This week's parsha is Shelach Lecha which tells the story of the sending of the 12 spies into Israel. In this parsha Moshe sends the spies to tour the land of Israel. He asks them to gather information about the people living in the land and about the quality of the land. The spies return after inspecting the land and instead of reporting the findings to Moshe privately they tell the whole nation. In addition, they not only tell facts but add their personal opinions.
They frighten the people of Israel and convince them they have no future in the Land of Israel. We must remember that they went out of Egypt in order to eventually enter the Promised Land. The people of Israel were punished for wanting to return to Egypt by staying in the wilderness for 40 years until that generation died in the wilderness. The generation after them was the generation privileged to enter the Promised Land.
The spies misunderstood their mission and made a whole generation forget their destiny.
The sin of the spies teaches us what a mission in a man’s life is. What is our responsibility, us, who've been sent to this world, what is our purpose in this world? A person is expected to understand that at the core purpose of his presence in the world is to keep the commandments and fulfil his destiny.
Our responsibility is to ask ourselves - what is our mission? What is our purpose? It’s clear that the heavens won’t tell us. We must find out for ourselves, by knowing our powers and abilities.
May we know our strengths and grow.
Mr. Eliav and Mr. Leon, Jewish Studies Teachers