Haftarah for Lech L’cha

Isaiah 40:27-41:16

Don’t think that G-d is unaware or that He ignores the reward of the righteous. G-d is everlasting and untiring – there’s simply no way we limited beings can understand His ways. He gives strength to the weary. Those who put their faith in G-d will have renewed vigor, as eagles’ wings. They will walk and run back to the land without tiring.

Chapter 41

G-d now tells the nations to be silent in order to hear His words. After that, they may approach and speak if they wish to appeal their judgments. G-d was the One Who sent Abraham, who preached righteousness, from the East. Abraham confronted the four kings (in Genesis 14) and G-d caused Abraham to rule over them. Their weapons were ineffective against him. Abraham pursued them unerringly, despite the unfamiliar path. G-d did all this for him; He was the first to act with Adam and is also the last, with us in latter days.

The nations will see the deeds of G-d and shake with fear. They will gather together to make war, encouraging one another with faith in their idols. The various craftsmen – carpenters, metal smiths, etc. – whose work makes the idols encourage one another that that it is good. Israel, however, are the descendants of Abraham, who loved G-d. G-d took Israel from the other nations to serve Him. Israel shall not be afraid because G-d is with them. He encourages, strengthens and supports Israel. Those who gather against Israel will be thwarted. Go look for them, but you won’t find them, because they’ll be reduced to nothing.

Isaiah tells us that G-d metaphorically holds Israel’s hand, telling us not to fear. He has always helped us. He has made us like a new, sharpened tool; we will raze mountains (referring to mighty rulers). We will crush them fine and they will blow away in the wind. We will rejoice in G-d.

Excerpted from The OU’s Nach Yomi

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