מקומנו במשפחה המורחבת
הדף מאת: איימי קליין / תא שמע - מליץ
בלימוד זה מוזמנים המשתתפים לגעת בשאלת מורכבות היחסים המשפחתיים הן במישור האישי האינטימי הן במישור הלאומי - הדו-קיום הרגיש היהודי-פלסטיני. במרכז הלימוד עומד הטקסט הידוע מספר בראשית, המספר על מערכת היחסים המשולשת שבין שרה, הגר ואברהם. כל אחד יכול להזדהות עם כל אחת מהדמויות, ולהעמיק את מודעותו לתכונותיו ועמדותיו, הן האישיות הן הלאומיות, גם ללא קשר למציאות הפוליטית בארץ. ברור כי המקורות אינם מספקים תשובות לשאלות הפוליטיות העכשוויות, וזו בוודאי איננה מטרת הלימוד; המטרה היא להבין לעומק את טבע האדם ולברר את עמדתנו אנו דרך הסיפור המקראי. ניתן כמובן לבחור בעמדה מרוחקת ללא עירוב הממד האישי.
(א) וְשָׂרַי אֵשֶׁת אַבְרָם לֹא יָלְדָה לוֹ; וְלָהּ שִׁפְחָה מִצְרִית וּשְׁמָהּ הָגָר. (ב) וַתֹּאמֶר שָׂרַי אֶל אַבְרָם, הִנֵּה-נָא עֲצָרַנִי ה' מִלֶּדֶת - בֹּא-נָא אֶל שִׁפְחָתִי, אוּלַי אִבָּנֶה מִמֶּנָּה; וַיִּשְׁמַע אַבְרָם לְקוֹל שָׂרָי. (ג) וַתִּקַּח שָׂרַי אֵשֶׁת אַבְרָם אֶת הָגָר הַמִּצְרִית שִׁפְחָתָהּ, מִקֵּץ עֶשֶׂר שָׁנִים לְשֶׁבֶת אַבְרָם בְּאֶרֶץ כְּנָעַן; וַתִּתֵּן אֹתָהּ לְאַבְרָם אִישָׁהּ לוֹ לְאִשָּׁה. (ד) וַיָּבֹא אֶל-הָגָר, וַתַּהַר; וַתֵּרֶא כִּי הָרָתָה, וַתֵּקַל גְּבִרְתָּהּ בְּעֵינֶיהָ. (ה) וַתֹּאמֶר שָׂרַי אֶל-אַבְרָם, חֲמָסִי עָלֶיךָ - אָנֹכִי נָתַתִּי שִׁפְחָתִי בְּחֵיקֶךָ, וַתֵּרֶא כִּי הָרָתָה וָאֵקַל בְּעֵינֶיהָ; יִשְׁפֹּט ה' בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶיךָ. (ו) וַיֹּאמֶר אַבְרָם אֶל-שָׂרַי, הִנֵּה שִׁפְחָתֵךְ בְּיָדֵךְ - עֲשִׂי-לָהּ הַטּוֹב בְּעֵינָיִךְ; וַתְּעַנֶּהָ שָׂרַי, וַתִּבְרַח מִפָּנֶיהָ. (ז) וַיִּמְצָאָהּ מַלְאַךְ ה' עַל-עֵין הַמַּיִם בַּמִּדְבָּר, עַל-הָעַיִן בְּדֶרֶךְ שׁוּר. (ח) וַיֹּאמַר, הָגָר שִׁפְחַת שָׂרַי אֵי-מִזֶּה בָאת וְאָנָה תֵלֵכִי; וַתֹּאמֶר, מִפְּנֵי שָׂרַי גְּבִרְתִּי אָנֹכִי בֹּרַחַת. (ט) וַיֹּאמֶר לָהּ מַלְאַךְ ה', שׁוּבִי אֶל-גְּבִרְתֵּךְ וְהִתְעַנִּי תַּחַת יָדֶיהָ. (י) וַיֹּאמֶר לָהּ מַלְאַךְ ה', הַרְבָּה אַרְבֶּה אֶת-זַרְעֵךְ, וְלֹא יִסָּפֵר מֵרֹב. (יא) וַיֹּאמֶר לָהּ מַלְאַךְ ה', הִנָּךְ הָרָה וְיֹלַדְתְּ בֵּן, וְקָרָאת שְׁמוֹ יִשְׁמָעֵאל, כִּי-שָׁמַע ה' אֶל-עָנְיֵךְ. (יב) וְהוּא יִהְיֶה, פֶּרֶא אָדָם - יָדוֹ בַכֹּל וְיַד כֹּל בּוֹ וְעַל-פְּנֵי כָל-אֶחָיו יִשְׁכֹּן. (יג) וַתִּקְרָא שֵׁם-ה' הַדֹּבֵר אֵלֶיהָ, אַתָּה אֵל רֳאִי: כִּי אָמְרָה, הֲגַם הֲלֹם רָאִיתִי אַחֲרֵי רֹאִי. (יד) עַל-כֵּן קָרָא לַבְּאֵר בְּאֵר לַחַי רֹאִי הִנֵּה בֵין-קָדֵשׁ וּבֵין בָּרֶד. (טו) וַתֵּלֶד הָגָר לְאַבְרָם בֵּן; וַיִּקְרָא אַבְרָם שֶׁם-בְּנוֹ אֲשֶׁר-יָלְדָה הָגָר, יִשְׁמָעֵאל. (טז) וְאַבְרָם בֶּן-שְׁמֹנִים שָׁנָה וְשֵׁשׁ שָׁנִים בְּלֶדֶת-הָגָר אֶת-יִשְׁמָעֵאל לְאַבְרָם.
