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Friday, January 16

The Weekly Shtikle - Va'eira

   In the plague of barad, hail, HaShem brought down hail accompanied by kolos, thunder. The hail also seemed to include rain. However, points out Minchas Yitzchak, when Paroah demands that Moshe pray that the plague end (9:28) he asks him to pray that the thunder and the hail should cease, but he does not mention the rain. This is because, as Rashi has mentioned many times, Egypt did not receive rain and relied solely on the Nile for irrigation. Therefore, Paroah would have been more than happy for the rain to stay. They needed it. However, when Moshe davens to HaShem, the pasuk (33) recounts that the thunder, the hail and the rain ceased. Thus, when Paroah observed this, as the next pasuk tells us - that he saw that the rain, the hail and the thunder had ceased (note how the order is switched from the previous pasuk) - he hardened his heart for he saw that his request wasn't fully carried out.
In the past, I have published a fascinating essay from my friend David Farkas, The Egyptian Holocaust, exposing many strong correlations between what our forefathers went through at the hand of the Egyptians and the horrors endured in the Holocaust at the hands of the Nazis, ys"v. With the frightening news of the past couple of weeks coinciding with the beginning of Sefer Shemos, I felt it would be apropos to republish it. As well, it has undergone many updates over the years (with some contributions by me) so even if you have seen it before, it is worth another look: The Egyptian Holocaust.

Have a good Shabbos.

Eliezer Bulka

Shtikle Blog Weekly Roundup:
Dikdukian: Dikdukei Va'eira by Eliyahu Levin
Dikdukian: Leshon Yachid veRabbim by Eliayhu Levin

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