Rabbi Sherman’s Weekly Torah Commentary – July 30-31, 2021 (22 Av 5781)

July 30-31, 2021                     Parashat Eikev
22 Av 5781

Remembering our past mistakes can help guide and strengthen our future choices.

In this week’s reading, Moses reminds the Israelites of the shameful incident of the Golden Calf. While Moses was receiving the stone tablets on Mt Sinai, the Israelites were worshiping a golden calf at the base of the mountain. Not long after the redemption from slavery in Egypt, the community had already lost its faith! In this retelling, Moses notes that the people were offered a second chance: Moses himself inscribed a new set of tablets and offered it to the people as a sign of the covenant.

What a powerful image—that we preserve both the memory of our misbehavior and the memory of our second chance! Rabbi Natan Fenner writes: “It holds many lessons about reconciliation and spiritual realignment, about how we may carry the legacy of our past misdeeds and acknowledge our losses and brokenness.” Our tradition does not permit us to forget this critical moment in our collective history; rather, it compels us to remember it and to allow it to shape our behavior.

Please join in this week’s Shabbat celebrations on Channel 1960 or in the Synagogue
Friday at 4:15 PM: Kabbalat Shabbat & Ma’ariv (Evening Service); Blessings in Dining Room at 5:15
Saturday at 10:00 AM: Shabbat Shacharit (Morning Service); Blessings in Dining Room at 12:15

Candle lighting time for the city of Mission Viejo: Friday evening at 7:34 PM
Shabbat ends Saturday evening at 8:32 PM

Shabbat Shalom!                                          Rabbi Sherman