Vayelech: Chapter 2

Moses is the rule of the sun, Joshua of the moon


Rabbi Chizkiyah tells us how the people were led by the sun itself, Zeir Anpin, during Moses' lifetime, but after his death they were led by the moon, Malchut, as the moon was the aspect of Joshua. Next the topic turns to the difficulty of matching people with those who are the other half of their spirits, since sometimes they are not incarnated at the same time. If a husband who is not a woman's true counterpart has behaved immorally, he is gathered up so that the counterpart can come and marry her. Rabbi Eleazar wonders why the man has to die, and why they cannot just separate. The answer is that the death saves the man from seeing his wife belong to another. This is compared to Saul's kingship which happened because David's time for kingship had not yet come. When David was ready, Saul was gathered up for his iniquities so that he would not have to see his servant ruling over him. This is also why Moses died when the rule of the moon, Joshua, arrived; the moon could not rule as long as the sun was around. The question is asked why, when Moses was about to die, many instructions were given by God to him rather than to Joshua. We learn that even after Moses' departure he would still exist to illuminate God's messages for Joshua, just as the sun in hiding illuminates the moon.