June 17th, 2020

One of the greatest puzzles of the post-Exodus narrative is the story in Shelach of the spies dispatched by Moses to scout out the Land of Canaan before the planned Israelite conquest anticipated for generations.

But just as they were about to embark on this final chapter of their destiny, everything went horribly wrong. The spies returned with a dreadful report and the entire nation protested against the long-awaited move to the Promised Land.

The result was devastating. The Exodus generation was unconditionally barred from entering Israel, and it would be a full forty years before Joshua — one of only two spies who broke ranks with the rest to give a good report — led the nation into the land.

Jewish commentators throughout the ages have puzzled over this story. Why did the nation panic so badly at this final juncture? Why, in contrast to so many other biblical-era missteps, was the entire nation swayed, and why did God not forgive them, when on so many other occasions they were forgiven? How did the spies get it so wrong? What was different about Caleb and Joshua?

Rabbi Dunner reveals all with a beautiful Nesivos Sholom that addresses all of these questions and many others, revealing the true essence of the Torah’s most tragic story.

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