In his introduction to sefer Bereishis, the Netziv notes that Sefer Bereishis is called Sefer HaYashar (lit. book of the upright/righteous ones), for the Avos were ‘yesharim.’ How so? For, as the Netziv writes, the Avos acted with love and chesed to members of other nations.

He cites the fact that Avraham Avinu prayed for Sedom not to be destroyed, Yitzchak’s appeasement of Avimelech, and Yaakov’s soft treatment of Lavan despite the latter’s constant attempts to trick Yaakov, as examples of this great attribute. Indeed, the Rambam writes (hil. Melachim 10:12) that Chazal commanded us to visit the sick of other nations, to bury their dead, and to provide money for their poor. This, understands the Rambam, is referred to in the psukim ‘HaShem is good to all and has mercy on all his creations,’ and ‘her ways (of the Torah) and all her paths encompass/express shalom.

’ Either way, we see the great levels of our Avos in that they managed to treat all people with the utmost care and sincerity - despite the fact that these peoples’ worldviews and goals in life were completely different to theirs.

May we merit to exhibit such traits.

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