WWOT: Weekly Words of Torah – Parashat Bechukotai

To inspire, guide, engage, enrich, and empower Conservative Jewish Women
By Rabbi Ellen S. Wolintz-Fields, Executive Director, Women’s League For Conservative Judaism

This week, with the Torah reading of Parashat Bechukotai, we complete the reading of Sefer Vayikra, the book of Leviticus. Parashat Bechukotai, which means “my laws,” commences with a promise and a curse. If the Israelites follow God’s laws and commandments, God will bless them, and their land will be fertile, and there will be peace, and their enemies will not bother them. However, if God’s commandments are not followed, they will be punished. One section of Parashat Bechukotai is referred to as the tochechah, warnings or reproofs. Throughout Sefer Vayikra, the book of Leviticus, the children of Israel are told to be holy. We are now told the consequences of obedience and disobedience. The blessings are in 10 verses, and the curses are written in 28 verses.

Have you ever noticed that, after a conversation, meeting or event, people might offer compliments, but the only comment you might remember is the complaint?  Or, how often do you receive complaints from people, and yet the statements of praise seem lacking?

Let us all remember that we catch more bees with honey than with vinegar and, if we want to interest people in being active and participating, we should be positive in our behavior, speech, and attitudes. Let us all see and provide more blessings each day.

Weekly Words of Torah is a brief paragraph prepared weekly by our new Executive Director, Rabbi Ellen S. Wolintz-Fields, presented in our “This Week @ Women’s League.” WWOT will provide meaningful thoughts related to the Weekly Torah Portion, an event on the Calendar, a Prayer, or something of Jewish interest, to inspire, guide, engage, enrich, and empower Conservative Jewish Women. If you have any particular interest in future topics, or want to send Rabbi Wolintz-Fields an email, you can contact her at ewolintz-fields@wlcj.org. Read previous Weekly Words of Torah here.