For Shabbat of August 24, 2019
Eikev, (עֵקֶב) — Hebrew for “if [you follow],” the second word in the parashah and is the 46th weekly Torah portion (פָּרָשָׁה, parashah) in the annual cycle of Torah reading and the third in the Book of Deuteronomy. It comprises Deuteronomy 7:12–11:25
Pastor Isaac’s whiteboard Breakdown:
Torah Parsha Eikev Summary
In the Parshah of Eikev (“Because”), Moses continues his closing address to the children of Israel, promising them that if they will fulfill the commandments (mitzvot) of the Torah, they will prosper in the Land they are about to conquer and settle in keeping with God’s promise to their forefathers.
Moses also rebukes them for their failings in their first generation as a people, recalling their worship of the Golden Calf, the rebellion of Korach, the sin of the spies, their angering of God at Taveirah, Massah and Kivrot Hataavah (“The Graves of Lust”). “You have been rebellious against God,” he says to them, “since the day I knew you.” But he also speaks of God’s forgiveness of their sins, and the Second Tablets which God inscribed and gave to them following their repentance.
Their forty years in the desert, says Moses to the people, during which G‑d sustained them with daily manna from heaven, was to teach them “that man does not live on bread alone, but by the utterance of God’s mouthdoes man live.”
Moses describes the land they are about to enter as “flowing with milk and honey,” blessed with the “seven kinds” (wheat, barley, grapevines, figs,pomegranates, olive oil and dates), and as the place that is the focus of God’s providence of His world. He commands them to destroy the idols of the land’s former masters, and to beware lest they become haughty and begin to believe that “my power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.”
A key passage in our Parshah is the second chapter of the Shema, which repeats the fundamental mitzvot enumerated in the Shema’s first chapter, and describes the rewards of fulfilling G‑d’s commandments and the adverse results (famine and exile) of their neglect. It is also the source of the precept of prayer, and includes a reference to the resurrection of the dead in the messianic age.
This week’s haftorah is the second of a series of seven “haftorot of Consolation.” These seven haftarot commence on the Shabbat following Tisha b’Av and continue until Rosh Hashanah.
The exiled Jewish people express their concern that G‑d has abandoned them. God reassures them that it is not so, comparing His love and mercy for His people to that of a mother for her children, and even greater than that, too.
The prophet Isaiah then touchingly describes the ingathering of the exiles which will occur with the Messiah‘s arrival and returning to the initial subject matter of this haftorah, that of the Jewish people’s complaint of being abandoned by God, he reminds them of their rebellious behavior that brought about the exile and suffering. He concludes with encouraging words, reminding us of what had happened to our ancestors, Abraham and Sarah. Just as they were blessed with a child when they had all but given up hope, so too, God will send us the Messiah.
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Torah Parashah teaching with video and audio and illustrations by Rabbi Isaac. © 2019 Assembly of Called-Out Believers. Use by Permission.