Thoughts from Kollel KLAL


The passuk states by the makkah of ערוב, “If you do not send out My nation, הנני משליח בך… את הערב behold I will send against you… the ערוב.” Rashi explains that all types of wild and harsh animals, snakes and scorpions were included in this makkah, and they destroyed the Mitzri’im.

The passuk states “והפלתי ביום ההוא את ארץ גשן, and I will separate on that day the land of Goshen which My nation stands upon.” The Ramban explains the Torah used the lashon פלא wondrous, because this makkah was wondrous. The nature of animals, especially wild ones, is to roam freely and injure or kill whatever they want. Here, the animals did not step foot into the land of Goshen, only into the land of Mitzrayim. Onkelos translates the word משליח as “I will send”, and not the usual translation of גרוי “to contend against you by biting and destroying.” The Nefesh HaGer explains that Hashem sent the animals specifically to Mitzrayim, and they did not roam freely. Hashem performed a wondrous miracle by causing the land of Mitzrayim to pull towards it the entire parade of animals, and the land of Goshen to push them away.

The passuk ends כי אני ה’ בקרב הארץ. Onkelos translates this as “because I am Hashem who rules within the land.” The Nefesh HaGer explains that Onkelos adds the word “rules” to teach that Hashem rules over the land itself. Wonders will be done with the land by keeping the wild animals in control and directed to their target, only entering the land of Mitzrayim, and not the land of Goshen.

Another passuk states by the makkah of ערוב, “ושמתי פדות בין עמי ובין עמך.” What does the Torah add to that which it already stated “והפלתי?” The Ramban explains that והפלתי only teaches about the animals not entering into Goshen. However, if a Jew would be in the land of Mitzrayim he may be attacked. ושמתי פדות adds that even if there was a Jew in Mitzrayim amongst the Mitzri’im, he was not harmed by the wild animals, since Hashem redeemed him. Onkelos translates the words ושמתי פדות as “and I will place redemption for My nation and for your nation, Mitzrayim, I will bring the makkah.” The Nefesh HaGer explains that even when a Jew is together with a Mitzri, the ערוב will only affect the Mitzri, and not the Jew, since Hashem will redeem him. Hashem performed a complete separation, of the lands and of the people.

May Hashem help us learn from the miracles to recognize that Hashem is King and rules over everything!

Leave a Reply