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Thursday
Jul062017

PURE REDEMPTION

The message conveyed here about the redemption is about the special quality and perfection of the redemption unto itself, the redemption in its purity .  

Translated by Boruch Merkur

DOMINION OVER THE NATIONS

6. […] Given the time of the year that Parshas Pinchas is read, it is connected with Bein HaMeitzarim [the three-week period of mourning the destruction of the Beis HaMikdash]. It is fitting then that reference to the redemption in this parsha expresses how it primarily relates to and emphasizes the correction of the destruction of the Beis HaMikdash and the [subsequent] exile. Parshas Balak, however, has no connection to Bein HaMeitzarim [being read prior to it]; it is above the concept of destruction and exile. Thus, it is not surprising that the message Parshas Balak conveys and emphasizes about the redemption is (not the correction for the destruction of the Beis HaMikdash and exile per se, but) the special quality and perfection of the redemption unto itself, the redemption in its purity (even if prior to it there was no state of destruction and exile(.* 

The notion of the redemption in its purity is also underscored in the manner by which the Torah, in Parshas Bilam, testifies about the advent of Moshiach, as discussed in Rambams Laws of Kings:

When Rambam writes there thatThe Torah testifies about him [Moshiach],” he first quotes the verse, “And G-d, your L-rd, will return your exiles and have mercy upon you, and He will return and gather you, etc. If your dispersed will be at the ends of the heavens, etc., G-d will bring you.” Then Rambam adds, “also in Parshas Bilam it says, and there he prophecies, about the two Moshiachs.”

Among the differences between these two sources** is that the verse, ‘And G-d your L-rd will return, etc.,” mainly emphasizes the redemption from the exile, whereas Parshas Bilam emphasizes the virtue and perfection of the redemption unto itself.*** That is, Bilam prophecies about the Davidic dynasty (the first Moshiach), as well as its perfection in the rule of the later Moshiach, who arises from King Dovids descendants (independent of any discussion of exile). Indeed, the prophecy of Bilam does not mention exile. It speaks about freedom fromeven dominion overall the [Gentile] nations: “They [the Jewish people] are a people who live alone, and they are not considered among the [other] nations,” “They are a nation, like a cub it shall get up, and like a lion it shall rise; it shall not lie down until it eats its prey, etc.,” “He shall be exalted from the kingdom of Agog, and his reign shall ascend.” These citations culminate with the verse, “I see him but not now, I shall behold him but it is not close; a star shall shoot forth from Yaakov and a staff shall arise from Yisroel, etc.” – here Rambam traces how Bilam, whoprophecies about the two Moshiachs,” progressively increases in extolling the virtues and praise of the Jewish people.

Accordingly, we can explain and provide insight into the reason for the emphasis of the exodus from Egypt in the section of the Torah that discusses howhe prophecies about the two Moshiachs” (“The L-rd Who took them out from Egypt,” “The L-rd Who took it [i.e., the nation] out of Egypt”) – in accordance with what is written, “As in the days of your exodus from Egypt I shall show them wonders.” Namely, this verse underscores how the redemption by Melech Moshiach is not only on account of the necessity of taking the Jewish people out of all the exiles that further plagued the Jewish people after the exodus from Egypt, but alsoin fact, primarilyhow it is an even greater increase and perfection than the exodus from Egypt, to the point of beingwonders” (even were there not any exiles that followed in its wake).

THE JOURNEYS OUT OF EGYPT

A similar message is derived from what is written (in the continuation of the parshiyos read during Bein HaMeitzarim): “These are the journeys (in the plural) of the Jewish people, who went out from the land of Egypt.” That is, the exodus from the land of Egypt is not only comprised of the first exodus and journey the Jewish people took from Ramses to Sukkos, but also all the individual journeys from Midbar HaAmim until Yarden Yericho, the River Jordan. HereYarden Yerichoalludes to the true and complete redemption through Moshiach Tzidkeinu, who is said to have the unique ability to bemorach (Yericho) vdayanto detect through the sense of smell and render judgment in cases of Torah law.” These journeys are a continuation of the ultimate exodus from Egypt, emphasizing the virtue and perfection of the redemption unto itself (even were there no need to rectify the destruction and the exile).

