Divrei HaRav

Noach / נח

Noach / נח
Hashem, using strong language, promised to destroy all the inhabitants of the world. Had it not been for Noach, the whole world would have been destroyed. Against such a corrupt society, Noach was still able to remain a tzaddik. What then was the greatness of Avrohom Avinu over Noach? Perhaps, in the time of Noach, there was still a remembrance of the name of Hashem. The people, although corrupt, still remembered Chanoch, and such people. However, it seems, that ten generations later there was no semblance whatever of a mention of G-d's name and Avrohom Avinu on his own had to rediscover the obvious.

At first Noach is called a tzaddik and a tamim but afterwards only a tzaddik. Explains the Ksav Sofer. The criticism of Noach for not admonishing his generation perhaps only began after the death of Mesushelach. Since Mesushelach was older, the burden of reprimanding the people belonged to him. When he was alive, Noach has complete title. However, once he passed away and the burden shifted to Noach and he did not respond properly, he lost his title of perfection.

The possuk refers to Nimrod as a hunter. The Noda B’Yhuda was once asked if a Jew is allowed to join in the sport of hunting. He answered that the only two hunters documented by the Torah are Nimrod and Eisav. It is obviously not a Jewish trait. Furthermore, we find in the “Rema” that one greets his friends’ new purchases with “titchadesh”, similar to “use in good health”. However, this does not apply to leather goods for we recognize that they came from an animal that was once living. Clearly then, we should not hunt just for pleasure. This then is the meaning of “now it is said, like Nimrod, a hunter” – something which was not said about others of our people. (M’Shulchan Gevoah)

The final decree of the generation of the flood was sealed because of theft and people’s conduct in their interpersonal relationships. Where is evidence of this found in the possuk? We are told that there lived among them a great tzaddik, Msushelach. However, he died a week before the great tragedy that befell the world. Usually the death of a tzaddik acts as a kopora for the generation – so why not here? The possuk compares, later in the Torah, the day of Yom Kippur and the death of tzaddikim, both of which act as atonement. Since we are told that Yom Kippur atones only for sins between man and G-d, likewise concerning the tzaddik. This is why Msushelach’s death did not shield and protect, for the people of his generation were involved in transgressions between man and fellow man. (Kvoda Shel Torah)

“And you will take from all the foods for yourselves that are eaten and gather them to you and it will be for you and them to eat”. The expression at the end of the possuk seems redundant. The Vilna Gaon explains that Noach actually gathered only enough food to provide a minimum amount of food for each meal. However, HaShem caused a brocha and there was satisfaction equal to a full course meal. It “will be” for you to eat.



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Tazria Metzora Achrei Mos Kedoshim Emor Behar Bechukosai Bamidbar Shavuos Naso Behalosicha Shilach Korach Chukas-Balak Pinchos Matos-Masei Devorim Voeschonon Ekev Reah Shoftim Ki Seitzei Ki Savo Nitzovim - Vayelech Rosh HaShana Haazinu-Yom Kippur Sukkos V'zos HaBrocha Breishis