Now Sarai Abram’s wife bore him no children; and she had a handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar. And Sarai said unto Abram: ‘Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing; go in, I pray thee, unto my handmaid; it may be that I shall be builded up through her.’ And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai. And Sarai Abram’s wife took Hagar the Egyptian, her handmaid, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to Abram her husband to be his wife. And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived; and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes. And Sarai said unto Abram: ‘My wrong be upon thee: I gave my handmaid into thy bosom; and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes: the LORD judge between me and thee.’ But Abram said unto Sarai: ‘Behold, thy maid is in thy hand; do to her that which is good in thine eyes.’ And Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her face. And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur. And he said: ‘Hagar, Sarai’s handmaid, whence camest thou? and whither goest thou?’ And she said: ‘I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai.’ And the angel of the LORD said unto her: ‘Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.’ And the angel of the LORD said unto her: ‘I will greatly multiply thy seed, that it shall not be numbered for multitude. And the angel of the LORD said unto her: ‘Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son; and thou shalt call his name Ishmael, because the LORD hath heard thy affliction. And he shall be a wild ass of a man: his hand shall be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the face of all his brethren.’ And she called the name of the LORD that spoke unto her, Thou art a God of seeing; for she said: ‘Have I even here seen Him that seeth Me?’ Wherefore the well was called Beer-lahai-roi; behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered. And Hagar bore Abram a son; and Abram called the name of his son, And Abram was fourscore and six years old, when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram.
דיון
  • משמעות השם 'הגר' בערבית הוא 'בריחה'. מה היא לדעתכם משמעותו בעברית?
  • כמה פעמים מופיע צירוף המילים 'שם', 'שמע', ומה הקשר ביניהן?
  • מה תפקידם של שרה, הגר ואברהם בתוך מערכת המשפחתית? עם איזו דמות (או יותר) אתם מזדהים?
  • למה מלאך ה' שואל את הגר 'אי-מזה באת ואנה תלכי?' (פסוק ח) אם הוא אינו יודע את התשובה?
  • מה מסמלים המוטיבים של המים, המסע למדבר ופועלי הראייה בקטע?
  • האם עצם המפגש של הגר עם [מלאך] ה' מפתיע? מה מאפשר מפגש זה שלא התקיים בחיי היומיום של הגר בבית אברהם ושרה?
