Parashat Chaye-Sarah, Genesis 23:1 to 25:18

Our Torah portion is usually translated as the “life of Sarah,” but these opening verses actually deal with the death of the matriarch, Sarah. She is old in numbers, but the Midrash tells us that she is morally pure and has the strength of a younger woman. Abraham seeks to purchase a proper burial place for his beloved, namely the cave of Machpelah. Ephron, the son of Zohar, owns the land in Hebron. Abraham negotiates with him for the purchase price. After the burial, Abraham sends his trusted servant Eliezer back to his native land to find an appropriate wife for Isaac. The servant meets Rebekah and finds her willing to return to Canaan and become the son’s wife. Isaac marries Rebekah and he is comforted for the death of his mother.

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