7. On account of this development, as we approach the redemption, an additional advantage accrues in this generation (even with respect to other years when 17 Tammuz falls out on Shabbos Parshas Balak(:

But first to preface: It was explained above that the 17th of Tammuz coming out on Shabbos primarily emphasizes thetovgood [which is numerically equivalent to 17[” of 17 Tammuz, as well as the Three Weeks. Namely, given the preeminence of the concept of redemption on Shabbos, the destruction and exile is not felt; the focus, rather, is on the preparation for the redemption [irrespective of the state of exile that is being left behind]. The same is true on a grander scale, in terms of generations: The closer we get in time to the true and complete redemption, the feeling of destruction and exile during these days increasingly diminishes, while the feeling of preparing for the redemption increases, which is thetovof the 17th of Tammuz and the Three Weeks.

TO FAST OR TO FEEL JOY

In the lexicon of the Gemara in explaining the reason whythey called thema fastand they called thema celebration and joy’”: “During a time of peace, they shall be [days of] celebration and joy. Should there be a royal decree [of a Gentile nation upon the Jewish people, compromising their ability to observe their religion], it is a fast. Should there not be a royal decree but there is no peaceif they want they may choose to fast or to not fast.” That is, when the power of exile is weakened – “there is no royal decree” – the strength of thefastis diminished (however, if they want, they may choose to fast), and we get closer to the time when there shall becelebration and joy.”

THE NEWLY JOYOUS MONTH OF TAMMUZ

This concept is especially pronounced in this generation:

Throughout all the previous generations (from the time of the tragic events of 17 Tammuz, which also gave rise to the events of Tisha BAv), the month of Tammuz was connected with unhappy mattersdestruction and exile. However, in this generation, an aspect of (joy and) redemption has been revealed in relation to the month of Tammuzthe redemption of my revered father in-law, the Rebbe, leader of our generation, on 12-13 Tammuz (whose rise and perfection in a manner ofVayachuluand they were completedis established on the day of Shabbos 17 Tammuz). In the words of [the Rebbe Rayatz] the baal hasimcha vhageula in his famous correspondence: “Not only did the Alm-ghty redeem me on 12 Tammuz, but also all those who hold our holy Torah to be dear, those who observe Mitzvos, even those who are merely called by the nameJew.’” Indeed, 12 Tammuz was a redemption of all the Jewish people, connected with the true and complete redemption through Moshiach Tzidkeinu, “for the nameredemptionis upon it.” This is especially the case as the perfection of spreading the wellsprings outward began then, reaching even the lower hemisphere. Indeed, from that point, the wellsprings were being spread throughout all the corners of the world, which is the final preparation for the advent of Moshiach Tzidkeinu.

The explanation as to why all these milestones are being achieved only now is that since according to all of the signs mentioned among the words of our Sages regarding the generation of the Heels of Moshiach [the final period of exile, on the very threshold of redemption], this generation is the final generation of exile and (of consequence) the first generation of redemption. Therefore, even during the time of the year when the destruction and exile took place (beginning with the 17th of Tammuz), the main emphasis is (not the rectification of something about it that is undesirable but) thetovof the matter, its inherent goodness, for this is the preparation for the true and complete redemption.

)Shabbos Parshas Balak, 17 Tammuz 5751; Seifer HaSichos 5751, pg. 688-689(

NOTES:

*The innovation here is that even in a state of destruction and exile the redemption in its purity is felt, just as if there were no destruction and exile.

**In addition to the main differencethat the verse, “‘And G-d your L-rd will return, etc.,” speaks about the general concept of redemption, through the Alm-ghty (without mention of Melech HaMoshiach), whereas Parshas Bilam, where the details for the redemption are recounted with respect to the two Moshiach (see Likkutei Sichos Vol. 18, pg. 272, among other places(.

***Accordingly we can explain the reason why Rambam first mentions the verse, “ And G-d your L-rd will return your exiles, etc.,” of Parshas Nitzavim before the verse in Parshas Bilam, which textually precedes it. Namely, in order to emphasize the progressively ascending order of the redemption: First and foremost, being redeemed from exile, and thereafter, the special quality and perfection of the redemption unto itself.

 

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