View, Like & Follow!

Last week’s portion contained the first portion of the Shema prayer. In this week’s portion, the second portion of the Shema is recorded. The second portion of the Shema begins with the exhortation of G-d for us to heed His commands and His promise of great benefits when we do so. The portion concludes with G-d’s assurance that when we fulfill His commands we will experience long life in the Promised Land of Israel.

The Halachic codifier, Rabbi Yaakov Baal HaTurim in his monumental compilation of Jewish Law, which is called the Tur, quotes a Medrash that records a conversation between the Torah and G-d. “Master of the Universe, when the Jews leave the desert and enter the Land of Israel they will become busy working the land. Since everyone will be busy working their vineyard or field, what is going to be with the study of the Torah?” G-d responded, “No need to worry! I have a match for you, and that is the weekly Shabbos. Since My children are prohibited from conducting creative activities on the Shabbos, they will have the day of Shabbos free to study and delve into the Torah, and Torah will not be forgotten from the masses.”

Rabbi Eliyahu Lopian o.b.m. conveyed something that he heard from the saintly Chofetz Chaim o.b.m. The Talmud relates that the importance of the Mitzvah of observing Shabbos is equal to observing all the 613 Mitzvos of the Torah. This means that every single Mitzvah we observe over the course of Shabbos is equal to 613 Mitzvos! Thus throughout Shabbos we compile many times 613 mitzvos!

More so, according to Rabbi Eliyahu of Vilna – the Vilna Goan, each letter of Torah studied is a Mitzvah by itself. Thus when one studies Torah on Shabbos fulfilling the Mitzvah of study of Torah, each letter studied is compounded 613 times.

The actual amount of Mitzvos that a person accumulates over the course of Shabbos just by reviewing the weekly Torah portion of the week is phenomenal!

For an example; there are 6,865 letters in this week’s portion. According to the Vilna Goan, each of the 6,865 letters of Torah are individual Mitzvos and when you times it by 613, because each Mitzvah is compounded by 613 on Shabbos, the total of Mitzvos that one accumulates by just reviewing the Torah portion on Shabbos is, 4,208,245 Mitzvos! That’s an awesome dividend!

When one serves G-d by consciously observing the Shabbos laws and refraining from the forbidden activities, each moment of restraint pertaining to the holiness of Shabbos is compounded by 613. These are figures and stats that only G-d can calculate, compute and consider.

Another point to consider: within the second portion of the Shema it states, “To serve Him with all your heart and soul.” The Talmud explains that one serves G-d with his heart when he prays with intent. Prayer is a Mitzvah. When we consider the four set prayers that we recite each Shabbos, the blessings we recite during the meals, that each letter, word or statement is an individual Mitzvah and it is compounded by 613, the accrual of Mitzvos that is accomplished throughout Shabbos is beyond comprehension!

There is also another consideration that only G-d knows and only He can regard. That is the positive influence of one’s actions and demeanor, and how it impacts and impresses others.

When one exhibits enthusiasm, delight and satisfaction in Mitzvah observance it will most likely rub off on others for they take notice and are inspired and motivated to introduce such a manner of service into their lives.  One has no way of knowing who was inspired by witnessing the positive way he observes a Mitzvah.

So, when one ‘likes’ what he has ‘viewed’ and then ‘follows’ it into practice, the person who had ‘shared’ this, continually accumulates compounded rewards as well, and all this information is ‘archived’ by G-d forever. And the one who was the inspiration to do the mitzvah will reap eternal benefits and rewards!