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The Never-Ending War

Exploring Rashi’s commentary on the statement to battle Amalek

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The Never-Ending War: Exploring Rashi’s commentary on the statement to battle Amalek

No sooner had the Jews left Egypt, Amalek attacked us. Rashi offers a fascinating insight into G-d’s eternal war on this rogue nation, plus a powerful personal take-home lesson.
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Amalek, Battle with, Rashi, Beshalach

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JeffB Northern California January 18, 2019

I have two questions. First, is Rashi suggesting that G-d's Name will be complete in each of us when we eliminate Amalek from our heart and thoughts? Or does Rashi here refer only to an external Amalek?

Second, in the modern world of today, who can we say represents Amalek? European Christians? The Iranian government? Can we actually identify Amalek as an actual people and if so, which people? These two questions are humbly asked. Reply

Ari Shishler January 21, 2019
in response to JeffB:

Hi Jeff,

Great questions! Rashi does not comment directly on how eradicating the personal Amalek from within ourselves will impact the Divine name within us. It is implied from his teaching that our personal Amalek is an impediment to our personal experience of G-d's revelation.

We can no longer identify Amalek's descendants. The Talmud (Yadayim 4:4) says that the Assyrian king, Sennacherib jumbled all the nations by exiling them from their homelands. That said, some commentators maintain that any nation that intends to destroy the Jewish nation is considered Amalek. Reply

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