Drash Cards for Nitzavim (5765)
by Marc Mangel
• All sages bu Sa’adiah Gaon include tsehuvah as one of the 613 mitzvot, but disagree where it is found.
• Rambam says that Ch 30, v2 the Torah refers to tsehuvah — confessing, regret, forsaking sin
•Ibn ben Baqya in Duties of the Heart says that Ch 30, v11-14 is incumbent upon all of us “this commandment”, “this instruction” — what is it?
• Commentators answer this with 1) the entire Torah; 2) all the commandments; 3) return to God
• Rav Soleveitchik says “God demands not tribute from man, but man himself — total and unreserved offering of soul and body is the foundation of Judaism”.
• We don’t need to go anywhere to return to God
• Harold Kushner asks “What does Moses receive at Mount Sinai?” and gives the answer “Permission to bear what is within him — and all of us — and God saying ‘Return to me’ “