It is Never Too Early to Begin to Teach Your Child Torah!

In Parshat Bamidbar 3:15 we learn that the male members of the tribe of Levi were counted from the age of one month. This was different from the other tribes where the male members were counted from the age of 20, the age that the men began to serve in the army.

 

Why would God want the members of the tribe of Levi to be counted from the age of one month instead of from the age of 20?

 

Rabbi Nissenboim’s answer is that we can begin to train the young men who are going to the army when they are teenagers. However, when we are speaking about training the Leviim who will be the leaders of the Jewish people, their education needs to begin at the age of one month.

 

We can learn from here that it is never too early to teach your child Torah. Here in Jerusalem, mothers and babies take part in Mommy and Me Torah study classes which help the mothers keep up with the study of Torah as well as expose the babies to the Torah at a young age.

 

There is a story in the Talmud about a woman who would bring her baby to the Beit Midrash so that he could absorb the sounds of Torah study. That baby later became a Rabbi in the Mishna. Rashi says that the mother deserved a reward as she demonstrated the value of Torah study. According to the Sfat Emet, even if the baby doesn’t understand what is going on, the study of Torah has an impact on his Neshama which will lead to a greater appreciation of Torah study.