Shabbat Eykev

Candles - August 3rd @ 7:49 pm
Havdalah - August 4th @ 8:45pm

Maybe you will say “My strength and my firm hand have acquired this great prize” but you should remember it is God who has given you the strength to do all this so that you can keep your agreement with Him” (Deut. 8:17).

Moses continues his series of speeches to the Israelites before he dies and in preparation for their invasion of Canaan. He repeats that the land is “flowing with milk and honey.” Yet he warns everyone against overestimating their strength. Of course, without manpower you cannot achieve such conquests. But manpower alone is not enough. Otherwise young, nimble start-up companies would never be able to outsmart old established huge companies. But they often do. Because they have both energy and spirit.

It is obvious that without effort very little can be accomplished. Buteffort is not enough. And this speech is designed to persuade the people that they need something more, spiritual dimension. This why this phrase “don’t say that my strength has…has acquired all this” is often used when we celebrate great victories like Hanuka. And it is the same nowadays with regard to our lives and successes and the achievements of Israel. It could not have all happened without our spirit and the spirit of our people. Sure, having a strong army helps, so does a good brain. But having the spirit is just as important.

We succeeded because we focus on building. On being positive. While our enemies focus on negativity on destruction.