In The Middle
East: One Of The Signs Of Redemption
Adapted from Besuras HaGeula by Dr.
D.S. Pape on the occasion of his son's bar mitzvah
Prophetic words regarding the
current situation in Eretz Yisroel from a sicha delivered on
Shabbos Bereishis, Isru Chag of Shmini Atzeres and Simchas Torah, 5751
In recent days the (seventy)
nations of the world have gathered together in order to accuse Israel with an
ancient accusation: "You are thieves! for you have conquered the land of
the seven nations [the Land of Israel]."
This is as the Midrash predicts
that when Moshiach comes, "The nations will all be in an uproar…."
And when they call the Jews
"thieves," they are not just referring to Gaza or Samaria, but even to
Judea, which means Yerushalayim, the City of David (Yeshayahu, 29:1), the
capital of Eretz Yisroel!
This accusation comes at a time
when, as everyone knows, we begin reading the Torah anew, beginning with the
words: "In the beginning, G-d created the heavens and the earth."
Rashi, in his commentary makes
it crystal clear that this verse means, that there will be a time when the
nations of the world will rise up to accuse the Jews, saying, "You are
thieves!" Therefore, the Torah begins by telling us how to reply. "We
must state boldly, Bereishis, In the beginning! All of the Earth belongs
to G-d. He created it. And He gave it to whomever He wanted. First He gave it to
them, and then He took it from them and gave it to us!"
Incredibly, we see that the
nations who come to accuse the Jews include our friends as well as our enemies.
Even nations that have championed the cause of righteousness and justice in the
world. Even nations who went to war in the Persian Gulf to prevent one person
from stealing from another, and one country from stealing from another country.
And yet, now, even these
righteous nations who normally pursue justice, have unjustly come to accuse the
Children of Israel of being thieves! And this, at a time when we are witnessing
open miracles in the world!
Perhaps we can suggest the
following explanation for the paradox: There is an order that G-d established in
the world, by which darkness precedes light. Thus, we should not be dismayed
when the "nations raise an uproar," since, as the verse concludes
"it is all in vain." As the Midrash comments: "The One who dwells
in Heaven will laugh! G-d will mock them." (Ibid.)
Therefore, the Jewish people
must stand confident and firm, and remember that the whole of the Land of
Israel, especially Yerushalayim, belongs to the Jews, for "all of the earth
is G-d’s. He created it…and He gave it to us."
As for "the nations making
an uproar:" This is nothing to be afraid of. In fact, it is one of the
signs of Redemption! As Rashi comments: "Our Sages explained that the
struggle for the Land of Israel, with the nations rising up in an uproar to
accuse the Jews of being thieves, refers to nothing less than the struggle which
will be fought by King Moshiach!"