Video Shiur: Matos-Masei 5751

How How Can I Bring Moshiach?

In the Sicha of Parshas Matos-Masei 5751, the Rebbe explains the importance of Ahavas Yisroel today, as a taste of how it will be when Moshiach comes ● Learn this week’s Sicha of the “Dvar Malchus” Sicha in English, presented by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Lipskier, Mashpia of Mesivta of Melbourne, Australia ● Watch Video

 

Matos-Masei 5751

1. Among the unique factors associated with this Shabbos is the conclusion of the Book of Bamidbar and the public pronouncement which follows, Chazak, Chazak, Venischazaik (“Be strong, be strong, and we will be strengthened”). This threefold repetition1 produces a chazakah, a sequence associated with permanence and strength.

Significantly, the conclusion of the Book of Bamidbar always takes place in the Three Weeks, a period associated with exile and destruction. One might ask; Why does this always occur at a time when the Jews are weakened as it were?

It is possible to explain that the one is a result of the other. Because this is a time when the Jews are “weakened,” there is a need for encouragement and reinforcement. From the fact that the Shabbos is referred to as Shabbos Chazak, (“the Shabbos of reinforcement”), it would appear that there is a more intrinsic bond, that the time itself adds strength to the Jews’ observance of the Torah and its mitzvos.

This concept can be explained within the context of the connection of the expression Chazak, Chazak, Venischazaik to the parshiyos read this week, Mattos and Maasei. There is an obvious connection between the concept of strength and Parshas Mattos. Mattos means “staff,” and is a symbol of strength, permanence, and authority, as reflected in the verse, “staffs of strength for the rods of those who rule.”

Maasei, meaning “journeys,” seems, however, to indicate a state in direct opposition to this permanence and strength. And yet, it is Parshas Maasei which is always read as the last parshah of the Book of Bamidbar. In contrast, there are times when Parshas Mattos is read as a separate parshah on the week before the Book of Bamidbar is concluded.

To explain: A chazakah associated with the number three represents a true conception of strength, for this strength exists Continue reading

Video Shiur: Pinchas 5751

How How Can I Bring Moshiach?

Chabadinfo.com Exclusive: In the Sicha of Parshas Pinchas 5751, the Rebbe explains how one little person can impact the whole world and bring the Geulah ● Learn this week’s Sicha with ChabadInfo.com’s Weekly Shiur of the “Dvar Malchus” Sicha in English, presented by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Lipskier, Mashpia of Mesivta of Melbourne, Australia ● Watch Video

 

18 Tammuz, 5751

1. A fast day is “a time of will.” Therefore it is an appropriate time for Divrei Kivushin, “words which motivate teshuvah.” This is particularly true after the afternoon service, when most people have concluded their work. Thus, in the Talmudic era, it was at this time that the community was free to listen to Divrei Kivushin.

The term Divrei Kivushin also alludes to the expression Kovaish Avon, “suppress sin”; i.e., the intent is not to tell a Jew unfavorable things about his conduct, but rather to emphasize how G‑d will “cast all sins to the depths of the sea.” Furthermore, there is the potential that the sins themselves become transformed into merits, indeed, merits of a uniquely elevated nature for they come from the transformation of the lowest levels.

In particular, there is an emphasis on nullifying and transforming negative qualities associated with this fast, because the date of the Seventeenth of Tammuz fell on Shabbos and the fast was postponed until the present day. The Talmud teaches that there was an opinion — and indeed, the author of this opinion was Rebbi, Rabbi Yehudah HaNasi, the author of the Mishnah — that “since a fast is postponed, it should be nullified entirely.” Moreover, not only should the fast be nullified, but — especially in light of our service throughout these many years — the fast should be transformed into a positive factor. As the Rambam writes, in the Era of the Redemption, all the fasts will be transformed into festivals.

The above receives greater emphasis since many years have already passed since the Previous Rebbe1 announced that we have finished “polishing the buttons,” and we must “stand together prepared” to greet Mashiach.

Added emphasis also comes from the fact that Tammuz is referred to as “the month of redemption.” Since it is associated with the redemption of a Nasi and as Rashi writes, “the Nasi is the entire people,” every Jew shares a connection with this redemption. Thus the Previous Rebbe writes, “The Holy One, blessed be He, did not redeem me only, but also… all that are called by the name Israel.” The latter term includes even those Jews on the furthest peripheries of Jewish involvement;2 even they have a share in the redemption of Yud-Beis Tammuz.

The connection to the redemption is further emphasized by this week’s Torah portion, Parshas Pinchas. Our Sages identify Pinchas with Eliyahu, the prophet who will announce the redemption. It is possible that Eliyahu has already come and has seen the coming of the Mashiach, but that his announcement has not reached us as of yet. The ultimate redemption is unique, for when it comes, it will come in a complete and total manner. In this, we see a contrast to the other redemptions from exile. The previous redemptions came in stages, while the future redemption will be immediate and total.

