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This week's 10-Minute Torah (August 28, 2021): "Parashat Ki Tavo" 5781

Updated: Aug 23, 2021

Parashat Ki Tavo / פרשת כִּי־תָבוֹא

Read on 28 August 2021 / 20 Elul 5781.

Parashat Ki Tavo is the 50th weekly Torah portion in the annual Jewish cycle of Torah reading.

Torah Portion: Deuteronomy 26:1-29:8

Parashat Ki Tavo tells of the ceremony of the first fruits (בִּכּוּרִים, bikkurim), tithes, and the blessings from observance and curses (תוֹכֵחָה, tocheichah) from violation of the law.

Triennial Year 2 28 Aug 2021

1: 26:12-15 · 4 p’sukim

2: 26:16-19 · 4 p’sukim

3: 27:1-3 · 3 p’sukim

4: 27:4-8 · 5 p’sukim

5: 27:6-10 · 5 p’sukim

6: 27:11-28:3 · 19 p’sukim

7: 28:4-6 · 3 p’sukim

maf: 29:6-8 · 3 p’sukim

Haftarah: Isaiah 60:1 - 60:22 · 22 p’sukim

Ki Tavo starts off discussing the process of bringing the first fruits (the seven species—wheat, barley, vines, figs pomegranates, olives and date-honey) of their harvest to the priests/Cohenim after they settle the Promised Land. This is to thank Hashem for their bounty. They will recite a prayer that discusses how “A wandering Aramaen was my father who went down to Egypt…” and then discusses the Exodus. The Children of Israel are then to make sure they complete the three-year cycle of tithes (Cohenim, Levites, Needy) and affirm that they’ve completed that cycle.

When the Israelites cross the Jordan, there are procedures to follow. They are to inscribe the commandments on twelve rocks and set them on an altar on Mount Ebal. They are then to offer peace offerings. Half of the tribes are then to stand on Mount Ebal and the other half on Mount Gerizim. The Levites will then pronounce blessings and curses—relating to extreme cases of irreligion and immorality—which the tribes will acknowledge.

The parashat then, as in Leviticus, discusses the Tochahah, or “Warning”. It first enumerates blessings if the Israelites follow the commandments. It then enumerates a series of warnings, each set worse, as the Israelites continue to ignore the commandments. Finally, Moses states that the Israelites will indeed realize the error of their ways and return to Torah and Hashem will bless them once more.

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