The Secret of the Angels

Israel on Mt Sinai used a strange formula.

נעשה ונשמע

We shall do, (perform, observe) , and we shall hear

It should have been vice versa!

First you hear and listen, then you do what should be done.

Of course “hear” here means harken, understand.

Our vow at Mt Sinai was to observe the Mitzvot, even without understanding why they should be done. Observance is not conditioned by understanding.

However, we do not neglect or underestimate understanding. On the contrary, it is included in that same vow to strive to understand (“hear”) as much as we can – only not as condition for  performing the Mitzvot.

Furthermore, it is our belief, that understanding is sure to come – more and more – as we persevere in observing the Mitzvot:

Naaseh Venishmah

We shall do, and then we are sure to hear and understand.

Obedience is not conditioned by understanding, because it’s really the other way round:

Understanding is conditioned by obedience.

And the Midrash says that that’s the Secret of the Angels.


One thought on “The Secret of the Angels

  1. Blind obedience is a hallmark of faith. God highly values our trust in Him, in fact it seems that extending our trust by following His instructions without second-guessing pleases Him so much that He reveals Himself more and more; and with that comes understanding. Humans and angels have an eternity to get to know God. What a wonderful prospect!

    Liked by 1 person

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