Commentary on Parashat Chayei Sara, Genesis 23:1 - 25:18
1. If Sarah had lived eight more years, how old would she have been when she died? Where did Sarah die? According to midrash, what caused Sarah’s death?
2. From whom did Abraham purchase the cave of Machpelah? What was his tribe?
3. How much did Abraham pay for the whole property?
4. What was the name of Abraham’s servant described herein, and what two things did Abraham make him promise?
5. What sign did Eliezer expect to receive to know that he had the right woman?
6. What was Rivka’s relationship to Yitzhak (besides being his wife)?
7. After all the negotiations were completed with Rivka’s family, Eliezer was ready to pack up and hit the road. What was the family’s first response, and what did they do to resolve the issue?
8. Does that scene remind you of a later scene with the same family?
9. Isaac came out to the field where he met Eliezer and Rivkah. Why did he go to the field?
10. What was the name of the wife Abraham took after Sarah died and how many children did she have by Abraham?
11. How old was Abraham when he died? Who buried him? Where?
12. What is the connection between the end of this week’s parashah and the beginning of next week’s?
13. According to midrash, there were three things that were always present with Sarah. What were they?
1. Sarah would have been 135 years old. She died in Kiryat Arba, and the midrash says that Sarah died because of the shock of hearing of Isaac’s near sacrifice (23:1).
2. Abraham purchased the cave from Ephron ben Zohar who was from the tribe of Heth (23:9-10).
3. Abraham purchased the property with 400 shekels of silver (23:15).
4. The name of Abraham’s servant was Eliezer. Abraham made him promise that he would not find a wife for Isaac from among the Canaanites, but from among Abraham’s kindred, and that he would bring Yitzhak and his wife back to live in the land, not with the kinfolk (24:3-6).
5. Eliezer expected that she would offer to fetch water for him, and his camels (24:13-14).
6. Rivkah was Yitzchaks 1st cousin once removed; Yitzhak was a first cousin to her father, Bethuel (24:15).
7. Rivkahs family said: “Let her stay with us for a few days, at the least, 10.” Then they let her make the decision (24:55-58).
8. The scene may remind you of when Yaakov wanted to leave with Leah and Rachel (29:10-20).
9. Isaac went to the field to daven Mincha (24:63).
10. After Sarah died, Abraham married Keturah, they had six children together (25:1-5).
11. Abraham died when he was 175 years old, Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the Cave of Machpela (25:7-9).
12. This week’s parashah end’s with the generations of Ishmael(25:12), next week’s begins with the generations of Isaac (25:19).
13. Three things that were always present with Sarah were blessings in her hallot, light in her tent, and a cloud (shekhina) over her tent for protection.
Provided by special arrangement with the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies.
Pronounced: MINN-khah, Origin: Hebrew, the afternoon prayer service. According to traditional interpretation of Jewish law, men are commanded to pray three times a day.
Pronounced: YAH-kove or YAH-ah-kove, Origin: Hebrew, Jacob, one of the Torah’s three patriarchs.
Pronounced: eetz-KHAHK, Origin: Hebrew, Hebrew name for Isaac.
Pronounced: ZOE-har, Origin: Aramaic, a Torah commentary and foundational text of Jewish mysticism.