Chasidic Insights

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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 18, v. 7: "Va'yeitzei Moshe likras chose'no" - Rashi says that Yisro received great honour from this meeting, as this brought all to greet him. The honour is especially expanded by virtue of Yisro's sending a message that Moshe should come to meet them in the merit of his wife and children. Yet, the Torah tells us that he went out in the honour of Yisro himself. This is indeed an extreme honour bestowed upon Yisro. (Rabbi Yechezkel of Kuzhmir)

Ch. 18, v. 10: "Asher hitzil es'chem miyad Mitzrayim u'miyad Paroh asher hitzil es ho'om mitachas yad Mitzroyim" - Rashi points out that "mitachas yad" connotes being under the oppressive hand. Indeed, this is why Yisro separates the salvation of Moshe and Aharon, "es'chem," from the salvation of the nation at large. They were redeemed from tyrannical slavery, while Moshe and Aharon were redeemed from the impurity of Egypt, which limited their spiritual pursuits. (Noam Elimelech)

Ch. 18, v. 11: "Atoh yodati ki godol Hashem mikol hoElokim" - I have now become aware that the greatness of mercy, "godol Hashem," the Name of that connotes mercy, is the true outcome of difficulties and tribulation, connoted by the Name of strict judgment, "Elokim." (Rabbi Avrohom Yaakov of Sadigura in Beis Yisroel)

Ch. 18, v. 20: "V'hizharto es'hem es hachukim v'es haToros" - And you should make them shine through the statutes and the teachings. (Rabbi Boruch Mordechai of Koidnov in Divrei Sholo-m)

Ch. 19, v. 2: "Va'yichan shom Yisroel" - Rashi says that they encamped there united, as one person with one heart. The mishnoh Brochos 54a derives from "b'chol l'VoVcho" (Dvorim 6:5), written with two letters Beis, that one should serve Hashem with his good and bad inclinations. Here, at Har Sinai, in preparation to receive the Torah, the bnei Yisroel's spiritual impurity ceased, "poskoh zuhamoson." They were thus able at this particular moment to serve Hashem with only their good inclination. This is the meaning of "with one heart, b'leiv echod." (Rabbi Yekusiel Yehudoh of Siget in Yeitav Leiv)

Ch. 19, v. 2: "Va'yichan shom Yisroel" - Rashi says that they encamped there united, as one person with a unified heart. This was possible because of "va'yichan," that everyone found favour, "chein," in his fellowmen's eyes. (Rabbi Yitzchok of Vorke)

Ch. 19, v. 2: "Va'yichan shom Yisroel neged hohor" - Right when the bnei Yisroel prepared to bring sanctity into themselves, "va'yichan shom Yisroel," their evil inclination, called a "har" in the gemara Sukoh 52a, expanded by the same measure, "neged hohor." (Rabbi Avrohom Yisochor of Radomsk in Chesed l'Avrohom)

Ch. 19, v. 3: "U'Moshe oloh" - These words come on the heels of "Va'yichan shom Yisroel." Moshe, in his great humbleness, attributed his ability to ascend to the heavens, to the great spiritual level that the bnei Yisroel attained, "k'ish echod b'leiv echod." (Rabbi Moshe Yechiel of Ozhrov in B'eir Moshe)


See also Sedrah Selections and Oroh V'Simchoh

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