Recommended Posts

Amidah-Vaeira-Avot and Gevurot

“I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob as ‘E-l Sha-ddai’, but with My Name ‘God’ I did not make Myself known to them (Exodus 6:3).” The idea of this verse is that He appeared to the patriarchs by this Name, which indicates that He is the victor and prevailer over the hosts of heaven, doing great miracles for them except that no change from the natural order of the world was noticeable.


It is not in nature that man should be rewarded for performance of a commandment or punished for committing a transgression but by a miracle. If man were left to his nature or his fortune, his deeds would neither add to him nor diminish from him. Rather, reward and punishment in this world, as mentioned in the entire scope of the Torah, are all miracles, but they are hidden. They appear to the onlooker as being part of the natural order of things, but in truth they come upon man as punishment and reward for his deeds.

It is for this reason that the Torah speaks at great length of the assurances concerning this world, and does not explain the assurances of the soul in “the World of Souls.” These assurances mentioned in the Torah as recompense for the observance or transgression of the Devine Commandments are wonders which go contrary to nature, while the existence of the soul after the death of the body and its cleaving to God are the proper way inherent in its nature that she, “returns to God Who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7).”

Thus, God said to Moses: “I have appeared to the patriarchs with the Might of My arm with which I prevail over the constellations and help those whom I have chosen, but with My Name “God,” with which all existence came into being, I was not made known to them, that is, to create new things for them by the open change of nature. And, “Therefore say to the Children of Israel: I am the Eternal (Psalms 57:6),” and inform them once again of the Great Name, for by that Name I will deal wondrously with them, and they will know that, “I am the Eternal, that makes all things (Isaiah 44:24).” [Nachmanides]

The opening blessings of the Amidah, “Avot,” and, “Empowerment,” address these different Names: Avot speaks of God’s relationship with the patriarchs, meaning “the Victor and prevail her over the forces of nature.” It speaks of the Torah’s assurances concerning this world. Empowerment which includes the concept of Resurrection, speaks of the World of Souls; wonders which go contrary to nature, the connection between the soul and God through Whom all came into being.

Go Back to Previous Page

  • Other visitors also read