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Parshat Shlach

Dear STOCS Friend:


Parshat Shelach presents a challenging perspective on Eretz Yisroel. The Jewish people, just weeks away from entering the land promised to Abraham and his descendants, are filled with doubts about what awaits them. They ask Moshe to appoint spies to scout the land and confirm its nature.

Unfortunately, the spies emphasized the negative parts of their scouting report. Due to this the Jewish people's hopes and aspirations were diminished greatly.

Rabbi Yaakov Medan writes: “The nation meanwhile had spent forty days in great anticipation. The division of the inheritances and the list of economic resources which each tribe would receive – on one hand, and details of the military challenge ahead – on the other, were the main topics of conversation. We may assume that after Moshe's declaration, "See, the Lord your God has given the land before you; arise and inherit as the Lord, God of your forefathers, has spoken. Do not be afraid and do not fear" (Devarim 1:21), the nation expected encouraging news. The depressed and terrorized appearance of the returning emissaries broke the tension. Fright spread like wildfire. For a moment, it appeared that Calev would be able to extinguish it, but the bitter reality soon became apparent. The mighty hero's words were too few and too late. The crying that night became a crying for all generations.”

Today, many are quick to accept and believe anything negative about Israel without verifying the source or accuracy of the information. We should learn from the mistakes of the spies and remember Hashem's reassurance to the Jewish people: "Do not fear." This is the land Hashem promised to Abraham and his descendants, a good and holy land created specifically for Am Yisroel.

I look forward to seeing you in shul this Shabbas!  

Shabbat Shalom!

Rabbi Shore


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