"My son, the doctor" and "Oh, Doctor, have I got a daughter for you" were the two most eligible bachelors in the American Jewish community for over half a century, from the old neighborhood on to the suburbs. Now, we've heard so many stories of doctors in the slammer for you-don't-want-to know-what, that we tend to deify them a bit less. Or do we?

We still tell tales of the guy who died and went to heaven; on his tour he sees someone walking around with a white jacket and a stethoscope around his neck. Who's that, he asks. Oh, don't mind him, he's told, that's G‑d… He likes to play doctor.

When a man's life is in the palm of your hand, you can't well be humbleTalmud tells us that the best of doctors should be shipped off to Hell. (I'm not making this up and I'm not exaggerating.) But can you blame them? When a man's life is in the palm of your hand – squeeze too hard and all the blood rushes out of the heart, let go too soon and all the blood runs into the heart – you can't well be humble. And maybe that's a good thing because it is not a humble moment.

But that's not enough. It's never enough. The doctor then thinks he can predict – he should predict – what will happen, and comes up with "He's not gonna make it" or in more subtle milieus: "Things don't look good."

But can you blame him? What's a man to do when everyone's calling him "Doc," his momma's so proud, his staff trusts him, and his patients think he knows it all – what's the man to think of himself? How does he see that he may be holding a heart in his hand, but life is not in his hands, that he can make a man live or die, but has no right over life and death, and has no right to do anything but heal?

How does he stop making determinations? How does he remember he's in a white suit but is not G‑d?

"Verapo yerapeh" – and you shall surely heal. Heed these words. They tell you that you shall heal – nothing else. You have an education and good grades and long nights in med school and accolades from your colleagues for the advancements you've made in medicine – but all you get to do is heal. Not predict. Not determine. And never judge.

There is an angel of healing named Raphael. He comes into the room with the doctor, and for all I know he leaves with him, too. There is an angel of judgment, his name is Gabriel and we don't want him in the room. Not in this room. Not at this time.

Maybe when you're a doctor who sees how fragile life is, you become immune. Or insensitive. Or just plain scared and therefore full of bravado. Don't worry about it. Remember you are a healer and the angel is doing your work. And like the plumber, you can go home at night and open up a book of Torah and the angels will be with you. Listen, and you can hear them singing the sweet tunes of the Talmud that, if you were lucky, you heard your daddy singing in the other room as you drifted off to sleep in your bedroom, a lullaby that could never be condescending and never outgrown, because it was real and wasn't directly done to you or for you.

You get so lost that you forget about healingNowadays, patients are encouraged to become their own doctors, and that's good because no one knows you better than you know yourself. So you read up on this and that, surf the web, take out books, buy supplements and present your findings to whoever will listen. And that is good. And then you can't leave well enough alone so you become a full-fledged doctor and start predicting and deciding what will happen and what should happen, and you get so lost that you forget about healing.

Come back, come back, come back to the parshah, to a sanity that begets humility. Heal, you shall surely heal – and surely you should stay away from anything that is not healing.

"Et mispar yomecha amaleh" – I [says the Living G‑d] will fill the number of your days. Reinforcements have arrived. Even patients don't have to play G‑d.