Pearls of Rashi: Parshas Eikev II

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In this week’s Torah portion, Eikev, the Torah says[1] “For if you keep all these commandments which I command you to do them, to love the Lord your God, to walk in all of His ways, and to cleave to Him …” Rashi cites the words “to walk in all of His ways,” and gives the following explanation. “Hashem is merciful, so too must you be merciful. He performs acts of kindness, so too you must bestow loving-kindness.” In other words, the Torah is telling us to follow all of Hashem’s ways.

We find that Divine speech can act. For example, we find that[2] “the world was created with ten utterances.” This means that G-d created the world with His speech. Since we are commanded “to walk in all of His ways,” it would seem that our speech can also accomplish actions. How is this possible?

This can be done under two conditions. We are taught that[3] “words which come from the heart, will enter the heart of the person to whom they have been spoken.” This means that the Torah assures us if we speak words of Torah and Mitzvos, which we sincerely believe and feel, they will have their desired effect. Under these circumstances, our terms are capable of acting.

The second condition is to fear Hashem, i.e., to feel His presence and stand in awe of Him continually. As stated in the Gemorah[4], “the words of one who has fear of heaven are heeded.”

There is an important message which we must take from the above. Each of us can accomplish great things through our speech alone. We can all change the world by speaking to our fellows, and drawing them closer to Torah and Mitzvos. This is true provided that we make the proper decisions. Firstly, we must sincerely mean what we are saying. In addition to this, we must feel Hashem in our lives, to the extent that we stand in awe of Him. It is up to us. By conducting ourselves in the proper manner, we can transform this world into a dwelling place for Hashem with our speech.

I wish one and all a good Shabbos and a healthy summer. May we all merit the complete and final redemption now!

Rabbi Shmuel Mendelsohn

Adapted from Igros Kodesh Volume 15, Letter Number 5,429.

מוקדש לזכות כ”ק אדמו”ר נשיא דורנו מליובאוויטש

חיילי “צבאות השם” חיים ועדן עודד שיחיו מאריס
נדפס ע”י הוריהם
הרה”ת ר’ מנחם מענדל וזוגתו מרת חי’ מושקא שיחיו מאריס

[1]. Our Parshah, Devorim 11:22.

[2]. Pirkei Avos, Chapter 5, Mishnah 1.

[3]. See the Sefer Hayashar of Rabbeinu Tam, Gate 13.

[4]. Talmud Berachos, Page 6, b.

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