Sunday, November 27, 2005

parshat Chayyei Sarah: Followup to The sons of Keturah

Last week on parshablog, I had a post about when exactly Avraham married Ketura, and suggested that it may have happened much earlier.

I should have pointed out how it can be made to work out even without appealing to this, though I do not regard my suggestion to be forced in any way. However, to make sense on the more midrashic level, why Avraham would take another wife:

According to those who take Keturah as Hagar, it is obvious. He was reluctant to drive her away in the first place. Now that Sarah had died and would not be troubled by Hagar's presence, he could take her back and thus make things between them somewhat right.

Even with Keturah and Hagar as two separate individuals, it still is not farfetched to imagine he took a wife at such an old age. Sarah died when Avraham was 137, and he died at 175. Thus, he has another 38 years of life. Avraham kept all the mitzvot in the Torah, even Rabbinic ones, and the Rambam writes (Hilchot Ishut, 15:16)

אף על פי שקיים אדם מצות פרייה ורבייה, הרי הוא מצווה מדברי סופרים שלא ייבטל מלפרות ולרבות, כל זמן שיש בו כוח--שכל המוסיף נפש אחת מישראל, כאילו בנה עולם; וכן מצות חכמים היא שלא יישב איש בלא אישה, שלא יבוא לידי הרהור, ולא תשב אישה בלא איש, שלא תיחשד.

Or, as Hashem says in Bereishit 2:18:

יח וַיֹּאמֶר ה אֱלֹקִים, לֹא-טוֹב הֱיוֹת הָאָדָם לְבַדּוֹ; אֶעֱשֶׂה-לּוֹ עֵזֶר, כְּנֶגְדּוֹ. 18 And the LORD God said: 'It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him.'


My Daily Struggles said...

Rock on!

William Dwek said...

It is time we learned how to serve Hashem from our cousins, the Arabs. They are our brothers. They are the descendants of Yishmael. And they are the children of Avraham and Keturah (Hagar).

The deeds of Keturah were extremely pleasing, and she is to be praised.“Keturah” means “untouched.”

Keturah lived longer than Sarah. Sarah lived until 127 years. Keturah lived until 135 years approximately. When Avraham sent Keturah away, she did not allow herself to be touched by any other man. Why? Because she loved Avraham. She always remained loyal and true to Avraham. And because of that, Avraham came back to her, and re-married her.

(Note that the name, “Keturah” is also very similar to “Ketoret,” which is the sweetest and most holy of all the offerings. It is the incense offering of 11 spices. And it is only the Ketoret which is offered by the Kohen HaGadol on Yom Kippur in the Kodesh HaKadashim.)

The Arabs pray to Hashem. They have only ONE G-D. And they pray to Hashem no less than 5 TIMES a day.

Although they have twisted the Torah, they have taken to heart 2 basic principles from the Torah - “Truth” and “Emunah in Hashem”.

Their service of Hashem is far more pleasing than us – and they are putting us to very great shame. And that is why they are flourishing.

The Jewish People is steeped in idolatry. Idolatry of Money. Money is their God, and their idol.

We have dealt treacherously with Hashem, and we have become traitors to Hashem (Read the Parshiot of Nasso through to Haazinu).

Our G-d, Hashem, is a “Jealous G-d,” and He will not tolerate this level of idolatry and immorality in the Jewish People.

Are we going to wake up or not?


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