Our Sages explain that the different redemptions experi­enced by the Jews are alluded to in the passage dealing with the Red Heifer. The Red Heifer was used to purify the Jewish people, “And I will pour pure water upon you and you will be purified.” This refers to the highest level of teshuvah, teshuvah which unites a person with an inner bond of joy with G‑d and therefore, has the potential to transform undesirable elements into good.

This inner bond is established through Torah study. Thus it relates to the coming of Mashiach who in addition to being the king of the Jewish people, will also serve as their teacher, exposing them to “the new [dimension of the] Torah that will emerge from Me.”

This will lead to a renewal of the heavens and the earth and then together with the entire Jewish people, we will proceed “on the clouds of heaven” to Eretz Yisrael, to Jerusalem, and to the Beis HaMikdash, “the Sanctuary of the L‑rd, established by Your hands.”

To hasten the coming of this, three dollars will be distributed to each individual to be given to tzedakah. On these bills, it is written “In G‑d We Trust.” Trust implies more than faith. It is faith so strong that one invests all that one has. Similarly, our faith in G‑d must encompass our entire being.

And this will lead to the era when we will achieve a higher level of faith. “The world will be filled with the knowledge of G‑d” and thus, having achieved this level of knowledge, our faith will be focused on even higher levels of G‑dliness. And in that era, there will be no strife or war, for “delicacies will be available like dust,” i.e., they will be so plentiful that they will have no more importance than dust. A foretaste of this wealth will be granted at present, even before Mashiach comes and then, in the immediate future, we will hear the announcement of Pinchas, i.e., Eliyahu, that Mashiach has come.

(Translation by Sichos in English)

Footnotes
1. Another connection to the redemption is seen in the Previous Rebbe’s name Yosef which refers to the verse Yosef Hashem,… “G‑d will again stretch forth His hand to gather His people.” Similarly, the name Yosef is associated with Rachel’s prayer, “May G‑d add on to me another son,” which Chassidus interprets as referring to the service of transforming “another,” a person who is alienated from his Jewish roots, into a son. This is possible for, in truth, as the Baal Shem Tov explains, each Jew is as dear to G‑d as an only son born to parents in their old age.
2. This is alluded to by the Hebrew term yichuneh, which as explained in the halachic literature connected with gittim (“bills of divorce”), refers to the name which is not used prominently. Even when the way a Jew is most prominently referred to is not “Israel,” as long as that is part of his identity — and it surely is for, “Even if a Jew sins, he remains ‘Israel’ ” — he shares in the redemption of Yud-Beis Tammuz.

Pinchas 5751–Make “Here” Eretz Yisroel

A chosid once asked the Tzemach Tzedek for a brocha to go live in the Holy Land so that he could devote his life there to Torah study and avodas Hashem; the Tzemach Tzedek replied, “R’ Hillel (Paritcher, a legendary chosid called by the Rebbeim “half a Rebbe”) doesn’t lack Eretz Yisroel. Make here Eretz Yisroel.”

In this week’s Dvar Malchus the Rebbe connects this story with the description in parashas Pinchas of the distribution of Eretz Yisroel among the 12 tribes and how it relates to our individual avodah in the last moments of exile.

The purpose of our exile (individual and collective) is to refine and elevate the world at large, transforming it into the level of the Land of Israel, our part in the words of the midrash that in the Time to Come the land of Israel will spread out to all the lands.  However, at the same time Yerushalayim will spread out to all of the land of Israel (Israel remaining on a higher level than the rest of the world) and thus Moshiach will come to gather every Jew and bring him to Eretz Yisroel.

Given this, one might think that “making here Eretz Yisroel” is only an intermediary step to bring the Geulah, when we will leave “here” and go to Eretz Yisroel itself.  One could come to diminish the importance of “making here Eretz Yisroel” because he has his eyes on the future when he will go with Moshiach to the Geulah in the true Eretz Yisroel.  In fact, this would be a big mistake, explains the Rebbe.  Because the preparations for something must be done with the same complete focus, energy, and desire as we feel for the final goal.

Thus, devoting ourselves totally and completely to the task of “making here Eretz Yisroel” becomes a vessel to receive the desired goal: the true and complete Geulah!  In fact, the Rebbe refers to this as “making ourselves accustomed” to the Geulah even while we are still in exile.  This complete effort while still in exile is in fact what brings the Geulah.

More than this: although each one has the obligation to make “here” (where he is, physically as well as spiritually) into Eretz Yisroel (“the land which wanted to do her Creator’s will”), we find that in Eretz Yisrael each portion contains within it all the other portions.  So, too, by each individual Yid–he contains within himself the entire world, and by doing his avodah completely, he is able to rectify the entire world, including all previous incarnations.  One little Jew can bring Geulah to all the world and all generations!

