The Sephardic Community of Fair Lawn, New Jersey

Weekly Parsha – Parashat Noah – Fair Lawn NJ

Parashat Noah
Dear Congregants:

In the beginning of this week’s Parashah, we read about the great flood that Hashem brought on the world. Later on in the Parashah, we read about the generation of division(Dor Hapelagah), in which Hashem mixed up the languages of the people.

Rashi analyzes the sins of these two generations and their respective punishments.

The generation of division lived in peace and harmony with each other, yet they built a tower to fight against G-d(kivyachol) and were punished with a mixing up of their languages.

The generation of the flood were not guilty of trying to wage war against G-d. They were guilty of theft and other lustful sins.

However there was disharmony among the people and their punishment was total obliteration in the flood. One would think that the punishments should have been reversed.

What lesson can be learned from this? Rashi, quoting Bereshit Rabbah says that this teaches us that “Great is Peace and Loathsome is fighting.” Hashem is more apt to show patience with a person, community or generation that live harmoniously with their fellow man even if they are guilty of idol worship than with people who are guilty of lesser sins yet fight with each other.

This is a sobering lesson in the importance of keeping the peace.

Have a Shabbat Shalom.

Rabbi Shemtob


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