Re-digging our Fathers' Wells Central Synagogue Torah Study for Parashat Toldot November 10, 2019 / 2 Kislev 5779
1א
(א) וַיִּסַּ֨ע מִשָּׁ֤ם אַבְרָהָם֙ אַ֣רְצָה הַנֶּ֔גֶב וַיֵּ֥שֶׁב בֵּין־קָדֵ֖שׁ וּבֵ֣ין שׁ֑וּר וַיָּ֖גָר בִּגְרָֽר׃ (ב) וַיֹּ֧אמֶר אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֶל־שָׂרָ֥ה אִשְׁתּ֖וֹ אֲחֹ֣תִי הִ֑וא וַיִּשְׁלַ֗ח אֲבִימֶ֙לֶךְ֙ מֶ֣לֶךְ גְּרָ֔ר וַיִּקַּ֖ח אֶת־שָׂרָֽה׃ (ג) וַיָּבֹ֧א אֱלֹהִ֛ים אֶל־אֲבִימֶ֖לֶךְ בַּחֲל֣וֹם הַלָּ֑יְלָה וַיֹּ֣אמֶר ל֗וֹ הִנְּךָ֥ מֵת֙ עַל־הָאִשָּׁ֣ה אֲשֶׁר־לָקַ֔חְתָּ וְהִ֖וא בְּעֻ֥לַת בָּֽעַל׃ (ד) וַאֲבִימֶ֕לֶךְ לֹ֥א קָרַ֖ב אֵלֶ֑יהָ וַיֹּאמַ֕ר אֲדֹנָ֕י הֲג֥וֹי גַּם־צַדִּ֖יק תַּהֲרֹֽג׃ (ה) הֲלֹ֨א ה֤וּא אָֽמַר־לִי֙ אֲחֹ֣תִי הִ֔וא וְהִֽיא־גַם־הִ֥וא אָֽמְרָ֖ה אָחִ֣י ה֑וּא בְּתָם־לְבָבִ֛י וּבְנִקְיֹ֥ן כַּפַּ֖י עָשִׂ֥יתִי זֹֽאת׃ (ו) וַיֹּאמֶר֩ אֵלָ֨יו הָֽאֱלֹהִ֜ים בַּחֲלֹ֗ם גַּ֣ם אָנֹכִ֤י יָדַ֙עְתִּי֙ כִּ֤י בְתָם־לְבָבְךָ֙ עָשִׂ֣יתָ זֹּ֔את וָאֶחְשֹׂ֧ךְ גַּם־אָנֹכִ֛י אֽוֹתְךָ֖ מֵחֲטוֹ־לִ֑י עַל־כֵּ֥ן לֹא־נְתַתִּ֖יךָ לִנְגֹּ֥עַ אֵלֶֽיהָ׃ (ז) וְעַתָּ֗ה הָשֵׁ֤ב אֵֽשֶׁת־הָאִישׁ֙ כִּֽי־נָבִ֣יא ה֔וּא וְיִתְפַּלֵּ֥ל בַּֽעַדְךָ֖ וֶֽחְיֵ֑ה וְאִם־אֵֽינְךָ֣ מֵשִׁ֗יב דַּ֚ע כִּי־מ֣וֹת תָּמ֔וּת אַתָּ֖ה וְכָל־אֲשֶׁר־לָֽךְ׃ (ח) וַיַּשְׁכֵּ֨ם אֲבִימֶ֜לֶךְ בַּבֹּ֗קֶר וַיִּקְרָא֙ לְכָל־עֲבָדָ֔יו וַיְדַבֵּ֛ר אֶת־כָּל־הַדְּבָרִ֥ים הָאֵ֖לֶּה בְּאָזְנֵיהֶ֑ם וַיִּֽירְא֥וּ הָאֲנָשִׁ֖ים מְאֹֽד׃ (ט) וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֲבִימֶ֜לֶךְ לְאַבְרָהָ֗ם וַיֹּ֨אמֶר ל֜וֹ מֶֽה־עָשִׂ֤יתָ לָּ֙נוּ֙ וּמֶֽה־חָטָ֣אתִי לָ֔ךְ כִּֽי־הֵבֵ֧אתָ עָלַ֛י וְעַל־מַמְלַכְתִּ֖י חֲטָאָ֣ה גְדֹלָ֑ה מַעֲשִׂים֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר לֹא־יֵֽעָשׂ֔וּ עָשִׂ֖יתָ עִמָּדִֽי׃ (י) וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֖לֶךְ אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֑ם מָ֣ה רָאִ֔יתָ כִּ֥י עָשִׂ֖יתָ אֶת־הַדָּבָ֥ר הַזֶּֽה׃ (יא) וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ אַבְרָהָ֔ם כִּ֣י אָמַ֗רְתִּי רַ֚ק אֵין־יִרְאַ֣ת אֱלֹהִ֔ים בַּמָּק֖וֹם הַזֶּ֑ה וַהֲרָג֖וּנִי עַל־דְּבַ֥ר אִשְׁתִּֽי׃ (יב) וְגַם־אָמְנָ֗ה אֲחֹתִ֤י בַת־אָבִי֙ הִ֔וא אַ֖ךְ לֹ֣א בַת־אִמִּ֑י וַתְּהִי־לִ֖י לְאִשָּֽׁה׃ (יג) וַיְהִ֞י כַּאֲשֶׁ֧ר הִתְע֣וּ אֹתִ֗י אֱלֹהִים֮ מִבֵּ֣ית אָבִי֒ וָאֹמַ֣ר לָ֔הּ זֶ֣ה חַסְדֵּ֔ךְ אֲשֶׁ֥ר תַּעֲשִׂ֖י עִמָּדִ֑י אֶ֤ל כָּל־הַמָּקוֹם֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר נָב֣וֹא שָׁ֔מָּה אִמְרִי־לִ֖י אָחִ֥י הֽוּא׃ (יד) וַיִּקַּ֨ח אֲבִימֶ֜לֶךְ צֹ֣אן וּבָקָ֗ר וַעֲבָדִים֙ וּשְׁפָחֹ֔ת וַיִּתֵּ֖ן לְאַבְרָהָ֑ם וַיָּ֣שֶׁב ל֔וֹ אֵ֖ת שָׂרָ֥ה אִשְׁתּֽוֹ׃ (טו) וַיֹּ֣אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֔לֶךְ הִנֵּ֥ה אַרְצִ֖י לְפָנֶ֑יךָ בַּטּ֥וֹב בְּעֵינֶ֖יךָ שֵֽׁב׃ (טז) וּלְשָׂרָ֣ה אָמַ֗ר הִנֵּ֨ה נָתַ֜תִּי אֶ֤לֶף כֶּ֙סֶף֙ לְאָחִ֔יךְ הִנֵּ֤ה הוּא־לָךְ֙ כְּס֣וּת עֵינַ֔יִם לְכֹ֖ל אֲשֶׁ֣ר אִתָּ֑ךְ וְאֵ֥ת כֹּ֖ל וְנֹכָֽחַת׃ (יז) וַיִּתְפַּלֵּ֥ל אַבְרָהָ֖ם אֶל־הָאֱלֹהִ֑ים וַיִּרְפָּ֨א אֱלֹהִ֜ים אֶת־אֲבִימֶ֧לֶךְ וְאֶת־אִשְׁתּ֛וֹ וְאַמְהֹתָ֖יו וַיֵּלֵֽדוּ׃ (יח) כִּֽי־עָצֹ֤ר עָצַר֙ יְהוָ֔ה בְּעַ֥ד כָּל־רֶ֖חֶם לְבֵ֣ית אֲבִימֶ֑לֶךְ עַל־דְּבַ֥ר שָׂרָ֖ה אֵ֥שֶׁת אַבְרָהָֽם׃ (ס)
