THE FINAL BOOK OF THE TORAH

August 7th, 2019

The final book of the Torah, Sefer Devarim, differs extensively from the previous four books.

The sages of the Talmud referred to Devarim by an alternative name — Mishneh Torah — generally understood to mean “review” or “repeat” of the previous four books, implying that Devarim contains a summary of the rest of the Torah, presented by Moshe before he died.

But this idea is very problematic. Much of the narrative and law contained elsewhere in the Torah is absent in Devarim, and there is plenty of material in Devarim that appears nowhere else. So what exactly is Sefer Devarim, and why is it called Mishneh Torah?

Rabbi Dunner addresses this puzzling anomaly head-on, using the actual text of Sefer Devarim to reveal a hidden aspect of post-Exodus history to solve one of the great mysteries of the Torah, thereby explaining both the structure of Devarim and its true purpose.

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