  • (ט) וַתֵּרֶא שָׂרָה אֶת בֶּן-הָגָר הַמִּצְרִית אֲשֶׁר-יָלְדָה לְאַבְרָהָם מְצַחֵק. (י) וַתֹּאמֶר לְאַבְרָהָם, גָּרֵשׁ הָאָמָה הַזֹּאת וְאֶת-בְּנָהּ: כִּי לֹא יִירַשׁ בֶּן-הָאָמָה הַזֹּאת עִם-בְּנִי עִם-יִצְחָק. (יא) וַיֵּרַע הַדָּבָר מְאֹד בְּעֵינֵי אַבְרָהָם עַל אוֹדֹת בְּנוֹ. (יב) וַיֹּאמֶר ה' אֶל-אַבְרָהָם, אַל-יֵרַע בְּעֵינֶיךָ עַל-הַנַּעַר וְעַל-אֲמָתֶךָ - כֹּל אֲשֶׁר תֹּאמַר אֵלֶיךָ שָׂרָה, שְׁמַע בְּקֹלָהּ כִּי בְיִצְחָק יִקָּרֵא לְךָ זָרַע. (יג) וְגַם אֶת בֶּן-הָאָמָה, לְגוֹי אֲשִׂימֶנּוּ כִּי זַרְעֲךָ הוּא. (יד) וַיַּשְׁכֵּם אַבְרָהָם בַּבֹּקֶר וַיִּקַּח-לֶחֶם וְחֵמַת מַיִם וַיִּתֵּן אֶל-הָגָר שָׂם עַל-שִׁכְמָהּ, וְאֶת-הַיֶּלֶד - וַיְשַׁלְּחֶהָ וַתֵּלֶךְ וַתֵּתַע בְּמִדְבַּר בְּאֵר שָׁבַע. (טו) וַיִּכְלוּ הַמַּיִם מִן-הַחֵמֶת; וַתַּשְׁלֵךְ אֶת-הַיֶּלֶד תַּחַת אַחַד הַשִּׂיחִם. (טז) וַתֵּלֶךְ וַתֵּשֶׁב לָהּ מִנֶּגֶד הַרְחֵק כִּמְטַחֲוֵי קֶשֶׁת, כִּי אָמְרָה אַל-אֶרְאֶה בְּמוֹת הַיָּלֶד; וַתֵּשֶׁב מִנֶּגֶד וַתִּשָּׂא אֶת-קֹלָהּ וַתֵּבְךְּ. (יז) וַיִּשְׁמַע ה' אֶת-קוֹל הַנַּעַר, וַיִּקְרָא מַלְאַךְ ה' אֶל-הָגָר מִן-הַשָּׁמַיִם, וַיֹּאמֶר לָהּ מַה-לָּךְ הָגָר, אַל-תִּירְאִי כִּי-שָׁמַע ה' אֶל-קוֹל הַנַּעַר בַּאֲשֶׁר הוּא-שָׁם. (יח) קוּמִי שְׂאִי אֶת-הַנַּעַר וְהַחֲזִיקִי אֶת-יָדֵךְ בּוֹ: כִּי-לְגוֹי גָּדוֹל אֲשִׂימֶנּוּ. (יט) וַיִּפְקַח ה' אֶת-עֵינֶיהָ וַתֵּרֶא בְּאֵר מָיִם; וַתֵּלֶךְ וַתְּמַלֵּא אֶת-הַחֵמֶת מַיִם וַתַּשְׁקְ אֶת-הַנָּעַר. (כ) וַיְהִי ה' אֶת-הַנַּעַר וַיִּגְדָּל וַיֵּשֶׁב בַּמִּדְבָּר וַיְהִי רֹבֶה קַשָּׁת. (כא) וַיֵּשֶׁב בְּמִדְבַּר פָּארָן; וַתִּקַּח-לוֹ אִמּוֹ אִשָּׁה מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם.
    And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne unto Abraham, making sport. Wherefore she said unto Abraham: ‘Cast out this bondwoman and her son; for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac.’ And the thing was very grievous in Abraham’s sight on account of his son. And God said unto Abraham: ‘Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah saith unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for in Isaac shall seed be called to thee. And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed.’ And Abraham arose up early in the morning, and took bread and a bottle of water, and gave it unto Hagar, putting it on her shoulder, and the child, and sent her away; and she departed, and strayed in the wilderness of Beer-sheba. And the water in the bottle was spent, and she cast the child under one of the shrubs. And she went, and sat her down over against him a good way off, as it were a bow-shot; for she said: ‘Let me not look upon the death of the child.’ And she sat over against him, and lifted up her voice, and wept. And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her: ‘What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is. Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him fast by thy hand; for I will make him a great nation.’ And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went, and filled the bottle with water, and gave the lad drink. And God was with the lad, and he grew; and he dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer. And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran; and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt.
    דיון
  • איזו אסוציאציה עולה בכם למשמע המילים 'וישכם אברהם בבוקר ויקח לחם וחמת מים ויתן אל הגר שם על שכמה ואת הילד...' (פסוק יד). האם יש דמיון בין הסיפורים?
  • גם בפרק זה ממשיכים להופיע המוטיבים של מים, המסע למדבר ופועלי הראייה (נוסף כאן גם 'ירא' בפסוק יז). מה תפקידם בסיפור? למה הגר מאבדת את יכולת הראייה שלה?
  • אם הגר בוכה מדוע ה' שומע את קול הנער? ולמה נוספו בפסוק יז המילים 'באשר הוא שם'?
