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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

VaYelech 52-4

And (he) walked

Deuteronomy 31:10-13

Assemble the people‹men, women and children, and the aliens living in your towns‹so they can listen and learn to fear the LORD your God and follow carefully all the words of this law. Their children, who do not know this law, must hear it and learn to fear the LORD your God as long as you live in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess."

Deut. 31:12-13 NIV

Why women come before children?

Once every seven years, on the Sabbatical year, during the feast of the Tabernacles, everyone had to gather in the place where the temple was and listen to the reading of the Torah. The Torah mentions those who had to be present, and in this occasion, we see that women are mentioned before children, not as in 29:11 where children are placed before women in the list.

This teaches us that when it is about the reading of the Torah, mothers have preference over their children, because they have to know well what to do at home and also to teach their children to be obedient to the commandments. It is good for women, not only men, to study the Torah.

This text mentions four purposes for this reading every seventh year. It is for men, women, children and converts to listen, to learn to fear the Eternal and to be careful to observe the Torah, and for their children who don't know the Torah also to listen and learn to fear the Eternal.

How important it is to read the Scriptures to one's children.

 If you have the opportunity to do it, read some verses of the Torah every day in presence of your children. When our children were living at home we did it at the table after breakfast and on Shabbat we not only listened to the Parashah (portion) reading of the week in Hebrew, but we also read it at home with our children and we explained it so that everyone could understand it.



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