01 August 2014

Parshat Devarim - Shabbat Chazon 5774 III

5 Av 5774
Erev Shabbat Kodesh

As the days of Moshe dwindled to a precious few, he gathered all of Israel to hear his final rebuke of their deeds over the past forty years. He reminded them of all their actions that angered G-d during their journey through the desert: The sin of the golden calf, the complaints about the lack of water and about the manna, and of course, the sin of the spies who refused to enter into the Land of Israel. The Torah tells us in this week's parsha: "In this matter you did not believe in the L-rd your G-d who goes before you." The common denominator of all of their sins was a lack of faith in the Holy One, Blessed be He.
This generation, the generation that were slaves in Egypt, had a lowly spirit; they could not be the ones who would be called upon to enter and conquer the Land of Israel. They had to die out over the forty years that the Jews journeyed in the desert.
A new generation would have to arise, a generation that knew not slavery or oppression; rather, a generation born free in the desert sands and relying only on Hashem. This would be the generation who would be called upon to conquer the Land of Israel from the seven nations, a generation that would not rely upon covenants and promises from the nations, but rather on the Mighty One of Jacob and themselves.
This type of complete faith in the Almighty is what is needed today from our leaders. Today, after nearly a full month of fighting against the terrorists in the Gaza Strip, the Israeli army has been fighting with one hand tied behind their backs. This type of warfare of course endangers our own soldiers. This is done in order not to cause civilian casualties and not to destroy property. All of this, of course, stems from the fear of "what will the world say"; we are concerned more about world opinion, United Nations condemnation, Barack Obama's friendship - than we are with protecting our own civilians and soldiers. It is this fear of the nations which is greater than the fear of G-d - the lowly spirit and lack of faith. The same army which destroyed seven nations within 6 days, is having a hard time finding its footing in a war that's taking almost 30 days so far. What is needed to clean up the terrorist den is for the full force of the IDF to come in and clean out the enemy. Let the pieces fall where they may, for in any case, the world will condemn us. Let us stop at nothing less than complete victory!
Rabbi Kahane HY"D writes in his classic book The Jewish Idea
"The key to bringing the Final Redemption with glory and majesty, and to stop the need for terrible Messianic birth pangs, is repentance based on a nation dwelling alone, in isolation. This is impossible without real complete faith and trust in G-d, which directs the Jew toward seemingly dangerous mitzvot that incur the wrath of the nations. Only through such trust will we be able to exchange redemption in its time - with its terrible suffering - for quick and majestic Redemption."G-d longs for this trust in Him, which will lead Israel to isolation and to reliance only on Him. This, in turn, will open the gates of Kiddush Hashem and will bring Him speedily to march in wrathful revenge against the nations - to save Israel and to rule over the entire world. Woe to us that we do not understand to what extent redemption is in our hands."
Levi Hazan


  1. Brilliantly insightful!

  2. Do you have a link for Levi Chazan. He used to write on the Parsha on Arutz7, but I haven't seen him lately.