(1) Abraham journeyed from there to the region of the Negeb and settled between Kadesh and Shur. While he was sojourning in Gerar, (2) Abraham said of Sarah his wife, “She is my sister.” So King Abimelech of Gerar had Sarah brought to him. (3) But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night and said to him, “You are to die because of the woman that you have taken, for she is a married woman.” (4) Now Abimelech had not approached her. He said, “O Lord, will You slay people even though innocent? (5) He himself said to me, ‘She is my sister!’ And she also said, ‘He is my brother.’ When I did this, my heart was blameless and my hands were clean.” (6) And God said to him in the dream, “I knew that you did this with a blameless heart, and so I kept you from sinning against Me. That was why I did not let you touch her. (7) Therefore, restore the man’s wife—since he is a prophet, he will intercede for you—to save your life. If you fail to restore her, know that you shall die, you and all that are yours.” (8) Early next morning, Abimelech called his servants and told them all that had happened; and the men were greatly frightened. (9) Then Abimelech summoned Abraham and said to him, “What have you done to us? What wrong have I done that you should bring so great a guilt upon me and my kingdom? You have done to me things that ought not to be done. (10) What, then,” Abimelech demanded of Abraham, “was your purpose in doing this thing?” (11) “I thought,” said Abraham, “surely there is no fear of God in this place, and they will kill me because of my wife. (12) And besides, she is in truth my sister, my father’s daughter though not my mother’s; and she became my wife. (13) So when God made me wander from my father’s house, I said to her, ‘Let this be the kindness that you shall do me: whatever place we come to, say there of me: He is my brother.’” (14) Abimelech took sheep and oxen, and male and female slaves, and gave them to Abraham; and he restored his wife Sarah to him. (15) And Abimelech said, “Here, my land is before you; settle wherever you please.” (16) And to Sarah he said, “I herewith give your brother a thousand pieces of silver; this will serve you as vindication before all who are with you, and you are cleared before everyone.” (17) Abraham then prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech and his wife and his slave girls, so that they bore children; (18) for the LORD had closed fast every womb of the household of Abimelech because of Sarah, the wife of Abraham.
