Parashat Vaera

By Rabbi Yosef Shemtov:

In this week’s Torah portion, HaShem tells Moshe “when you go to Pharaoh to ask him to let the Jews go out of Egypt, he will ask you to perform signs to give him proof of Hashem. Then you shall tell Aharon to throw his stick on the floor which will change to a snake.”

When Moshe and Aharon came to Pharaoh and Aharon threw the staff and it became a snake, Pharoah laughed and asked four year old children to come and do the same thing. So they came and they threw their staff and their staff also became a snake. Then Aharon’s staff changed to its original form and swallowed their staff.

Even though he saw this, Pharaoh didn’t pay attention and didn’t listen to Moshe. The question is if HaShem wants to show proof of Himself to Pharoah, why did he tell Moshe to do something that the Egyptians could also do?
The answer must be that HaShem never makes a person not have a choice. In every case a person must be able to make decisions on his own and there is always a balance.

Pharoah can think this is a sign that there is God running the world or he can think that we both can do sorcery, but maybe you are a bit more advanced than me. That’s why we always have the option to decide to go in HaShem’s way or, G-d forbid, in our own way.