Redeeming the Akeidah, Halakhah and Ourselves
Parashat VaYera

Ethan Tucker

The Akeidah—the story of the binding of Isaac as told in this week’s parashah—is one of the most central narratives and texts in the Jewish tradition. The Akeidah, however, also seems to be an act of attempted murder of an innocent, and anyone today who would claim divine sanction to kill his own child would be locked up, left for mad, and hounded out of any sane religious community. And beyond dealing with Avraham’s willingness to carry out this task, how can we deal with the fact that God commanded this seemingly immoral act? How do we respond to this basic dilemma?

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