Vayera (Genesis 18-22):
In this Torah Portion we read of Abraham pleading with Yehovah to spare the wicked city of Sodom.
Rabbi Sacks in an excellent article on this Torah Portion suggests that the key theme of history up until Abraham is a “failure of responsibility”.
He writes: “… Adam and Eve lack personal responsibility. Adam says, “It wasn’t me; it was the woman.” Eve says, “It wasn’t me, it was the serpent.” It is as if they deny being the authors of their own stories – as if they do not understand either freedom or the responsibility it entails.
Cain does not deny personal responsibility. He does not say, “It wasn’t me. It was Abel’s fault for provoking me.” Instead he denies moral responsibility: “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
Noah fails the test of collective responsibility. He is a man of virtue in an age of vice, but he makes no impact on his contemporaries. He saves his family (and the animals) but no one else. According to the plain reading of the text, he does not even try.”
Abraham on the other hand passes all these tests of his character. He displays personal responsibility, moral responsibility, and collective responsibility in relation to Sodom.
This lesson is so much for our time right now, this week and most especially if you live in the USA.
It’s one thing to take personal responsibility and even be morally responsible in how you live, but collective responsibility means being prepared to stand up against the crowd, against fear and intimidation and stand for the principles of Torah, for truth, for honesty and integrity and for justice.
Some years ago I wrote an article ‘Why is the Church Silent?’ which discussed the rights and wrongs of ‘rescuing’ (standing up for the unborn).
While this issue is still in my opinion more important than almost every other issue and seemingly much more important than who wins an election in a foreign country (speaking as an Australian), but there is a very strong sense that this is a watershed moment in history, not just the history of the USA, but world history, redemptive history.
There is no doubt that the current election counting for the President of the USA has been seriously corrupted in at least 7 distinct ways by the Democrats and those in bed with them, and it seems likely that a Socialist Dictatorship is about to be inaugurated in the USA which will then become a puppet of the Communist Party of China.
As pointed out by a dear friend and kindred spirit from Texas, while the election decision this year will most likely involve the Courts and go all the way to the Supreme Court of the USA, it is not likely to change the fraudulent outcome, as he argues that the Courts really don’t wish to be caught up in political fights.
But before we turn off and lie down in submission to the will of the criminals behind this massive fraud, now seems the time to head the call to engage, to demonstrate as Abraham did, collective responsibility.
This can be done through prayer and protest, through social media activism, through supporting those on the frontlines in anyway you can.
But how many will heed the call. Sadly, it has been my experience as someone who has stood up and stood in front of the ‘murder mills’, that most find this a bridge too far.
Why? Because it costs. It costs in a way that taking personal responsibility rarely does. It can cost you your livelihood, your friends, even some in your family.
Whether or not it is Yehovah’s will that the country that is the leader of the free-world descends into a Socialist nightmare or not, it is very clear that all lovers of righteousness and Torah are called to be counted.
Rabbi Sacks also quotes the very powerful works of the poet John Donne, which have always been amongst my favourite call to arms:
“No man is an island,
Entire of itself …
Any man’s death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, never send to know for whom the bells tolls, it tolls for thee’.
May all lover of Truth, of Torah, of Yeshua and Yehovah, answer the call and stand up and be counted at this momentus time.
Link to Rabbi Sacks article ‘Answering the Call’:
PS: Only a few hours after writing this I heard that Rabbi Sacks has passed away. (1948 -2020). May his memory be a blessing! Baruch Dayan Ha’Emet.