Delray Orthodox Synagogue
DELRAY ORTHODOX SYNAGOGUE
"A Jewel of a Shul"
7319 W. ATLANTIC AVENUE
DELRAY BEACH, FLORIDA 33446
RABBI MENACHEM JAROSLAWICZ
HARRY LAZARUS, PRESIDENT
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This week’s Parsha, Lech Lecha, has a Pasuk in it that, at first glance, seems totally insignificant -- but, upon deeper perusal, packs a serious punch. Beraishis 13:7 tells us: "Vayehi riv bain ro'ai mikneh Avram u'vain ro'ai mikneh Lot, v’haKna'ani v’haPerizzi ohz yoshaiv ba'aretz. [And there was a quarreling between the herdsmen of Avram's livestock and the herdsmen of Lot's livestock -- and the Canaanite and the Perizzite were then dwelling in the land.]"
Our Rabbis ask: What do these two seemingly independent statements, that of the quarreling herdsmen and that of the Canaanites and Perizzites living in the land, have to do with one another such that they are recorded in the same sentence? One struggles to see the immediate connection.
Avrom's response to Lot is, "Please let there be no strife between me and you, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen, for we are men who are brothers.” (Beraishis 13:8)
The lesson being taught here by the Torah is one that carries forth for all of time and not just for Avram and Lot. Unfortunately, we live in a time where the ramifications of this lesson are being experienced by all of Klal Yisroel on a daily basis.
While it is never acceptable at any time or in any place for brothers to quarrel, it is so much more dangerous for us to do so in the presence of and while living amongst our non-Jewish neighbors. Especially at times when these neighbors sit in waiting to take away our inheritance, the Holy Land of Eretz Yisroel. When we fight amongst ourselves, we feed right into their hands. Any lack of unity between Jews invites others to attract our enemies and join in with them as well. The Torah is telling us very clearly in the same sentence, when there is fighting between brothers, the direct cause is that the Canaanites and the Perizzites are dwelling in our land, and not us.
Anybody who read some of the articles in this week's Jewish Journal, articles written by Jews, Rabbis (supposedly) and seemingly-respected individuals, liberals and what nots, saw underlying themes of "Give back land. Give in to the Arab pressures and divide Jerusalem. Welcome the terrorist into our Homeland and we will have peace." You saw Jews preaching to the world that all of Hamas and ISIS violence would go away if only the Jews in Israel would stop acting so righteous and be good little puppies, roll over and play dead. Then we would have peace.
The Torah already warned us some 4,000+ years ago to beware of those who would create arguments amongst Jews in the presence of our non-Jewish neighbors. It is because of a lack of tolerance by brothers for each other’s religious beliefs --and the inability to accept anyone who is more or less religious than themselves -- that people have such a strong need to be accepted and admired by the non-Jewish sophisticates of the world. THEY, and only THEY, are the direct cause for the Canaanites and the Perizzites still dwelling in OUR land.
May Hashem grant us wisdom to follow the Torah's guidance of so long ago, and grant us clarity, unity and peace until the arrival of our final redemption in the immediate future.
Have a GREAT Shabbos.
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