2ב
(כב) וַֽיְהִי֙ בָּעֵ֣ת הַהִ֔וא וַיֹּ֣אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֗לֶךְ וּפִיכֹל֙ שַׂר־צְבָא֔וֹ אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֖ם לֵאמֹ֑ר אֱלֹהִ֣ים עִמְּךָ֔ בְּכֹ֥ל אֲשֶׁר־אַתָּ֖ה עֹשֶֽׂה׃ (כג) וְעַתָּ֗ה הִשָּׁ֨בְעָה לִּ֤י בֵֽאלֹהִים֙ הֵ֔נָּה אִם־תִּשְׁקֹ֣ר לִ֔י וּלְנִינִ֖י וּלְנֶכְדִּ֑י כַּחֶ֜סֶד אֲשֶׁר־עָשִׂ֤יתִי עִמְּךָ֙ תַּעֲשֶׂ֣ה עִמָּדִ֔י וְעִם־הָאָ֖רֶץ אֲשֶׁר־גַּ֥רְתָּה בָּֽהּ׃ (כד) וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ אַבְרָהָ֔ם אָנֹכִ֖י אִשָּׁבֵֽעַ׃ (כה) וְהוֹכִ֥חַ אַבְרָהָ֖ם אֶת־אֲבִימֶ֑לֶךְ עַל־אֹדוֹת֙ בְּאֵ֣ר הַמַּ֔יִם אֲשֶׁ֥ר גָּזְל֖וּ עַבְדֵ֥י אֲבִימֶֽלֶךְ׃ (כו) וַיֹּ֣אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֔לֶךְ לֹ֣א יָדַ֔עְתִּי מִ֥י עָשָׂ֖ה אֶת־הַדָּבָ֣ר הַזֶּ֑ה וְגַם־אַתָּ֞ה לֹא־הִגַּ֣דְתָּ לִּ֗י וְגַ֧ם אָנֹכִ֛י לֹ֥א שָׁמַ֖עְתִּי בִּלְתִּ֥י הַיּֽוֹם׃ (כז) וַיִּקַּ֤ח אַבְרָהָם֙ צֹ֣אן וּבָקָ֔ר וַיִּתֵּ֖ן לַאֲבִימֶ֑לֶךְ וַיִּכְרְת֥וּ שְׁנֵיהֶ֖ם בְּרִֽית׃ (כח) וַיַּצֵּ֣ב אַבְרָהָ֗ם אֶת־שֶׁ֛בַע כִּבְשֹׂ֥ת הַצֹּ֖אן לְבַדְּהֶֽן׃ (כט) וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֖לֶךְ אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֑ם מָ֣ה הֵ֗נָּה שֶׁ֤בַע כְּבָשֹׂת֙ הָאֵ֔לֶּה אֲשֶׁ֥ר הִצַּ֖בְתָּ לְבַדָּֽנָה׃ (ל) וַיֹּ֕אמֶר כִּ֚י אֶת־שֶׁ֣בַע כְּבָשֹׂ֔ת תִּקַּ֖ח מִיָּדִ֑י בַּעֲבוּר֙ תִּֽהְיֶה־לִּ֣י לְעֵדָ֔ה כִּ֥י חָפַ֖רְתִּי אֶת־הַבְּאֵ֥ר הַזֹּֽאת׃ (לא) עַל־כֵּ֗ן קָרָ֛א לַמָּק֥וֹם הַה֖וּא בְּאֵ֣ר שָׁ֑בַע כִּ֛י שָׁ֥ם נִשְׁבְּע֖וּ שְׁנֵיהֶֽם׃ (לב) וַיִּכְרְת֥וּ בְרִ֖ית בִּבְאֵ֣ר שָׁ֑בַע וַיָּ֣קָם אֲבִימֶ֗לֶךְ וּפִיכֹל֙ שַׂר־צְבָא֔וֹ וַיָּשֻׁ֖בוּ אֶל־אֶ֥רֶץ פְּלִשְׁתִּֽים׃ (לג) וַיִּטַּ֥ע אֶ֖שֶׁל בִּבְאֵ֣ר שָׁ֑בַע וַיִּ֨קְרָא־שָׁ֔ם בְּשֵׁ֥ם יְהוָ֖ה אֵ֥ל עוֹלָֽם׃ (לד) וַיָּ֧גָר אַבְרָהָ֛ם בְּאֶ֥רֶץ פְּלִשְׁתִּ֖ים יָמִ֥ים רַבִּֽים׃ (פ)
(22) At that time Abimelech and Phicol, chief of his troops, said to Abraham, “God is with you in everything that you do. (23) Therefore swear to me here by God that you will not deal falsely with me or with my kith and kin, but will deal with me and with the land in which you have sojourned as loyally as I have dealt with you.” (24) And Abraham said, “I swear it.” (25) Then Abraham reproached Abimelech for the well of water which the servants of Abimelech had seized. (26) But Abimelech said, “I do not know who did this; you did not tell me, nor have I heard of it until today.” (27) Abraham took sheep and oxen and gave them to Abimelech, and the