Friday, January 16, 2015

the strength to have hope

Right after Moshe told Hashem that even Bnei Yisrael were not listening to him, the Torah takes what seems like a detour from the story of yetzi’as Mitzrayim into a discussion of the yichus of the shevatim and their families (6:14-27).  What is this discussion of lineage doing here?  Rashi has an answer, but I wanted to share a classic Ishbitzer.

Sometimes we see people who are really suffering but somehow they never lose hope and never stop davening.  Where does that strength come from? The Beis Ya’akov writes that when Hashem wanadiants to help a person, Hashem gives them the strength not to despair; Hashem inspires a person to turn to Him.  I think I’ve posted the Mei HaShiloach before: “terem nikra’u ani e’eneh” means that even before we start davening, Hashem responds to us by giving us the desire and strength to daven.
Bnei Yisrael thought they were the lowest of the low.  There was no point to listen to Moshe because whatever he said, it wasn’t going to make a difference.  Hashem therefore taught Moshe this parsha about their yichus.  Hashem reminded Bnei Yisrael that slavery did not define who they were – what defined who they were was their yichus to the Shivtei K-h, the greatest of the great.  Hashem restored their belief in themselves, gave them hope, and as a result they were able to believe in the possibility of redemption and daven to make it happen.


  1. Which is the obverse of Reb Chayim Shmuelevitz's vort: וימת יוסף וכל אחיו וכל הדור ההוא. As long as the Jews saw the first generation, their yichus, nobody could enslave them. It was only after that generation was gone and forgotten that ויקם מלך חדש

  2. Methinks that you owe us an definition of the penultimate word, second line, second paragraph. Could it possibly be a combination of "wants" and "radiates"? OCY wants to know.