In Parshas Matos we learn the laws of personal vows and oaths. We are told that a person must not profane his word. That implies we should keep our word. It's strange then that the Torah tells us in the same verse 'everything that we say we should do' seemingly repeating the same idea. What's the deeper meaning? 

 

According to Rashi not profaning our words means we shouldn't make them 'mundane'. The word 'yaichal' (profane) and 'yechalel' (mundane) have the same root letters.

 

Thus we have a responsibility to make our words Holy. How exactly do we do that?

 

The Vilna Gaon calls the mouth the Holy of Holies. In the Rabbeinu Yona he says a Jew who sanctifies his mouth turns his mouth into a vessel of service like that of the temple. The mouth is more a vessel of service and more Holy than other parts of the body because of it's immense potential to shape ours and other people's lives.

 

Our words can build or destroy. When we express positive words we are making Holiness just like when the flour is put into the pan for the meal offering in the Temple is transformed into an offering.

 

Even more than that our words are our innate power. Hashem blessed the Jewish people with our speech as it says "the voice is the voice of Yaakov".

 

The Arizal (likutei Torah Parshas Eikev) writes based on our verse "He shall not profane his word; whatever comes out of his mouth he shall do (make)" teaches that every word we say creates an Angel. If it's good it will be a defending Angel and if it's something forbidden it creates an Accusing Angel.

 

That's why we shouldn't make our words mundane because every word that comes out makes another Angel.

 

The Zohar says that not only will we be judged for the bad things that we said but also for the good things that we didn't say. (Zohar Tazria)

 

The Shalosh D'paranusa; the Haftorahs on the Shabbosos of the 3 weeks we are in now start with different words each time.  The Portion of Mattos starts with "The WORDS". Masei starts with "LISTEN" and Devorim starts with "VISION".

 

These 3 weeks mourning the destruction are an opportunity to fix up our words, hearing and seeing.

 

Interestingly the word to take in Hebrew "vayikach" is translated in Aramaic as "uDVAR" the Hebrew word for speech.

 

Perhaps the lesson is we can choose to use our speech to 'take' for ourselves a good path or otherwise.

 

May Hashem help us to fix up our Speech so we can touch all of those around us in a good way.

 

Let's fulfill our words so that Hashem will fulfill his word that "on that day Hashem will be one and his name will be One"

Have an Inspiring Shabbos!

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