FROM THE RABBI’S DESK: CHAYEI SARAH
Abraham’s desire to buy burial property from Ephron the Hittite despite G-d’s promise to the former that his descendants shall inherit the land, speaks to the character of our patriarch who recognizes that any claim to the land without official documentation will indeed be contested. He insists that proper protocols of buying and selling be utilized to effectuate a legally binding contract that cannot be challenged in court.
But despite the contractual agreement between Abraham and Ephron concerning the field in which the Mearat Hamachpela (the burial cave) is located, nations from time immemorial have challenged that sale, even till this very day. The Palestinian Authority and UNESCO, partners in crime, declare that Israel has no historical or religious claim to the Temple Mount or anywhere else for that matter in the Holy Land. A new means of denying Jewish sovereignty in Israel is once again rearing its ugly head.
While some of the fires that have plagued Israel in the past few days are due to dry conditions, there are those deliberately set by arsonist terrorists. To burn forests and to set homes afire are not necessarily new goals on the part of those who wish us harm. But the fact they are occurring at this stage simultaneously is cause for major concern and awareness. An Israeli student in my grade 8 class told me that her friendâ€™s house in suburban Haifa was set ablaze by arsonists. The impact of such personal stories hits home.
The flames of hatred are difficult to control, Israel, on a daily basis, has to contend with new methods and attempts to obliterate its existence. One fire can be put out, but another grows in its place. Here, in Ottawa, we saw a minor manifestation of anti-Semitism this past week. But Israel remains strong, and so must we.