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Different Types of "Good"

The concept of "good" in this world is a relative term, comparing one thing to something that is less "good". "Good" in the ultimate sense, we are taught is through building a connection with Hashem. The means of connection to Hashem we are taught is through, "doing what is right and turning away from that which is sinful."

Moses shares with the Jewish people the details of the second set of the "Ten Commandments" (the original ten commandments were smashed by Moses after seeing the Jewish people involved with the sin of the Golden Calf). This second set contains several differences from the first. The Talmud discusses that in the commandment to honor father and mother, the line continues and states, "so that it will be good for you . . . ". This phrase was not contained in the first set of commandments. Why?

The Talmud teaches us that had "good" been contained in the first set of commandments and destroyed then good/happiness would have been destroyed indefinitely. Our commentaries go on to explain that the "good" that was left out of the first set of commandments was "good" devoid of any sin of man (angelic type good). The "good" given with the second set is referring to an earthly "good" that relates to material happiness.

"Honor your father and your mother, as Hashem, your G-d, commanded you, so that your days will be lengthened and so that it will be good for you, upon the land that Hashem, your G-d, gives you." Deuteronomy 5:16, from this week's Torah portion,Va'etchanan, Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11

Based on the writings of Rav Shlomo Wolbe


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