Weekly D'rash and Parsha Ki Tavo

The Weekly D'rash and the Scriptures that we will be reading this Shabbat for Ki Tavo from Rabbi Howard Silverman:


TORAH ~ Deuteronomy 26:1-29:9 (29:8 in Tenach)

HAFTARAH ~ Isaiah 60:1-22 BRIT CHADASHA ~ Revelation 22:1-9



We are living in days of great uncertainty. For most people, these are especially challenging times because there is no hope beyond this world. When I read the Book of Deuteronomy, I see hope! There is hope for the generation of Israelites entering the Promised Land, but also hope in a final consummation of the plan of God. The Torah portions for the next two weeks focus on the future, but the portion for this week is about the hope of the present generation who are entering the Promised Land. We read about the blessings of the Land, the accountability of the people to God, and the warning of what will happen if the people disregard the commandments of God. At the beginning of the portion, we read a command about bringing the firstfruits of the produce of the ground as an offering. This was a special offering that occurred every three years. It was an offering of thanksgiving because they were commanded to remember their journey story of redemption. The "fruit of the soil" probably referred to anything that grows in the ground. Last week, we mentioned that people walking in the land could eat the grain and the grapes grown by others (Deut 23:24–25). Grain and grapes represent two staples of the "fruit of the earth." When the people brought food grown in the land as an offering, they were acknowledging God as the provider and blesser of people. The offering was to be disbursed to those who had no means to enjoy the fruit of the soil: the Levites, aliens, orphans, and widows. In the economy of God, we learn that we are our brothers' and sisters' keepers. Clearly, there was a responsibility to care for those who could not enjoy the provisions of the Land either because they were Levites or they were destitute. The desire of God was that this special offering be disbursed so that these vulnerable groups of people be satisfied in the land—just like everyone else. Notice in chapter 27 that the list of curses is almost all for actions done to other people. We learned last week that it was not only every three years, but an ongoing way of life in which people took care of "aliens, orphans and widows" (Deut 24:19–21). In the New Covenant Scriptures, we read that while we were helpless and enemies, God delivered us and transferred us from the domain of darkness to the Kingdom of Yeshua (Rom 5:6–10; Col 1:13). These are not simply theological beliefs or words in a doctrinal statement. They are reminders of what God has done for us in order that we would bless others with what we have. Blessing others with what we have is not just a good thing to do. Rather it is an act of worship. The way it is written in the Scriptures, if we do not bless others we are denying them blessings from God! We are to be the conduit of God's blessing to others. That is how we have a living hope for today. Our world will always have challenges until the final return of Yeshua. In the meantime, we can experience the presence of the future by both giving and receiving blessing from others. When we live this way, we are worshipping God all of the time and truly being an image bearer of God in all that we do. It brings satisfaction and fulfillment to be the blesser, and it brings tremendous thanksgiving, humility, and transformation to those who receive. May we be the conduits of blessing today. Shabbat Shalom, Rabbi Howard TORAH READING: DEUTERONOMY 26:1 – 29:9 (29:8 in Tenach) 26:1 "Then it shall be, when you enter the land which the L-RD your G-d gives you as an inheritance, and you possess it and live in it, 2 that you shall take some of the first of all the produce of the ground which you bring in from your land that the L-RD your G-d gives you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place where the L-RD your G-d chooses to establish His name. 3 "You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time and say to him, 'I declare this day to the L-RD my G-d that I have entered the land which the L-RD swore to our fathers to give us.' 4 "Then the priest shall take the basket from your hand and set it down before the altar of the L-RD your G-d. 5 "You shall answer and say before the L-RD your G-d, 'My father was a wandering Aramean, and he went down to Egypt and sojourned there, few in number; but there he became a great, mighty and populous nation. 6 'And the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, and imposed hard labor on us. 7 'Then we cried to the L-RD, the G-d of our fathers, and the L-RD heard our voice and saw our affliction and our toil and our oppression; 8 and the L-RD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with great terror and with signs and wonders; 9 and He has brought us to this place and has given us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 'Now behold, I have brought the first of the produce of the ground which You, O L-RD have given me.' And you shall set it down before the L-RD your G-d, and worship before the L-RD your G-d; 11 and you and the Levite and the alien who is among you shall rejoice in all the good which the L-RD your G-d has given you and your household. 