  • 'וישכם אברהם ויקח לחם וחמת מים' - שלחהּ בגט גירושין ולקח את הדרדור וקשר במתניה כדי שיהא סחוב אחריה לידע שהיא שפחה. ולא עוד אלא כשרצה אברהם לראות את ישמעאל בנו ולראות את הדרך שהלכו בה ובזכות אברהם לא חסרו המים מן החמת וכיון שהגיעה במדבר התחילה תועה אחר ע"א [=עבודת אלילים] של בית אביה ומיד חסרו המים מן החמת לפיכך ותשלך את הילד ובן כ"ד שנה היה ישמעאל כשיצא מבית אברהם ויצחק בן עשר שנים היה ותלך ותתע אין ותתע אלא ע"א דכתיב בה הבל המה מעשה תעתועים ועיפה נפשו של ישמעאל בצמא הלך והשליך את עצמו תחת חרולי המדבר ואמר רבון העולמים אם יש לפניך רצון להשקות אותי מים השקיני ולא תצא נפשי בצמא כי משונה היא מיתת הצמא וקשה מכל המיתות ושמע הקב"ה תפלתו שנאמר וישמע ה' את קול הנער וכתיב כי שמע ה' את קול הנער באשר הוא שם ושם נפתח להם הבאר שנברא – בין השמשות והלכו ושתו ומלאו את החמת מים שנאמר ויפקח ה' את עיניה ושם הניחו את הבאר ומשם נשאו רגליהם והלכו כל המדבר כלו עד שהגיעו למדבר פראן ומצאו שם מים וישבו שם שנאמר וישב במדבר פארן שלח ישמעאל ולקח לו אשה מערבות מואב ועיסה שמה.

    'וישכם אברהם ויקח לחם וחמת מים' - שלחהּ בגט גירושין ולקח את הדרדור וקשר במתניה כדי שיהא סחוב אחריה לידע שהיא שפחה. ולא עוד אלא כשרצה אברהם לראות את ישמעאל בנו ולראות את הדרך שהלכו בה ובזכות אברהם לא חסרו המים מן החמת וכיון שהגיעה במדבר התחילה תועה אחר ע"א [=עבודת אלילים] של בית אביה ומיד חסרו המים מן החמת לפיכך ותשלך את הילד ובן כ"ד שנה היה ישמעאל כשיצא מבית אברהם ויצחק בן עשר שנים היה ותלך ותתע אין ותתע אלא ע"א דכתיב בה הבל המה מעשה תעתועים ועיפה נפשו של ישמעאל בצמא הלך והשליך את עצמו תחת חרולי המדבר ואמר רבון העולמים אם יש לפניך רצון להשקות אותי מים השקיני ולא תצא נפשי בצמא כי משונה היא מיתת הצמא וקשה מכל המיתות ושמע הקב"ה תפלתו שנאמר וישמע ה' את קול הנער וכתיב כי שמע ה' את קול הנער באשר הוא שם ושם נפתח להם הבאר שנברא – בין השמשות והלכו ושתו ומלאו את החמת מים שנאמר ויפקח ה' את עיניה ושם הניחו את הבאר ומשם נשאו רגליהם והלכו כל המדבר כלו עד שהגיעו למדבר פראן ומצאו שם מים וישבו שם שנאמר וישב במדבר פארן שלח ישמעאל ולקח לו אשה מערבות מואב ועיסה שמה.

    מושגים
    • פרקי דרבי אליעזר - חיבור מדרשי המיוחס לתנא רבי אליעזר בן הורקנוס, התחבר במאה ה- 8, ככל הנראה בארץ ישראל. ייחודו של המדרש הוא בתיאור האירועים מבריאת העולם ועד פרשת נחש הנחושת במדבר כסיפור אגדה ארוך. משוקעים בו מקורות עתיקים כמו גם ספרות חיצונית ומקורות איסלמיים.
