Midreshet Amit


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Passing the Test

By: Jaclyn Wildes and Sarah Gabay

Avraham Avinu’s life was full of tests, beginning with his first test in Parshat Lech Lecha, Avraham was  told to leave his family and go to a foreign country because Hashem told him to do so. The last test is in this week's parsha, Parshat Vayera, that of Akeidat Yitzchak, being willing to sacrifice his very own flesh and blood that he waited 100 years for. For what purpose did Avraham have to go through the pain of almost sacrificing his son? The test of Lech Lecha is understandable— for Avraham to be able to become the patriarch of a new religion, he would have to leave his idol worshiping home and start anew. But here, in this scenario, what was the ultimate purpose of this heartbreaking command? God simply instructs Avraham to slaughter his son without any reasoning, a seemingly irrational gesture. The answer, according to the Abarbanel, is that Avraham actually performs a miracle, he sets an example of what we should do when we encounter a test. In addition, the Ramban says that God gave Avraham this test to change it to an opportunity to do the right thing. As heroic as Avraham may seem in this situation, it is important to keep in mind the explicit divine intervention that occurred here. Avraham heard God’s voice, so it was much easier for him to say yes to this task than it would be for one of us today to say yes if we got asked the same question. But, with that being said, we can learn an amazing lesson from Avraham and his willingness to do whatever God asked of him. Here at AMIT, we have learned that everything we go through is a test— small or big— and God wants us to respond the same way that Avraham responded to Him during all of his tests: by saying yes. Although we cannot physically hear or see God, we must have faith that the daily obstacles we encounter are there for an ultimate purpose, perhaps even to strengthen each and every one of us. May we all be zocheh to find Hashem in everything in life and be able to conquer all of our tests, just like Avraham. Shabbat Shalom!