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In light of recent news, there has been discussion surrounding a man who became a father at the age of 87. This raises questions regarding the applicability of the mitzvah of Pru Urvu at such an advanced age, especially considering that he would be 101 years old at his son's bar mitzvah. Some Pshatim suggest that the obligation of Pru Urvu pertains to individuals who are emotionally and capable of nurturing children. Consequently, do his actions align with fulfilling this mitzvah?

Jerusalem rabbi becomes father at 88, 'like our forefather Abraham'

Another consideration I've been pondering is the moral fairness of bringing a child into the world who won't have a father figure in their life.

There was a halachic debate some time ago about whether IVF is permissible for older singles. Rabbis had concerns about this because it could mean there would be no father figure in the child's life, and the presence of a father figure is deemed crucial.

Another concern I've contemplated is whether utilizing science and modern technology to conceive children at an advanced age diminishes the fulfillment of the Mitzvah of pru urvu.

I think bringing a proof from Abraham is weak because he was commanded by God to have a child. Also this is probably the worst part of Abraham’s life you could model yours after.

Noteworthy is a compilation of rabbis who became fathers at an advanced age, including the Netziv, the Chofetz Chaim, Divrei Chaim, Grodzisker Rebbe, Rudniker when he had the Klausenberger, and Rabbi Yissocher Dov when he had the Bilgorayer Rebbe. Expanding this list would be appreciated.

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    Siring a child at an advanced age isn't such a medical miracle for a man. The unusual thing is an 87 year old being married to a woman who is still fertile (that's basically a woman who could be his daughter, or in some communities granddaughter)
    – Double AA
    Mar 11 at 23:46
  • I heard he Married her 5 years ago because she was still capable of producing children. Mar 12 at 0:18

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Yes, as Jews we celebrate the birth of every Jewish child. You mentioned the 'applicability of the mitzvah of Pru Urvu'. We don't look into 'applicability of mitzvahs'. We just do it because it is a Mitzvah that was commanded at Sinai.

You mentioned that some Pshatim suggest that the obligation of Pru Urvu pertains to individuals who are emotionally and capable of nurturing children. Are you personally aware of this person's emotional status? Also, please show me a halachic gauge to measure an individual's emotions and capability. That would sound borderline controlling of others which we Jews dont believe in.

You mentioned if' his actions align with fulfilling this mitzvah'. Yes, every Jew by virtue of being Jewish can perform any mitzvah that they feel like performing; anytime, day or night, 24/7.

You talk about the 'moral fairness of bringing a child into the world who won't have a father figure in their life'. Well, you are guessing that the person will not live to be 120. There are many individuals who have grown to be outstanding humans whose dads passed away at an early age. And then there are kids who have dads who checked out just because they felt like it.

You mention, 'I think bringing a proof from Abraham is weak because he was commanded by God to have a child.' The same G_d who commanded Avraham Avinu commanded this person too.

You said, 'Also this is probably the worst part of Abraham’s life you could model yours after.' Guess what, as Jews we try to imitate our Avoth as much as possible. In this case the person chose to do what he was obligated at Sinai to do.

To bring up non Jewish logic into Jewish lives is dangerous. It is the same non Jewish logic that says that assisted suicide is moral. Well guess what, we Jews don't believe in that. We have the Torah to go by and we are happy to keep it, even if it puts us on the 'extremities' of the non jewish world.

We Jews are known to have a lot of kids and that is our way of life.

Live and let live. There is a G_d running the show. :)

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  • If we would be following our forefathers in all they do we would be kissing our girlfriends before marriage. Mar 12 at 3:09
  • @Truthseeker We Jews believe that our forefathers had a good reason for every single act they did. That is why they are called Tzadikim. Yes, a very cursory reading of the texts using the King James version etc, which you most likely did, will throw people off. It will throw them off so much that they will misinterpret the most valid actions by the forefathers as undesirable. That’s why it is so important to learn the Talmud, Rashi etc., because they give the reasons why something that was done by the forefathers is totally okay. Apr 1 at 17:22
  • @Truthseeker Without the interpretations/ reasoning that were handed down at Sinai, people will be lost and confused about why the forefathers kissed their ‘girlfriends’ before marriage. At the end of the day, for Jews today, it is indeed forbidden to kiss before marriage. But, when it comes to the forefathers, absolutely nothing they did was wrong because they were Tzadikim. They just knew better, period. And yes, this entire kissing episode happened before the giving of the Torah which was a monumental turning point in the official observances of the mitzvoth. Apr 1 at 17:22

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