21 October 2016

Shabbat Chol HaMoed Sukkot 5777

19 Tishrei 5777
Erev Shabbat Kodesh
4th Day Chol HaMoed Sukkot

It is remarkable that the War of Gog and Magog figures so prominently in the readings for the Festival of Sukkot. The Haftarah for the first day of Sukkot comes from Zechariah 14 and the Haftarah for Shabbat of Sukkot comes from Ezekiel 38:18 - 39:16...
18 And it will come to pass on that day, when Gog comes against the land of Israel, declares the Lord God, that My blazing indignation will flame in My nostrils.
19 For in My jealousy and in the fire of My wrath I have spoken; Surely there shall be a great noise on that day in the land of Israel.
20 And at My presence, the fishes of the sea and the birds of the heaven and the beasts of the field and all the creeping things that creep upon the earth and all the men who are upon the surface of the earth shall quake, and all the mountains shall be thrown down, and the cliffs shall fall to the ground.
21 And I will call the sword against him upon all My mountains, says the Lord God: every man's sword shall be against his brother.
22 And I will judge against him with pestilence and with blood, and rain bringing floods, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone will I rain down upon him and upon his hordes and upon the many peoples that are with him.
23 And I will reveal Myself in My greatness and in My holiness and will be recognized in the eyes of many nations, and they will know that I am the Lord.
1 And you, Son of man, prophesy about Gog, and say; So says the Lord God: Lo! I am against you, O Gog, prince and head of Meshech and Tubal.
2 And I will unbridle and entice you and lead you up from the utmost parts of the north and bring you upon the mountains of Israel.
3 And I will smite the bow out of your left hand and make your arrows fall from your right hand.
4 Upon the mountains of Israel shall you fall, you and all your hordes, and the people that are with you; to the birds of prey, to all the winged creatures and the beasts of the field have I given you to be devoured.
5 Upon the open field shall you fall, for I have spoken, says the Lord God.
6 And I will send fire on Magog and on those who dwell in safety in the islands, and they will know that I am the Lord.
7 And I will make known My Holy Name in the midst of My people Israel, and I will no longer cause My Holy Name to be profaned, and the nations will know that I, the Lord, am holy in Israel.
8 Behold it is coming, and it will be, says the Lord God: that is the day whereof I have spoken.
9 Then the inhabitants of the cities of Israel will go forth and make fires and heat up with the weapons, the bucklers, and the encompassing shields, the bows and the arrows and the handstaves and the spears, and burn them as fires for seven years.
10 So that they shall carry no wood from the fields nor cut down any from the forests, for they shall make fires from the weapons. Thus will they spoil those who spoiled them and plunder those who plundered them, says the Lord God.
11 And it shall come to pass on that day that I will give Gog a place there as a grave in Israel, the valley of them who pass along the east side of the sea, and it will then stop those who pass along. And there shall they bury Gog and all his hordes, and they shall call it the Valley of Hamon Gog [the masses of Gog].
12 And seven months shall the House of Israel be burying them in order to purify the land.
13 They will bury all the people of the land, and they will be renowned; it is a day when I will be glorified, says the Lord God.
14 Men of continuous employment they shall separate, who pass through the land, burying those who pass through with those who are left on the surface of the land, in order to purify it, at the end of seven months shall they search.
15 And when they that pass through shall pass and see a human bone, they shall build a sign next to it until the buriers bury it in the Valley of Hamon Gog.
16 And also the name of the city shall be Hamonah. Thus they shall purify the land.
"The reading of the haftara of Gog and Magog on Shabbat Chol ha-Mo'ed Sukkot is not merely a custom, but an obligation of Talmudic law. The gemara in Megilla (31a) mentions it along with the other haftarot read on the various holidays to this very day; we thus see that Chazal already saw an essential connection between the prophecy and the festival."

See the rest here: The War of Gog and Magog


Shabbat shalom! Moadim l'Simchah!