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Nachmanides had a student named Reb Avner. At one point Avner left Judaism, becoming very successful among the gentiles, and was famous as an important minister in his land. To show his hatred for Judaism, he once sent for Nachmanides in the middle of Yom Kippur, slaughtered a pig, cooked it, and proceeded to eat it in front of his former teacher. Distraught, Nachmanides asked his student what had brought him to reject his faith. “A teaching from you”, Avner answered.

"Once during Parashat Ha’azinu, you said that everything in the world and all of the commandments are found in this Parasha! I did not believe that a portion so small could include everything, and came to the conclusion that all of your teachings are not true."

Nachmanides immediately responded, “But it is true! Everything in the world is in this portion!” Avner was skeptical. “If so, show me my name.” “So be it,” answered Nachmanides and turned to pray. G-d helped him and he found a verse that hinted at Avner's name in the third letter of four consecutive words.

Nachmanides told him, “In chapter 32, the 26th verse mentions your name!” Avner read the verse (in the original Hebrew) and found his name; the verse says ‘I said I would scatter them and make their memory vanish from mankind.’

Shocked, Avner immediately regretted his past actions and decided to return to Judaism. “Can I change my life?” he begged of his teacher. Nachmanides answered, “Fulfill the teaching of the verse.” Avner entered a boat with no captain or sailors, and allowed it to take him where it would. He was never heard of again as Avner the minister.

If you examine the verse, not only is Avner's name spelled out, but the word before begins with the letter Raish, standing for 'Reb', a name of honor. Why should the Torah hint, with an appellation of honor, to the name of a Jew who rejected Judaism? The Torah wants to teach us the great power of teshuva.

When a Jew returns completely to his faith, the Torah names him ‘Reb’ even if he was previously on a very low level. Even if he is still doing evil, the Torah is hinting to us that he will eventually return, therefore he deserves the name Reb. This is an appropriate message.precisely in this Torah portion, since Ha’azinu is almost always read on Shabbat Shuva, the Shabbat between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.