Apples, Grapes and Our Acceptance of the Torah

In Parshat Yitro (Shmot 19:8) before the Ten Commandments were given we find B’nai Yisrael proclaiming the words “All that God has spoken, we will do (naaseh)”.


In Parshat Mishpatim (Shmot 24:7) we read “He then took the book of the covenant and read it in the ears of the people. They said “All that God has spoken we will do and we will listen (naaseh v’nishma)”. According to Rashi these words were declared before the giving of the Ten Commandments as well, following the principle of “ein mukdam u’meuchar batorah”, “the sections of the Torah are not necessarily in chronological order”.


A few days ago, we celebrated Tu B’Shvat, the New Year of the Trees, when it is customary to eat different types of fruits, nuts and grains from the Land of Israel and study about their spiritual significance. Both the apple and the grape have spiritual interpretations which lead us back to the words “naaseh v’nishma”.


In Song of Songs 2:3 we see an allusion to the apple tree: “As an apple tree among the trees of the forest, so is my beloved among the sons; in his shade I delighted and sat and his fruit was sweet to my palate”.


In the Gemara in Masechet Shabbat 88, Rabbi Chama ben Chanina asks why the Jewish people are compared to an apple tree? They are compared to an apple tree to teach us that just as in the case of an apple tree, its fruit precedes its leaves, so too did Israel precede ‘we will do (naaseh)’ to “we will hear (nishma)’.”


In Hoshea 9 we see an allusion to grapes “I found Israel like grapes in the wilderness”.


Shmot Raba 44:1 asks the question: “Why is Israel compared to a grapevine? When you want to improve its fruit, you dig it up and replant it elsewhere and it improves. So too when God wanted to make Israel known in the world, what did he do? He uprooted them from Egypt and brought them to the wilderness where they flourished. When they began to receive the Torah, they said “All that God has spoken we will do and we will listen” and they became known throughout the world.


As the Jewish people continue to reside throughout the world as well as in Israel, we must remember the importance of following the mitzvoth and sanctifying God’s name the way that we did at Mount Sinai .


Opportunity to Send Mishloach Manot/ Matanot L'Evyonim to Jerusalem's Impoverished Elderly


According to the Rambam in his Mishneh Torah: “gifts for the poor deserve more attention than the seudah (festive meal) and mishloach manot (gifts for friends) because there is no greater, richer happiness than bringing joy to the hearts of needy people, orphans, widows and proselytes.”


Torat Reva Yerushalayim will be delivering mishloach manot/ matanot laevyonim packages to elderly residents in Jerusalem’s nursing homes on Shushan Purim (the day that Purim is celebrated in Jerusalem). The packages will include healthy snacks and Purim treats.


Our goal is to provide packages for residents of two full nursing homes in Jerusalem who study Torah with Torat Reva Yerushalayim.  


A donation of $18 covers one package, $180 covers packages for an entire floor of a nursing home.


Please click on the following link to donate on line

 Or mail a check payable to Torat Reva Yerushalayim to:
In the US
Torat Reva Yerushalayim, 75 Berkeley Avenue, Yonkers NY 10705
In Israel
Torat Reva Yerushalayim, 12 Israel  Eldad #19, Jerusalem 93399