    Abraham rose up early, and wrote a bill of divorce, and gave it to Hagar, and he sent her and her son away from himself, and from Isaac his son, from this world and from the world to come, as it is said, "And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and took bread and a bottle of water" (Gen. 21:14). He sent her away || with a bill of divorcement, and he took the veil, and he bound it around her waist, so that it should drag behind her to disclose (the fact) that she was a bondwoman. Not only this, but also because Abraham desired to see Ishmael, his son, and to see the way whereon they went. By the merit of our father Abraham the water did not fail in the bottle, but when she reached the entrance to the wilderness, she began to go astray after the idolatry of her father's house; and forthwith the water in the bottle was spent, as it is said, "And she departed and wandered" (ibid.), Ishmael was seventeen years old (when) he went forth from the house of Abraham, and Isaac was forty years old. By the merit of our father Abraham the water did not fail in the bottle, but when she reached the entrance to the wilderness, she began to go astray after the idolatry of her father's house; the water in the bottle was spent, and the soul of Ishmael was faint with thirst. "And she departed and wandered" (ibid.). The meaning of "and she wandered" is merely idolatry, because it is written, concerning (this root), "They are vanity, a work of delusion" (Jer. 10:15). He went and cast himself beneath the thorns of the wilderness, so that the moisture might be upon him, and he said: O God of my father Abraham ! Thine are the issues of death; take away from me my soul, for I would not die of thirst. And He was entreated of him, as it is said, "For God hath heard the || voice of the lad where he is" (Gen. 21:17). The well which was created at twilight was opened for them there, and they went and drank and filled the bottle with water, as it is said, "And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water" (Gen. 21:19). And there they left the well, and thence they started on their way, and went through all the wilderness until they came to the wilderness of Paran, and they found there streams of water, and they dwelt there, as it is said, "And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran" (Gen. 21:21). Ishmael sent for a wife from among the daughters of Moab, and 'Ayeshah was her name. After three years Abraham went to see Ishmael his son, having sworn to Sarah that he would not descend from the camel in the place where Ishmael dwelt. He arrived there at midday and found there the wife of Ishmael. He said to her: Where is Ishmael? She said to him: He has gone with his mother to fetch the fruit of the palms from the wilderness. He said to her: Give me a little bread and a little water, for my soul is faint after the journey in the desert. She said to him: I have neither bread nor water. He said to her: When Ishmael comes (home) tell him this || story, and say to him: A certain old man came from the land of Canaan to see thee, and he said, Exchange the threshold of thy house, for it is not good for thee. When Ishmael came (home) his wife told him the story. A son of a wise man is like half a wise man. Ishmael understood. His mother sent and took for him a wife from her father's house, and her name was Fatimah.
    דיון
  • מה לדעתכם הניע את מחבר המדרש? מה הוא החסיר מהפסוקים?
  • האם המדרש מסביר את בואו של ישמעאל לקבור את אביו עם אחיו יצחק למרות גירושו?
  • אמר רבי יוחנן משום רבי יוסי: מנין שהקדוש ברוך הוא מתפלל? שנאמר "וַהֲבִיאוֹתִים אֶל הַר קָדְשִׁי וְשִׂמַּחְתִּים בְּבֵית תְּפִלָּתִי" (ישעיהו נו, ז). תפלתם לא נאמר אלא תפלתי. מכאן שהקדוש ברוך הוא מתפלל.
    מאי מצלי [=מה מתפלל]? אמר רב זוטרא בר טוביה אמר רב: יהי רצון מלפני, שיכבשו רחמי את כעסי, ויגולו רחמי על מדותי, ואתנהג עם בני במדת רחמים, ואכנס להם לפנים משורת הדין.
    תניא אמר רבי ישמעאל בן אלישע: פעם אחת נכנסתי להקטיר קטורת לפני ולפנים וראיתי אכתריאל יה ה' צבאות שהוא יושב על כסא רם ונשא, ואמר לי: ישמעאל בני, בַּרכֵני. אמרתי לו: יהי רצון מלפניך, שיכבשו רחמיך את כעסך, ויגולו רחמיך על מדותיך, ותתנהג עם בניך במדת הרחמים, ותכנס להם לפנים משורת הדין. ונענע לי בראשו.
    וקא משמע לן [=וזה מלמד אותנו] שלא תהא ברכת הדיוט קלה בעיניך.

    הסברים
    • רבי ישמעאל בן אלישע היה כוהן גדול והוא מספר את אשר ראה כאשר נכנס לקודש הקודשים ביום הכיפורים.


