SAID Rabbi Simeon: Wherefore on first revealing himself79b to Abraham did the Holy One say unto him, 'Lekh lekha, (Get thee out) when as yet he had not spoken a word to him? It was that by the numerical value of the letters of these words he might indicate that when he was a hundred years old 1 , a son should be born unto him. Observe: everything the Holy One does on earth, is wrought by a mysterious wisdom and beyond all human comprehension. Abraham at the time of his call was far from being perfect in his relationship to the Holy One, and knowledge of divine science; and, in these words first spoken unto him, allusion is made to the true path and manner of spiritual ascension by which the soul of man is able to become harmonized and assimilated with the Divine Being, and this Abraham could not attain unto previous to his entry into the land of Canaan.
King David experienced the same difficulty ere he could become qualified to rule. In connection with him it is written, 'And it came to pass after this, that David enquired of the Lord, saying, 'Shall I go up to any of the cities of Judah?' And the Lord said unto him, 'Go up,'2 Sam. 2:1 and David said 'Whither shall I go up?' And He said, 'unto Hebron.' As soon as Saul was dead, the kingdom became David's by right,
why, therefore, was he not at once invested with sovereignty over Israel? By understanding the occult signification of the words of scripture just quoted, the reason why may be discerned. David could not merit and qualify himself for the assumption of royalty and pre-eminence until he had attained to the same degree of spiritual life and esoteric science as that of the patriarch Abraham, who lay buried in Hebron. Only by the merit of perfection (telera in the mysteries) could he become invested with kingly authority. To attain unto this, he was obliged to live and abide seven years in Hebron in order to qualify himself for the sovereignty over Israel, similar to Abraham, who was unable to come into direct covenant with the Holy One until he had entered into the land of Canaan. 79b
"Note now what is written, 'And Abraham passedGen 12:6 through the land (va-yaaabor)' rather than he marched or journeyed, indicating the mystery of the Holy Name, the Shemhamphorash of seventy-two letters, the almost infinite combinations of which form the signatures impressed upon every living created being and thing. It is also the synthesis of all other divine names. The same word (yaabor) is used when it is stated, 'And the Lord passed before him (Moses) and proclaimed, 'The Lord, the Lord God be merciful and zealous, long suffering and abundant in goodness and truth.' (Ex. XXXIV. 6), in which verse is contained the Divine Name implicitly and the seventy-two letters of which it is composed. In the book of Rabbi Yessa, the Aged, it is stated that the word (va yaabor) in the verse, 'And Abraham passed through the land' is also in the words, 'And I will make all my goodness pass (aaber) before thee' (Ex. XXXIII. 19), and is intended to convey that the holiness of Palestine proceeds and originates from on high. Concerning Abraham's journey to Canaan it is further added, 'unto the place of Sichem,Sichem = Shechem unto the plain of Moreh;' that is, from the impure to the pure part of the Holy Land. 'And the Canaanite was yet in the land.' These words confirm what has already been stated, and refer to the evil spirit which after being cursed, brought maledictions into the world, as it is written, 'Cursed be Canaan,Gen 9:25 a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.' 'Cursed art thou above all cattle and above every beast of the field.'
It was whilst the world was under the rule of the wicked
one and had become depraved, that Abraham beginning to live the higher life, God, as we read, appeared unto him as He had never before revealed himself to any human being, as the one supreme power and sovereign of the world. On learning this great truth, until then unknown, Abraham, as scripture states, 'builded an altar unto the Lord who appeared unto him,' for the first time causing him to feel assured that the one true God and Lord of the universe had manifested and made known his existence unto him. 'And he removed79b-80a from thence unto a mountain (ha-harah)' or the mountain of the 'He,' where were found all kinds of plants, or in more explicit terms, where existed a community or sodality composed of various classes and grades of neophytes (sometimes called plants or little ones). 'And he pitched his tent (oholoh),' having Bethel on the west and Hai on the east. The word 'oholoh (tent)' is here spelled with a superfluous H, by which is meant Kaballistically that entering on a course of initiation into the mysteries of the higher life, he pitched his tent on the sacred mount of the 'He' and lived there in accordance with the occult teachings imparted unto him. As soon as he knew that the Holy One was ruler of the world, he built an altar. In fact, he built two, the first when the Lord revealed himself unto him, the other when he had attained the science of the 'Hidden Wisdom' and having passed through the various grades, became a full initiate. This we gather from the esoteric meaning of the words, 'And Abraham journeyed, going on still towards the south,' until he reached adeptship, symbolically described as the Holy Land, after taking the solemn oath and obligation of silence and obedience. After this, scripture states, 'there was a famine in the land'; that is, 'through laxity of life and non-observance of the good law, a decline in moral and spiritual life occurred to such an extent that it is further stated, 'for the famine was grievous in the land.'
343:1 the numerical value of לך לך = 50 + 50 = 100.--JBH