“Why all the punishments? Where can I find a list of the rewards?”
When I encourage people to start reading the weekly Torah portion, I guess I have to be prepared for all the questions that are bound to follow!
This particular question came a month back, when someone wanted to understand why there are so many consequences listed in the Torah (for NOT following G-d’s directions), but there were no rewards outlined for when we DID do what G-d instructed.
I asked the questioner, if he would be offered to participate in a delegation that was meeting the US president, or (perhaps more thrilling to you) the Queen of England, would he take up the opportunity?
Of course he would.
Of course we all would!
Then I asked if he would expect a gift, a reward or a payment to compensate for his time. Of course it was a rhetorical question, but its intention was to drive home the answer to his original question.
Do you need a reward for a mitzvah?
Imagine this- you, a small and finite mortal, has the opportunity to “meet” and fulfill the needs of the infinite, Almighty King of the Universe! What a tremendous opportunity! What a great honor! Would you request compensation for this, let alone pass up such an offer?
Yesterday’s daily message in the Rebbe’s compilation, “Hayom Yom/ Day to Day”, quoted a saying from the mishnah: “…for the reward of the mitzvah is a mitzvah”….
The word Mitzvah is from the word tzavta/ attachment, and each mitzvah enables us to attach ourselves with the Almighty G-d, the one who commanded it. THAT in itself is a reward!
Wishing you a Shabbat Shalom.