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The Torah In Haiku: Lech L'cha

The Torah In Haiku: Lech L'cha



Uncle and nephew
Avram, his brother's son Lot
Go their separate ways

Lot chooses poorly
Leaves Canaan to his uncle
Settles in Sodom

There is some Divine foreshadowing in this week's parashah. To avoid conflict over limited resources, Avram suggests to Lot they continue their travels separately:

"Let there be no strife, I beg you, between me and you, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen ... Separate yourself, I beg you, from me" (Gen 13:8-9).

Avram lets Lot choose - east or west - and "Lot ... saw the valley of the Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere" (Gen 13:10). So he ends up "pitching his tent toward Sodom" while "Avram lived in the land of Canaan" (13:12)

Unless this is our first time hearing the story, we know Lot has chosen a bad place to settle and will soon enough need to be rescued. But even first time readers of this story are given a couple of clues about trouble ahead. First, we are told that although Lot saw a "well watered" valley, this was "before God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah" (Gen 13:10). Then, after uncle and nephew split, we are told "The men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinners before God." (Gen 13:13)

Ed Nickow is a teacher and member of the Board of Trustees at Temple Chai in Long Grove, IL. He blogs at The Torah in Haiku.

Ed Nickow

Published: 10/31/2014

Categories: Learning, Torah Study
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