11 Jan Rabbi Hillel Skolnik’s Torah Spark for Parashat Va’eira 5778 – Weekend of January 12, 2018
This Shabbat we read from Parashat Va’eira which contains the first seven of the ten plagues. But before we can learn about the blood, frogs, etc. that are brought down on Egypt, God and Moshe have some relationship building to do. The parasha opens with God revealing to Moshe that God is Adonai, or the Lord, a name that God never used with Abraham, Isaac or Jacob. This is a very clear sign of the fact that Moshe and God have a different relationship than God had with our forefathers. God and Moshe are partners in a way that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were not and so it is fitting that God would reveal Godself differently to Moshe. And it is only once this bond between the two is completely formed that the full-on effort to free the people can begin. It should inspire all of us to think about our own relationships with the Divine, remembering that no one relationship is better or worse than another.
Rabbi Hillel Skolnik