Going the Extra Meal by Ben Krinsky


At the beginning of this week’s Parsha, Avraham
invites three angels into his house and offers to feed them.
He says in 18:5, “‘Viekcha Pat Lechem, Vesaadu
Libchem’…Vayomru, ‘Kein Taaseh Kaasher Dibarta,’”
“‘And I will get a morsel of bread, and you shall satisfy
yourselves’…and they said, ‘Do so – as you said.’” He
merely offers them a little bread, and they respond that this
will be enough. However, later we see that Avraham
serves the angels an elaborate and sumptuous meal,
which includes homemade cakes and some of his best calf
meat. Why, after they say they only want a small amount
of food, does it make sense for Avraham to serve them so
much food? All they said they needed was a piece of

The Gemara in Bava Metzia explains that this is the
quality of the righteous, who always go above and beyond what
is required in the performance of Mitzvot. Avraham was the
perfect example of this behavior. First of all, he did not have to
invite the angels into his tent at all. He also could have just
offered them a place to stay so that they could avoid the
sweltering heat. Even when he provided them with food, he
could have just given them a small piece of bread as he offered,
and they would have been satisfied. Yet Avraham did as much
as possible to completely fulfill the Mitzvah of Hachnasat Orchim
and accommodate his guests. To accomplish this goal, he did
his best to provide them with everything they wanted. When he
found that all they said they wanted was a little bread, he was
afraid that they were being modest and did not want to cost him
too much, and so had not informed him of what they truly
wanted. Avraham therefore gave them much more than they
requested. Avraham’s actions are a lesson not only in the
importance of going out of our way to do Mitzvot, but also in the
importance of not cutting corners when we do them. Like
Avraham, we must find the best and most complete way to
perform each Mitzvah.

Against The Odds by Avi Wollman

The Chesed of Avraham by Rabbi Joel Grossman