12 "When you have finished paying all the tithe of your increase in the third year, the year of tithing, then you shall give it to the Levite, to the stranger, to the orphan and to the widow, that they may eat in your towns and be satisfied. 13 "You shall say before the L-RD your G-d, 'I have removed the sacred portion from my house, and also have given it to the Levite and the alien, the orphan and the widow, according to all Your commandments which You have commanded me; I have not transgressed or forgotten any of Your commandments. 14 'I have not eaten of it while mourning, nor have I removed any of it while I was unclean, nor offered any of it to the dead. I have listened to the voice of the L-RD my G-d; I have done according to all that You have commanded me. 15 'Look down from Your holy habitation, from heaven, and bless Your people Israel, and the ground which You have given us, a land flowing with milk and honey, as You swore to our fathers.' 16 "This day the L-RD your G-d commands you to do these statutes and ordinances. You shall therefore be careful to do them with all your heart and with all your soul. 17 "You have today declared the L-RD to be your G-d, and that you would walk in His ways and keep His statutes, His commandments and His ordinances, and listen to His voice. 18 "The L-RD has today declared you to be His people, a treasured possession, as He promised you, and that you should keep all His commandments; 19 and that He will set you high above all nations which He has made, for praise, fame, and honor; and that you shall be a consecrated people to the L-RD your G-d, as He has spoken." 27:1 Then Moses and the elders of Israel charged the people, saying, "Keep all the commandments which I command you today. 2 "So it shall be on the day when you cross the Jordan to the land which the L-RD your G-d gives you, that you shall set up for yourself large stones and coat them with lime 3 and write on them all the words of this law, when you cross over, so that you may enter the land which the L-RD your G-d gives you, a land flowing with milk and honey, as the L-RD, the G-d of your fathers, promised you. 4 "So it shall be when you cross the Jordan, you shall set up on Mount Ebal, these stones, as I am commanding you today, and you shall coat them with lime. 5 "Moreover, you shall build there an altar to the L-RD your G-d, an altar of stones; you shall not wield an iron tool on them. 6 "You shall build the altar of the L-RD your G-d of uncut stones, and you shall offer on it burnt offerings to the L-RD your G-d; 7 and you shall sacrifice peace offerings and eat there, and rejoice before the L-RD your G-d. 8 "You shall write on the stones all the words of this law very distinctly." 9 Then Moses and the Levitical priests spoke to all Israel, saying, "Be silent and listen, O Israel! This day you have become a people for the L-RD your G-d. 10 "You shall therefore obey the L-RD your G-d, and do His commandments and His statutes which I command you today." 11 Moses also charged the people on that day, saying, 12 "When you cross the Jordan, these shall stand on Mount Gerizim to bless the people: Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph, and Benjamin. 13 "For the curse, these shall stand on Mount Ebal: Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali. 14 "The Levites shall then answer and say to all the men of Israel with a loud voice, 15 'Cursed is the man who makes an idol or a molten image, an abomination to the L-RD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.' And all the people shall answer and say, 'Amen.' 16 'Cursed is he who dishonors his father or mother.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 17 'Cursed is he who moves his neighbor's boundary mark.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 18 'Cursed is he who misleads a blind person on the road.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 19 'Cursed is he who distorts the justice due an alien, orphan, and widow.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 20 'Cursed is he who lies with his father's wife, because he has uncovered his father's skirt.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 21 'Cursed is he who lies with any animal.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 22 'Cursed is he who lies with his sister, the daughter of his father or of his mother.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 23 'Cursed is he who lies with his mother-in-law.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 24 'Cursed is he who strikes his neighbor in secret.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 25 'Cursed is he who accepts a bribe to strike down an innocent person.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 26 'Cursed is he who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.' 28:1 "Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the L-RD your G-d, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the L-RD your G-d will set you high above all the nations of the earth. 2 "All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the L-RD your G-d: 3 "Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the country. 