Meir Tzvi Berman

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Parshas Bo

(Exodus 10:2)
U’lima’an Tisaper B’azney Bincha… Vee’da’atem Kee Ani Hashem

In order that you should tell your children… and you will know that I am Hashem (G-d).

Moshe was told by Hashem that the purpose of the next three plagues is so that the story will be passed from generation to generation. Obviously, the purpose of the miracles being in the annals of our people is so they can reinforce our conviction that Hashem will do miracles to redeem us in the future.

It is interesting to note that the Torah first instructs us to tell our children about the miracles and it then tells us that we, the story-tellers, will come to know that "I am Hashem). Would it not have been more appropriate for us to first perceive the glory of Hashem’s existence before we tell our children about His miracles? To answer, it is true that those who describe the ten plagues must have some knowledge of the miracles that took place. However, their full impact and the extent to which Hashem’s glory was revealed by them may not be obvious. When one seeks to actually explain these great happenings to others, he will almost invariably gain a deeper understanding of what transpired.

Indeed, this is what this verse is telling us when it says "that you should tell your children… (about the miracles, so that) you will know that I am Hashem."

The speaker will have a greater understanding of how Hashem’s glory was manifest in all of the plagues and miracles that occurred.

· Razah in Iturei Torah

(Exodus 10:3)
Vayavo Moshe V’Aharon El Paroh Vayomru Ailuv… Ad Mosai May’antuh Lay’unos Me’panay…

Moshe and Aharon came to Pharoh and they said to him… "Until when will you refuse to humble yourself before ME…"

Moshe and Aharon are seen standing before Pharoh. Pharoh still refused to yield to Hashem’s will and he still does not wish to grant independence to the Jewish people. This is after he and his nation suffered through seven horrible plagues.

Even a righteous person can make mistakes. He feels great remorse when he fails and he strongly desires to have the moral strength and fortitude to do the will of Hashem. This is a very important and positive character trait in Hashem’s eyes. On the other hand, not only did Pharoh not possess the "moral strength" to humble himself before Hashem, he had no desire at all to acquire such a quality. He purposely refused to humble himself. In his perverted set of values, indifference to the strong message of the plagues was a sign of courage and fortitude. To him, this reaction was a positive step in his own character development. So, not only did he not humble himself, he "refused" to humble himself.

· Sfas Emes in Itturei Torah

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