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Wednesday
Jun172015

WHAT DOES GIMMEL TAMMUZ MEAN TO YOU?

Dear Fellow Chassidim sh’yichyu,

We are quickly approaching the day of Gimmel Tammuz, the day about which the Rebbe writes (Likkutei sichos vol. 4 page 1315): “Chassidim who are connected to the Rebbe should celebrate Gimmel Tammuz!” Since 5754, it seems very difficult to celebrate Gimmel Tammuz.

As we prepare for Shnas Hakhel (5776), when we are instructed (D’varim 31:12) to “assemble the people, the men, the women, and the children, and your stranger in your cities, in order that they hear, and in order that they learn and fear the L-rd, your G-d, and they will observe to do all the words of this Torah,” I would like to share some words of encouragement for men, woman and children.

To Anash sh’yichyu,

Regarding the (apparent) death of Moshe Rabbeinu, the Torah (Ibid 32:48) writes, “And Hashem spoke to Moshe on that very day, saying.” Rashi comments: “בְּעֶצֶם הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה – In three places Scripture employs this phrase which has the meaning, ‘at the strongest light of the day.’ First, regarding Noah, Scripture states, ‘On that very day (בְּעֶצֶם הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה) Noah entered [… the ark]’ (Gen. 7:13), which means in the glare of full daylight. Noah’s contemporaries said: ‘We swear by such and such, that if we notice him about to enter the ark, we will not let him proceed! Moreover, we will take axes and hatchets and split open the ark!’ So the Holy One, Blessed is He, said: ‘I will have Noah enter at midday, and let anyone who has the power to prevent it, come and prevent it!’

“Second, regarding Egypt, Scripture states, ‘On that very day, the L-rd brought [the children of Israel] out [of the land of Egypt]’ (Exod. 12:51). The Egyptians said: ‘We swear by such and such, that if we notice them about to leave, we will stop them! And not only that, but we will take swords and other weapons, and kill them!’ So, the Holy One, Blessed is He, said: ‘I will bring them out in the middle of the day, and let anyone who has power to prevent it, come and prevent it!’ 

“Likewise here, regarding Moshes’ death, Scripture states, ‘On that very day (בְּעֶצֶם הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה).’ The children of Israel said, ‘We swear by such and such, that if we notice Moshe [ascending the mountain to die], we will not let him do so! The man who brought us out of Egypt, divided the Red Sea for us, brought the manna down for us, made flocks of quails fly over to us, brought up the well for us, and gave us the Torah – we will not let him!’ Thereupon, the Holy One, Blessed is He, said: ‘I will have Moses ascend the mountain [to his resting place] in the middle of the day! (Sifrei 32:47)’”

After reading this Rashi, there are two very obvious questions that arise:

1) Why would Hashem want to prove this point to the Jewish people? It is understood that the people in the times of Noach and the Egyptians were evil, so Hashem had to prove to them and the future generations that His power is ultimate. Why did Hashem feel compelled to show that He can take Moshe Rabbeinu in front of all the Jewish people?

2) Why, concerning the passing of Moshe, does Rashi not finish with “and let anyone who has the power to prevent it, come and prevent it!” as he did in the previous two instances?

The Rebbe explains (Likkutei Sichos Vol. 19 page 346): The passing of Moshe was truly different than the previous two cases. While in the first two cases (Noach and Mitzrayim), the onlookers truly could not prevent the event, the Jews could have prevented the passing of Moshe! Hashem knew that and therefore wanted to bring Moshe to him in middle of the day so that the Jewish people should use the opportunity to prevent the passing of Moshe (look into the sicha at length).

Dear Anash, while we cannot judge or ultimately question the ways of Hashem, we can make sure that “We will not let Moshe go!” in our lives. When we continue to show the world that the Chassidim are alive – by learning the Rebbe’s Torah and following in his ways, and especially by learning Inyanei Moshiach and Geula – we will show the world and our young children that “the head is alive.” Be strong!

To N’shei Chabad sh’tichyu,

By the passing of Moshe it says (Ibid 34:8): “And the sons of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab for thirty days, and the days of weeping over the mourning for Moses came to an end.”

Rashi comments: “The sons of Israel: [Ordinarily meaning the children of Israel, male and female. But here, it refers only to] the males [who wept for Moshe]. However, concerning [the passing of] Aaron, since he used to pursue peace and bring peace between a man and his fellow and between a woman and her husband, it is said [at Aaron’s passing], ‘The whole house of Israel [wept for him]’ (Num. 20:29), meaning both males and females.”

