Shavuot

A Poetic Description of the Giving of the Torah

June 30, 2006

“You were Revealed in Your Cloud of Glory…”
(Mussaf Prayer of Rosh HaShanah)

The following is the translation of the introduction to the “Shofarot” Prayer, which is one of three special prayers: “Malchiyot” (Kingliness), “Zichronot” (Remembrances) and “Shofarot” (Sounds of the Shofar) incorporated into the Mussaf Prayer of Rosh HaShanah:

“You were revealed in Your cloud of glory, to Your People, to speak with them. From heaven You made them hear Your voice, and were revealed to them in clouds of purity. The whole world as well was terrified of You, and creatures present at the Beginning trembled before You; When You revealed Yourself, our King, over Mount Sinai, to teach Your People the Torah and its Commandments. You made them hear the majesty of Your voice, and Your Holy Utterances from flames of fire.”

“In thunder and lightning You were revealed to them, and with the sound of the Shofar You appeared to them, as it is written in Your Torah: ‘And it was on the third day, as morning arrived, and there was thunder and lightning, and a thick cloud on the mountain, and the sound of the Shofar very strong, and all the people in the camp trembled.’ (Shemot 19:16)”

“And it is said, ‘And the sound of the Shofar became stronger and exceedingly stronger; Moshe would speak, and the L-rd would respond in thunder.’ (Shemot 19:19)”

“And it is said, ‘The entire People saw the thunder, and the flashes of lightning, and the sound of the Shofar, and the smoking mountain. And the People saw and trembled, and they stood from afar.’ (Shemot 20:15)”