Summary of The Weekly Torah Reading:
Note: The Shabbos Torah Reading is divided into 7 sections. Each section
is called an Aliya [literally: Go up] since for each Aliya, one person
"goes up" to make a bracha [blessing] on the Torah Reading.
Sefer Devarim is called "Mishneh Torah - The Review of the Torah" because it
repeats over 100 mitzvos already mandated in the previous 4 Books. Rav S.R.
Hirsch explains that of the 199 Mitzvos commanded in this book, more than 70
are new. The repeated mitzvos focus on areas that will be of greater
immediate concern as they encounter the 7 Nations. For example, the
prohibition against idol worship. Although already taught, it needed to be
reiterated as the Jews would confront the inhabitants of Canaan, who were
idolatrous. Those mitzvos whose application was the same, whether in the
desert or in the Land, are not reviewed. In Parshas Vaeschanan Moshe
continues his final instructions to the Bnai Yisroel.
1st & 2nd Aliyot:
Moshe beseeched Hashem to enter the Land. However, he
seemingly blamed the nation when his request was turned down. Moshe explained
the foundation of our divine mission, which will be recognized by the other
nations. Moshe stressed allegiance to Hashem and the consequences to ourselves
and our children if we do not keep the law.
3rd & 4th Aliyot:
Moshe designated the Cities of Refuge, and reviewed the
entire experience of Revelation.
4th, 5th & 6th Aliyot:
Moshe stressed the reaction of the nation after te
giving of the Torah, and forewarned them not deviate from the Torah, either to
the right or the to the left. The first paragraph of Shema is recorded.
(6:10-15) Moshe warned the people about the dangers of prosperity, and
directed them to keep the commandments and remember the Exodus. Moshe
forewarned them about the dangers of assimilation and told them to always
remember that they are the Chosen People.
Parsha Summary by Rabbi Aron Tendler