two of them made a pact. (28) Abraham then set seven ewes of the flock by themselves, (29) and Abimelech said to Abraham, “What mean these seven ewes which you have set apart?” (30) He replied, “You are to accept these seven ewes from me as proof that I dug this well.” (31) Hence that place was called Beer-sheba, for there the two of them swore an oath. (32) When they had concluded the pact at Beer-sheba, Abimelech and Phicol, chief of his troops, departed and returned to the land of the Philistines. (33) [Abraham] planted a tamarisk at Beer-sheba, and invoked there the name of the LORD, the Everlasting God. (34) And Abraham resided in the land of the Philistines a long time.
3ג
(א) וַיְהִ֤י רָעָב֙ בָּאָ֔רֶץ מִלְּבַד֙ הָרָעָ֣ב הָרִאשׁ֔וֹן אֲשֶׁ֥ר הָיָ֖ה בִּימֵ֣י אַבְרָהָ֑ם וַיֵּ֧לֶךְ יִצְחָ֛ק אֶל־אֲבִימֶּ֥לֶךְ מֶֽלֶךְ־פְּלִשְׁתִּ֖ים גְּרָֽרָה׃ (ב) וַיֵּרָ֤א אֵלָיו֙ יְהוָ֔ה וַיֹּ֖אמֶר אַל־תֵּרֵ֣ד מִצְרָ֑יְמָה שְׁכֹ֣ן בָּאָ֔רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֖ר אֹמַ֥ר אֵלֶֽיךָ׃ (ג) גּ֚וּר בָּאָ֣רֶץ הַזֹּ֔את וְאֶֽהְיֶ֥ה עִמְּךָ֖ וַאֲבָרְכֶ֑ךָּ כִּֽי־לְךָ֣ וּֽלְזַרְעֲךָ֗ אֶתֵּן֙ אֶת־כָּל־הָֽאֲרָצֹ֣ת הָאֵ֔ל וַהֲקִֽמֹתִי֙ אֶת־הַשְּׁבֻעָ֔ה אֲשֶׁ֥ר נִשְׁבַּ֖עְתִּי לְאַבְרָהָ֥ם אָבִֽיךָ׃ (ד) וְהִרְבֵּיתִ֤י אֶֽת־זַרְעֲךָ֙ כְּכוֹכְבֵ֣י הַשָּׁמַ֔יִם וְנָתַתִּ֣י לְזַרְעֲךָ֔ אֵ֥ת כָּל־הָאֲרָצֹ֖ת הָאֵ֑ל וְהִתְבָּרֲכ֣וּ בְזַרְעֲךָ֔ כֹּ֖ל גּוֹיֵ֥י הָאָֽרֶץ׃ (ה) עֵ֕קֶב אֲשֶׁר־שָׁמַ֥ע אַבְרָהָ֖ם בְּקֹלִ֑י וַיִּשְׁמֹר֙ מִשְׁמַרְתִּ֔י מִצְוֺתַ֖י חֻקּוֹתַ֥י וְתוֹרֹתָֽי׃ (ו) וַיֵּ֥שֶׁב יִצְחָ֖ק בִּגְרָֽר׃ (ז) וַֽיִּשְׁאֲל֞וּ אַנְשֵׁ֤י הַמָּקוֹם֙ לְאִשְׁתּ֔וֹ וַיֹּ֖אמֶר אֲחֹ֣תִי הִ֑וא כִּ֤י יָרֵא֙ לֵאמֹ֣ר אִשְׁתִּ֔י פֶּן־יַֽהַרְגֻ֜נִי אַנְשֵׁ֤י הַמָּקוֹם֙ עַל־רִבְקָ֔ה כִּֽי־טוֹבַ֥ת מַרְאֶ֖ה הִֽיא׃ (ח) וַיְהִ֗י כִּ֣י אָֽרְכוּ־ל֥וֹ שָׁם֙ הַיָּמִ֔ים וַיַּשְׁקֵ֗ף אֲבִימֶ֙לֶךְ֙ מֶ֣לֶךְ פְּלִשְׁתִּ֔ים בְּעַ֖ד הַֽחַלּ֑וֹן וַיַּ֗רְא וְהִנֵּ֤ה יִצְחָק֙ מְצַחֵ֔ק אֵ֖ת רִבְקָ֥ה אִשְׁתּֽוֹ׃ (ט) וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֲבִימֶ֜לֶךְ לְיִצְחָ֗ק וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ אַ֣ךְ הִנֵּ֤ה אִשְׁתְּךָ֙ הִ֔וא וְאֵ֥יךְ אָמַ֖רְתָּ אֲחֹ֣תִי הִ֑וא וַיֹּ֤אמֶר אֵלָיו֙ יִצְחָ֔ק כִּ֣י אָמַ֔רְתִּי פֶּן־אָמ֖וּת עָלֶֽיהָ׃ (י) וַיֹּ֣אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֔לֶךְ מַה־זֹּ֖את עָשִׂ֣יתָ לָּ֑נוּ כִּ֠מְעַט שָׁכַ֞ב אַחַ֤ד הָעָם֙ אֶת־אִשְׁתֶּ֔ךָ וְהֵבֵאתָ֥ עָלֵ֖ינוּ אָשָֽׁם׃ (יא) וַיְצַ֣ו אֲבִימֶ֔לֶךְ אֶת־כָּל־הָעָ֖ם לֵאמֹ֑ר הַנֹּגֵ֜עַ בָּאִ֥ישׁ הַזֶּ֛ה וּבְאִשְׁתּ֖וֹ מ֥וֹת יוּמָֽת׃ (יב) וַיִּזְרַ֤ע יִצְחָק֙ בָּאָ֣רֶץ הַהִ֔וא וַיִּמְצָ֛א בַּשָּׁנָ֥ה הַהִ֖וא מֵאָ֣ה שְׁעָרִ֑ים וַֽיְבָרֲכֵ֖הוּ יְהוָֽה׃ (יג) וַיִּגְדַּ֖ל הָאִ֑ישׁ וַיֵּ֤לֶךְ הָלוֹךְ֙ וְגָדֵ֔ל עַ֥ד כִּֽי־גָדַ֖ל