The Portion of V’Zot Habracha

Sep 27, 2015

Photo credit: Yehoshua Halevi

וְזֹאת הַבְּרָכָה אֲשֶׁר בֵּרַךְ מֹשֶׁה אִישׁ הָאֱלֹהִים אֶת־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לִפְנֵי מוֹתוֹ׃

This is the blessing with which Moshe, the man of Hashem, bade the Israelites farewell before he died.

Deuteronomy 33:1

וּלְכֹל הַיָּד הַחֲזָקָה וּלְכֹל הַמּוֹרָא הַגָּדוֹל אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה מֹשֶׁה לְעֵינֵי כָּל־יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

and for all the great might and awesome power that Moshe displayed before all Yisrael.

Deuteronomy 34:12

V’Zot Habracha is the final portion of the Torah. In it, Moses blesses each of the tribes, as is customary in the Bible for parents to bless their children before dying. When Moses is done, God instructs him to ascend the mountain where he will survey the land before being “gathered to his fathers”. Finally, the portion — and the Torah — ends with a reckoning of what it was that made Moses so unique.

 

It should be noted that this portion is not read on the Sabbath. Rather, it is read on the holiday of Simchat Torah, in which the Torah reading cycle is completed and restarted, amid much joyous celebration.

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