Pearls of Rashi: Parshas Vo’eiro I

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In our weekly Parshah, Vo’eiro, we read that Hashem commanded Moshe to speak to Pharaoh. Moshe claimed that he was not the best choice[1]; “I am of closed lips, (I cannot speak clearly), so how will Pharaoh listen to me?” Hashem responded to this claim by saying[2], “See! I have made you a lord over Pharaoh, and Aharon, your brother, will be your speaker.” Rashi explains that “a lord over Pharaoh” means that Moshe would be “a judge and a chastiser, to chastise him with plagues and torments.”

Every word in Torah teaches us a lesson for all times and places. What lesson can we learn from this?

What does Rashi mean when he says that Moshe would be “a judge and a chastiser, to chastise him (Pharaoh) with plagues and torments?” Chassidic Philosophy[3] explains that there are forces of evil in the world, referred to as husks or shells[4]. They are not Chas Veshalom independent of G-d; nothing is! However, Hashem gives them a limited amount of vitality to serve their purpose: to provide us with free will and enable us to “just say no” to them. However, whenever (G-d forbid) one of us gives in to temptation, these husks derive additional vitality. There comes the point that they become so powerful that even a Tzaddik is powerless against them.

In each generation, there is one person who can destroy them; the “Moshe,” the leader of each generation. That is the meaning of “See (an exclamation of astonishment)! I have made you a lord over Pharaoh.” Although Pharaoh was in his full power, only Moshe could be his judge and a chastiser and chastise him with plagues and torments.

If only Aharon spoke to Pharaoh, why did Moshe need to be there? Because only Moshe was able to defeat him.

Just as we merited redemption from Mitzrayim, so too may we merit redemption from our present exile.

I wish you a wonderful Shabbos!

Rabbi Shmuel Mendelsohn

Adapted from Likkutei Sichos Volume 16, Page 60ff.


DEDICATED IN HONOR OF THE LUBAVITCHER REBBE

IN LOVING MEMORY OF
DR. MINDEL RIVKA (MURIEL) BAS REB MENACHEM MENDEL SHLOMO ע”ה STITT
PASSED AWAY ON SHABBAT PARSHAS LECH LECHA, 10 MAR-CHESHVAN, 5782
MAY HER SOUL BE BOUND IN THE ETERNAL BOND OF LIFE

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


[1]. Our Parshah, Shemos 6:30.

[2]. Ibid, ibid. 7:1.

[3]. See Ohr Hatorah on our Parshah, Page 231. See also the Chassidic discourse beginning with the words “See that I have made you,” from the years 5631, 5777, and 5715. It is also explained in this manner in the work Pelach Harimon on our Parshah, Page 64.

[4]. The meaning of this name is that they block the G-dly creative light which is within the world.

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