מְאֹֽד׃ (יד) וַֽיְהִי־ל֤וֹ מִקְנֵה־צֹאן֙ וּמִקְנֵ֣ה בָקָ֔ר וַעֲבֻדָּ֖ה רַבָּ֑ה וַיְקַנְא֥וּ אֹת֖וֹ פְּלִשְׁתִּֽים׃ (טו) וְכָל־הַבְּאֵרֹ֗ת אֲשֶׁ֤ר חָֽפְרוּ֙ עַבְדֵ֣י אָבִ֔יו בִּימֵ֖י אַבְרָהָ֣ם אָבִ֑יו סִתְּמ֣וּם פְּלִשְׁתִּ֔ים וַיְמַלְא֖וּם עָפָֽר׃ (טז) וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֲבִימֶ֖לֶךְ אֶל־יִצְחָ֑ק לֵ֚ךְ מֵֽעִמָּ֔נוּ כִּֽי־עָצַֽמְתָּ־מִמֶּ֖נּוּ מְאֹֽד׃ (יז) וַיֵּ֥לֶךְ מִשָּׁ֖ם יִצְחָ֑ק וַיִּ֥חַן בְּנַֽחַל־גְּרָ֖ר וַיֵּ֥שֶׁב שָֽׁם׃ (יח) וַיָּ֨שָׁב יִצְחָ֜ק וַיַּחְפֹּ֣ר ׀ אֶת־בְּאֵרֹ֣ת הַמַּ֗יִם אֲשֶׁ֤ר חָֽפְרוּ֙ בִּימֵי֙ אַבְרָהָ֣ם אָבִ֔יו וַיְסַתְּמ֣וּם פְּלִשְׁתִּ֔ים אַחֲרֵ֖י מ֣וֹת אַבְרָהָ֑ם וַיִּקְרָ֤א לָהֶן֙ שֵׁמ֔וֹת כַּשֵּׁמֹ֕ת אֲשֶׁר־קָרָ֥א לָהֶ֖ן אָבִֽיו׃ (יט) וַיַּחְפְּר֥וּ עַבְדֵֽי־יִצְחָ֖ק בַּנָּ֑חַל וַיִּ֨מְצְאוּ־שָׁ֔ם בְּאֵ֖ר מַ֥יִם חַיִּֽים׃ (כ) וַיָּרִ֜יבוּ רֹעֵ֣י גְרָ֗ר עִם־רֹעֵ֥י יִצְחָ֛ק לֵאמֹ֖ר לָ֣נוּ הַמָּ֑יִם וַיִּקְרָ֤א שֵֽׁם־הַבְּאֵר֙ עֵ֔שֶׂק כִּ֥י הִֽתְעַשְּׂק֖וּ עִמּֽוֹ׃ (כא) וַֽיַּחְפְּרוּ֙ בְּאֵ֣ר אַחֶ֔רֶת וַיָּרִ֖יבוּ גַּם־עָלֶ֑יהָ וַיִּקְרָ֥א שְׁמָ֖הּ שִׂטְנָֽה׃ (כב) וַיַּעְתֵּ֣ק מִשָּׁ֗ם וַיַּחְפֹּר֙ בְּאֵ֣ר אַחֶ֔רֶת וְלֹ֥א רָב֖וּ עָלֶ֑יהָ וַיִּקְרָ֤א שְׁמָהּ֙ רְחֹב֔וֹת וַיֹּ֗אמֶר כִּֽי־עַתָּ֞ה הִרְחִ֧יב יְהוָ֛ה לָ֖נוּ וּפָרִ֥ינוּ בָאָֽרֶץ׃ (כג) וַיַּ֥עַל מִשָּׁ֖ם בְּאֵ֥ר שָֽׁבַע׃ (כד) וַיֵּרָ֨א אֵלָ֤יו יְהוָה֙ בַּלַּ֣יְלָה הַה֔וּא וַיֹּ֕אמֶר אָנֹכִ֕י אֱלֹהֵ֖י אַבְרָהָ֣ם אָבִ֑יךָ אַל־תִּירָא֙ כִּֽי־אִתְּךָ֣ אָנֹ֔כִי וּבֵֽרַכְתִּ֙יךָ֙ וְהִרְבֵּיתִ֣י אֶֽת־זַרְעֲךָ֔ בַּעֲב֖וּר אַבְרָהָ֥ם עַבְדִּֽי׃ (כה) וַיִּ֧בֶן שָׁ֣ם מִזְבֵּ֗חַ וַיִּקְרָא֙ בְּשֵׁ֣ם יְהוָ֔ה וַיֶּט־שָׁ֖ם אָהֳל֑וֹ וַיִּכְרוּ־שָׁ֥ם עַבְדֵי־יִצְחָ֖ק בְּאֵֽר׃ (כו) וַאֲבִימֶ֕לֶךְ הָלַ֥ךְ אֵלָ֖יו מִגְּרָ֑ר וַאֲחֻזַּת֙ מֵֽרֵעֵ֔הוּ וּפִיכֹ֖ל שַׂר־צְבָאֽוֹ׃ (כז) וַיֹּ֤אמֶר אֲלֵהֶם֙ יִצְחָ֔ק מַדּ֖וּעַ בָּאתֶ֣ם אֵלָ֑י וְאַתֶּם֙ שְׂנֵאתֶ֣ם אֹתִ֔י וַתְּשַׁלְּח֖וּנִי מֵאִתְּכֶֽם׃ (כח) וַיֹּאמְר֗וּ רָא֣וֹ רָאִינוּ֮ כִּֽי־הָיָ֣ה יְהוָ֣ה ׀ עִמָּךְ֒ וַנֹּ֗אמֶר תְּהִ֨י נָ֥א אָלָ֛ה בֵּינוֹתֵ֖ינוּ בֵּינֵ֣ינוּ וּבֵינֶ֑ךָ וְנִכְרְתָ֥ה בְרִ֖ית עִמָּֽךְ׃ (כט) אִם־תַּעֲשֵׂ֨ה עִמָּ֜נוּ רָעָ֗ה כַּאֲשֶׁר֙ לֹ֣א נְגַֽעֲנ֔וּךָ וְכַאֲשֶׁ֨ר עָשִׂ֤ינוּ עִמְּךָ֙ רַק־ט֔וֹב וַנְּשַׁלֵּֽחֲךָ֖ בְּשָׁל֑וֹם אַתָּ֥ה עַתָּ֖ה בְּר֥וּךְ יְהוָֽה׃ (ל) וַיַּ֤עַשׂ לָהֶם֙ מִשְׁתֶּ֔ה וַיֹּאכְל֖וּ וַיִּשְׁתּֽוּ׃ (לא) וַיַּשְׁכִּ֣ימוּ בַבֹּ֔קֶר וַיִּשָּׁבְע֖וּ אִ֣ישׁ לְאָחִ֑יו וַיְשַׁלְּחֵ֣ם יִצְחָ֔ק וַיֵּלְכ֥וּ מֵאִתּ֖וֹ בְּשָׁלֽוֹם׃ (לב) וַיְהִ֣י ׀ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֗וּא וַיָּבֹ֙אוּ֙ עַבְדֵ֣י יִצְחָ֔ק וַיַּגִּ֣דוּ ל֔וֹ עַל־אֹד֥וֹת הַבְּאֵ֖ר אֲשֶׁ֣ר חָפָ֑רוּ וַיֹּ֥אמְרוּ ל֖וֹ מָצָ֥אנוּ מָֽיִם׃ (לג) וַיִּקְרָ֥א אֹתָ֖הּ שִׁבְעָ֑ה עַל־כֵּ֤ן שֵׁם־הָעִיר֙ בְּאֵ֣ר שֶׁ֔בַע עַ֖ד הַיּ֥וֹם הַזֶּֽה׃ (ס)

