This week’s parsha is that of Va’eira in the Book of Exodus. It is in this parsha that the back and forth between Moses and Pharaoh ends with the 10 plagues (which we all know from the Pesach story, and will therefore be focussed on during Pesach). What is more interesting to me in this parsha however is the short dialogue between G-d, Moses and Aaron towards the beginning.
The context to this conversation is that G-d instructed Moses to go and speak to the Israelites and tell them: “I am the Lord, and I will take you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will save you from their labour, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. And I will take you to Me as a people, and I will be a G-d to you, and you will know that I am the Lord your G-d, Who has brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. I will bring you to the land, concerning which I raised My hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, and I will give it to you as a heritage; I am the Lord”. So in basic terms G-d says: I am your G-d and will take you from slavery and to the Land of Israel.
Moses then goes on to say this to the Israelites but the Israelites didn’t listen to Moses (apparently because of his speech impediment). Moses then tells G-d that they didn’t listen and then this happens:
“So the Lord spoke to Moses and to Aaron, and He commanded them concerning the children of Israel and concerning Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, to let the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt.”
G-d has just given Moses a partner! G-d recognised that Moses couldn’t bring the Israelites out of slavery on his own so he gave him some help! This for me is the biggest and most wise message from this week’s parsha. That only together can we succeed.
This is extremely pertinent in our movement. Our movement teaches that only with partners can we hope to change the world, this is why tzvatim exist! The movement functions on partnership, without it we would achieve nothing! This is why we place great emphasis on building strong relationships within the movement. To quote someone not in the movement but nonetheless is still wise “A dream you dream by alone is only a dream, a dream you dream together is reality”. You know who said that quote? John Lennon and he was a pretty smart guy!
This week’s parsha has a short but sweet message: Gain partners in your life that can help you achieve your goals! That’s it! As I said, short but sweet!
NB: All quotes are taken from Chabad.org and their translation of the original Hebrew text.