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Wednesday
Jul102019

Steps towards Redemption

ל. קטעים משיחות ש”פ בלק, י”ז (טוב) תמוז תנש”א (1)

 30. Tammuz 17, 5751 − June 29, 1991 (1)

The 17th of Tammuz  in 5751 came out to be on a Shabbos, delaying the fast (commemorating a few tragic events) to Sunday. At the farbrengen, the Rebbe explained that Shabbos only delays the negative aspect, the fast and the sorrow, but the positive aspects (the inner good) remain, giving us a “taste” of how the day will be marked in the future to come. The Rebbe continued to describe that as we approach the time of the Redemption, the positive aspects of the day and of the month come to the forefront, culminating in the miraculous and joyous liberation of the Frierdiker Rebbe from the Soviet prison and exile on the 12th of this month in 5687, deeming it a “Chodesh HaGeulah” – a month of Redemption. The Rebbe went on to describe various stages in the rapid approach of the generation towards the Geulah.

All the signs mentioned by our sages concerning the generation of the approach of Moshiach indicate that our generation is the last generation of exile and consequently the first generation of the Redemption.

עַל-פִּי כָּל הַסִּימָנִים שֶׁבְּדִבְרֵי חֲזַ”ל אוֹדוֹת דָּרָא דְּעִקְבְתָא דִּמְשִׁיחָא, דוֹרֵנוּ זֶה הוּא דּוֹר הָאַחֲרוֹן שֶׁל הַגָּלוּת וּ(בְמֵילָא) דּוֹר הָרִאשׁוֹן שֶׁל הַגְאוּלָה

…This realization has been greatly increased through the enhancement of the efforts to disseminate Torah, Judaism and the wellsprings of Chassidus in the “lower hemisphere,” i.e. the Western Hemisphere,

 . . וּבְכָל זֶה נִיתּוֹסַף עוֹד יוֹתֵר עַל-יְדֵי שְׁלֵמוּת הָעֲבוֹדָה דְהַפָצַת הַתּוֹרָה וְהַיַּהֲדוּת וַהֲפָצַת הַמַּעְיָנוֹת חוּצָה בַּחֲצִי כַּדּוּר הַתַּחְתּוֹן

over the course of the last fifty years (which came as a result of the liberation of 12-13 Tammuz which was the natural cause that ultimately led to the Previous Rebbe’s relocation of the center of Chabad Chassidus to America).

(כְּתוֹצָאָה מֵהַגְאוּלָה דְּי”ב-י”ג תַּמּוּז) בְּמֶשֶׁךְ יוֹבֵל שָׁנִים,

The idea of relocating the center of Torah, Judaism and Chassidus to a place so remote from G-dly awareness —as America was in those years — thus transforming the place, was a crucial final step in preparing the world at large for the Geulah. This was manifested by the large-scale campaign launched by the Previous Rebbe to strengthen Jewish observance, with a focus on the need to prepare for the coming of Moshiach. 

The Rebbe goes on to reflect on the various stages of this era of preparation:

Consider this: If at the beginning of this era, my sainted father-in-law, the Rebbe and leader of our generation, issued a proclamation that “Immediate Teshuvah, will bring immediate Redemption,”

אֲשֶׁר, אִם בְּהַתְחָלַת תְּקוּפָה זוֹ יָצָא כְּבוֹד-קְדוּשַּׁת מוֹרִי-וְחָמִי אַדְמוֹ”ר נְשִׂיא דוֹרֵנוּ בַּהַכְרָזָה “לְאַלְתַּר לִתְשׁוּבָה לְאַלְתַּר לַגְאוּלָה”,

and he in fact testified that we have already completed all aspects of our Divine service needed to bring about the Redemption and what remains is only to “polish the buttons”

 וְהֵעִיד שֶׁכְּבָר סִיְּמוּ כָּל עִנְיְנֵי הָעֲבוֹדָה, וּצְרִיכִים רַק “לְצַחְצֵחַ הַכַּפְתּוֹרִים”,

— a term the Previous Rebbe coined to describe our readiness as a nation for the coming of Moshiach, using an analogy from an army that has successfully completed a campaign and is now in the final stage of preparing for the victory parade by polishing the buttons on their uniforms.

More so: the Rebbe said that we have finished even “polishing the buttons,” and we need to just stand ready to greet our righteous Moshiach like soldiers lined up at parade.

 וִיתֵירָה מִזֶּה, שֶׁכְּבָר סִיְּמוּ גַּם “צִחְצוּחַ הַכַּפְתּוֹרִים”, וּצְרִיכִים רַק לַעֲמֹד הָכֵן (“עִמְדוּ הָכֵן כֻּלְּכֶם”) לְקַבֵּל פְּנֵי מָשִׁיחַ צִדְקֵנוּ,

All this was true at the beginning of this era, —

How much more so that now, at the end of this era, there certainly remains absolutely no shred of a doubt that the time of the Redemption has arrived.

הֲרֵי בְּסִיּוּמָהּ שֶׁל תְּקוּפָה זוֹ, בְּוַדַּאי וּבְוַדַּאי לְלֹא כָּל סָפֵק וְסָפֵק סְפֵיקָא שֶׁכְּבָר הִגִּיעַ זְמַן הַגְאוּלָה,

To borrow a Talmudic expression: “All of the kitzin — appointed times — have passed.”

וּבִלְשׁוֹן חֲזַ”ל “כָּלוּ כָּל הַקִיצִין”

Even Teshuvah (which the Gemara in the same teaching states is a prerequisite for the Redemption, even after “all the kitzin have passed” — It depends solely on Teshuvah”) has already been fully realized.

וְגַם עִנְיָן הַתְּשׁוּבָה (כְּהֶמְשֵׁךְ הַמַּאֲמָר “וְאֵין הַדָּבָר תָּלוּי אֶלָּא בִּתְשׁוּבָה”) הָיָה כְּבָר בִּשְׁלֵמוּת.

 

Thoughts of Teshuvah Don’t Expire

To hear a statement that Teshuvah, a prerequisite for the Geulah, has been fully realized, is a statement that can be very surprising, to say the least, when observing the spiritual state of both religious Jews and not-yet-observant Jews.

In several of his talks (see the sicha of 15 Shvat 5739), the Rebbe draws our attention to an interesting Halacha (Kidushin 49b):  “If a man tells a woman: “You are consecrated to me on condition that I’m a Tzadik,” even if he is known to be wicked, the woman is consecrated, for it is possible that he had thoughts of Teshuvah in his heart at that time.”

This Halacha illustrates that Teshuvah is something that can be done in a mere moment just with a thought! Even if a person returns to his evil ways thereafter, the mitzvah of Teshuvah that he did, like any other mitzvah, is not lost.

The Rebbe many times reiterated that in our generation especially, after all the sufferings and troubles we experienced in the Holocaust, there is not one Jew who hasn’t had a thought of Teshuvah, and not only once, but many times over!

 

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