My Father was a wandering Amramean

I gave this Dvar on September 13, 2014

In Parshat Ki Tavo we envision a time when the Israelites are living in the Promised Land and are experiencing the blessings of prosperity that they could only dream of during 40 years of wandering in the desert. Moses instructs them how to appreciate and celebrate their bountiful harvest. He tells them to be thankful. He tells them to take some of every first fruit from the soil, put them in a basket and take it to the priest in charge at the time, and the priest will take the basket, and the Israelite is then to tell the priest “My father was a wandering Amramean, he went to Egypt with meager numbers and lived there, they were few in number and became a great nation” What a strange thing to say.

The point of this is that God knew that when we are prosperous and successful every force around us is going to want us to think that it is all about us and we are going to forget just how bad it was back then. And God does not want us to forget.

God is basically telling the Israelites, “Years from now things are going to go really well for you and you will forget about God because things are fine but this Torah Portion is a reminder to never foget and to be thankful for our first fruits and set them aside and share our blessings first with the priest and then with the stranger, because we were strangers once and God rescued us and delievered us out of Egypt.

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