It seems from this Rashi that the women didn’t cry at the death of Moshe. This is rather strange! Do women not cry by funerals? How much more so, with the passing of Moshe Rabbeinu!

 

I heard a fascinating explanation. The real reason that the women did not cry was because they knew the truth that Moshe did not die! “Moshe lo Meis!” He continues to live (see Likkutei Sichos vol. 26 to Parshas Shmos) in this physical world and there is no room for tears.

N’shei Chabad! The Rebbe tells you (B’Shalach 5752), “The writings of the Arizal explain that the generation of the future Redemption is the reincarnation of the generation that went out of Egypt. Accordingly, the righteous women of our generation, in whose merit we will be redeemed, are the same righteous women in whose merit we left Egypt.

“Our generation is the last generation of exile and the first generation of Redemption, for, in the words of my sainted father-in-law, all aspects of the Divine service have been completed and we stand ready to greet our righteous Moshiach. Since this is the case, my sainted father-in-law, the leader of our generation, endeavored to affect and influence the women, in order to hasten the Redemption in the merit of the righteous women of our generation.

“…There is a unique and essential lesson in regards to the concept of the song, as exemplified by the song of Miriam and the song of Devorah:

“Just as in the exodus from Egypt ‘the righteous women of the generation were confident that G-d would perform miracles for them, and they brought tambourines from Egypt,’ so too in this final Redemption from exile, the righteous women of Israel must be confident, and certainly they are confident, that immediately and imminently the true and complete Redemption is actually coming. [So strong is their conviction that] ‘they begin immediately (in the last moments of exile) to sing with tambourines and with dances, for the coming of the true and complete Redemption!

It is your privilege and responsibility to bring the spirit of Emuna and Hiskashrus to your homes and to prepare your surroundings for Geula!

Dear Children of the Rebbe and Yemos HaMoshiach,

One of the hardest stories to read in the Chumash is the story of the Meraglim, the spies who went to Eretz Yisroel during the times of Moshe Rabbeinu. The Jewish people were so close to entering Eretz Yisroel with Moshe Rabbeinu. They had just witnessed all the miracles of Yetzias Mitzrayim, the giving of the Torah at Har Sinai, the building of the Mishkan, the falling of the Manna and the many other miracles that were their daily fare, and then these ten leaders ruined everything! What were they thinking?

From the continuation of the Parsha, it is clear that they had a very simple calculation. They felt that they would not be able to deal with the new hardships that leaving the cloud of Glory would bring them. They had witnessed the miracles first-hand, but what would be with the next generation that did not see? How would they stand up to the test?

Hashem (BaMidbar 14:34) responded, “As for your infants, of whom you said that they will be as spoils, I will bring them [there], and they will come to know the Land which You despised!”

Dear Children and young bachurim!

There are many people in the outside world – and even among the older generation of Chassidim – who feel that there is no hope for you to be Chassidim. They were the ones who saw the Rebbe, and therefore they can be Chassidim after Gimmel Tammuz, but as for you….

You must be strong, for the Rebbe believes in you! Just as it was those young children in the desert who actually conquered and entered Eretz Yisroel, it is you (or rather, us – I am with you) who will lead the charge of bringing the world to Moshiach.

The Rebbe has complete faith in you. In his holy words (Simchas Torah 5752), “According to our Sages, the verse “Do not touch My anointed ones (Meshichoi)’ refers to the children who study Torah.

“One of the explanations of this statement (in addition to those provided by the commentators) is that the education of school children has to be in a manner that the children are completely permeated and absorbed with the ideal of Moshiach. Just by looking at a Jewish child, what should one see? Moshiach! His entire being is “Moshiach,” the realization of “You have been shown… there is none beside Him.”

“The idea is even more pronounced with respect to the school children of our generation who are called (and endorsed by Jewish leaders as) ‘Tzivos Hashem-the Army of G-d.’

The name Tzivos Hashem signifies that the children are totally devoted and subordinated to G-d, as (and even more than) the devotion of soldiers to their general. It follows that the Jewish children of our generation – boys and girls – possess in an even more revealed measure the status of Meshichoi, G-d’s own anointed ones. This provides for the preparation and introduction that leads to the impending revelation of the general Moshiach of all Jews, with the true and complete Redemption.”

Children! Be strong and prove the world wrong (again)!

May we be Zocheh to openly celebrate Gimmel Tammuz this year with the complete Hisgalus of the Rebbe MH”M now!

Rabbi Avtzon is the Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Lubavitch Cincinnati and a well sought after speaker and lecturer. Recordings of his in-depth shiurim on Inyanei Geula u’Moshiach can be accessed at http://www.ylcrecording.com.

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