Abraham, the First Jew
By Avi Lazerson
This week’s parsha is Lech Lecha. Abraham, the first Jew is told by G-d to leave his home in Ur (present day Iraq) and come to the Land of Israel. There he will be made into a great nation. There he is told that he is to walk the land, for it will be given to him and his children as a eternal inheritance.
Yet, in short time we find that a terrible famine has come upon the land of Israel and Abraham is forced to leave Israel and desend to Egypt.
While in Egypt, Abraham fears for his life and requests that Sarah not disclose that she is his wife. Rather she is to tell all that she is his sister, for she is beautiful and the Egyptians may kill him to take her as their wife.
Of course, the Egytian's are taken by Sarah's beauty, and none other than the king of Egypt takes Sarah to be his wife. Fortunately, he is prevented from completing his desire and becomes aware that Sarah is Abraham's wife. He returns Sarah to Abraham and as a result, Abraham is given wealth as a compensation.
Yet Abraham does not complain. Here G-d, Himself, has promised him that he will inherit the land of Israel. He is forced by an act of G-d to leave the land of Israel. His wife is abducted by the evil king. Still Abraham does not complain.
Certainly he has good reason to beseech G-d. He was personally promised the land of Israel. Yet he was forced to leave. What kind of land was he promised? A land of famine?
Yet Abraham never complained. He knew that this was part of the devine plan. He knew that this was the workings of G-d. He had no doubts that G-d knew what he was doing and that all would work out for the best.
This is the lesson that we should learn. As we travel through life and misfortune comes upon us, and who does not experience misfortune. We must not just be patient and wait for the misfortune to pass. We must look forward to seeing what was the devine plan that this came upon us.
We should learn from Abraham who passed the test of having faith in G-d which brought him to an even higher level than before. So, we also must have faith in G-d and His goodness in the face of obsticles.
Wishing you all a Shabbat Shalom!