Chasidic Insights

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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 21, v. 10: "Ki seitzei lamilchomoh al oyvecho unsono Hashem Elokecho b'yo'decho" - The verse states that Hashem will place your enemy into your hand, seemingly with no effort on your part. Compare this with "V'chi sovo'u milchomoh b'artz'chem .. v'ha'rei'osem bachatzotzros" (Bmidbar 10:9). The war is with our evil inclination. If we preempt him and go out to war, "ki seitzei," then he is easily given over to us. If however, we sit idly by and let him encroach upon us, only taking action when he is striking at our jugular vein, "v'chi sovo'u milchomoh b'artz'chem," then he is not given over to us easily. It requires much more effort, "v'ha'rei'osem bachatzotzros." (Admor of Kotzk in Likutei Yehudoh)

Ch. 21, v. 10: "Lamilchomoh" - Rashi writes that the verse is discussing "milche'mes horshus," a voluntary war. The most challenging war we have with our evil inclination is not in the area of outright sins. It is in the area of that which is permitted but is inappropriate, "ka'deish atz'm'cho b'mutor l'cho." (Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Vorke in Divrei Vinoh)

Ch. 21, v. 10: "V'shoviso shivyo" - The war is against our evil inclination. Capture the one who is attempting to capture and ensnare you. (Baal Shem Tov) Alternatively, you must be constantly on guard against your evil inclination. If you rest and let down your guard for even a moment, "v'shoviso," you can be sure that he will capture you, "shivyo." (Rabbi Moshe of Ujhel in Yismach Moshe)

Alternatively, just as when the evil inclination would ensnare you, he would not he would not be satisfied with this one victory alone. He would attempt to drag you down further and further. So too, you should capture him by fighting him off and not be satisfied with one small victory. Fight to push his enticement further and further away. (Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson Admor of Lubavitch)

Ch. 22, v. 7: "V'es habonim tikach loch" - the verse began with "efrochim" or "beitzim" and ends with "bonim." This comes to allude that the reward for fulfillment of this mitzvoh for a person who has no children is children, as per the M.R. 6:6. (Yismach Yisroel of Alexander)

Ch. 22, v. 8: "V'osiso maa'keh l'ga'gecho" - A roof is at a height. Make a safety fence around your roof, your haughtiness, lest it will be the cause of your downfall, "ki yipol hanofeil mi'menu." (Shalo"h Hakodosh)

Ch. 22, v. 14: "Es ho'ishoh hazose lokachti" - The husband says that he TOOK this woman. Compare this with the words of her father in the next verse, "es biti nosati," I GAVE my daughter. Each one is stressing the audacity of the other. The husband says that he has the advantage of choosing the wife of his liking and has done the family a major favour. In spite of this she was unfaithful. The father says that he has done his son-in-law the favour. He has GIVEN his daughter and in spite of this his son-in-law has spun a false claim against his daughter. (See Rashi on Breishis 34:16). (Ponim Yofos)


See also Sedrah Selections and Oroh V'Simchoh

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