Monthly Archives: ‍‍ שבט / אדר א' תשעו

Shabbat Shalom Message

Dear Girls and Boys,

At the very end of this week’s Torah Parsha, פרשת משפטים, the Nation of Israel all say together as one, “Everything that Hashem has spoken, נעשה ונשמעwe will do and we will hear.” “We will do,” of course means that we will follow all the commands of the Torah, but what does “we will hear” mean? I know you are thinking but  shouldn’t hearing come first? How do I know what to do if I don’t first hear it? Excellent question!
Our great Torah scholars, חכמנו, explain that “hearing” in this verse, פסוק, does not mean to hear a sound. It means “We will study, learn and understand.” It is like when we say to a friend, “I hear you,” you really mean “I understand you.” So too with all of our mitzvot, מצות. We will of course do them since they come from Hashem. But Hashem wants us to also study, learn and understand them. that only comes after I start doing them first. Then when we do the mitzvot, they have much more meaning to us.
Every command by Hashem has very important lessons for us, and Hashem wants us to know the meaning behind everything we do in Judaism. But even if I study for many years and still don’t know everything about a mitzvah or understand it completely, I still must do it. Just like when a doctor gives us medicine to take. We should take it, even if we don’t fully understand yet how it works. However, as we learn more about science, perhaps then we will fully understand how the medicine works.
May you have a very enjoyable and restful שבת שלום
Rabbi Kaplan