Literally translated, the beginning of this portion says, "See that I am putting before you today blessings and curses," and usually the understanding of this verse is that the Creator is speaking through Moses. However, in the Midrash, it says that the "I" who is being referred to in the first verse is not the Creator, but rather Moses. Moses is telling the Israelites, essentially, "Look at my life, look at what I have accomplished, look at the great level of connection, the great level of wisdom that I've achieved." When you initially hear this, it's a little strange because one thing we know about Moses is that he was the most humble of all people. Why then, before he leaves this world, is he telling the Israelites "Look at me, pay attention to the greatness that I've achieved..."?
The answer is that one of the biggest problems the Israelites had at that time in the desert – and that... read more