Dvar for Beshalach (Exodus 13:17-17:16)
After the sea was split in our Parsha, Beshalach, the Torah says (14:31), “And they believed in G-d and His servant Moshe.” As Rav Aron Tendler wonders, what exactly did they believe in? It can not mean that they believed in the existence of G-d and Moshe, because they saw G-d, and new that Moshe existed. If you know something, it’s fact, not belief, so what is the Passuk (verse) referring to by using the word “believed”?
Rav Tendler explains that following the splitting of the sea, the Jews understood far more than the obvious reality of G-d’s power and majesty. They understood that they had been chosen to the exclusion of the rest of the Egyptians, and the rest of the world. They also understood that being chosen meant that they had a mission to accomplish. Therefore, their stated belief was not for that which they had already experienced or witnessed, but with accepting their station and responsibilities as the world’s designated teachers. As Jews we need to ensure that all our actions reflect the dignity, honor and responsibility we were given.