Todah Le’HaShem Part II

Updated: May 27, 2020

Article from: Alon HaKodesh (3) Be Honest with Yourself Edition

Today’s politically correct world is quick to conclude that talks of Biblical rebuke are negative, yet much of the holy Torah is just that—Mussar (i.e. rebuke).  It may surprise some to learn that in his commentary on the Talmud (Shabbat 32b), Rashi clearly states that the words Mussar and Torah are synonymous.  As Rav Nissim Yagen zt’l once said “even the exciting wedding day between Am Yisrael and HaShem Yitbarach began with the Ten Commandments that forced us to change everything overnight.”  Whether it’s the difficulties experienced by our forefathers, the intricate details of the Torah commandments, or the heavy price we pay for disobeying either of them, the holy Torah is the instructions book to life. 

""...וְהָיָ֣ה עֵ֣קֶב תִּשְׁמְע֗וּן אֵ֤ת הַמִּשְׁפָּטִים֙ הָאֵ֔לֶּה וּשְׁמַרְתֶּ֥ם וַעֲשִׂיתֶ֖ם אֹתָ֑ם “This shall be the reward (Eikev עקב) when you hearken to these ordinances, and you observe and perform them;” (Deuteronomy 7:12)

Unlike most of the Torah, Parashat Eikev (i.e. The Reward) opens in an unusually delightful way, whereby Moshe Rabbeinu tells Am Yisrael about the divine promise of extraordinary rewards.