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“And all the people answered… all that Hashem has spoken we will do.” (19:8)

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Bnei Yisrael responded ,with “We will do,” prior to saying “And we will listen”. Consequently, a Heavenly voice came forth and proclaimed, “Who revealed to My sons the secret of uttering vagb before gnab, an expression reserved for angels?” Because Bnei Yisrael were absolutely prepared to accept the Torah before hearing its commandments, they attained the highest spiritual level a human being is capable of achieving. We must endeavor to understand the great secret of exclaiming vagb prior to gnab/ What difference is there in the precise order of acceptance as long as the Torah is properly observed? In order to answer this question, we must first explore why some people respond positively to various events, while others are seemingly unaffected. One’s reaction is dependent upon his state of mind prior to these occurrences. If one is open to changing the nature of his ways, when he is confronted with the truth he will be further motivated to alter his previous lifestyle. If one is not amenable to change, however, nothing that he hears or sees will leave a lasting impression upon him. This is the great secret of vagb before gnab. One must first decide to “do” and behave properly, so that the various lessons that he “hears” and sees will successfully influence his judgment. Only one who is willing to listen will benefit from that which he hears.

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