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    Walking & observing – B’chukkotai

    walking 2B’chukkotai begins, “If you walk in My statutes and observe My commandments” (Lev. 26:3).

    The Biblical principle of parallelism, in which the first and second parts of a verse balance each other, requires us to see “walk in My statutes” and “observe My commandments” as saying the same thing. Hence there is a link between the two verbs, “walk” and “observe”.

    But one can argue that there is a difference. The message is a double one: If you walk (metaphorically) in God’s statutes, you observe His commandments; if you observe His commandments, you walk (physically) in His ways.

    In the first message, “walk” gives us the source of the word halachah, “walking”, for Jewish law. In the second message, the observance of the commandments indicates movement, progress.

    Each commandment we observe is a stepping stone to the next. The more you live by the commandments, the higher you go in your spiritual life.

    It reminds us of the Seder song, Dayyenu, in which every stage is a building-block towards the next.

    In this sense, even the building of the sanctuary is not the last word. Having a Temple is the foundation for a life of spiritual elevation.

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