4 "Blessed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground and the offspring of your beasts, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock. 5 "Blessed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. 6 "Blessed shall you be when you come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out. 7 "The L-RD shall cause your enemies who rise up against you to be defeated before you; they will come out against you one way and will flee before you seven ways. 8 "The L-RD will command the blessing upon you in your barns and in all that you put your hand to, and He will bless you in the land which the L-RD your G-d gives you. 9 "The L-RD will establish you as a holy people to Himself, as He swore to you, if you keep the commandments of the L-RD your G-d and walk in His ways. 10 "So all the peoples of the earth will see that you are called by the name of the L-RD, and they will be afraid of you. 11 "The L-RD will make you abound in prosperity, in the offspring of your body and in the offspring of your beast and in the produce of your ground, in the land which the L-RD swore to your fathers to give you. 12 "The L-RD will open for you His good storehouse, the heavens, to give rain to your land in its season and to bless all the work of your hand; and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow. 13 "The L-RD will make you the head and not the tail, and you only will be above, and you will not be underneath, if you listen to the commandments of the L-RD your G-d, which I charge you today, to observe them carefully, 14 and do not turn aside from any of the words which I command you today, to the right or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them. 15 "But it shall come about, if you do not obey the L-RD your G-d, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes with which I charge you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you: 16 "Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country. 17 "Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. 18 "Cursed shall be the offspring of your body and the produce of your ground, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock. 19 "Cursed shall you be when you come in, and cursed shall you be when you go out. 20 "The L-RD will send upon you curses, confusion, and rebuke, in all you undertake to do, until you are destroyed and until you perish quickly, on account of the evil of your deeds, because you have forsaken Me. 21 "The L-RD will make the pestilence cling to you until He has consumed you from the land where you are entering to possess it. 22 "The L-RD will smite you with consumption and with fever and with inflammation and with fiery heat and with the sword and with blight and with mildew, and they will pursue you until you perish. 23 "The heaven which is over your head shall be bronze, and the earth which is under you, iron. 24 "The L-RD will make the rain of your land powder and dust; from heaven it shall come down on you until you are destroyed. 25 "The L-RD shall cause you to be defeated before your enemies; you will go out one way against them, but you will flee seven ways before them, and you will be an example of terror to all the kingdoms of the earth. 26 "Your carcasses will be food to all birds of the sky and to the beasts of the earth, and there will be no one to frighten them away. 27 "The L-RD will smite you with the boils of Egypt and with tumors and with the scab and with the itch, from which you cannot be healed. 28 "The L-RD will smite you with madness and with blindness and with bewilderment of heart; 29 and you will grope at noon, as the blind man gropes in darkness, and you will not prosper in your ways; but you shall only be oppressed and robbed continually, with none to save you. 30 "You shall betroth a wife, but another man will violate her; you shall build a house, but you will not live in it; you shall plant a vineyard, but you will not use its fruit. 31 "Your ox shall be slaughtered before your eyes, but you will not eat of it; your donkey shall be torn away from you, and will not be restored to you; your sheep shall be given to your enemies, and you will have none to save you. 32 "Your sons and your daughters shall be given to another people, while your eyes look on and yearn for them continually; but there will be nothing you can do. 33 "A people whom you do not know shall eat up the produce of your ground and all your labors, and you will never be anything but oppressed and crushed continually. 34 "You shall be driven mad by the sight of what you see. 35 "The L-RD will strike you on the knees and legs with sore boils, from which you cannot be healed, from the sole of your foot to the crown of your head. 36 "The L-RD will bring you and your king, whom you set over you, to a nation which neither you nor your fathers have known, and there you shall serve other gods, wood and stone. 37 "You shall become a horror, a proverb, and a taunt among all the people where the L-RD drives you. 38 "You shall bring out much seed to the field but you will gather in little, for the locust will consume it. 39 "You shall plant and cultivate vineyards, but you will neither drink of the wine nor gather the grapes, for the worm will devour them. 40 "You shall have olive trees throughout your territory but you will not anoint yourself with the oil, for your olives will drop off. 41 "You shall have sons and daughters but they will not be yours, for they will go into captivity. 