hebrew
1)

What does "Ariri" mean?

1.

Rashi: It means either without heirs (Menachem ben S'ruk) or without children (Rashi, Ramban, Targum Onkelus and Targum Yonasan).

2.

Seforno: It is without a son to take my place. 1


1

This seemingly combines Rashi's two explanations.

2)

Seeing as Hashem had already promised him that He would give the land to him and to his children, how could Avraham even think that he would die without children?

1.

Ramban: Tzadikim are always afraid that their sins may cause them to lose all their merits. 1


1

Refer to 15:1:2:1.

3)

On what basis did Hashem reassure Avraham that he was still due to receive abundant reward? Why were his fears (that he had lost all his reward) unfounded?

1.

Seforno: Hashem was informing him that, not only was his reward not diminished, but on the contrary, it had increased, due to the Chesed that he had performed with his nephew Lot. 1

2.

Ramban: Refer to 15:1:2:3.

3.

Da'as Zekenim: Avraham was worried that his merits were decreased through killing the kings. Hashem informed him, that, on the contrary, he had removed thorns from the vineyard, for which he would receive reward. 2


1

As taught by the Mishnah in Pe'ah (1:1), which lists Gemilas Chasadim as one of the things, the fruits of which one eats in this world, whereas the main reward is reserved for the World to Come.

2

And, as the Pasuk says in Mishlei (11:10) "When Resha'im are destroyed there is jubilation".

4)

Why did Avraham refer to Eliezer as Damesek Eliezer?

1.

Rashi #1 and Ramban (and most other commentaries): Because he hailed from Damascus.

2.

Rashi #2 (citing the Midrash) and Targum Yonasan: Because, together with Avraham Avinu, he chased the kings as far as Damascus, and experienced many miracles.

3.

Rashi (citing Yoma, 28b): 'Damesek' is the acronym of 'Doleh u'Mashkeh (mi'Toraso shel Rabo)'' - he drew from the well of Avraham's Torah and taught others.

4.

Seforno: He was a nonentity who was not even known by his name, only by his town.

5)

What is the connection between the fact that he had no children and that Eliezer managed his estate?

1.

Rashi and Seforno: He was 'complaining' that his affairs were being looked after by his slave, because if he had a son, then he would be the one to sustain his household. 1

2.

Lev Eliyahu (Bereishis p.51-4): Surely he was not concerned about his property, rather, about continuing to teach people Darchei Hashem. Eliezer comes from the cursed Kena'an. Even though he was a great Tzadik, we do not find any importance to his descendants (or those of Lot or Avraham's other Talmidim).


1

Moreover, the Seforno adds, one cannot compare a slave who manages his master's property based on fear, to a son. who manages it based on love

6)

What is the connection between the fact that he had no children and that Eliezer managed his estate?

1.

Rashi and Seforno: He was 'complaining' that his affairs were being looked after by his slave, because if he had a son, then he would be the one to sustain his household. 1

2.

Lev Eliyahu (Bereishis p.51-4): Surely he was not concerned about his property, rather, about continuing to teach people Darchei Hashem. Eliezer comes from the cursed Kena'an. Even though he was a great Tzadik, we do not find any importance to his descendants (or those of Lot or Avraham's other Talmidim).


1

Moreover, the Seforno adds, one cannot compare a slave who manages his master's property based on fear, to a son. who manages it based on love

7)

רש"י: ואלו היה לי בן היה בני ממונה על שלי...דולה ומשקה מתורת רבו לאחרים: וכי אברהם מבקש בן רק כדי שיהיה ממונה על שלו?

1.

גור אריה: כיון שאמר ה' "שכרך הרבה מאוד" אמר אברהם: אם תתן לי שכר בעולם הזה, אין לי חפץ בכך כי אליעזר ממונה על שלי. ואם שכר בעולם הבא- אילו היה לי בן הוא היה מלמד את תורתי ולא אליעזר וזה שכר לעולם הבא. לכן המשיך רש"י שדמשק פרושו שאליעזר דולה ומשקה מתורתו.

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