Exodus 19:1-8, 20:1-14
On Shavuot, we celebrate the giving of Torah. God brought us out of slavery so that we might be given the gift of Torah, which in turn we would share with the world. The reading for this day includes the Ten Commandments, re-enacting this climactic moment in Jewish history and establishing the covenantal relationship between God and the Jewish people. It is traditional for the Book of Ruth to be read on Shavuot. The story of Ruth takes place during the harvest, which reminds us that Shavuot is also a Festival, when our ancestors brought the first fruits of the harvest to the Temple. Ruth, by converting to Judaism, reminds us that each of us makes the choice to accept Torah into our lives. The reading of Ruth has served to elevate the status of converts (Jews-by-Choice) in Reform Judaism.