07 September 2022

You Just Never Know

11 Elul 5782 

I have a theory which is based on some really good evidence.  I believe that a lot of the Erev Rav, who followed us out of Egypt, are found among American Jewry today.  I believe that these are the ones leading the way to religiously-observant assimilation by creating a new form of "Judaism" which is most aptly termed Judeo-Christianity.  As their name implies, the Erev Rav are a mixture from among the nations and their goal is to mix Klal Yisrael with the nations.  They pay only lip service to the Torah and they are dangerous because they assume leadership positions in order to mislead the klal, much the same way that they did with the Eigel HaZahav.

As the moderator of Tzvi Fishman's recent Aliyah Conference, Josh Wander had the ultimate responsibility to eject the missionary/provocateur Chaim Malespin (see previous blog post), and now we know why he did not.  He has no problem with idolatry or idolatrous people.  And this is the way of the present-day Erev Rav.  

The thing is, your Creator, the One you claim to be in covenant with as a religious Jew, does not share your opinion and He expects you to conform to His viewpoint.  Otherwise, you are not His.  

Who Is Josh Wander?

He actually has a Wikipedia page.  I have to admit that I was a bit shocked.  Even I did not expect this...

Josh Wander is an American perennial candidate who was the Republican nominee for Mayor of Pittsburgh in the 2013 general election.  He was also featured in a segment on the reality television Doomsday Preppers.  He is also a public relations consultant representing projects in, and around the Old City of Jerusalem.  He holds dual citizenship in the United States and Israel.

In an episode of the National Geographic Channel program Doomsday Preppers, Wander was quoted as saying that he was concerned "about a series of catastrophic terrorist attacks which will fundamentally change our lives as we know them."  He founded the "Bring Them Home" organization to encourage Diaspora Jewry to relocate to Israel. He is a certified NRA arms instructor and gun rights advocate.

In 2003 Wander started a website to mobilize support for shipping the Statue of Liberty back to France. In a National Public Radio interview he discussed the alternate possibility of decapitating the statue and sending back "just her head" because "then they'll [France] really know we're serious."

And there are just so many more like him!  Israel365 seems to be a meeting place for them.  All of the ones I am aware of are associated with it in some way, and they in turn are associated in some way with all the missionary groups in Israel.  Go figure!

[See "...Israel 365's Josh Wander and Bridges for Peace"]

Why are we talking about this now, nearly halfway through Elul?  Repentance!  We are commanded to separate from the Erev Rav and not to share in their sin.  (Shemot 32:33-34) 

"...the war against the erev rav is the most difficult and most bitter, and we must use all our remaining forces to win this war. Whoever is not engaged in actively fighting the erev rav becomes an automatic partner to the husk of the erev rav, and whoever this may be it would be better for him had he not been created." (Kol HaTor, chapter II, part II, section II)
If you feel you have been misidentified as Erev Rav, you need to repent for acting like one.  The tree is identified by its fruit.

From The Concise Book of Mitzvoth complied by the Chafetz Chaim:
  • To entertain no thought that there is any other god except the blessed God.
  • To make no idol to worship.
  • Not to make any idol to be worshiped [by himself or by anyone else], even for a heathen.
  • Not to bow down and prostrate oneself to an idol.
  • Not to worship an idol in any way that it is usually venerated.
  • Not to swear in the name of an idol.
  • Not to lead a town in Israel astray to worship in idolatry.
  • To eat or drink nothing from an offering to an idol.
  • Not to turn one's attention to idolatry.
  • To have no benefit from any decoration of an idol or from its ornaments.
  • To have no benefit from an idol, from its offering or its attendants, or anything done on its behalf. [Considering that this is the basis upon which Hayovel offers its services to Israeli farmers, that means no Jew may have benefit from the grapes they pick or the wine that comes from them.]
  • Not to intermarry with a non-Jewish person. 
  • To have no mercy on idol-worshipers.
  • Not to pay any heed to a person prophesying in the name of an idol.
  • To entice no one in Jewry to worship an idol. [Enticing Jews to form loving relationships with idolaters is so close as to be right on the edge!]
  • For the enticed person not to relinquish his hatred for the enticer.
  • Not to rescue the enticer if one sees him in danger of death.
  • Not to prophesy in the name of an idol.
  • Not to settle idol-worshipers in our holy land. [Har Brachah???]                  
* Although the translator of the book this is taken from chose to use the word idolatry, the Hebrew original actually uses the term avodah zarah, which includes anything that is outside the bounds of the Torah's instructions.  This is a broader term as, for example, it would include Islam which is not considered to be idolatry.