hebrew
1)

Sarah said that Avraham was old. Why did Hashem quote her as having said that she was old?

1.

Rashi: To avoid friction between Avraham and Sarah 1 , since to say that one's husband is old 2 and cannot have children is degrading. 3

2.

Ramban, Rashbam, Moshav Zekenim, Da'as Zekenim: "Ani Zakanti" is synonymous with "Acharei Belosi Haysah Li Ednah", so Hashem told the absolute truth. Hashem did hold back a part of the truth - He said "va'Adoni Zakein", and not "va'Ani va'Adoni Zekeinim".


1

We learn from here that one is permitted to lie for the sake of peace.

2

Da'as Zekenim: I.e. he does not ejaculate.

3

Moshav Zekenim, Da'as Zekenim, Hadar Zekenim: We can say that Hashem totally deviated. Sarah saw a sign of returning to her youth (Dam Nidah), but she could not believe that Avraham will be able to father a child.

2)

Why did Hashem take Sarah to task for laughing, but not Avraham, who laughed too?

1.

Ramban: because Avraham's external laughter was one of joy, 1 whereas that of Sarah, who laughed 'in her heart', was a laugh of mockery. 2

2.

Moshav Zekenim: Sarah publicized the predicted miracle among her neighbors. It was proper not to fulfill it, for Hashem prefers doing miracles covertly. She then denied (the predicted miracle), for she feared lest (due to the publicity) it not be fulfilled. Avraham prostrated when he heard, amidst gratitude.


1

Refer to 17:17:1:1 and to 17:17:1:1 2

.

3

Moshav Zekenim: The prefix Hei ("hal'Ven Me'ah...") shows astonishment at the miracle. Without the Hei (Acharei Belosi...) is mockery, like "Hinei Hashem Oseh Arubos ba'Shamayim."

3)

Seeing as Sarah did not know that the guests were angels (as the Ramban explained in the previous Pasuk), why did Hashem take her to task?

1.

Ramban: Because she mocked the suggestion that she would have children. She should have believed that it was possible, or have responded with 'Amen!'

4)

Who reprimanded Sarah?

1.

Rashbam: It was the angel speaking in the name of Hashem. 1


1

According to the other commentaries, it was Hashem Himself who addressed Avraham.

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