Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Parshas Vaera

Dare Not Be Fooled

By Rabbi Label Lam

And G-d spoke to Moshe and Aaron and commanded them concerning the Children of Israel and concerning Pharaoh King of Egypt to bring Israel out of Egypt. These are the heads of their fathers' houses... And Amram took Yocheved his aunt to him for a wife and she bore to him Aaron and Moses...These are Aaron and Moses, to whom G-d had said; "Bring out the Children of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their hosts. These are they that spoke to Pharaoh, King of Egypt, these are Moshe and Aaron.... (Shemos 6:13...27)

Right before Moses is to speak to Pharaoh, the Torah seemingly switches subjects and we are treated to a lesson in lineage. Since every word is crucial and holy, why is there such a deviation from the narrative to tell us about Moshe and Aaron’s family tree, and why specifically at that moment immediately prior to their negotiations with Pharaoh?

Rabbi Samson Rafael Hirsch, in his commentary on the Torah writes the following: "Right from the earliest times it occurred that men who have shown themselves quite strikingly to be benefactors to their people on account of their "godlike" deeds, have been invested after their passing away from this world, with a "godly" origin. We know well enough how in later times, a Jew whose genealogical table was not available, and because it was not available, and because he brought the world a few sparks of light borrowed from the man Moses, came to be considered by nations as begotten by God, and to doubt his divinity became a capital crime. Our Moses was a man, remained a man, and is to remain a man..."

For the very same reason the burial place of Moses remains forever obscure, as it states at the very end of the Torah, "And Moses, the servant of God, died there in the land of Moab...and no man knows his grave until this very day." (Devarim 34:5-6) Moshe’s name is mentioned only once in the Haggadah on Pesach and even then he is referred to as a servant of HASHEM.

It’s not about Moshe. It was never about Moshe. The idea is not to be distracted by “who” but rather to remain forever with the“what”. The Torah’s message would otherwise be at risk of being eclipsed and distorted by a focus on the one “who” happened to be chosen to deliver the Torah. Since there is strong human tendency to deify the messenger, the Torah goes way out of its way, in anticipation of such a deviant movement, so we all dare not be fooled.


DvarTorah, Copyright © 2007 by Rabbi Label Lam and Torah.org.


 


ARTICLES ON MIKETZ AND CHANUKAH:

View Complete List

Mitzvah Lamp
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5766

Smelling The Fragrance Of Hope
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5768

The Miracle of the Oil
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5775

ArtScroll

What You See & What You Get
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5756

Darkness and Light
Shlomo Katz - 5773

Pharaoh Delivers A Not So Subtle Reminder: I Made You Who You Are
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5767

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Parshas Miketz
Shlomo Katz - 5771

Performances and Customs
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5755

The Key To Something More
Rabbi Label Lam - 5762

> Oh Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel!
Rabbi Label Lam - 5768

In Your Dreams
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5765

The Inside Story Revealed
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5758

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Hanukkah
Rabbi Naphtali Hoff - 5775

Shehechiyanu in Bergen Belsen
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5756

Bonding Time
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5760

Yosef Recognizes His Brothers
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5773



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information