Psalms – Chapter 114

Flint Stone. Meet the Flint Stone.

By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

When Israel left Egypt, a foreign land whose language they did not adopt, G-d selected the Tribe of Judah for a position of prominence. (This was based largely on the actions of Nachshon ben Aminadav, leader of the Tribe, who placed his trust in G-d and led the charge into the Red Sea.) At the Red Sea, Israel left Egyptian servitude and started reporting exclusively to G-d. The Red Sea split, just as the Jordan would later do in the time of Joshua (see Joshua chapter 3). When G-d gave the Torah, the mountains around Sinai trembled. David asks what made the sea, the Jordan and the mountains act this way. It was because they were in awe of G-d, Who is Master of the entire world! G-d brings water from rocks, as He did for the Jews in the wilderness; He will likewise turn stones of flint into fountains of water.

The phrase for a nation that speaks a different language (referring to Egypt) is Me’am Loez. The phrase was used for an 18th-century commentary on Tanach by Rabbi Yaakov Culi, which was written in Ladino (and is the best-known work in that language).

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