Tonight we begin the final days of the Holiday of Succos. The last day, this Thursday night and Friday, we celebrate the Holiday of Simchas Torah, as we conclude our year long journey through the Torah. When we finish the Torah, we always begin to read the Torah from the beginning, the book of Genesis, immediately. The service we are concluding is very long. Why do we start reading Beraishis (Genesis) right away? We will be reading the entire Parsha of Beraishis the next day anyway? Couldnít we just wait to begin on the next day?
The most important thing for a Jew to do is to study Torah. We are taught that mitzvah of Torah study is equal to all the mitzvohs together. There is no limit to the reward for this mitzvah. When we have this great moment of finishing a section of Torah, we must make sure that we donít have any feeling of being finished with Torah study. We want to make it clear that we are still committed to studying further, and to learning more. Therefore, as soon as we finish the book of Deuteronomy, we immediately start the Book of Beraishis (Genesis). Especially on this important day of Simchas Torah, as we rejoice over the Torah, we make it clear that we will commit ourselves to continue studying Torah.
As we celebrate this beautiful Holiday of Simchas Torah, let us all take new commitments to increase our commitments to study Torah. I personally offer to set time to study Torah with anyone who would like to study Torah. Just come and join us!!