Page 118 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 51

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110
JEWISH BOOK ANNUAL
Haran died before his father Terah....His father Terah sold
idols and once Abraham stood nearby. When someone came
to purchase the idol Abraham asked the man “How old are
you?” He answered: “Fifty or sixty years old.” Then Abraham
said: “You are now sixty years old and you wish to bow down
to one who is one day old?” Then the man was ashamed and
went away in disgrace. Once a woman came with bowl of the
best flour and said to Abraham: “Take this bowl of the best
flour as a sacrifice to the idols.” Then Abraham took the bowl
of the best flour, placed it in front of the idols and then took
a large stick to break all the idols, except for one large idol
and he placed the large stick in the idol’s hands. When Terah
came he said to Abraham: “Who did this?” Then said Abraham:
“A woman brought the best flour for sacrifice, then the idols
began to quarrel with one another as to which one would eat
first, then the biggest idol took a stick and broke all the others.”
Then said Terah: “And do these have sense or life in them­
selves?”
Then said Abraham: “If they have no sense, why should we
worship them?” Then Terah his father took him and gave him
into Nimrod’s hands. Then Nimrod said to Abraham: “I f you
bow down to the fire all will be well with you, if not, I will
have you thrown into the fire.” Haran was standing there and
he didn’t know whom he should help, Abraham or Nimrod.
He thought to himself: “I will see, if Abraham comes out, then
I will say I worship the God Abraham worships, but if Abraham
stays in, then will I worship what Nimrod worships.” And then
Abraham came out whole from the fire; then Haran, Abraham’s
brother, was asked: “Whom do you worship?” Then he an­
swered: “I worship what Abraham worships.” Then he was
thrown into the fire and his intestines shriveled up and he died.
Then an angel came and threw him out in front of Terah his
father.
CONCLUSION
What I believe is interesting about these parallel re-tellings
of the same story is that the contemporary translation offers
37. The passage was reproduced by Shmeruk, 330-331.
TSENE-RENE, PARASHAH NOAH, BASEL, 162237