Portrait of Hacham Shimon Agassi

Portrait of Hacham Shimon Agassi
Portrait of Hacham Agassi painted by Mrs Ruth Gila, Beit Meir , Israel

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Ten Trials of Abraham
Our Sages of beloved memory teach us that Abraham underwent “Ten Trials” in order to prove his love for Hashem (Avot 5.3):

עֲשָׂרָה נִסְיוֹנוֹת נִתְנַסָּה אַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ עָלָיו הַשָּׁלוֹם וְעָמַד בְּכֻלָּם,
לְהוֹדִיעַ כַּמָּה חִבָּתוֹ שֶׁל אַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ עָלָיו הַשָּׁלוֹם


However the Mishnah does NOT list what these “Ten Trials” were.

The commentators differ as to exactly what “Trials” are included in the “Ten”. The only “Trial” which is written in the Torah specifically as a “Trial” is the Binding of Isaac-“And Hashem Tested Abraham”- וְהָאֱלֹהִים נִסָּה אֶת אַבְרָהָם.

By detailing all the possible "Trials” that the various commentators have suggested there are a maximum of 14 and not 10.

The gematria of the words “Ten Trials”- עשרה נסיונות is 1157=14=8!


There are seven major commentators who list the “Ten Trials” of Abraham:
·         Pirkei D'Rabbi Eliezer (26-31)
·         Midrash Tehillim (Buber) 18
·         Avot D'Rabbi Natan (A. 33)
·         Rabbi Ovadia Bartenura-Avot 5.3
·         Rambam-Pirush Mishnayot- Avot 5.3
·         Rabeinu Yonah- Pirush Mishnayot- Avot 5.3
·         Rashi
The 14 “possible” Trials which are gleaned from all the above sources are:
1.       The attempt by Nimrod to kill Abraham he was born;
2.       Nimrod casting Abraham into the Fiery Furnace in Babel;
3.       The Command to leave his Home-"Lech-Lecha";
4.       The Famine and the Decent to Egypt;
5.       Pharaoh abducting Sarah;
6.       War of the Kings and Rescuing Lot;
7.       The Covenant Between the Parts;
8.       Taking Hagar as a wife;
9.       Circumcision;
10.   Sarah’s abduction by Abimelech;
11.   Expulsion of Hagar;
12.   Expulsion of Ishmael;
13.   Binding of Isaac;
14.   Purchasing the Cave of Machpelah.
In my opinion all 14 (8) “Trials” can be counted as “10” in 18 words:
1.       Nimrod (attempt to kill him as an infant and in the furnace)-          נמרוד  =300
2.       Go For Yourself-                                                                                         לך לך  =100 or 1060
3.       Descent to Egypt (Famine and Pharaoh)-                                 ירידת מצרים=1004 or 1564
4.       Circumcision-                                                                                               מילה=85
5.       Hagar-Ishmael (Both are connected as one trial)-                  ישמעאל-הגר=659
6.       The Covenant Between the Parts-                                      ברית בין הבתרים=1331 or 2541
7.       War of the Kings-                                                                      מלחמת המלכים=663 or 1223
8.       Avimelech (both encounters)-                                                              אבימלך=103 or 583
9.       The Binding of Isaac-                                                                      עקידת יצחק=792
10.   Field of Machpelah-                                                                     שדה המכפלה=489

5526=18 or + 18 words=5544=18

9296=26=8 or + 18 words=9314=17=8 (final letters)

This is the code in which the Torah and the Universe is encrypted

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