(1) There was a famine in the land—aside from the previous famine that had occurred in the days of Abraham—and Isaac went to Abimelech, king of the Philistines, in Gerar. (2) The LORD had appeared to him and said, “Do not go down to Egypt; stay in the land which I point out to you. (3) Reside in this land, and I will be with you and bless you; I will assign all these lands to you and to your heirs, fulfilling the oath that I swore to your father Abraham. (4) I will make your heirs as numerous as the stars of heaven, and assign to your heirs all these lands, so that all the nations of the earth shall bless themselves by your heirs— (5) inasmuch as Abraham obeyed Me and kept My charge: My commandments, My laws, and My teachings.” (6) So Isaac stayed in Gerar. (7) When the men of the place asked him about his wife, he said, “She is my sister,” for he was afraid to say “my wife,” thinking, “The men of the place might kill me on account of Rebekah, for she is beautiful.” (8) When some time had passed, Abimelech king of the Philistines, looking out of the window, saw Isaac fondling his wife Rebekah. (9) Abimelech sent for Isaac and said, “So she is your wife! Why then did you say: ‘She is my sister?’” Isaac said to him, “Because I thought I might lose my life on account of her.” (10) Abimelech said, “What have you done to us! One of the people might have lain with your wife, and you would have brought guilt upon us.” (11) Abimelech then charged all the people, saying, “Anyone who molests this man or his wife shall be put to death.” (12) Isaac sowed in that land and reaped a hundredfold the same year. The LORD blessed him, (13) and the man grew richer and richer until he was very wealthy: (14) he acquired flocks and herds, and a large household, so that the Philistines envied him. (15) And the Philistines stopped up all the wells which his father’s servants had dug in the days of his father Abraham, filling them with earth. (16) And Abimelech said to Isaac, “Go away from us, for you have become far too big for us.” (17) So Isaac departed from there and encamped in the wadi of Gerar, where he settled. (18) Isaac dug anew the wells which had been dug in the days of his father Abraham and which the Philistines had stopped up after Abraham’s death; and he gave them the same names that his father had given them. (19) But when Isaac’s servants, digging in the wadi, found there a well of spring water, (20) the herdsmen of Gerar quarreled with Isaac’s herdsmen, saying, “The water is ours.” He named that well Esek, because they contended with him. (21) And when they dug another well, they disputed over that one also; so he named it Sitnah. (22) He moved from there and dug yet another well, and they did not quarrel over it; so he called it Rehoboth, saying, “Now at last the LORD has granted us ample space to increase in the land.” (23) From there he went up to Beer-sheba. (24) That night the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am the God of your father Abraham. Fear not, for I am with you, and I will bless you and increase your offspring for the sake of My servant Abraham.” (25) So he built an altar there and invoked the LORD by name. Isaac pitched his tent there and his servants started digging a well. (26) And Abimelech came to him from Gerar, with Ahuzzath his councilor and Phicol chief of his troops. (27) Isaac said to them, “Why have you come to me, seeing that you have been hostile to me and have driven me away from you?” (28) And they said, “We now see plainly that the LORD has been with you, and we thought: Let there be a sworn treaty between our two parties, between you and us. Let us make a pact with you (29) that you will not do us harm, just as we have not molested you but have always dealt kindly with you and sent you away in peace. From now on, be you blessed of the LORD!” (30) Then he made for them a feast, and they ate and drank. (31) Early in the morning, they exchanged oaths. Isaac then bade them farewell, and they departed from him in peace. (32) That same day Isaac’s servants came and told him about the well they had dug, and said to him, “We have found water!” (33) He named it Shibah; therefore the name of the city is Beer-sheba to this day.

