This week’s Torah reading of Re’eh (Deuteronomy 11:26 – 16:17) covers a vast swath of time, but it’s centrally devoted to the aging Moses’ effort to engineer the Jewish future. The thread running through it can be traced back to a recurring issue in Israelite life over the previous four decades in the desert—an issue codified much earlier in the book of Leviticus (17:3 – 4):
How Moses Let Go
For 40 years, Moses held tight to the Jews lest they relapse into idol worship. As his time drew to an end, he forced himself to loosen the reins.