Pesach and Avrohom

by Rabbi Shaul Dov Felman shlit"a

Chag Kasher Vesameach!


Pesach 5762

Our Chazal have made us well aware that the three Yomim Tovim correspond to the three Avos (see Tur at the beginning of Hilchos Rosh Chodesh); Pesach to Avrohom, Shavuos to Yitzchok and Sukkos to Yaakov. Each is a discussion of its own as to explaining in detail why it is so. We will concentrate on Pesach as we are now on the heels of that particular Yom Tov.

The simple explanation seems to be that we are well familiar that Avrohom Ovinu is the representation in this world of “Middas Hachesed” and it was through his actions that we learn the depth of Hakadosh Boruch Hu’s use of that particular Middah. Truly, Avrohom Ovinu merited being called “Avrohom Ohavi” (See Yeshayahu 41,8) Avrohom my beloved, by the Ribono Shel Olom. It seems that this was a result of his being the personification of love and goodness. The essence of “Yetzias Mitzrayim” was certainly the greatest “Chessed” that Ha-shem could have ever done with us. He took us out of Egypt at a time when we had sunk to the 49th level of impurity. Had we stayed there even a moment longer, our Rabbis teach us, we would have fallen to a point of no return. We didn’t have the opportunity to earn the redemption, unlike Shavuos when we approach “Kabbolas Hatorah” after 49 days of perfecting ourselves. We then have justly, with “Middas Hadin” earned the privilege of being awarded the Torah, thereby corresponding Shavuos to Yitzchok.

Another thread that connects the “Shalos Regolim” is the concept of the relationship that is being forged between Hakadosh Boruch Hu and Klal Yisroel. The Yom Tov of Pesach is generally thought of as alluding to the “Eirusin” engagement, of a bride and groom, while Shavuos is corresponding to the “Chuppah” and Sukkos is when the couple enters the “Cheder Yichud” together alone. The Slonimer Rebbe ZTL wonders how is it that we see the tremendous importance applied to the Yom Tov of Pesach as being the first of the “Moadim” when in truth it is only the beginning of the relationship that still is far from it’s conclusion?

It seems that the special quality of the Yom Tov of Pesach lies in the fact that the “choice” has been made. One often struggles to find a suitable mate and when finally makes the decision he generally feels a great sense of relief and tremendous satisfaction. True, the relationship is only at the beginning of the road but when one is able to see the potential that it has, the anticipation alone can bring someone great satisfaction. Hakadosh Boruch Hu had searched for a nation that is fit to carry His name. He revealed himself through the miracles of “Yetziyas Mitzrayim” to the whole world and His essence was known to all. Klal Yisroel was the nationthat devoted itself to His service thus setting the stage for the status of “Eirusin” engagement with Hakadosh Boruch Hu.

The truth is that returning to the beginning of our discussion, we see the exact parallel to this in our Avos. Whilst Avrohom Ovinu was undoubtedly the first of the Avos, we have been taught that Yaakov Ovinu was the “Bechir Shebeavos” which would seem to indicate that he was the most special. Yet we saw above the special endearment that was awarded to Avrohom Ovinu. Once again the reason is very simple. In Avrohom Ovinu, Hakadosh Boruch Hu had made his choice. As we recite every morning; Hakadosh Boruch Hu chose “Avrom,” took him out of Ur Casdim and called him “Avrohom.” (Nechemia 9,7) In Arohom Hakadosh Boruch had made his choice. After all the generations that had gone by from Adam till Noach and then from Noach to Avrohom, with all the idol worshipping that had filled the world, Hakadosh Boruch Hu had finally found a devoted servant who recognized Him as the Creator of the world. True, the highest level would not be reached till the oncoming of Yaakov Ovinu. Nevertheless, in Avrohom Ovinu Hakadosh Boruch Hu was able to see that from him would inevitably come a Yaakov Ovinu. It was just a matter of time and effort.

Let us rejoice in our being the “Chosen Nation.” Truly with “Yetiyas Mitzrayim” we begin to be referred to as the nation of Israel. The choice has been made. The future is so bright. Let us serve Hashem with that rejuvenated spirit that is felt by a young couple that tries so hard to please one another. Maybe we will then be zocheh to the fulfillment of the words of Chazal that just like we were redeemed in Nissan, we shall once again be redeemed in Nissan, speedily in our days.

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