Zohar Chaye Sarah
“וַיִּהְיוּ חַיֵּי שָׂרָה, מֵאָה שָׁנָה וְעֶשְׂרִים שָׁנָה וְשֶׁבַע שָׁנִים–שְׁנֵי, חַיֵּי שָׂרָה”
“And the life of Sarah were one hundred year and twenty year and seven years; these were the two lives of Sarah.”
The large numbers in this verse are mentioned in singular as 100 year and 20 year and the single digit number is said in plural as 7 years.
The Zohar tells us that the Torah teaches us here that “Those who are small are big and those who are big are small”. This statement is quoted by many commentaries to teach the aspect of humility in everything we do.
The Holy One blessed be He makes small of those who has pride and make themselves big in this world, and those who behave as small, the Holy one makes them big.
We find support to the teaching of the Zohar in 1 Samuel 16:7, when Samuel the prophet was sent by God to find a king to replace King Saul among the family of Yishai. Samuel saw the big brother, who had impressive looks and was about to anoint him, but God told the prophet;
“ וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל-שְׁמוּאֵל, אַל-תַּבֵּט אֶל-מַרְאֵהוּ וְאֶל-גְּבֹהַּ קוֹמָתוֹ–כִּי מְאַסְתִּיהוּ: כִּי לֹא, אֲשֶׁר יִרְאֶה הָאָדָם–כִּי הָאָדָם יִרְאֶה לַעֵינַיִם, וַיהוָה יִרְאֶה לַלֵּבָב.”
“But YHVH said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but YHVH looks at the heart.”
Yishai the father brought his seven sons in front of the prophet but God didn’t choose any of them. Then the prophet asked if there were any more, and they brought David, the youngest who didn’t think of himself and didn’t come to see the prophet.
David was humble and didn’t look for titles of glory. God chose him and he was anointed to be a new king of Israel.
The lessons that can be learned from this short statement of the Zohar are many. To really understand it, we should remember that Malchut and the material world have no Light of their own. All that exists in a material form, including our body, has a long or short temporary state. There’s no exception unless a person elevates himself to a divine state and can move between spiritual and physical dimensions like Pinchas, who is Elijah.
Our spiritual connections expand and extend our souls. Whatever we do for others without expectation of being rewarded in this world adds to our souls. There are no limits of spiritual growth. Physical growth of the body means greater material that requires greater Light to sustain it. Without Light a big sized body would die because there’s more darkness than Light. Accumulation of wealth has no spiritual value unless it is used to build and support others.
Pride is one of the most difficult sins to correct after death. A prideful person can not stand in front of the Light before his pride on all levels is cleansed.
The 72 names represent the spiritual forces that manifest in this world. We find all the Hebrew letters except for the letter Gimel ג, a letter that represents ‘Pride’, ‘גאוה’. Everything in this world is manifested with the power of God. We own nothing in this world and we cannot take pride on anything we do, even doing a mitzvah. All forms of giving, Tzedakah, Charity, Maaser are actually a delivery of God’s blessings to others through our hands.
After King David prepared everything for the building of the first Holy Temple, he assembled the people and made a short speech.
1 Chronicles 29
10. David praised the Lord in the presence of the whole assembly, saying: “Praise be to you, Lord, the God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting.
11 Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, Lord, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all.
12 Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.
13 Now, our God, we give you thanks,
and praise your glorious name.
14 “But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.
Are we humble and big as King David?
I suggest reading the entire chapter.