Torah Commentary

Torah Commentary

Even if You Don't Listen, the Voice Will Still Be Heard

In a different place, long ago, in the core of Eikev, we can hear the slow, ungainly, quiet steps of Moses as he descends from the mountain, holding the two tablets of the covenant in both of his reverent hands. He holds them with two hands and breaks them with two hands.

To Be Worthy

It is a paradox, really. People of real worth tend to have worth because of their belief in their unworthiness. That's one of Moses's messages to the Israelites in this week's Torah portion, Eikev.

Live on Bread, But Not on Bread Alone

In Parashat Eikev, we read: “A human being does not live on bread alone…” (Deut. 8:3). Found on inspirational posters, T-shirts, and in the titles of a great many cookbooks, this short statement constitutes one of the most well-known phrases from Eikev and from the Book of Deuteronomy as a whole. The phrase has come to mean that mere physical sustenance is not sufficient for a life of fulfillment; rather, people need and desire spiritual and cultural nourishment as well. Many Jewish commentaries have noted that, in context, this phrase actually insinuates close to the opposite of our conventional understanding; rather, that human beings can survive on things other than bread.