Although we must strongly feel that “we want Moshiach now”–right now!–the Rebbe guides us how to proceed when still find ourselves in golus:

Since the Geulah still didn’t come in this moment,and by Divine Providence we are still found “here”, in this time and place — without a doubt we need to capitalize on this and fulfill the instruction to “make here Eretz Yisroel”.

Thus, it is our task to publicize the injunction to “make here Eretz Yisroel” and to fulfill it in a complete manner, and through this we will actually bring the Geulah in revealed actuality.

Video Shiur: Balak 5751

How Important is it to Learn About Moshiach?

Chabadinfo.com Exclusive: In the Sicha of Parshas Balak 5751, the Rebbe explains why it is so important to learn the subject of Moshiach and Geulah ● Learn this week’s Sicha with ChabadInfo.com’s Weekly Shiur of the “Dvar Malchus” Sicha in English, presented by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Lipskier, Mashpia of Mesivta of Melbourne, Australia ● Watch Video

 

Balak 5751–Preparations for Geulah, and Learn About it

The Previous Rebbe stated that all that is necessary to do is to “polish the buttons” — and even that service has been accomplished — and we need do no more than “stand together prepared” to greet Moshiach.

In particular, this is true in the present year, a year when “I will show wonders,” a year in which will be fulfilled the prophecy “As in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders.” We have seen wonders of the nature that indicate — as mentioned in the Yalkut Shimoni — that this is “the year when the King Moshiach will be revealed” and that it is “the hour when the King Moshiach comes… and announces to the Jewish people, ‘Humble ones. The time for your redemption has come.’ ”

We are standing at the threshold of the Era of Moshiach, at the threshold of the beginning of the Redemption, and in the immediate future, it will be brought to its completion. In such a year, there is the potential, not only for the Three Weeks to be seen as a preparation for the Redemption, but for the Redemption to actual come, even on the present Shabbos, and thus transform the Three Weeks into a positive period.

In this context, a greater emphasis has to be put on the custom of studying the laws of the structure of the Beis HaMikdash in these Three Weeks. As G‑d told the prophet Yechezkel, through this study, it is considered as if we have been involved in the actual construction of the Beis HaMikdash.

Also, the approach to studying these laws must be different than the approach in previous years. The emphasis must be on, not on mourning over the destruction of the Beis HaMikdash, but rather, on the desire and the yearning for the Third Beis HaMikdash of which it is said, “The glory of this later house will surpass the glory of the previous house.”

Thus the subject must be approached as a present reality. It is not that in the distant future these laws will be relevant, but rather that at any moment the Third Beis HaMikdash which is already built in the heavens will descend and be revealed on earth.

In this context, the study of these laws — as the study of the subjects ofMoshiach and the Redemption — should not be looked at as merely a means to hasten the coming of this future era. Rather, it is the beginning of the efforts to live with the concept of Moshiach, to “live with the times,” with the Era ofMoshiach. When these concepts are perceived intellectually, they will affect our feelings, and ultimately our deeds and our actions. Our conduct will be appropriate to the present era, a time when we are at the threshold of Moshiach’s coming.

Although our Sages declared, “Moshiach will come when our attention is diverted,” this is no contradiction to the emphasis on studying the subjects ofMoshiach and Redemption. A diversion of attention can also be interpreted as referring to a step above our ordinary conscious processes. After one has deepened his awareness of Moshiach to the extent that he appreciates that we are standing on the threshold of Moshiach, that we have completed all the service necessary for his coming, and at any moment, he will come, one can step beyond one’s ordinary thinking process and consider the Redemption in a new light.

These words are meant as a directive for action. Despite the outcry that has been made in the last months, and despite the wonders that we have seen in the present year which indicate that this is “the year when the King Moshiach will be revealed,” there is a difficulty in having this concept permeate people’s consciousness, that they should be aware that we are actually on the threshold of the Redemption, and that they should begin living with the concepts ofMoshiach and the Redemption.

Although this is a year when “I will show you wonders,” and wonders have taken place, they have not been shown to us in a complete manner. On the contrary, it has been necessary to explain and elaborate on the fact that we have seen wonders. When G‑d Himself will show the Jews the wonders in a completely manifest way, there will be no need to explain that we are on the threshold of the Redemption. But until that time, it is difficult for these concepts to make a thorough and effective impression on our thought processes.

How can this be changed? By studying about the concepts of Moshiach and Redemption. The power of the Torah, which is G‑d’s wisdom and His will, transcends the world and has the potential to change man’s character. Thus, even though someone feels on the outside when it comes to the Redemption, through studying about these matters, they can begin to live with the idea of Moshiach’s coming, and sense that he is coming in the immediate future.

Sichos in English