The Impact of Torah

פרשת וילך
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Written by:
Rabbi Rick Schindelheim
Access editable doc with student handouts:

לימוד ועבודה פנימית

10 And Moses instructed them as follows: Every seventh year, the year set for remission, at the Feast of Booths, 

11 When all Israel comes to appear before your God in the place that [God] will choose, you shall read this Teaching aloud in the presence of all Israel.        

12 Gather the people—men, women, children, and the strangers in your communities—that they may hear and so learn to revere your God and to observe faithfully every word of this Teaching.

13 Their children, too, who have not had the experience, shall hear and learn to revere your God as long as they live in the land that you are about to cross the Jordan to possess.

It is a positive commandment to gather together the entire Jewish people - men, women, and children - after every Sabbatical year when they ascend for the pilgrimage holiday and to read so that they hear passages from the Torah that encourage them to perform mitzvot and strengthen them in the true faith, as (Deuteronomy 31:10-12) states: "At the end of a seven-year period, at the time of the Sabbatical year on the Sukkot holiday when all Israel come to appear... gather the nation, the men, the women, the children, and your stranger in your gates...."

 וַיְצַו מֹשֶׁה, אוֹתָם לֵאמֹר:  מִקֵּץ שֶׁבַע שָׁנִים, בְּמֹעֵד שְׁנַת הַשְּׁמִטָּה--בְּחַג הַסֻּכּוֹת.  

יא בְּבוֹא כָל-יִשְׂרָאֵל, לֵרָאוֹת אֶת-פְּנֵי יְקוָק אֱלֹקיךָ, בַּמָּקוֹם, אֲשֶׁר יִבְחָר:  תִּקְרָא אֶת-הַתּוֹרָה הַזֹּאת, נֶגֶד כָּל-יִשְׂרָאֵל--בְּאָזְנֵיהֶם.  

יב הַקְהֵל אֶת-הָעָם, הָאֲנָשִׁים וְהַנָּשִׁים וְהַטַּף, וְגֵרְךָ, אֲשֶׁר בִּשְׁעָרֶיךָ--לְמַעַן יִשְׁמְעוּ וּלְמַעַן יִלְמְדוּ, וְיָרְאוּ אֶת-יְקוָק אֱלֹקיכֶם, וְשָׁמְרוּ לַעֲשׂוֹת, אֶת-כָּל-דִּבְרֵי הַתּוֹרָה הַזֹּאת. 

יג וּבְנֵיהֶם אֲשֶׁר לֹא-יָדְעוּ, יִשְׁמְעוּ וְלָמְדוּ--לְיִרְאָה, אֶת-יְקוָק אֱלֹקיכֶם:  כָּל-הַיָּמִים, אֲשֶׁר אַתֶּם חַיִּים עַל-הָאֲדָמָה, אֲשֶׁר אַתֶּם עֹבְרִים אֶת-הַיַּרְדֵּן שָׁמָּה, לְרִשְׁתָּהּ.

משנה תורה - הלכות חגיגה פרק ג הלכה א

מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה לְהַקְהִיל כָּל יִשְׂרָאֵל אֲנָשִׁים וְנָשִׁים וְטַף בְּכָל מוֹצָאֵי שְׁמִטָּה בַּעֲלוֹתָם לָרֶגֶל 

וְלִקְרוֹת בְּאָזְנֵיהֶם מִן הַתּוֹרָה פָּרָשִׁיּוֹת שֶׁהֵן מְזָרְזוֹת אוֹתָן בְּמִצְוֹת וּמְחַזְּקוֹת יְדֵיהֶם בְּדַת הָאֱמֶת

שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים לא י) "מִקֵּץ שֶׁבַע שָׁנִים בְּמֹעֵד שְׁנַת הַשְּׁמִטָּה בְּחַג הַסֻּכּוֹת" (דברים לא יא) "בְּבוֹא כָל יִשְׂרָאֵל לֵרָאוֹת" וְגוֹ' (דברים לא יב) "הַקְהֵל אֶת הָעָם הָאֲנָשִׁים וְהַנָּשִׁים וְהַטַּף וְגֵרְךָ אֲשֶׁר בִּשְׁעָרֶיךָ" וְגוֹ':

  1. Imagine that you went back in time and attended/participated in a הקהל. What images do you see? What sounds do you hear? What is it like being there?
  2. Who is הקהל for and what is it supposed to accomplish?

    The Rambam (above) describes the sections of Torah that are to be read as:

    פָּרָשִׁיּוֹת שֶׁהֵן מְזָרְזוֹת אוֹתָן בְּמִצְוֹת וּמְחַזְּקוֹת יְדֵיהֶם בְּדַת הָאֱמֶת"

  3. What is a section or piece of Torah that has inspired (מזרז) you to do mitzvot, to strengthen (מחזק) your faith in Torah or your relationship with Hashem?
  4. What was/is it about that particular Torah that moved you?
  5. If you were to study that Torah right now, what would it say to you? What would you say back to it?

Notes to the teacher

  • This is the place to make suggestions to the teacher of different ways they may choose to facilitate this limmud
  • Or particular grade levels or sensitivities to take into account
  • Or anything else you think is important for the teacher to know

עבודת המורה

  • This is the place to raise some questions that make sure the teacher tests the limmud on themselves or others
  • Could be a general question like - which part of the limmud resonated most for you? Which question was the hardest for you to answer?
  • Or questions anticipating students’ responses- What do you think students will say for X or Y? To what extent are you open to being surprised?
Download with student handouts:
Please help others by sharing how you used the resource, how you adapted it (link to your own version!) and what worked more or less well. You can also post questions that Lifnai Vlifnim staff or community members will try to respond to.

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