By Rabbi Shlomo Zargari
In this week’s parasha we learn that Avraham Avinu has to travel yet again and this time to Gerar (a Philistine territory). His wife is taken away by the king after he claimed she was his sister. HaShem appears to the king in a dream and pretty much tells him that he is in grave danger. In the morning, after warning his nation about the honor of Avraham Avinu, the king asks Avraham to explain why he said Sara was his sister when in fact she was his wife. This statement had caused the king, who was in his own mind very righteous, ( and that’s actually what he claimed to HaShem !!!) to take Sara and get into trouble with HaShem…
The answer that Avraham Avinu gives is chilling to the bone!
וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ אַבְרָהָ֔ם כִּ֣י אָמַ֗רְתִּי רַ֚ק אֵין־יִרְאַ֣ת אֱלֹהִ֔ים בַּמָּק֖וֹם הַזֶּ֑ה וַהֲרָג֖וּנִי עַל־דְּבַ֥ר אִשְׁתִּֽי׃
“I thought,” said Avraham, “surely there is no fear of G-d in this place, and they will kill me because of my wife.”
As civilized and honorable you think you are, and as educated and well mannered you think your nation is, if there’s no fear of HaShem it all goes away when you’re faced with a simple test of the Yetzer Hara! The simple command of “ Do Not Murder” will simply be justified in this manner or another. Only fear of HaShem will be the factor that controls this behavior.
We have seen this time and again historically how we have been attacked from without and within. The lesson from this is to be very wary of people who don’t have fear of HaShem and to strengthen our own fear of HaShem.