42 "The cricket shall possess all your trees and the produce of your ground. 43 "The alien who is among you shall rise above you higher and higher, but you will go down lower and lower. 44 "He shall lend to you, but you will not lend to him; he shall be the head, and you will be the tail. 45 "So all these curses shall come on you and pursue you and overtake you until you are destroyed, because you would not obey the L-RD your G-d by keeping His commandments and His statutes which He commanded you. 46 "They shall become a sign and a wonder on you and your descendants forever. 47 "Because you did not serve the L-RD your G-d with joy and a glad heart, for the abundance of all things; 48 therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the L-RD will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in the lack of all things; and He will put an iron yoke on your neck until He has destroyed you. 49 "The L-RD will bring a nation against you from afar, from the end of the earth, as the eagle swoops down, a nation whose language you shall not understand, 50 a nation of fierce countenance who will have no respect for the old, nor show favor to the young. 51 "Moreover, it shall eat the offspring of your herd and the produce of your ground until you are destroyed, who also leaves you no grain, new wine, or oil, nor the increase of your herd or the young of your flock until they have caused you to perish. 52 "It shall besiege you in all your towns until your high and fortified walls in which you trusted come down throughout your land, and it shall besiege you in all your towns throughout your land which the L-RD your G-d has given you. 53 "Then you shall eat the offspring of your own body, the flesh of your sons and of your daughters whom the L-RD your G-d has given you, during the siege and the distress by which your enemy will oppress you. 54 "The man who is refined and very delicate among you shall be hostile toward his brother and toward the wife he cherishes and toward the rest of his children who remain, 55 so that he will not give even one of them any of the flesh of his children which he will eat, since he has nothing else left, during the siege and the distress by which your enemy will oppress you in all your towns. 56 "The refined and delicate woman among you, who would not venture to set the sole of her foot on the ground for delicateness and refinement, shall be hostile toward the husband she cherishes and toward her son and daughter, 57 and toward her afterbirth which issues from between her legs and toward her children whom she bears; for she will eat them secretly for lack of anything else, during the siege and the distress by which your enemy will oppress you in your towns. 58 "If you are not careful to observe all the words of this law which are written in this book, to fear this honored and awesome name, the L-RD your G-d, 59 then the L-RD will bring extraordinary plagues on you and your descendants, even severe and lasting plagues, and miserable and chronic sicknesses. 60 "He will bring back on you all the diseases of Egypt of which you were afraid, and they will cling to you. 61 "Also every sickness and every plague which, not written in the book of this law, the L-RD will bring on you until you are destroyed. 62 "Then you shall be left few in number, whereas you were as numerous as the stars of heaven, because you did not obey the L-RD your G-d. 63 "It shall come about that as the L-RD delighted over you to prosper you, and multiply you, so the L-RD will delight over you to make you perish and destroy you; and you will be torn from the land where you are entering to possess it. 64 "Moreover, the L-RD will scatter you among all peoples, from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth; and there you shall serve other gods, wood and stone, which you or your fathers have not known. 65 "Among those nations you shall find no rest, and there will be no resting place for the sole of your foot; but there the L-RD will give you a trembling heart, failing of eyes, and despair of soul. 66 "So your life shall hang in doubt before you; and you will be in dread night and day, and shall have no assurance of your life. 67 "In the morning you shall say, 'Would that it were evening!' And at evening you shall say, 'Would that it were morning!' because of the dread of your heart which you dread, and for the sight of your eyes which you will see. 68 "The L-RD will bring you back to Egypt in ships, by the way about which I spoke to you, 'You will never see it again!' And there you will offer yourselves for sale to your enemies as male and female slaves, but there will be no buyer." 29:1 These are the words of the covenant which the L-RD commanded Moses to make with the sons of Israel in the land of Moab, besides the covenant which He had made with them at Horeb. 