Kenneth Cohen

The Ultimate Blessing

Before Moshe Rabbeinu lists the curses for violating the Torah, he lists the blessings if one observes the Torah. One of the blessings comes from the words, ברוך אתה בצאתך, “You will be blessed when you leave the world.”

The Gemara in Baba Metzia says that this is the ultimate blessing that one’s offspring will be just like him. Everything that the parents lived for, in instilling values, their love for G-d, the Torah, and the Jewish people, will be rewarded. Their children will diligently carry on, all of their teachings and strivings. It doesn’t seem that there could be a better blessing than this.

If we view the world as it is today, there are so many options of lifestyles out there. Parents may do their best, but there is no guarantee of the outcome. How comforting would it be to know that our offspring will make the correct choices.

In a way, Avraham Avinu did receive this blessing. He was promised that his children would remember all that he lived for, and the example he set.

The Gemara gives a parable to demonstrate this. A starving traveler in the desert, finds a tree with sweet fruit, and wonderful shade, with a stream of water next to it. After enjoying the fruit, water, and shade, he wanted to give thanks to the tree for sustaining him.

He blessed the tree by saying that he hoped that all other trees that grow from it or its shoots, should be as sweet and delicious as this tree. May we all be blessed with children who carry on, all that is dear and precious to us.

About the Author
Rabbi Cohen has been a Torah instructor at Machon Meir, Jerusalem, for over twenty years while also teaching a Talmud class in the Shtieblach of Old Katamon. Before coming to Israel, he was the founding rabbi of Young Israel of Century City, Los Angeles. He recently published a series of Hebrew language-learning apps, which are available at