Omer Learning 2018: Day 49 | Parashah: V’Zot HaBerachah

Today is 49 days, which is 7 weeks of the Omer

Instructions for counting the omer are found on our Omer Overview Page. You can find the specific blessing for today at

We’re dedicating a new Sefer Torah on the first day of Shavuot. In honor of this joyous occasion, we’re using the counting of the Omer to take a whirlwind trip through the Torah

Today’s portion is V’Zot HaBerachah from the book of Deuteronomy. Today’s insight was generously provided by Joe and Kitty G.

Verses of note: Deuteronomy 33:3 – 5

What caught your attention in this parashah?

Verse 4 is one that is traditionally taught to all children early in Hebrew school, which we accept as almost a nursery rhyme; “Moses taught us the Torah, as the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob”. I did not know it came from here, and indeed had not thought about it for perhaps 65 years.

What’s one explanation for these verses?

In Verses 3 and 4, Moses states that the Israelites “followed in Your steps, accepting Your pronouncements”, and then apparently Israel responds that Moses charged (commanded) us with the Torah, making it our prime heritage. So then, says Verse 5, God “became King in Jeshurun (among the upright)……” The Creator of the Universe did not need Israel, or any other segment of humanity, to create existence from nothingness. But to become a force in the lives of mankind, to thus become a moral force rather than a merely physical one, i.e. to become a true king, he needed the assent of mankind. And this, it would appear, was and is Israel’s role.