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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

Vezot HaBrachah 54-7

And this is the blessing

Deuteronomy 34:1-12

Then Moses climbed Mount Nebo from the plains of Moab to the top of Pisgah, across from Jericho... And Moses the servant of the LORD died there in Moab, as the LORD had said.

Deut. 34:1a, 5 NIV

How did Moshe Rabbenu die?

The last thing Moshe did in his life was to climb a mount. The plains of Moab are at about 400 meters below sea level and Mount Nevo has an approximate height of 800 meters above sea level, a bit higher than Yerushalaim. So Moshe climbed around 1200 meters. Going up a mountain represents getting closer to the Most High, and the last thing Moshe did in his life was to get even closer to the One he loved more than anyone else.

The Hebrew text says that Moshe died according to the Eternal's mouth – "על־פי ה, al pi HaShem. The same expression appears 26 times in the Scriptures. According to the simplest level of interpretation it is understood as the mouth of the Eternal pronouncing the words. However, the Midrash explains that it may be understood as the Eternal giving Moshe a kiss and taking his spirit from him. The same expression appears in the text in which the death of Aharon is narrated, in Numbers 33:38a, where it says: "And Aaron the priest went up Mount Hor at the command of the LORD (al pi HaShem) and died there" (ESV)

These two brothers, men of the Most High, had the privilege of dying on a mountain close to the Eternal, by means of a divine kiss.

What do you aspire to in life? Do you want to climb and get closer and closer to the Most High, your heavenly Father? Or, do you want to reach the heights of this world? How would you want to end your life: kissing temporary things of the world? Or kissing the Eternal who is able to return your spirit and pull you out of the tomb?

Approach the Eternal more and more and you'll receive more and more kisses as it is written in Song of Songs 1:2 "Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth— for your love is more delightful than wine." (NIVUK)

When our daughter was six years old she composed a song called: "My dad loves me very much". I have that song in my heart too in relation to my beloved heavenly Dad. The only thing I wish for in life and death is to be close to Him.

May the Eternal grant grace to those who have to die before the coming of the Messiah, so that they can finish their lives with a divine kiss.

Kol tuv – all the best,



Panoramic view of the promised Land from Mount Nevo

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