In this webinar, Rabbi Ari Enkin discusses the Torah portion of Teruma (Exodus 25:1-27:19) which discusses the construction of the Mishkan, the portable synagogue that accompanied the Jewish people during their 40 years of wandering.
This past Shabbat we read the Torah portion of Ha’azinu (Deuteronomy 32:1-52) but this Shabbat was much more significant than many others. That is because this past Shabbat was also “Shabbat Teshuva”, meaning “The Shabbat of Repentance” because it is the Shabbat between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur – a Shabbat whose entire theme is that of repentance.
Among the many different mitzvot discussed in Ki Teitzei is the lesser-known mitzva of “Shilu’ach Ha’ken” – sending away the mother bird. The mitzva of Shilu’ach Ha’ken goes something like this: If one happens upon a bird’s nest while the mother bird is roosting her eggs or chicks, one is required to shoo away the mother bird before one may take the eggs or chicks for oneself.
The Jews are about to complete their forty year journey and enter the Land of Israel! G-d is now giving them a choice: they can choose blessings by listening to the Torah, or can choose a cursed life if they do not obey His commandments. When G-d offers them this choice, He uses the word 'today,' indicating that it is a decision that applies to every Jew every single day. Which do you choose?