2 And Moses summoned all Israel and said to them, "You have seen all that the L-RD did before your eyes in the land of Egypt to Pharaoh and all his servants and all his land; 3 the great trials which your eyes have seen, those great signs and wonders. 4 "Yet to this day the L-RD has not given you a heart to know, nor eyes to see, nor ears to hear. 5 "I have led you forty years in the wilderness; your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandal has not worn out on your foot. 6 "You have not eaten bread, nor have you drunk wine or strong drink, in order that you might know that I am the L-RD your G-d. 7 "When you reached this place, Sihon the king of Heshbon and Og the king of Bashan came out to meet us for battle, but we defeated them; 8 and we took their land and gave it as an inheritance to the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of the Manassites. 9 "So keep the words of this covenant to do them, that you may prosper in all that you do. HAFTARAH READING: ISAIAH 60:1-22 60:1 "Arise, shine; for your light has come, And the glory of the L-RD has risen upon you. 2 "For behold, darkness will cover the earth And deep darkness the peoples; But the L-RD will rise upon you And His glory will appear upon you. 3 "Nations will come to your light, And kings to the brightness of your rising. 4 "Lift up your eyes round about and see; They all gather together, they come to you. Your sons will come from afar, And your daughters will be carried in the arms. 5 "Then you will see and be radiant, And your heart will thrill and rejoice; Because the abundance of the sea will be turned to you, The wealth of the nations will come to you. 6 "A multitude of camels will cover you, The young camels of Midian and Ephah; All those from Sheba will come; They will bring gold and frankincense, And will bear good news of the praises of the L-RD. 7 "All the flocks of Kedar will be gathered together to you, The rams of Nebaioth will minister to you; They will go up with acceptance on My altar, And I shall glorify My glorious house. 8 "Who are these who fly like a cloud And like the doves to their lattices? 9 "Surely the coastlands will wait for Me; And the ships of Tarshish will come first, To bring your sons from afar, Their silver and their gold with them, For the name of the L-RD your G-d, And for the Holy One of Israel because He has glorified you. 10 "Foreigners will build up your walls, And their kings will minister to you; For in My wrath I struck you, And in My favor I have had compassion on you. 11 "Your gates will be open continually; They will not be closed day or night, So that men may bring to you the wealth of the nations, With their kings led in procession. 12 "For the nation and the kingdom which will not serve you will perish, And the nations will be utterly ruined. 13 "The glory of Lebanon will come to you, The juniper, the box tree and the cypress together, To beautify the place of My sanctuary; And I shall make the place of My feet glorious. 14 "The sons of those who afflicted you will come bowing to you, And all those who despised you will bow themselves at the soles of your feet; And they will call you the city of the L-RD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel. 15 "Whereas you have been forsaken and hated With no one passing through, I will make you an everlasting pride, A joy from generation to generation. 16 "You will also suck the milk of nations And suck the breast of kings; Then you will know that I, the L-RD, am your Savior And your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob. 17 "Instead of bronze I will bring gold, And instead of iron I will bring silver, And instead of wood, bronze, And instead of stones, iron. And I will make peace your administrators And righteousness your overseers. 18 "Violence will not be heard again in your land, Nor devastation or destruction within your borders; But you will call your walls salvation, and your gates praise. 19 "No longer will you have the sun for light by day, Nor for brightness will the moon give you light; But you will have the L-RD for an everlasting light, And your G-d for your glory. 20 "Your sun will no longer set, Nor will your moon wane; For you will have the L-RD for an everlasting light, And the days of your mourning will be over. 21 "Then all your people will be righteous; They will possess the land forever, The branch of My planting, The work of My hands, That I may be glorified. 22 "The smallest one will become a clan, And the least one a mighty nation. I, the L-RD, will hasten it in its time." B’RIT CHADASHAH READING: REVELATION 22:1-9 22:1 Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb, 2in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3There will no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him; 4they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads. 5 And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever. 6And he said to me, “These words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show to His bond-servants the things which must soon take place. 7“And behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.” 8I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed me these things. 9But he said to me, “Do not do that. I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God.”

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