Parshas Vaeirah:
 By: Yaacov Silverstein
e@mail: hm16@popeye.cc.biu.ac.il

Parshas Vaeireh


Pasuk (8:2)

"Aharon lifted his hand above the waters of Egypt, and the frog came up , and covered the whole land of Egypt".

Rashi brings down the Midrash that we see from the way the Pasuk wrote "Frog" and not "Frogs", to teach us that it all started with one big frog, and each time it was hit, it multiplied.

If this is the case, why did the Egyptians keep on hitting the frog?

They should have stopped hitting it, thereby stopping it from multiplying??

Rav Y. Kanievsky (Birchos Peretz) explains that is the result of anger.

Even though when one gets angry at another, he feels the tension, and destruction that is being built by his rage, he still goes on with his anger, and heats up even more.

The same happened in Egypt, through their anger, they kept on hitting the frog, without taking some time-out to see what destruction they were doing.

Let us all take a lesson from this the next time we get angry with someone.

Pasuk (9:14)

Comes the Gra"h and asks why only by the plague of hail does Hashem say that "this time I am sending all my plagues"?

So he answers that in the past, Hashem repaid all those that rebelled against Hashem:

Sedom = with Fire

Mabuhl = with Water

Dor Haflagah = with Wind (scattered upon the face of the earth)

When Hashem punished Egypt he used all three.

Blood & Frogs = Water

Locust = Wind (they came through a wind)

Boils = Fire

Comes the Gra"h and explains that the plague of hail had all three punishments together, for hail is water. The Pasuk says that fire was in the hail, and there was also great winds.

Therefore the Pasuk says "this time I am sending all my plagues"(fire, water, wind).

Pasuk (6:13)

"Vayetzavem El Bnei Yisroel"

It is brought down in the Talmud Yerushalmi (R.H. perek 3, halacha 5) that at this same time Hashem commanded the Bnei Yisroel about the Mitzvah of freeing ones slave.

It is unclear why specifically at this time, in their present troubles, when it was the hardest time for the Bnei Yisroel, Davkah than Hashem commands the Bnei Yisroel about the commandment of slaves?

It seems as if it is "Laag Lah Rash"!

Comes Rav Mordechai Ilan (Mikdash Mordechai) and explains that this is human nature, when one is a master over a slave, he feels like he is the only boss over the slave, with great power over the poor slave. Therefore Hashem commanded them now, in middle of their enslavement, where they had a chance to really feel the meaning of the commandment and take it to heart for the future.

Comes Reb Chaim Shmulevitz and writes in Sichot Mussar, that this was used as a reminder for the Bnei Yisroel in order for them to use it and not only remember their enslavement.

For one must take those rare moments of elevation that one feels when he is spiritually elevated, and remember those moments by way of a reminder.

This same force of emotional reinforcement was revealed to us after the flood in the time of Noach, in the form of a rainbow.

This rainbow is not a reminder to Hashem not to make a flood again, so to speak, yet it is there to teach us a lesson, like we see in our Parsha.

No matter how strong one may be determined to change himself, it is still necessary for one to design for himself a reminder in order to invoke in himself the same original emotions, when one finds it necessary.

I would like to add to this a very interesting thought, brought down by Rav Kook (Sefer Ein Haayah Berochos 4)

The Gemarah brings down, "Rav Yochanan said, who is worthy of Olam Habah ?

And he answers, one who is "Somech Geulah Leh Tefilah" by the evening prayer.

Comes Rav Kook and brings out a deeper meaning into this above statement.

Morning, light, hints to the times that a person is successful,

Evening, darkness, hints to bad times.

When one is satisfied, than it is not hard for him to Daven and thank Hashem.

When one is in trouble, it is much harder to thank Hashem for what one has.

Therefore, the Gemarah tells us, who is worthy for Olam Habah ? One who even during darkness (Maariv, troubles), nevertheless his Tefilah is next to his mentioning of the Geulah. That his personal requests (Tefilah) is right after his request for all mankind (Geulah).

The same with the Jews in Egypt, Hashem wanted, Davkah in their hardest time (Maariv) to take this moment and remember it eternally, and use it to make a better nation out of Bnei Yisroel.

That their present wanting (prayer) to be freed, is next to the wanting of others less fortunate (slaves).



By the plague of hail, Moshe first went out of the city, and only then lifted up his hands in order to Daven to Hashem to stop the plague.

Why did Moshe have to leave the city?

Comes Rashi and explains that Egypt was full of "Gilulim" (idols)

The Egyptians worshiped sheep, and they grazed in the fields out side of the city.

However, many of the Egyptians brought them into the house before the plague of hail, therefore the city became full of Gilulim, and the ones outside the city were all killed by the hail. (Chanukahs Hatorah).

When Davening to Hashem, one should make sure that he is Davening in a place that is fit for prayer.

1) The place should be clean, no excretions in the area. One should distance himself from excretion at least "Kimloh Eynav". If it is behind him, at least 4 Amos, if there is no smell. (O.C. 90, 79)

2) There should be no urine.

3) There should be no foul smells in the area.

4) One should not Daven in a place that there is a lady that has one Tefach of her body uncovered, in a place where it is supposed to be covered according to Halacha.

Same applies to a married women who must have her head covered. In a case that one is having a meal at a table where there is a lady with her head uncovered, in the time of need, one may close his eyes or turn away from her, and Bench. (M.B. 75:5)

5) One should not Daven if he hears a lady singing.

There are many other places that a person should not Daven by, and I have not included in this list. For more info- Shulchan Aruch, and a competent Rav)