Nitzavim: A Summary of the Parashah

Moses describes the Covenant between God and the Israelites, urging the Israelites to uphold the Covenant and honor the Torah so that they may be rewarded with life in the land of Israel.

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"See, I have set before you today life and good, and also death and evil, inasmuch as I command you today to love God, to walk in God's ways and to keep God's commandments, so that you may live and multiply. God will bless you in the land to which you are coming to take possession. But if your heart shall turn in a manner that forsakes God and serve other gods, then I have announced to you this day that you will quickly perish, that you will not last long in the soil of this promised land.

"I have called heaven and earth today as witnesses against you. I have set life and death before you, blessing and curse. Choose life, so that you and your descendants may live to love your God. Cling firmly to God, for that is your life and the length of your days, to dwell upon the soil that God swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob."

Questions For Discussion

1) What do you think are "the secret things that belong to God?" What are some questions that you would like God to answer about these secrets? What difference would the answer make to your life?

2) In this portion it appears that Moses already knows that the people will stray away from God's teachings and will be scattered among the peoples of the earth, but that the Israelites will return to the teachings of God. Why do you think that Moses predicts this rejection and then acceptance? Do you think this has happened? What phase, rejection or acceptance, are the Jewish people in now?

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Nancy Reuben Greenfield

Nancy Reuben Greenfield has written three adaptations of the Torah, including an
interactive family version at, and an engaging
Jewish immigrant novel, The Golden Medina, available on itunes and Amazon.