hebrew
1)

Seeing as both Avraham (here) and Sarah (in Bereishis 18:12) laughed, why did Hashem take Sarah to task but not Avraham?

1.

Rashi, Targum Onkelus 1 and Ramban, Riva: Because whereas Avraham, who believed firmly in the prophesy that he would have a son, laughed out of pure joy, 2 Sarah laughed because she found the prophesy difficult to believe. 3


1

Ramban: Onkelus' source is that Hashem commanded to keep the name. Surely it was not laughter! 2

Targum Yonasan, in both places, translates the laughing as a laugh of surprise. It is not clear how he explains Hashem's different reactions to the two laughs. 3

Riva: Sarah laughed because she thought that it was a person's Brachah. Avraham knew that Hashem said so

2)

Bearing in mind that the earlier generations bore children as late as five hundred years, what was so surprising for Avraham and Sarah to bear children at a hundred and at ninety, respectively?

1.

Rashi: By this time, the ages of people had already been cut, and at their age, they were considered too old to have children.

3)

Avraham already had a son (Yishmael) when he was 86, so what did he mean when he exclaimed "'hale'Ven Me'ah Shanah Yivaled?"

1.

Seforno: What he meant was that, under normal circumstances, a man of a hundred might well bear a child from a young woman but not from an older one; and as for a woman of ninety, she could not bear children at all, even from a young man.

2.

Ramban: Although it was possible for a man of a hundred to bear children, 1 it was amazing for him to begin to have children from Sarah, after having lived with her for so many years without children.

3.

Lev Eliyahu (Shmos p.131): The entire reason Avraham wanted a son was to continue teaching the world Hashem's ways. He was concerned lest he not live long enough to train him! He prayed that Yishmael, whom he already trained for 13 years, would fear Hashem enough to be Avraham's spiritual heir. This is why Hashem added "v'Es Brisi Akim Es Yitzchak", i.e. he will be Kadosh from the womb (Rashi, verse 19).


1

Indeed, Avraham went on to bear many more children still later in life!

4)

Avraham already had a son (Yishmael) when he was 86, so what did he mean when he exclaimed "'hale'Ven Me'ah Shanah Yivaled?"

1.

Seforno: What he meant was that, under normal circumstances, a man of a hundred might well bear a child from a young woman but not from an older one; and as for a woman of ninety, she could not bear children at all, even from a young man.

2.

Ramban: Although it was possible for a man of a hundred to bear children, 1 it was amazing for him to begin to have children from Sarah, after having lived with her for so many years without children.

3.

Lev Eliyahu (Shmos p.131): The entire reason Avraham wanted a son was to continue teaching the world Hashem's ways. He was concerned lest he not live long enough to train him! He prayed that Yishmael, whom he already trained for 13 years, would fear Hashem enough to be Avraham's spiritual heir. This is why Hashem added "v'Es Brisi Akim Es Yitzchak", i.e. he will be Kadosh from the womb (Rashi, verse 19).


1

Indeed, Avraham went on to bear many more children still later in life!

5)

רש"י: בימי אברהם נתמעטו השנים: רא"ם: קשה מה בכך שהתמעטו הדורות, והרי נח ילד קרוב לחצי ימיו וכך אברהם שחי 175 שנה יכול להוליד בגיל 100? ואברהם הוליד מהגר אחר שהיה בן 140 ויעקב את בנימין כשהיה בן 95?

1.

גור אריה: אברהם אמנם ראוי להוליד אבל הוא ראה שהוא לא ראוי להוליד משרה כי התחלת הלידה היא תגבורת הטבע, ולכן היה חידוש בכך שלמרות שעד עכשיו הוא לא הוליד משרה, בגיל כזה [שבו האדם נחלש מטבעו] היא תלד לו. והוכיח רש"י שלא היה ראוי אז להוליד ממה שמאז המבול הקדימו להוליד, כי האדם אינו מוליד כאשר הוא בתגבורת כחו [-בשנות הגדילה] אלא כאשר הוא מפסיק לגדול, ולכן הקדמת ההולדה מראה על חולשת הכח [ובני האדם סיימו לגדול בגיל צעיר יותר], ולכן היה זה תמוה שבן 100 יגבר כח התולדה שלו להוליד משרה למרות שלא ילד ממנה עד עכשיו. עיי"ש.

Chumash: Perek: Pasuk:
Month: Day: Year:
Month: Day: Year:

KIH Logo
D.A.F. Home Page
Sponsorships & Donations Readers' Feedback Mailing Lists Talmud Archives Ask the Kollel Dafyomi Weblinks Dafyomi Calendar Other Yomi calendars