Kenneth Cohen

Preparations for the Great Day

The Gemara in Masechet Shabbat, gives a detailed description of the preparations for the great day of G-d’s Revelation to His people.

It should be noted that the souls of every Jew, were also at Sinai. Therefore, there is a subconscious connection to that great event at Mount Sinai.

We are told that the Jewish people arrived at the Desert of Sinai on the first day of the month of Sivan. There is some debate as to whether this fell on a Sunday or Monday. All agree that the Ten Commandments were given that following Shabbat.

During that week, Moshe Rabbeinu was ascending and descending Mount Sinai three times. Each time, he brought a special message to the people.

The first message was meant to be an acceptance by the people, of their special role of being, “A nation of priests and a holy nation.”

After their acceptance, their second message was a warning that they must distance themselves from the mountain. Anyone who came to close and touched the mountain, would die.

And the final message was the need for everyone to purify themselves, who had come in contact with impurities.

The Jewish nation was extremely unified and elevated at that time. They were on the level of Adam before his sin. Had they not worshipped the Golden Calf, death would have been abolished forever.

It is important to study all of these details, and appreciate the gift of receiving the Torah.

We believe that if we collectively work at purifying ourselves, and growing spiritually, we can once again return to that state of holiness that our ancestors and our souls, experienced at Sinai.

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