Susan Barth
Marriage Education, Enrichment / Enhancement & Advocacy

It is all about our children (young and old)!

Among the most horrific images we have from this war are those of the children taken by Hamas as hostages — and what I find fascinating is that this focus on the children has a basis in this week’s Torah portion of Noah.

In chapter 7, verse 7 , the text states that during the interval that Noah and his family were in the ark, there was a strict prohibition imposed not only on Noah and his wife and his sons and daughter in laws , but also on the animals against Intimacy/marital relations (according to the commentator Rashi).

This prohibition was the subject of  a prior blog, “What Noah and Na’amah Taught Us About Intimacy.” Specifically, I wrote that “one of the most poignant marital challenges given to Noah and his wife Na’amah upon entering the ark and during the yearlong deluge of the flood and the confinement in the ark was G-d’s commandment prohibiting intimacy.”

The Return to Intimacy

The subject of intimacy is also highlighted in terms of the first commandment which Hashem issues to Noah in association with the command to exit the ark after the flood. This command is stated in  Chapter 8 verse 16 when Hashem commands Noah to “go forth from the ark, thou and thy wife, and thy sons….” The commentator Rashi comments that this means “man and wife” and the expression indicates that henceforth Hashem permitted (and encouraged) co- habitation.

This commandment from Hashem shows how precious our children (young and old) are to Hashem, as well as the significance that he places on the couple themselves.  Having a safe and secure home environment is the core of our beliefs and foundation of our heritage.

Prayer for our Children

It is our fervent prayer that all the hostages (old and young) be returned and that ALL OUR “CHILDREN” -especially the brave soldiers in the IDF return from the battleground safe and to their homes and that we can once again watch our children grow in peace and security!

About the Author
Susan (Sarah) Barth is founder and director of Israeli non profit Together in Happiness/B'Yachad B'Osher, promoting stronger, healthier marriages impacting Israeli and English speaking countries' societies. A Project Management Professional (PMP) and businesswoman from the US, Susan sponsored and chaired the First International Conference on Marriage Education in Israel (attended by over 360 professionals) in Jerusalem in memory of her parents and launched I-PREP, an innovative marriage education curriculum. On November 8, 2017, Together in Happiness co-hosted a historic Knesset seminar promoting government support for pre-marriage education
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