Wednesday, October 9, 2013

CHESHVAN 8, 5774: 12 OCT 2013: LECH LECHA

Get ready for this week's Torah Study, Lech Lecha.

Genesis 12:1-17:27   Isaiah 40:27-41:16  Luke 1:1-80

Torah Teaching - Very beautiful


Tuesday, Cheshvan 4, 5774 / October 8, 2013

Parshat Lech Lecha begins with G-d commanding Abraham to leave his father's place and travel to "the land that I will show you." Abraham didn't know yet what G-d had in store for him.

The Torah tells us, "And Avram took Sarai his wife (their names were not changed yet to "Abraham" and "Sarah"), and Lot, his brother's son, and all their possessions and the people they made in Charan and they departed to the land of Canaan."

Q. What does the Torah mean by, "the people they made in Charan"? Who were these people? How does one "make people"?

A. Our sages explain this to mean the people whom Abraham and Sarah brought closer to G-d; "under the wings of G-d's presence."

Abraham, who grew up in a household of idol worshippers came to the realization, completely on his own, that there is only one G-d - the G-d Who created heaven and earth and everything within them. Not being satisfied to know the truth himself, he and Sarah made it their mission to go out and spread the message of truth and bring people closer to the true G-d.

Our sages say that one who teaches someone Torah it is as if they "gave birth to them." It is as if they created and made them.

This was the difference between Noach, hero of last week's Parsha and Abraham. Noach was a righteous man, he and his family were saved from The Flood, but his generation didn't benefit from him. He didn't go out of his way to teach people and perhaps save them from The Flood.

But Abraham and Sarah, the patriarch and matriarch of the Jewish people, went out of their way and made it their goal to bring people closer to G-d - the Torah calls them, "the people they made." They joined Abraham and Sarah on their journey.

There is a lesson in this. It is not enough to be righteous ourselves, like Noach was. We have to follow in the footsteps of Abraham and Sarah. It is our duty to go out and help others who need guidance and bring them closer to G-d and their Jewish heritage.

It is with great sadness that the Jewish people lost a great sage and Torah giant, Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef, of blessed memory, who passed away in Israel, at the age of 93. Rabbi Yosef was the former Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel and leader of the Sephardic communities. He dedicated his life to teaching Torah and bringing them closer to G-d. His funeral in Jerusalem was attended by 400,000 people who came to pay him his well deserved last respects. May his memory be a blessing. Amen..


Tammi  Wohlers

Lech Lecha: Covenant With God

In this week's parsha, God and Abraham make a hugely important covenant, where God promises Abraham children and land, leading to the start of the Jewish nation. In this video, Rabbi Fohrman helps us understand what can we learn from a fascinating literary chiasm in the text surrounding this covenant.

Life’s Detours
A Taste of Text—Lech Lecha
By Chana Weisberg

Visit Jewish.TV for more Jewish videos.

Lech Lecha
By Rabbi Ben Tzion Shafier

Diamond With A Flaw

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