In this week’s Torah Portion, Vayeiro, the Torah tells us that Hashem informed Avrohom that because the sins of Sodom and Amora were great, He would destroy them. Upon hearing this, he immediately pleaded with Hashem on their behalf. The Torah tells us that “Avrohom approached (Hashem) and said, ‘Will You even destroy the righteous with the wicked?'” Rashi cites the words “And Avrohom approached (Hashem) and said.” He comments that we find that the phrase “approached – ויגש “has three different connotations in the Torah; it can mean approaching placate, to pray, or to speak harshly.
Avrohom’s primary attribute wat that of “Chesed,” which means kindness. “Chesed” is rooted in the character trait of loving Hashem. Avrohom had this characteristic in great abundance. Each of our forefathers had whatever attributes were needed to serve G-d. However, the driving force behind Avrohom was that of “Chesed.” He was the physical manifestation of the G-dly quality of kindness. Therefore, the prophet refers to the Jewish people as “the seed of Avrohom who loved Me..”
Accordingly, we need to understand why Avrohom found it necessary to approach G-d with harsh words at all. Moreover, he began by speaking harshly. Even if he had a reason to talk to Hashem with harsh words, why did he start the conversation in that manner? He could have started with appeasement or prayer, either of which would be keeping with his nature. In that way, he may have avoided harshness altogether.
The explanation is that love was not merely his nature. What it means is that love was the root of his soul. It was the primary method in which he served Hashem. However, when there is either a physical or a spiritual threat to life, he was perfectly willing to do whatever it took to save them.
We should all take this lesson to heart. There are so many people whose spiritual lives, their G-dly soul, is in severe danger. We must be ready to do whatever it takes to save them. In this merit, we will surely merit the ultimate redemption through our righteous Moshiach.
Have a wonderful Shabbos!
Rabbi Shmuel Mendelsohn
Adapted from Likkutei Sichos Volume 10, p. 55 ff.
DEDICATED IN HONOR OF THE LUBAVITCHER REBBE
מוקדש לזכות כ”ק אדמו”ר נשיא דורנו מליובאוויטש
IN HONOR OF
The Soldiers of Tzivos Hashem Chaim and Aiden Oded שיחיו Morris
DEDICATED BY THEIR PARENTS
Rabbi & Mrs. Menachem M. and Chaya Mushka שיחיו Morris
חיילי “צבאות השם” חיים ועדן עודד שיחיו מאריס
נדפס ע”י הוריהם
הרה”ת ר’ מנחם מענדל וזוגתו מרת חי’ מושקא שיחיו מאריס
. Our Parshah, Bereishis 18:23.
. Yeshayahu 41:8.