In Deuteronomy 31; 10-12 Moses conveys the Torah’s 612th commandment: “…at the end of every seven years… on the Festival of Sukkot. When all Israel comes to appear before the Lord, your G-d, in the place that He shall choose, you shall read this Torah before all Israel in their hearing. Assemble the people the men, women, and the little ones, and your stranger… so that may hear, and so that they may learn; and revere the Lord your G-d and observe to perform all the words of this Torah.

This in-depth mini-series focuses on the page in Masechet Sotah that records the teachings of our Sages about this rare Mitzvah. The Talmud (and its multi-layered commentaries) richly define and elucidate the details that govern the fulfilment of this enigmatic biblical commandment.
Series on Hakhel, Part One. Tractate Sotah, Chapter Seven, Page 41a “A ROYAL AFFAIR”

In this opening Episode we study the first section of the Mishna that speaks of the practical performance of this, biblically ordained, septennial Jewish National Assembly, and its unique connection to the Monarchy.

As we are introduced to the of the Mitzvah of Hakhel with details like timing, staging there is a heavy emphasis on the King’s pivotal role as the central actor. Surprisingly however, the royal element is missing in the Scriptural narrative.

In this Episode we will delve deeply into this mystery to discover the true origin of the Jewish Sovereign’s seemingly central ingredient in the fulfillment of this Mitzvah: Is it an Oral Siniac tradition from Moses (e. g. a prophetic instruction), or rather a subsequently added rabbinically ordained injunction?

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