Kenneth Cohen

Israel’s Special Destiny

The giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai, was the greatest day in human history. All of the Jewish people were elevated to a level higher than angels, when they heard G-d utter the first two, of the Ten Commandments.

Moshe Rabbeinu worked frantically during the days preceding this great event. The war with Amalek was on the twenty-eighth day of Iyar, and the Revelation took place about a week later. During that week, Moshe explained to the Jewish people of their special destiny in the world.

They were to become a nation of priests, and a holy nation. They would be raised up to be higher than all of the nations of the world. This task would not be easy, but it was the special calling of the Jewish people.

The people responded with the word, “נעשה,” we will do. The text of the Torah seems to be a last minute confirmation for what was soon to transpire. It was as if Moshe was asking the people, “Are you in or out?” When they said נעשה, he related to Hashem that they are ready, and there is a clear understanding of what is expected of them.

The receiving of the Torah, truly sets us apart from the rest of the world. We are a nation that “dwells apart.” We are meant to lead by example, and teach all that is good, moral, and decent.

This is the essence of the current battle with Hamas. Israel understands now more than ever, that they are fighting a battle of good verses evil. They are fighting for the security and safety of its people. And they are fighting with such a high level of bravery and faith, that truly is a “light among the nations.” When the Jewish people understand and fulfill their special destiny, the world becomes a better place for everyone.

About the Author
Rabbi Cohen has been a Torah instructor at Machon Meir, Jerusalem, for over twenty years while also teaching a Talmud class in the Shtieblach of Old Katamon. Before coming to Israel, he was the founding rabbi of Young Israel of Century City, Los Angeles. He recently published a series of Hebrew language-learning apps, which are available at