4ד

(יט) אברהם הוליד את יצחק עַל יְדֵי שֶׁכָּתַב הַכָּתוּב יִצְחָק בֶּן אַבְרָהָם הוּזְקַק לוֹמַר אַבְרָהָם הוֹלִיד אֶת יִצְחָק; לְפִי שֶׁהָיוּ לֵיצָנֵי הַדּוֹר אוֹמְרִים מֵאֲבִימֶלֶךְ נִתְעַבְּרָה שָׂרָה, שֶׁהֲרֵי כַמָה שָׁנִים שָׁהֲתָה עִם אַבְרָהָם וְלֹא נִתְעַבְּרָה הֵימֶנּוּ; מָה עָשָׂה הַקָּבָּ”ה? צָר קְלַסְתֵּר פָּנָיו שֶׁל יִצְחָק דּוֹמֶה לְאַבְרָהָם, וְהֵעִידוּ הַכֹּל אַבְרָהָם הוֹלִיד אֶת יִצְחָק, וְזֶהוּ שֶׁכָּתוּב כַּאן יִצְחָק בֶּן אַבְרָהָם, שֶׁהֲרֵי עֵדוּת יֵשׁ שֶׁאַבְרָהָם הוֹלִיד אֶת יִצְחָק:

(19) אברהם הוליד את יצחק ABRAHAM BEGAT ISAAC — Just because Scripture wrote, “Isaac, son of Abraham” it felt compelled to say “Abraham begat Isaac”, because the cynics of that time said, “Sarah became with child of Abimelech. See how many years she lived with Abraham without becoming with child”. What did the Holy One, blessed be He, do? He shaped Isaac’s facial features exactly similar to those of Abraham’s, so that everyone had to admit that Abraham begat Isaac. This is what is stated here: that Isaac was the son of Abraham, for there is evidence that Abraham begat Isaac (Tanchuma).

5ה

Chizkuni (13th Century, Europe)

כשמות אשר קרא להן אביו, “as had been their names when his father had named them.” He wished to draw attention to the fact that the success of these wells had been and continued to be due to the merit of his father. In order to prove that this was so, when he left the vicinity of Avimelech’s capital and settled where Avraham had lived for a while and demonstrated that the success depended not on the quality of the earth and the skill of its farmers, but on the goodwill enjoyed by them in the heavenly spheres.