    מילים
    • לפני ולפנים - בקודש הקודשים
    Along the same lines, Rabbi Yoḥanan said in the name of Rabbi Yosei: From where is it derived that the Holy One, Blessed be He, prays? As it is stated: “I will bring them to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in the house of My prayer” (Isaiah 56:7). The verse does not say the house of their prayer, but rather, “the house of My prayer”; from here we see that the Holy One, Blessed be He, prays. The Gemara asks: What does God pray? To whom does God pray? Rav Zutra bar Tovia said that Rav said:
    God says: May it be My will that My mercy will overcome My anger towards Israel for their transgressions,
    and may My mercy prevail over My other attributes through which Israel is punished,
    and may I conduct myself toward My children, Israel, with the attribute of mercy,
    and may I enter before them beyond the letter of the law. Similarly, it was taught in a baraita that Rabbi Yishmael ben Elisha, the High Priest, said: Once, on Yom Kippur, I entered the innermost sanctum, the Holy of Holies, to offer incense, and in a vision I saw Akatriel Ya, the Lord of Hosts, one of the names of God expressing His ultimate authority, seated upon a high and exalted throne (see Isaiah 6).
    And He said to me: Yishmael, My son, bless Me.
    I said to Him the prayer that God prays: “May it be Your will that Your mercy overcome Your anger,
    and may Your mercy prevail over Your other attributes,
    and may You act toward Your children with the attribute of mercy,
    and may You enter before them beyond the letter of the law.”
    The Holy One, Blessed be He, nodded His head and accepted the blessing. This event teaches us that you should not take the blessing of an ordinary person lightly. If God asked for and accepted a man’s blessing, all the more so that a man must value the blessing of another man. And Rabbi Yoḥanan said in the name of Rabbi Yosei: From where is it derived that one must not placate a person while he is in the throes of his anger, rather he should mollify him after he has calmed down? As it is written, when following the sin of the Golden Calf, Moses requested that the Divine Presence rest upon Israel as it had previously, God said to him: “My face will go, and I will give you rest” (Exodus 33:14). Rabbi Yoḥanan explained: The Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: Wait until My face of wrath will pass and I will grant your request. One must wait for a person’s anger to pass as well. The Gemara asks: And is there anger before the Holy One, Blessed be He? Can we speak of God using terms like anger? The Gemara answers: Yes, as it was taught in a baraita, God becomes angry, as it is stated: “God vindicates the righteous, God is furious every day” (Psalms 7:12). How much time does His anger last? God’s anger lasts a moment. And how long is a moment? One fifty-eight thousand, eight hundred and eighty-eighth of an hour, that is a moment. The Gemara adds: And no creature can precisely determine that moment when God becomes angry, except for Balaam the wicked, about whom it is written: “He who knows the knowledge of the Most High” (Numbers 24:16). This should not be understood to mean that Balaam was a full-fledged prophet. Now, clearly, Balaam did not know the mind of his animal; and he did know the mind of the Most High? If he could not understand the rebuke of his donkey, he was certainly unable to understand the mind of the Most High. Rather, this verse from Numbers teaches that Balaam was able to precisely determine the hour that the Holy One, Blessed be He, is angry. At that moment, Balaam would utter his curse and, through God’s anger, it would be fulfilled. And that is what the prophet said to Israel: “My nation, remember what Balak king of Moab advised, and how Balaam, son of Beor, responded; from Shittim to Gilgal, so that you may know the righteous acts of the Lord” (Micah 6:5). What is meant by the statement: “So that you may know the righteous acts of the Lord”? Rabbi Elazar said that the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Israel: Know how many acts of kindness I performed on your behalf, that I did not become angry during the days of Balaam the wicked, for had I become angry, there would have been no remnant or survivor remaining among the enemies of Israel, a euphemism for Israel itself. Instead, God restrained His anger and Balaam’s curse went unfulfilled. And that is what Balaam said to Balak: “How can I curse whom God has not cursed? And how can I condemn whom God has not condemned?” (Numbers 23:8). This verse teaches that all those days, God was not angry. And how long does His anger last? God’s anger lasts a moment. And how long is a moment? Rabbi Avin, and some say Rabbi Avina, said: A moment lasts as long as it takes to say it [rega]. From where do we derive that God is only angry for a moment? As it is stated: “His anger is but for a moment, His favor, for a lifetime” (Psalms 30:6). And if you wish, say instead, from here, as it is stated: “Hide yourself for a brief moment, until the anger passes” (Isaiah 26:20), meaning that God’s anger passes in a mere moment. The Gemara asks: When is the Holy One, Blessed be He, angry? Abaye said: God’s anger is revealed through animals. During the first three hours of the day, when the sun whitens the crest of the rooster and it stands on one leg. When it appears that its life has left him and he suddenly turns white, that is when God is angry. The Gemara asks: The rooster also stands that way every hour. What kind of sign is this? The Gemara answers: The difference is that every other hour when the rooster stands in that