Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Hastening The Redemption

Audio Version By Rabbi Sholem Perl

This week we read the sixth Haftora of consoling. It tells us what it will be like when Moshiach comes and how special we are. Hidden in the words of the Haftora, is the secret to bringing Moshiach sooner.

The Haftora begins, "Arise, shine, for your light has come." The Baal Shem Tov explains that this verse is talking to Jewish spiritual leaders who set aside their own growth in Torah and mitzvas, in order to give to the community. Because in truth, if they focused on their own spiritual growth instead of the community's, they would attain far greater spiritual heights.

To them the verse says, "Arise, shine, for your light has come." Hashem is saying, don't be afraid that you are losing out, give your light to the community, "for your light has come," you are not losing out. You will receive the light that you are sacrificing.

Same is true for any person who helps another spiritually, to get closer to Hashem, and for that matter, physically, through acts of kindness, should realize that he is not losing out. He too will get his.

When we show love to each other and help each other spiritually or physically, we bring Moshiach sooner.

Now the Haftora tells us how the nations of the world and their kings, will serve us and bring us all kinds of gifts. How they will recognize Hashem and honor Him.

The Haftora continues to tell us, that we won't need the sun or the moon, because Hashem will be our everlasting light, "and you will have completed your days of mourning." Why does the verse say "completed," it should have used the word "ended?" "Completed," refers to completing our missions. Every Jewish person has mitzvahs to do, and when we complete our mitzvahs, the world will be ready for Moshiach. Every extra mitzvah we do brings Moshiach sooner.

Hashem now says, "Your people are all righteous. they will inherit the land forever, they are the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, in which I will glory." This verse tells us two things about how Hashem feels about us. First, we will inherit the land forever, because we are all righteous, meaning, we all did the mitzvahs we had to do. Even more than that, he loves us because we are the branch of His plantings and the work of His hands. Meaning, that he loves us, not only for our accomplishments, but just because of who we are.

When you build something, you choose the materials and the design. However when you plant something, you have no control over how it will turn out. By saying, " the branch of my planting," Hashem is saying, that He loves us each for the unique person we have become.

Hashem also glorifies himself through the Jewish people, because we are His representatives in this world. When we act in accordance to his laws, everyone recognizes that we are Hashem's people, and He is glorified.

How do we know that our work can hasten the redemption? We learn it from the last words of the Haftora, regarding this prophecy of redemption "in its time, I will hasten it." if it's in its time, it is not hastened, and if it is hastened, it is before it's time. What then is the meaning of these words? The answer is, if we are not worthy, it will come in its time. However, if we are worthy, because of our mitzvahs, kindness, love for each other, etc., it will be hastened.

There is no doubt that with all we have done and all we have been through, that we are more than worthy. May Hashem hasten the coming of Moshiach and may we experience the prophecy of this Haftora. May it happen soon.

1 comment:

  1. Sorry late in responding but just wanted to add to your beautiful message from the Baal Shem Tov:
    I once heard the following on the Talmudic teaching which says that one should seek a rebbi (teacher) who is similar to an angel. The similarity is that just as an angel cannot grow spiritually (unlike humans who can) so too one's teacher should not be someone interested in furthering his own growth on the account of his students who may not be on his level. Rather he should be someone who raises the students from the level where they are holding.
    Good Shabbos and Have a Great New Year!
    Chasiva V'chasima Tova!