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Simcha Groffman

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Kinder Torah
For parents to share with children at the Shabbos Table

Parashas Bo

Dedicated in Honor of the 50TH Wedding Anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Groffman By Mr. and Mrs. Aaron Groffman and family

A Happy Marriage

"Mazel tov, mazel tov!"

"Tizku livnos bayis ne'man bi'yisrael (May you merit to build a faithful home in [the Nation of] Israel)!"

The mother of the kallah (bride) was beaming. She and her husband had found a good husband for their daughter - a nice boy from a good family. They had worked hard to help set them up in a nice home. Now the proud mother of the bride could relax. Her daughter has found her place in the home of her new husband. The father, however, was a little more reserved.

"Not so fast, my dear. He seems like a nice boy, but the real test will come later. How will we know if our daughter has found someone who is truly dedicated to her? Let us see if he takes care of her. If he assumes the responsibility for supporting her, then we will know that our hard work in finding a suitable husband has paid off."

This parable from the Meshech Chochma zt"l parallel's Hashem's relationship with Klal Yisrael. The verse states, "It is because of this that Hashem acted on my behalf when I left Mitzraim" (Shemos 13:8). What "this" is the verse referring to? The observance of the Chag of Pesach. When will that be? When they enter the Land of Israel. When will Hashem know that it was worth His while (so to speak) to redeem the Jewish people from Mitzraim? Not while He is carrying them on eagle's wings, surrounding them with Clouds of Glory, and feeding them mun. In such a pampered existence, it is relatively easy to be a good servant to Hashem. However, when they enter the Land, plow, sow, and reap, they are busy with their livelihood. If they are still faithful to Hashem by observing this springtime festival (Pesach), then He will know that it was worthwhile to have redeemed them.

The Meshech Chochma goes on to speak about the golus (exile). When we are no longer able to sacrifice the Korbon Pesach, will we still be loyal to Hashem? The answer is yes. Now Hashem is very satisfied with us. We have proven ourselves faithful servants for over 3000 years.

Kinderlach . . .

May you all merit to find wonderful husbands and wives; spouses who will be concerned for you, and take care of you. The going may get rough, but the main thing is that you stick together. You have a good example to guide you. Hashem and the Jewish people. We have stuck by Him for over 3000 years, and He has stuck by us. Through thick and thin. We are His chosen nation, and He is our G-d. Take pleasure and security in knowing this, kinderlach. Enjoy our happy marriage to Hashem.

Merit to be Saved

"In the merit of four things, Klal Yisrael was redeemed from Mitzraim. They did not change their names . . . They did not change their language. They spoke Loshon HaKodesh. They did not speak Loshon Hora about each other . . . They did not behave immorally" (Yalkut Shemoni 226). We can see a similarity in three of these four reasons. Hashem took "goy mikerev goy" (a nation out from within another nation) [Devarim 4:34]. In order to take out a nation, they must have some identity as a nation. If they share a common language, traditional names, and solid family structure, then they are indeed a recognizable nation. Where does Loshon Hora fit into the picture? Does that make them a nation?

The Ksav Sofer zt"l explains as follows. A person may commit many aveyros (sins) because he cannot control his desires. He loves food, and cannot resist eating non-kosher delicacies. He loves money and cannot resist stealing. These are terrible things and can bring a person down to a very low madrayga (spiritual level). Yet, there is always hope, if he does tshuva (repentance). However, if a person resents Rabbonim, and speaks Loshon Hora about them, therefore causing others to sin, he cannot be saved.

This was the situation in Mitzraim. Most of the nation was on the 49th level of tumah (impurity), committing all types of sins. Yet, a few tsaddikim among them stayed pure. Jews certainly had the opportunity to speak badly about those tsaddikim, and report them to the authorities. Yet, they did not. They retained their respect for those holy people. Therefore, Hashem had mercy upon them, and revealed Himself to them with signs and wonders. Slowly their faith in Him increased, until in the end, they accepted the Torah. This was in the merit of respecting their leaders.

Kinderlach . . .

We are so fortunate to have great Rabbonim and Talmidei Chachomim to guide Klal Yisrael. Where would we be without their constant leadership, encouragement, and support? They are so self-sacrificing for the needs of the community. They deserve our ultimate and unfailing respect. To say bad things about them is unthinkable. Even if we do not understand or are inconvenienced by some of their decisions. In the merit of this respect, our ancestors were redeemed from Mitzraim. In the merit of our not speaking Loshon Hora, may we also be redeemed from our golus (exile) bi'mhayra biyomainu (speedily in our days). Amen.

Parasha Questions

Where did the wind blow the arbeh (out of Mitzraim)? (10:19)

What was the first mitzvah given to Klal Yisrael? (12:2)

What is the punishment for someone who eats chometz on Pesach?


What did they use to spread the blood on the door posts? (12:22)

How many years were the Jews in Mitzraim? (12:40)

Who may not eat from the Korbon Pesach? (12:43 and Rashi)

Where do we find the mitzvah of Sipur Yitzias Mitzraim?

What is done with a bechor that is not redeemed? (13:13)

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