350. "And the children of Yisrael sighed" (Shemot 2:23). HE ASKS, It is not written 'they sighed' with a reflexive form, WHICH WOULD SIGNIFY THAT THEY SIGHED BECAUSE OF THEIR OWN TROUBLES, but rather with a transitive form, WHICH CAN BE CONSTRUED TO MEAN THAT THEY POSSIBLY SIGHED BECAUSE OF THE TROUBLES OF OTHERS. HE ANSWERS, That is to say they sighed from above, that the sighing was for them from above, MEANING THAT THE ANGELS SIGHED FOR THE CHILDREN OF YISRAEL.
351. Rabbi B'rechyah said, THE PASSAGE, "THE CHILDREN OF YISRAEL SIGHED," refers to the children of Yisrael above, MEANING THE ANGELS. THE CONCLUSION OF THE PASSAGE, "FROM THE LABOR" IS TO TEACH ABOUT who are the children of Yisrael IN THIS PASSAGE. Those who are called, "those who serve," are those who are of the supernal service; NAMELY THE MINISTERING ANGELS. THEREFORE, IT IS NOT NECESSARY TO DEDUCE THIS FROM THE FACT THAT IT IS NOT WRITTEN WITH A REFLEXIVE VERB AS THE WORDS OF THE PREVIOUS PARAGRAPH. "And their cry rose up to the Elohim" TEACHES US that until that hour their cry did not rise up before Him.
352. Rabbi Yitzchak said, When the Holy One, blessed be He, punishes the company of supernal ministers, NAMELY THE MINISTERING ANGELS, AND THE MINISTERS OF THE SEVENTY NATIONS, what is the nature of that punishment? Rabbi Elazar said, He has them pass through the Dinur River, and depose them from their positions, and appoints different ministers of the other nations. He said to him, But it is written, "The flames of fire His ministers" (Tehilim 104:4). THUS, HOW DOES THIS AFFECT THEM IF THEY PASS THROUGH THE RIVER OF FIRE? He said to him, There is fire that is stronger than fire, and there is fire that rejects fire. THEREFORE, EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE OF FIRE, THE FIRE OF THE RIVER OF FIRE IS STRONGER. AND THERE, PUNISHMENT IS DONE TO THE FIERY ANGELS.