way, there are red streaks in his crest. But when God is angry, there are no red streaks in his crest. The Gemara relates: A certain heretic who was in Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi’s neighborhood would upset him by incessantly challenging the legitimacy of verses. One day, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi took a rooster and placed it between the legs of the bed upon which he sat and looked at it. He thought: When the moment of God’s anger arrives, I will curse him and be rid of him. When the moment of God’s anger arrived, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi slept. When he woke up, he said to himself: Conclude from the fact that I nodded off that it is not proper conduct to do so, to curse people, even if they are wicked. “His mercy is over all His creations” (Psalms 145:9) is written even with regard to sinners. Moreover, it is inappropriate to cause the punishment of another, as it is written: “Punishment, even for the righteous, is not good” (Proverbs 17:26), even for a righteous person, it is improper to punish another. Explaining the cause of God’s anger, it is taught in the name of Rabbi Meir: When the sun rises and the kings of the East and the West place their crowns on their heads and bow down to the sun, the Holy One, Blessed be He, immediately grows angry. Since this occurs in the early hours every day, God becomes angry at His world at that moment every day. And Rabbi Yoḥanan said in the name of Rabbi Yosei: A single regret or pang of guilt in one’s heart is preferable to many lashes administered by others that cause only physical pain, as it is stated: “And she chases her lovers, but she does not overtake them; she seeks them, but she will not find them; and she will say ‘I will go and return to my first husband; for it was better for me then than now’” (Hosea 2:9). Remorse is more effective than any externally imposed punishment listed in the verses that follow (Hosea 2:11–19). And Reish Lakish said that in the Bible, it seems that such remorse is preferable to one hundred lashes, as it is stated: “A rebuke enters deeper into a man of understanding than a hundred lashes to a fool” (Proverbs 17:10). And Rabbi Yoḥanan said in the name of Rabbi Yosei regarding Moses’ request that the Divine Presence rest upon Israel as it once had: Moses requested three things from the Holy One, Blessed be He, at that time, all of which were granted him. He requested that the Divine Presence rest upon Israel and not leave, and He granted it to him, as it is stated: “For how can it be known that I have found grace in Your sight, I and Your people? Is it not in that You go with us, so that we are distinguished, I and Your people, from all the people that are on the face of the earth?” (Exodus 33:16). The request: Is it not in that You go with us, refers to the resting of the Divine Presence upon Israel. Moses requested that the Divine Presence not rest upon the nations of the world, and He granted it to him, as it is stated: “So that we are distinguished, I and Your people, from all the people on the face of the earth” (Exodus 33:16). Lastly, Moses requested that the ways in which God conducts the world be revealed to him, and He granted it to him, as it is stated: “Show me Your ways and I will know You” (Exodus 33:13).
    Moses said before God: Master of the Universe. Why is it that the righteous prosper, the righteous suffer, the wicked prosper, the wicked suffer?
    God said to him: Moses, the righteous person who prospers is a righteous person, the son of a righteous person, who is rewarded for the actions of his ancestors. The righteous person who suffers is a righteous person, the son of a wicked person, who is punished for the transgressions of his ancestors. The wicked person who prospers is a wicked person, the son of a righteous person, who is rewarded for the actions of his ancestors. The wicked person who suffers is a wicked person, the son of a wicked person, who is punished for the transgressions of his ancestors. The Gemara expands upon these righteous and wicked individuals: The Master said: The righteous person who prospers is a righteous person, the son of a righteous person. The righteous person who suffers is a righteous person, the son of a wicked person. The Gemara asks: Is it so that one is always punished for his ancestors’ transgressions? Isn’t it written: “He visits iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and fourth generations” (Exodus 34:7). And it is written elsewhere: “Fathers shall not die for their children, and children shall not be put to death for the fathers; every man shall die for his own transgression” (Deuteronomy 24:16). And the Gemara raises a contradiction between the two verses. The Gemara resolves the contradiction: This is not difficult. This verse from Exodus, which states that God punishes descendants for the transgressions of their ancestors, refers to a case where they adopt the actions of their ancestors as their own. While this verse from Deuteronomy, which states that descendants are not punished for the actions of their ancestors, refers to a case where they do not adopt the actions of their ancestors as their own, as it is stated: “I visit iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the third and fourth generations of my enemies” (Exodus 20:5). A righteous person is clearly not punished for the transgressions of his ancestors. Rather, it must be that God said to Moses as follows:
    The righteous person who prospers is a completely righteous person whose actions are entirely good and whose reward is entirely good both in this world and in the World-to-Come.
