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Friday, January 04, 2013

Beginnings Part 9 - Yishmael & Yitzchak: The Missing Blessing (Video)

Rabbi Haber teaches how there is an amazing parallelism between the story of Yishmael and the story of Yitzchak.  In this shiur, the Rav exposes the difficulties that Avraham, Sarah and Haggar had in the struggle to determine the destiny of the world.

The universalism of Yishmael (and Avraham) vs. the constricted approach of Yitzchak (and Sarah) to Hashem’s plan for the world is the background to the whole problem of the “Missing Blessing.” Hashem makes it clear, says the Rav, that there is “No Two State Solution” and that the yerusha of the Jewish People (the centerpiece of creation) must go through Yitzchak.
Hashem told Avraham to “Listen to your wife!” Sarah‘s vision was the correct one of completing the mission of correcting the chet of Adam HaRishon by starting with the “family” (the place where the tikun really must occur) rather than Avraham’s universal approach of trying to m’karev the whole world to the belief in Hashem. But, nevertheless, Yishmael will make G-d “known” to the world. However, Avraham was so confused about upon whom to confer the yerusha to which he was entrusted (that would fix Adam’s sin for the purpose of getting the whole world to believe in Hashem) that he never blessed either Yishmael or Yitzchak. The universalism approach of Mashiach ben Yosef vs the building of the eternal Beis HaMikdash (focusing on the family) of Mashiach ben Dovid is how the Rav sums up this story.

Posted on 01/04 at 12:10 AM • Permalink
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Meet Rabbi Yaacov Haber

Rabbi Yaacov HaberRabbi Haber has been a leading force in Jewish Outreach for the past 25 years. A founding trustee of AJOP, the Association of Jewish Outreach Professionals, he was the founder and director of the Torah Center of Buffalo from 1980-1990 while serving as a community rabbi in Buffalo. From Buffalo he and his family traveled to Melbourne, Australia where as a project of Kollel Bais HaTalmud he founded the Australian Institute of Torah, a national outreach and adult education program. He directed that program from 1990-1995, at which time he was sought out as National Director of Jewish Education for the Orthodox Union in the United States where he created the Internationally acclaimed and highly successful "Pardes Project."

In addition to his duties at the OU, in 1996 he replaced Rabbi Berel Wein as the spiritual leader of Congregation Bais Torah in Monsey, NY. In keeping with the position of Congregation Bais Torah in the Monsey community, Rabbi Haber was involved in issues involving the greater Monsey community, and counseled hundreds of individuals in the surrounding area.

Rabbi Yaacov Haber is the founder and driving force behind TorahLab. Through TorahLab, Rabbi Haber is bringing together educational and media specialists to create dynamic learning experiences which will be accessible to adults of all backgrounds and levels. Rabbi Haber has published numerous articles and books and is a sought after international lecturer.

Rabbi Haber and his family are presently living in Ramat Beit Shemesh where he is the Rabbi of Kehillas Shivtei Yeshurun.

Rabbi Haber can be contacted at