Stone Me!By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz
Moshe and the elders commanded the Jews to erect twelve huge stones after they cross the Jordan River into the land of Israel. They were to plaster these stones and write the words of the Torah on them. (There is a difference of opinion as to what part or parts specifically were to be written. They may also have been written in a number of languages – see Talmud Sotah 32a.) The stones were to be placed on Mount Eival, where the curses were to be uttered. After this, they were to build an altar to sacrifice burnt offerings and peace offerings, followed by rejoicing. (We see these stones erected as commanded in Joshua chapter 4.) Moshe and the kohanim informed the people that, with the giving of the commandments, they have become a nation consecrated to God. They must therefore be careful to observe all these laws.