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    I won’t stand for it – Nitzavim

    This week’s portion is called Nitzavim, “Standing”. Appropriately for the period just before Rosh HaShanah, it says, “You are standing this day in front of God” (Deut. 29:9).

    At a moment of heavenly judgment, we find ourselves on our feet, facing the supreme Judge for His scrutiny of our actions, deeds and attitudes.

    What a terse summing up of where we are at this moment before the Day of Judgment!

    There is an ethical Nitzavim too, when it is we humans who are, as it were, the judge, and the world is arraigned in the dock.

    There are things that the world tolerates which we have a stern duty to condemn, to say, “If you think you are doing the right thing we cannot agree with you. We cannot stand what it is that has gripped your minds and influenced your actions.”

    Being an ethical arbiter is neither easy nor tolerable but we have no choice. If something we see and hear is wrong we have to have the courage to say so.

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