It’s Shabbat Shuvah – the Shabbat that falls in the midst of the High Holy Days – and this week we read Parashat Vayeilech. It’s a short portion, chapter 31 of Deuteronomy, and Moses gives his final charge to Joshua his successor and to the other leaders of Israel. He introduces the poetry we will read next week in Ha’azinu.
He said to them: I am now one hundred and twenty years old, I can no longer be active. Moreover, the LORD has said to me, “You shall not go across yonder Jordan.” – Deut. 31:2
The traditional Jewish blessing for birthdays comes from this verse of Torah. When we say to someone “May you live to be 120” we are not only wishing them a long life, but the other attributes of Moses as well. Moses was simultaneously a humble man and a great leader, a rare combination.
Now, the divrei Torah [words of Torah] from around the Internet!
This Poem – Rabbi Rachel Barenblat
Parashat Vayelech, Shabbat Shuvah – Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild
Someone Sees and Now We All See – Rabbi Amy Scheinerman
Parenting by the Parasha – Rabbi Eve Posen (VIDEO)
The Hidden Face – Rabbi David Kasher
Get Us To Safety – Rabbi Nina Mizrahi
Famous (Almost) Last Words – Rabbi Jason Parr