Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Parshas Bo

by Rabbi Dovid Green


The last plague given to the Egyptians was the slaying of the first born. Moshe warns Pharoah that this plague will occur at "about" midnight (Exodus 11:4). It's unusual that Moshe spoke in such terms. This is especially true considering that G-d told Moshe the plague would occur "at midnight". Why did Moshe alter what G-d told him? The Talmud says that if Moshe had said exactly midnight, and the plague had occured at a time that the advisors of Pharoah thought was slightly before or after midnight, they would claim Moshe was a liar.

Rabbi Zelig Pliskin in his work "Growth Through Torah" comments that this is a function of the power of finding fault. After nine severe plagues they still wouldn't consider the possibility that maybe they calculated the time incorrectly? Were they blind? However, since they were looking to find fault, even a minor discrepancy would cause them to claim Moshe was a liar.

Finding fault is always at someone's expense. It can be very hurtful, and it usually accomplishes little. People rarely respond positively to vindictive criticism. Finding the positive traits in a person or a situation goes a much longer way.

In "Duties of the Heart" by Rabbi Bachya Ibn Pekudah, a story is told to emphasize this point. A rabbi was walking through the street with several of his students. They came upon the carcass of a dead dog. "What a vile sight," they remarked. "Look how white its teeth are," responded the rabbi. With those words the rabbi taught his students that even when there is much more which is negative, there is still something positive to look for and find. It is a trait which carries us through life. It effects our relationships with our spouses, children, fellow workers, and employees to name just a few.

In this world no one and nothing is perfect. There is always fault to find. However, the Torah teaches us the negative repercussions of being a fault finder. We should always concentrate on seeing and emphasizing the good in everthing. In the merit of our seeking the good in others, may G-d only seek the good in us.

Good Shabbos!


Text Copyright © 1996 Rabbi Dovid Green and Project Genesis, Inc.



 






ARTICLES ON DEVARIM AND THE THREE WEEKS:

View Complete List

How We Suffer
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5758

From Rock Bottom to Bottoms Up
Jon Erlbaum - 0

You Gotta Believe
Rabbi Raymond Beyda - 5765

ArtScroll

Born To Be Wise
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5766

Paradise Lost
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5759

The Purpose of the Fifth Book
Shlomo Katz - 5767

> A Lesson About Our Psyche
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5757

Shabbos Chazon
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5762

Self-Fulfilling Prophecy
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5773

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Seeing HASHEM with Our Hearts
Rabbi Label Lam - 5772

Now I Know My Aleph-Bais
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5764

Falsehood's Foothold
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5763

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

That's Not What Friends Are For
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5772

What to Cry About
Rabbi Label Lam - 5769

A Judgement Call
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5758

Murphy's Day
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5761



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information