By Michael Gold
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Extra info for And Hannah Wept: Infertility, Adoption, and the Jewish Couple
There is an interesting development in this story that should be of great interest to infertile couples. Michal had an older sister named Merab, who was married to Adriel, the son of Barzillai; later the Bible speaks of the five sons of Michal, who were born to Adriel (2 Sam. 21:8). The Tal mud questions this biblical passage. Did Michal give birth to five sons? Michal’s sister Merab was the mother. The Talmud continues in the name of Rabbi Joshua, “Merab gave birth to them, and Michal raised them, therefore they are called by her name.
In the next verse, we learn that God remembered Sarah, and she became pregnant with a son of her old age, Isaac. The rabbis learned a beautiful thought from the juxtaposition of these two passages. ” 22 Abraham, in spite of his own fertility problem, was willing to pray for Abimelech. In praying for his fellow, his own prayer was answered. Perhaps there is a lesson in this story for modern infertile couples. By helping each other and rejoicing in each other’s triumphs, we can ultimately help ourselves.
The first option, marriage to a second wife, was not favored by the rabbis. Although the Torah permits po lygamy, monogamy is the ideal. The Torah says, “Hence a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, so that they become one flesh” (Gen. 2:24). The Bible presents monogamous marriage as the proper life-style for a man and woman. The Talmud, although permitting polygamy, truly frowned upon it. Not one of the more than 2,000 sages quoted in the Talmud had a second wife.
And Hannah Wept: Infertility, Adoption, and the Jewish Couple by Michael Gold