With the end of the earthly mortal life period of our mother Sarah the aspect of loving care for the deceased presents itself. The idea of her son becoming a sacrifice by the hands of her beloved husband was too much for her. And so she passes away at the young age of 127. She realizes that she had a son who was willing to give his life for the G-d of Israel. And he did that without having to kill somebody for it. Sarah was the carefully chosen woman who became our father Avraham’s wife. A divinely accompanied action at the time. Sarah was a strong woman, an eshet chayil: strong, original, creative, happy, secure, and obedient to Hashem and His Word. Great example.
She married a strong man who was a strong believer in the G-d of Israel. Avraham was the first man on earth to whom Hashem had shown the power of His works in the way it is written in Psalm 111 verse 6: “He has shown to His people Israel the power of His works, in order to give to them the heritage of the Gentiles.” According to Rabbi Rashi this was the reason for Hashem to create the heavens and the earth. Sarah had come from a family who believed in other gods than Hashem. It was the willpower of Sarah to change religion consciously and so she had become the first Matriarchs of Israel. If you are the only one or the first one in your family who realizes that the G-d of Israel is your G-d and that Torah is to be lived by you follow that role of Sarah.
Avraham buys a grave for his wife’s earthly remains. This grave site which still exists and is located in the city of Hebron, Israel, has a very peculiar name: Machpelah. The cave has been the possession of the people of Israel ever since, although at this moment it is not easy to get there if you know what I mean. The name Machpela comes from the verb: khafal, which means: to double. Machpelah is the site where Sarah doubled her earthly life into her eternal life. This is the situation of all who, like Sarah, are obedient to the G-d of Israel and to His Torah and who expect Messiah to come and break the curse of our disobedience as promised in Beresheet (Genesis) 3:15.
At the age of thirty seven Yitzchak was willing to give his life for His G-d. The human sacrifice was not executed because Hashem requires only one human sacrifice to atone for the sins of Israel: that of His own in human form by the name of Yeshua (see Zechariah 12:10, Daniel 9:26 and Isaiah 9:6 and 53:1-10). And after three years, when Yitzchak reaches the age of forty, he marries his wife Rivkah. The choice of the wife for Yitzchak, the son of Avraham and Sarah, was visibly lead by Hashem. Great when you can say that.
We need to realize how the focus of the Bible is not randomly on all humankind, but on only one family: Avraham and his descendants via the line of Yitzchak and Ya’akov. Hashem shows very carefully how important it is in His eyes to be of that line, either by birth – as Jews – or by faith – as our soul mates –. All the happiness, sorrow, grief, loneliness, family problems of these people are spelled out in an honest and transparent way in the Bible. To show us that we, like they, will find our life’s destiny if we keep our relationship with Hashem and His Messiah.
Shabbat shalom from Jerusalem,
Lion S. Erwteman, Rosh Kehilla of Beth Yeshua