Parashas Bo

In the piece on Hallel that I posted during Chanukah, I discussed one of the Maggid’s fundamental teachings about our observance of festivals. The Maggid, in his commentary on Esther 9:28, explains that the miracles that Hashem does for the Jewish People effect benefit not only the generation that experienced the miracle, but also all future generations. When Hashem does a great act of kindness for us, the time when that kindness was done becomes infused with eternal blessing. This is particularly so of the festivals, which is why we observe them as days of joy and thanksgiving. The Maggid cites various examples of how a miracle performed at a certain time becomes a wellspring of salvation for the future. Two of these examples relate to this week’s parashah.
First, the Midrash (Bereishis Rabbah 43:3) states that just as Avraham went out to war against the four kings at midnight (Bereishis 14:15), so too, Hashem smote the Egyptian firstborn at midnight (Shemos 12:29). Avraham’s salvation, rooted in the hour of midnight, established this hour as a time of salvation for the Jewish People in later years. [The closing Nirtzah section of the Haggadah Shel Pesach includes a poem enumerating a series of miracles that Hashem performed for the Jews at midnight. The first event mentioned is Avraham’s conquest of the four kings.] 
Second, in the very first Torah passage on the laws of Pesach, it is stated (Shemos 12:17): “For, on that very day, I brought your hosts out from the land of Egypt.” The Maggid explains that the very day itself was infused with the benevolent influences with which God blessed us at the time of the Exodus, thereby investing the day with the force of redemption forever. Hence the verse concludes: “And you shall keep this day in your future generations – it is an eternal statute.” For the eternal blessing infused in this day, we must eternally express our joy and thanks.
David Zucker, Site Administrator

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