Chasidic Insights

on the Weekly Parsha

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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 12, v. 1: "Lech l'cho" - Rabbi Nochum of Chernobyl busied himself with redeeming prisoners, "pidyon shvuyim." He pushed himself to great lengths to both gather funds and distribute them to the powers that may be to procure freedom for the incarcerated. He was once in Zhitomer and was falsely accused of some crime, and was placed into prison. A very righteous person whom he did not know came to visit him in prison. He told Rabbi Nochum that Avrohom was the paradigm host, trying to maximize hospitality for wayfarers who crossed his threshold. Hashem therefore told him "lech l'cho," so that he himself would become a traveler. Being in the position of recipient of "hachnosas orchim" he would more readily realize the needs of a guest and be able to give to his guests in an even better fashion. He said that this was why Rabbi Nochum "merited" to be locked up, so that he would feel the needs of a prisoner and be able to do his monumental work even better.

Ch. 12, v. 2: "Ve'h'yei brochoh" - Rashi explains that this refers to the blessing of "Mogein Avrohom." This blessing is most unusual as it is not one regarding the present or the future, as the rest of the blessings of the Amidoh. We can answer that Hashem promised Avrohom that a spark of his sanctity would be implanted into the hearts of each of the future bnei Yisroel and that Hashem would be their shield. (Chidushei Hori"m)

Ch. 15, v. 6: "V'he'emin baShem" - "V'he'emin" is in the "hifil," causative form. This word does not mean "and he believed," but rather "and he caused others to believe." Avrohom planted the belief in Hashem in the masses. He was therefore rewarded with their good deeds, "va'yach'sh'vehoh lo tzedokoh." (Rabbi Meir of Stavnitz)

Ch. 16, v. 1: "V'Sorai eishes Avrom lo yoldo LO" - Sorai did nt give birth TO Avrom, but she did give birth to many all on her own. Since she taught the belief in Hashem to women, it is as if she gave birth to them. (Rabbi Yechiel of Melitz)


See also Sedrah Selections and Oroh V'Simchoh

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