Dvar Torah (Missing Traits)

Jack Fefer (jacfef@juno.com)
Tue, 03 Dec 1996 12:10:19 EST

In Honor of the n'shama of Tica Esther Stimler, niftara 22 Kislev 5757 May
H'KBH keep and give strength to her family in this time of anguish.

Shimon Leibowitz touches on a subject I have been working on for some time
now, namely the "missing traits" in Bais Yisroel. In his reply to TF V2 #93
{Robert Klein} Shimon Lebowitz writes of the 'maamar' from Harav Goldvicht
Zt'l that Hashem *planned* for the Davidic dynasty and hence Moshiach to
come from Amon and Moav. It is, IMHO, obvious that Hashem had every reason
to keep Lot and his daughters alive, and to bring forth from their
relationships these 2 nations. I have long felt that there is a specific
reason why two *additional traits* had to be brought into the Jewish
mainstream in order for the Davidic household to reach its goal.

Let us look for a moment at the beginning of Sefer S'hmos, where we are
told that Yaacov and his entire entourage embark on the path to Egypt. The
Torah takes great pain to point out the "b'shivim nefesh' ( with 70 souls)
... and the number 70 in Jewish learning and history is highly significant
( i.e. 70 members of Sanhedrin.... 70 interpretations of Torah and each is
valid, etc.) Yet we would have already known this, for prior to concluding
sefer B'reishis the Torah has enumerated the households ( Vayigash, V'eleh
Shmos Bnei Yisroel Haboim Mitzriymah); why then reiterate the count of 70?
And more.... we learn later on that as long as any member of those 70 were
still alive ( that is, any who directly knew Yaacov Avinu) the worst part
of the subjugation to the Egyptians did not take place. It was only
afterwards that the downwards slide of the Klal Yisroel began in earnest...
and only then that the taskmasters made their lives a living G'henom.
Herein we have the beginning of the idea that these 70 sould were carrying
a necessary "trait" or characteristic for the building of the nation which
could ultimately be worthy of receiving Hashem's Torah.... yet, somehow
something was missing!

Let us look back to the time of Er and Onan, two sons of Judah who married
the same woman, Tamar. These two died for their repulsive acts... and Judah
sought to keep her from his 3rd son. Hashem saw fit for Tamar to 'trick'
Judah into giving her a child, and hence from Tamar came the line which
carried on Judah's seed... and who was Tamar? A Canannite!( member of Moav)
From which we may see that at least 1 trait of the 2 sons who died needed
to be "replaced" for the plan to carry forward. And as we know, Tamar gave
birth to twins, Peretz and Zerah. Now the math portion as explained in
Vayigash is sometimes disputed, but apparantly there were 72 ( counting
Yoseph , and his 2 sons born in Egypt) yet the Torah tells us there were
70, including Yaacov. The toll first names, and then excludes Er and Onan.
But, IMHO, in order for all the traits to be carried down, 2 were missing!
Who were these 2? Ruth and ( on this I am not quite clear yet, sorry)
Na'mah or Tamar . And the colleration of *two tents* *two metziot* is
further enhanced by Dovid Hamelech himself in T'hillim. { Halili Nafshi es
Hashem}

In the final verses Dovid writes" Hashem Shomer Ess Geyrim, Yosom Valmono"
Hashem protects the stranger, supports the orphan and the widow. Who is the
stranger... in this lashan a GER.. a convert. Ess Geyrim.... Geyrim would
have sufficed.... the word "Ess" is extra... to point out that they are
both needed. Who were the Geyrim? Yossom Valmonah... the orpahn and the widow.

Ruth indeed became an orphan... as a true convert she gave up her land, her
home, her family.... And Tamar??? Tamar, widowed twice, told by Yehuda to
sit in her place until his 3rd son would grow "of age"... Tamar who Hashem
used to repay Yehuda 'Midah k'neged Midah' for the pain he caused to Yaacov
his father. Hence she requested his cloak as a siman (proof) to produce
when she would be brought up and charged with harlotry.

And therein is the trait... the trait lost from Bnai Yisroel, the trait
Hashem needed to re-introduce into the tribe of Judah for the Davidic
dynasty to be able to produce Moshiach. And as for the trait of Ruth? I
will try to complete this soon and will with G-d's help post my findings,
if you would like.

Respectfully submitted on the day of the funeral of an "Aishas Chayil"

Yaacov Fefer