Avraham was different than the tzadikim who preceded him. Hashem attests to the fact that Avraham would command his children after him. (1) The other tzadikim did not have much hashpa on others. Avraham influenced his children and students, publicizing Hashem’s way (as we discussed last week in the name of the Rashba).
Eliezer, Avraham’s servant, embodies Avraham’s faith. He is so certain that Hashem will answer him, that he prays to be successful that very day. (2)
Eliezer is described as the elder of the household, “who ruled over all that he (Avraham) had.” The Rabbis say that Eliezer had mastered the Torah of Avraham. (3) Besides the fact that Avraham had great confidence in Eliezer (as seen in the parsha), Eliezer was a great Torah sage, the ultimate student.
Here is an illustration of Avraham’s influence. Eliezer always mentions “the G-d of Avraham my master,” showing us that his prayer is only due to his faith in Avraham’s teaching.
Eliezer, in turn, influences as well. He is responsible for arranging the match for Avraham’s son. Rivka’s idolatrous family are so impressed by Eliezer’s story that they acknowledge that the match of Yitzchak and Rivka comes from Hashem.
Chazal tell us that the mundane speech of the servants of the Avos is more precious than the Torah of Moshe. (4) There is much to learn from Eliezer’s talk — so much so, that the Torah repeats it at length, although many halachos of the Torah are derived from small marks and hints. The Torah of Eliezer, the servant of Avraham, lasts for all generations.
It’s amazing that Eliezer says a brocha with the correct format of the Rabbis: “Baruch Hashem, the G-d of Avraham my master…” (5) See in footnote 6 how mentioning ‘the G-d of Avraham’ fulfills an important requirement in halacha.
1. Bereishis 18:19
2. Ibid., 24:12. See Ohel Moshe (Sheinerman) at length, parshas Chayei Sarah: The Ohr Hachayim writes that Eliezer was certain of Avraham’s tefila (prayer). Perhaps this demonstrates the high level of Eliezer’s Bitachon (trust); perhaps it illustrates a different concept — the power of tefila. That which happens through tefila is not considered miraculous — it’s simply that Hashem is not bound by nature whatsoever!
3. Yoma 28b
4. See Rashi, Bereishis, 24:42
5. Bereishis 24:27
6. In order to fulfill the requirement for brochos, a brocha must contain Hashem’s name and ‘malchus’ — a reference to Hashem’s rule in the world. We usually fulfill the requirement for ‘malchus’ by saying ‘Melech Ha’olam’ — ‘King of the World.’ Tosafos ask, “Where, in shemona esreh — the main part of the prayer service — do we find ‘malchus?'” (‘King of the World’ is missing.) They answer — when mention is made of ‘Elokei Avraham’ — ‘G-d of Avraham,’ because Avraham caused Hashem’s Malchus to be known. (Tosafos, Brochos 40b, 49a, Ba’alei Tosafos on Rashi, Bereishis 24:7)