V’Zot HaBrachah: Final Blessings

“V’zot HaBrachah” “And this is the blessing.” (Devarim 33:1) Why was Moshe given the special opportunity to give a final blessing to Bnai Yisrael? The Midrash in Devarim Rabbah 11:3 depicts a conversation that occurred between Moshe and famous biblical personalities in order to expose the underlying reasons for this honor having been bestowed on Moshe. Adam said to Moshe: “I’m greater than you because I was created in the image of God!” Moshe responded that he was superior to Adam because God’s radiance was within him. Noah said to Moshe: “I’m greater than you because I was saved from the generation of the flood.” Moshe responded that he was superior to Noah because Noah was only able to save himself. Moshe was able to save both himself and Bnai Yisrael at the time of the golden calf. Avraham said to Moshe: “I provided hospitality to all people that passed by.” Moshe responded that he was superior to Avraham because he provided hospitality in the wilderness whereas Avraham had provided hospitality in an inhabited land.

  • What does this Midrash expose about the rabbinic view of Moshe as a leader?
  • What does this Midrash demonstrate about the significance of this final Brachah?

May we all be blessed with the Brachah of health and happiness for this new year ahead. Chazak Chazak V’Nitchazek!

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