A Sequence for Today
Now take a look at this. We know that most commentaries support the opinion that EIN SEIDER MUKDAM UM'UCHAR BATORAH, that the Torah does not always present occurrences in chronological order. Each time that happens, though, we are entitled to ask why a particular episode is out of order.
In the beginning of D'varim, we have a different manifestation of EIN SEIDER. Moshe Rabeinu is talking to the people, the new generation that is soon to cross the Jordan into Eretz Yisrael. He begins his talk with a summary of events that occurred in the previous 40 years. And he too, does not present them in the order in which they occurred. In last week's sedra, Moshe focused on the Sin of the Spies. In this week's sedra, he reviews the events of Matan Torah, Revelation at Sinai. Why did Moshe present these events out of sequence?
Not second-guessing Moshe, perhaps we can say the following. The story of the Meraglim happened in the past, has lessons for us in every generation, but is best being only an unfortunate piece of history. It should not keep happening (although it sadly does).
Matan Torah is a totally different thing. It is history that MUST keep on repeating itself in every generation, with every Jew, even daily. True, the first Matan Torah happened before the sin of the spies, but not so, the Matan Torah of that generation poised on the threshold of Eretz Yisrael, and not so the Matan Torah for each of us today. Moshe said it (D'varim 5:3): Not with our fathers (alone) did G-d make this covenant, but with us, here and now.