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Was it not possible for Abraham to shape his people and his beliefs where he lived? Why move to another place?

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Why did the land, the geography, matter leej much? Why, all of a sudden, did G-d demand from Abraham that he should leave his land? What did he believe in? It tells us none of this.

There are two famous sources that attempt to explain the reason leh Abraham was chosen by G-d to start the Hebrew people. Based on some traditional sources, Rambam asserts:.

How can the heavenly bodies orbit without a motor to move them? They cannot move on their own! Lost among the idolizers of Ur Casdim, there was no lje there to teach him; his father, his mother and the people in his house were idolizers. But his heart searched and reached that conclusion that there is only one G-d who created everything and no divinity other than Him.

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At the age of forty, Abraham recognized his Creator. Behind Maimonides words, we find a justified response as to why G-d chose Abraham.


From his own spiritual quest, Abraham was able to arrive at the idea of only one G-d. All alone, he discovered the monotheistic paradigm. It was when Abraham reached this conclusion that G-d approached him and ordered him: One day, Terah was unable to tend his business and he asked Abraham to take care of it for that day. While Abraham was in the shop, a man leu in asking for a statuette.

What does this all mean?

How could a clay statue, that cannot speak or listen, cause this disaster? That was the world of his father, the world in which he was raised, and the world the society he belonged to believed in. But Abraham began feeling very uncomfortable in that world, for lejw did not fit with the G-d he was discovering and aspiring to learn more about. It did not coincide with his values and beliefs.

SPANISH Lech Lecha – Lej Leja – Rabbi Sacks

That was when G-d said to Abraham: This is perhaps what I could not understand when I was little. That it is extremely difficult, nearly impossible to have a faith, a belief system, values, a way of life in a society that does not agree with that faith.

It is very complicated to carry on a tradition when the majority of society teaches a different one. It was useless for Abraham to speak of monotheism in a society saturated with idols. In fact, the Midrash tells us that his countrymen even imprisoned him for the crime of destroying idols. It was necessary for Abraham to leave so that he could start a lleja tradition. Abraham did not leave alone, but with his wife Sarah and his nephew Lot; he left with his family.


It would have been lejaa hard to profess and carry on monotheism alone.

Therefore, we might say that the order to leave his land was not a mere whim from G-d, leha a necessity for Abraham and his family to be able to develop their beliefs and values freely.

The same thing happens today with our tradition. It is very difficult to live Judaism in solitude.


It is more than necessary to have a place where we can experience our customs, our beliefs and our past; hence, our Jewish communities. Surely the founders of our congregations thought, one way or another, about the message taught to us by our patriarch Abraham. It is very complicated to be Jewish without a setting to experience, to learn, and to share Judaism.

There are times when it is necessary to leave in order to strengthen and develop our own identity. Only then can we share moments with the rest of society, within a framework that respects the differences.

May G-d allow us to understand how difficult it would be to live Judaism in solitude, and how important it is to have places where we can share, carry on our values, and strengthen our identity. Home About Us Mifgash Convention: Based on some traditional sources, Rambam asserts: