Tuesday, May 25, 2010

ELOKE ABRAHAM “The God of Abraham” (Part 3)

Today is the 12th of Sivan 5770

In the previous weeks we analyzed the words Eloke Abraham, the God of Abraham. We explained that we are praying to the God Abraham “discovered” and taught us about.
First, we said, Abraham found out that God is invisible, second that He is one (see last week’s HOTD) but probably the most important thing we’ve learned from Abraham about God is that God ”cares” about us.
In all ancient civilization the gods had their own concerns and problems. Normally they would spend their time fighting against each other to impose their supremacy. If they ever did something good for a human it wasn’t out of love or altruism: it was payback for or in anticipation of some human favor (human sacrifices, human gifts or human help in fighting a competitor god).
Abraham Abinu taught us that God Almighty is our Creator, and as such He loves us and cares about us, the same way a parent loves and cares about his children. While the idols or mythological gods “behave” like the tyrants who invented them, and acted upon selfishness and mutual interests Abraham taught the world that the true God listens to our prayers, protects us or delivers us without expecting anything in return.
It was probably the most revolutionary discovery of our father Abraham.

So important is this concept that the rest of this berakha does not elaborate on God’s unity or God’s invisibility. It focuses on the ways the God of Abraham cares about Abraham’s descendants, the people of Israel.