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  • Writer's pictureRabbi Yonah Burr

Bo: The Other Way Around

והגדת לבנך ביום ההוא לאמר בעבור זה עשה ד' לי בצאתי ממצרים
And you shall tell your son on that day, saying, ‘it is because of this that Hashem acted on my behalf when I left Egypt.

This is the well-known Possuk of the parsha where the father tells the son who doesn’t even know to ask, "It is because of this, that Hashem took us out of Mitzrayim".

What is "this" referring to? Rashi says it refers to the Mitzvos. It for this reason, in order to perform Hashem’s mitzvos, that we were taken out of Mitzrayim.

Rashi says the example of some of the mItzvos are Matzah, Korban Pesach, Maror, and the Hallel.

At first glance, this seems strange. It appears that Hashem took us out of Egypt, and in order to commemorate the exodus, He gave us the commandments of Matzah, Morror and Pesach! Not the other way around! Why are we saying that Hashem took us out in order to perform the commandment of matzah?

Rav Yeruchem Levovitz, the late Mashgiach of the Mirrer Yeshiva, explains that we commonly think that when a miraculous deliverance occurs, the purpose of the event was to save us, and in order to reciprocate we say Hallel and give thanks. But we see from here that the opposite is true; the purpose of the deliverance was in order for us to thank Hashem and perform His commandments.

Sometimes, we are sufficiently motivated to pray and serve Hashem on our own. We grow in our Avodah, and we are steadily strengthening our relationship with Him. Other times however, we stagnate, and switch into cruise control and autopilot and grow stale in our service.

Hashem then gives us a challenge, where we see the need to reach out to Him; Hashem delivers us, and now we continue to pray and offer thanks. The thanks is not incidental, but rather the entire purpose of the deliverance.

Our goal should be to continue to thank and thank, and keep that relationship strong, so that it is no longer necessary to give us reasons to pray; may we merit the level to pray to Hashem sincerely, even before we have a need to!

Have a wonderful Shabbos!

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