Student Teaching in the New Millenium

5771 Devarim II

In Deuteronomy, Torah on August 3, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Heavy to carry
Burdensome, Loud, Contentious
Help you help yourself

Isaiah 1:1-1:27
Deuteronomy 1:12-21

Is self-government a biblical ideal? Moses is advised by Yitro, over forty years ago, to delegate judicial duties to men in the congregation. This story is not restated here. Why not? Why place the onus on Moses?

Is an officer and a judge the same thing? Is an officer of tens like to a town court judge? An officer of hundreds like a county judge? Is Moses a supreme court judge? Are there other supreme court judges? Or is a Moses trial the same as a bench trial?

What is the biblical attitude towards self-government? Can a biblical ideal, and a biblical attitude towards that ideal, be opposed? Rashi has Moses rebuke Israel for accepting officials (disciples) between them too readily. Does Rashi say Torah endorses autocracy? Or does Rashi say that the desire to self-govern cannot exist in a vacuum of ideals?

Final question:

Pick from each of your tribes men who are wise, discerning, and experienced, and I will appoint them as your heads…So I took your tribal leaders, wise and experienced men, and appointed them heads over you (Deut. 1:13,15).

Is there a difference between wise, discerning, and experienced, and wise and experienced?

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