Sunday, September 28, 2008

Guest Posting By Shoshannah Brombacher - The Strength of Youth

On the second day of Rosh HaShanah we read the story of the Akedah (Bereishit/Genesis 22), how Avraham went together with his son Yitzchak to offer a sacrifice to G-d. Avraham knew what the sacrifice would be, because G-d Himself had told him this to test his loyalty: his only son, whom he loved, and for whom he had prayed and waited very long. Yitzchak did not know till the last moment; he assumed it would be some animal, as usual.

We read about their journey to the place of the sacrifice in Bereishit 22:6: “and the two of them went together...”

The great Chassidic Master Rabbi Simchah Bunem of Pschyscha explained this verse as follows:

The test of the Akedah was much more difficult to accept for Yitzchak than it was for Avraham.


Avraham had been told by HaShem Himself that the sacrifice would involve his only beloved son. Yitzchak however, heard that he would be the sacrifice from his own father, a man of flesh and blood, and not from HaShem. Yitzchak accepted this readily, and he agreed to do as his father asked. He did not put up a fight nor did he argue or flee. Avraham wondered why this was so? Wasn’t his son scared? Wasn’t he human? What would he have done himself? Then he figured: it must be because Yitzchak is so young, that he has the ‘strength of youth’.

Realizing this, Avraham himself felt filled with the strength of youth at once to perform his difficult task. And so they ‘went together’ in the true sense of the word, both with strength.

May we all be zoykheh to have the strength of youth to do mitzvoth and have a good and blessed year.


At September 28, 2008 at 10:13:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yitzchak was 35 years...young??

At September 28, 2008 at 11:53:00 PM EDT, Blogger Menashe said...

I don't wish to compare Avrohom Avinu to anybody in any of the more recent generations. BUT if the Moshe Rabbeinu sheb'doreinu is telling you to do something it is as if the shechina itself is speaking. This is no small matter. There's a big difference between my father, holy as he may be, telling me something and Hashem's representative on earth doing the same.

I understand the Rebbe's point here but I feel in my humble opinion that it almost minimizes the strength of a tzadddik's words.


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