    The righteous person who suffers is one who is not a completely righteous person. Because he does have some transgressions, he is punished in this world so that he will receive a complete reward in the World-to-Come.
    The wicked person who prospers is one who is not a completely wicked person. God rewards him in this world for the good deeds that he performed, so that he will receive a complete punishment in the World-to-Come.
    Finally, the wicked person who suffers is a completely wicked person. Since he performed absolutely no mitzvot and deserves no reward, he receives only punishment both in this world and in the World-to-Come (Maharsha). Rabbi Yoḥanan’s opinion, that God granted Moses all three of his requests, disagrees with that of Rabbi Meir, as Rabbi Meir said: Two of Moses’ requests were granted to him, and one was not granted to him. God granted him that the Divine Presence would rest upon Israel and not leave, and that the Divine Presence would not rest upon the nations of the world, but God did not reveal to Moses the ways in which He conducts the world. As it is said: “And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious” (Exodus 33:19); in His mercy, God bestows His grace upon every person, even though he is not worthy. Similarly, God says: “And I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy,” even though he is not worthy. According to Rabbi Meir, the way in which God conducts the world and bestows grace and mercy was not revealed even to Moses. The Gemara continues to cite the Sages’ explanation of verses that require clarification on the same topic. With regard to God’s statement to Moses, “And He said: ‘You cannot see My face, for man shall not see Me and live’” (Exodus 33:20), it was taught in the name of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa that the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses as follows: When I wanted to show you My glory at the burning bush, you did not want to see it, as it is stated: “And Moses concealed his face, fearing to gaze upon God” (Exodus 3:6). But now that you want to see My glory, as you said: “Show me Your glory,” I do not want to show it to you. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa interprets Moses’ initial refusal to look upon God’s glory negatively, as he rebuffed God’s desire to be close to him. This disagrees with that which Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani said that Rabbi Yonatan said, as Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani said that Rabbi Yonatan said: Specifically as a reward for three acts of humility in averting his glance at the burning bush, Moses was privileged to experience three great revelations: Because “Moses concealed his face, fearing to gaze upon God” (Exodus 3:6), he was privileged to have his countenance [kelaster] glow.
    Because he “feared,” he was privileged that “they feared to approach him” (Exodus 34:30).
    Because he did not “gaze,” he was privileged to “behold the likeness of the Lord” (Numbers 12:8). What did Moses see? It is said: “And I will remove My hand, and you will see My back, but My face you will not see” (Exodus 33:23). Rav Ḥana bar Bizna said in the name of Rabbi Shimon Ḥasida, the expression: “And you will see My back,” should be understood as follows: This teaches that the Holy One, Blessed be He, Who, as mentioned above, wears phylacteries, showed him the knot of the phylacteries of His head, which is worn on the back of the head. On this subject, Rabbi Yoḥanan said in the name of Rabbi Yosei: Every statement to a person or to a nation that emerged from the mouth of the Holy One, Blessed be He, with a promise of good, even if it was conditional, He did not renege on it. Ultimately, every promise made by God will be fulfilled. From where do we derive that all of God’s promises are fulfilled? We know this from Moses our teacher, as God promised and said: “Leave Me alone; I will destroy them and blot out their name from under heaven; and I will make from you a nation mightier and greater than they” (Deuteronomy 9:14). Even though Moses prayed to have the decree repealed, and it was nullified, the promise was fulfilled and Moses’ descendants became a nation mightier and greater than the 600,000 Israelites in the desert. As it is stated with regard to the Levites: “The sons of Moses: Gershom and Eliezer…and the sons of Eliezer were Reḥaviya the chief. And Eliezer had no other sons; and the sons of Reḥaviya were very many” (I Chronicles 23:15–17). And Rav Yosef taught in a baraita: “Many” means more than 600,000. This is learned through a verbal analogy between the words many and many. It is written here with regard to Reḥaviya’s sons: “Were very many.” And it is written there with regard to the Israelites in Egypt: “And the children of Israel became numerous and multiplied and were very many, and waxed exceeding mighty; and the land was filled with them” (Exodus 1:7). Just as when the children of Israel were in Egypt, very many meant that there were 600,000 of them, so too the descendants of Reḥaviya were 600,000.
    דיון
    המוטיב 'רחמים' מקשר בין המדרש מפרקי דרבי אליעזר לבין הברייתא ממסכת ברכות. האם יש משמעות לכך שרבי ישמעאל הוא האיש ממנו מבקש ה' ברכה שמסתברת כברכת רחמים?