Table Talk: Chayei Sarah
1. Intimacy With God: Sarah was the single person in the world with whom Abraham could share the experience of the Binding of Isaac. She had shared all his achievements and struggles. Yet, when Abraham returned from Mt. Moriah, his greatest
achievement, Sarah was not there. She had died.
➢ Are there certain spiritual experiences that should not be shared even with a Sarah?
➢ Would Sarah’s experience have been so different from Abraham’s that the experience was not possible to share?
➢ Are there moments we should simply experience with God?
2. The Demands of Chesed/Kindness
In this portion we first read of Rebecca’s compassion toward Eliezer, the servant of Abraham, and then, we learn of the kindness she extended to his animals. She poured enough water to fill ten camels that had just completed a long and arduous journey. Her act of Chesed was almost superhuman.
➢ Why does the Torah choose examples of kindness that are beyond our ken?
➢ Are we expected to live up to Rebecca’s example? …Abraham’s?
3. Consistency Please
The story of Abraham began with his total and absolute rejection of his family. He inspired his servant, Eliezer, enough for the latter to convert. Yet, when the time came to choose a wife for Isaac, he rejected Eliezer, the person who consciously chose to live as Abraham did, and only wanted a woman from the family he rejected.
➢ Why did Abraham choose family over choice?