6ו

Like Water, Like Torah

For it was taught: 'And they went three days in the wilderness and found no water,15 upon which those who expound verses metaphorically16 said: water means nothing but Torah,17 as it says: Ho, everyone that thirsteth come ye for water.18 It thus means that as they went three days without Torah they immediately became exhausted. The prophets among them thereupon rose and enacted that they should publicly read the law on Sabbath, make a break on Sunday, read again on Monday, make a break again on Tuesday and Wednesday, read again on Thursday and then make a break on Friday so that they should not be kept for three days without Torah.'19 BT, Baba Kamma, 82A

7ז

Rabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus, "Digging Our Parents' Wells"

What can we learn from the image of a well that has been intentionally filled with earth so that it no longer functions as a well? If water is life-giving, then a stopped-up well is the opposite. Why, then, did the Philistines, as we read in this week's parashah, Tol'dot, stop up the wells that had been dug in the days of Abraham and tell Isaac to leave the region? (Genesis 26:15) Why were they ready to make their own land uninhabitable? It is not a logical action and seems contrary to normal human behavior.

Nehama Leibowitz suggests that there must be more to the matter than what is literally stated, that this action of the Philistines must be understood to imply something symbolic. She cites Jacob Zvi Mecklenburg in HaKetav Vehakabbalah, who suggests that the wells were symbols from the beginning and that each time Abraham dug a well, he gave it a name that taught a lesson about the true nature of God. Each well served as a means of bringing idolaters under the wings of the Divine Presence. After Abraham's death, the local folk reverted back to their idolatry and stopped up the wells in order to erase his teachings from their memory. When Isaac returns to dig anew the same wells, he gives them the same names that his father did "in order to restore the crown of the true faith to its former glory."

Isaac's digging the same wells that his father dug shows us how he takes his place in Tol'dot, the family story that becomes our national history. He understands the need to reclaim his father's traditions and to ensure their survival. It is an act of maturity that he crowns with further honoring his father's memory giving the wells the "same names that his father had given them." (Genesis 26:18) Only then did Isaac's servants find "there a well of spring water" (Genesis 26:19). The term used in the text is mayim chayim - "living water," the waters of life.

As we mature, we identify with Isaac's actions: We learn to understand and to seek to reclaim the traditions handed down to us by our parents and, when possible, to honor their work and their wisdom. The lessons we learn from the generations that preceded us are as life-giving as is a well of living water.

https://reformjudaism.org/digging-our-parents-wells

8ח

Like Water, Like Torah

Words of Torah are compared to water: “Everyone that thirsts come to the water” (Isaiah. 55:1). As water reaches from one end of the world to the other, so Torah reaches from one end of the world to the other. As water gives life to the world, so Torah gives life to the world. As water is given without cost to the world, so is Torah given without cost to the world. As water is given from heaven, so Torah is given from heaven. As water is given with thunder, so was Torah given to the accompaniment of thunder (at Sinai). As water restores a person's spirit, so Torah restores a person’s spirit. As water cleanses a person from uncleanness, so Torah cleanses an unclean person from his uncleanness. As water comes down in many drops and becomes a mighty river, so Torah; today a person learns two Halakhot, tomorrow two more, and so on, until he becomes like a bubbling brook. As water leaves a high place and flows to a low place, so Torah leaves him whose opinion of himself is high and cleaves to him whose spirit is lowly. As water is not kept in vessels of silver or gold, but only in the The Rabbinical Assembly Talmud Torah: Mitzvah, Mission and Meaning Page 3 cheapest of vessels, so Torah abides only in one who regards himself as lowly as an earthenware vessel. As when thirsty, a grown man is not ashamed to say to a child, "Let me have a drink of water," so in studying Torah a grown man who is unlearned should not be ashamed to say to a child, "Teach me a chapter or a verse or a word," or even "Teach me a single letter." As with water, if one does not know how to swim in it, he will end by drowning, so with words of Torah: if one does not know how to swim in them and teach them, he will drown in the end.

BT. Eruvin 54a

9ט

Rabbi Adam Lavitt, "Digging Wells for Generations"

According to psychological research, “The more children [know] about their family’s history, the stronger their sense of control over their lives, the higher their self-esteem and the more successfully they believed their families functioned.” Despite all our displacement, this research tells us that in order to thrive, we need to reclaim our sense of belonging – wherever we are. Can we, like Isaac, begin to uncover the wells of our ancestors? How do we settle more deeply into the feeling that we belong, whether we consider ourselves to be living in a promised land, diaspora, or exile?

As we drink the water from these wells, the stories of our ancestors give us perspective on our daily experience. Learning these stories, we become more resilient. For me the water is the book of midrash my great-great grandfather wrote, the journal my great-aunt kept, and the family tree my mother has been assembling. As I open the covers of these wells, I prepare to nourish my roots, and ground myself more deeply in the soil of this moment of my life.

https://www.myjewishlearning.com/rabbis-without-borders/digging-wells-for-generations/