Sunday, July 09, 2006

Who’s your daddy?

Parshat Pinchas

In 25:11 the passuk tells us “Pinchas, son of Elazar, son of Aharon Ha’Kohen”. Rashi tells us the reason the Torah felt it important o state the lineage of Pinchas back to Aharon (the grandfather) instead of just to Elazar (the father) was because people were talking about how hypocritical Pinchas was. After all, they said, Pinchas’ grandfather (Yisro) himself was a priest o Avoda Zaras who fattened the animals for sacrificing to all sorts of deviant gods. Who is Pinchas to preach to us??!! Therefore the passuk relates Pinchas to Aharon.

So what? What does relating him to Aharons side of the family do for anyone? Did people stop talking after that? It must have gone something like this: People were talking about Pinchas and then suddenly they read he was Aharons grandson so they stopped??!! I do not think so. They knew he was Aharons grandson to start with, so what was the purpose of writing this?

I think the passuk was not writing this fact in order to stop the rumors and lashon hara from spreading and to stop people from besmirching the integrity of Pinchas. People talk and nobody likes to be told they are acting inappropriately, so they spoke badly of Pinchas. The passuk is coming to tell future generations – us, that we should know that the intentions of Pinchas were honest and done with integrity.

9 comments:

socialworker/frustrated mom said...

Very nice thoughts. I think that the lesson i a strong one for future generations. We can take the lessons for us as well.

FrumGirl said...

And this is still a huge problem - loshon hora. youd think the generations would have learned by now!

Rafi G said...

you'd think. speaking freely has become so commonplace and easy now that Jews live in democratic countries that we do not even weigh our words before we talk any longer (I don't know if we speak lashon hara more than previous generations or not, so it is a general assumption that might be wrong..)

Chaim B. said...

See the Noam Elimelech who has a different spin to answer the same kashe you raise. The Torah is not just telling us the yichus of Pinchas, but where he received the koach in his neshoma to carry out such an act.

Rafi G said...

shkoyach

josh waxman said...

fyi, I included these posts post in my weekly parsha roundup.

Rafi G said...

shkoyach

Neil Harris said...

I agree. By stating his lineage, it give more clout to his future situation in Shilo.

Rafi G said...

in shilo? what do you mean?