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Published by B. Merkur
Heralding the imminent arrival of Moshiach
Heralding the imminent arrival of Moshiach

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Published by: B. Merkur on Jun 19, 2013
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Beis Moshiach (USPS 012-542) ISSN 1082-0272is published weekly, except Jewish holidays(only once in April and October) or $160.00 inCrown Heights. USA $180.00. All other places or$195.00 per year (45 issues), by Beis Moshiach,744 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11213-3409.Periodicals postage paid at Brooklyn, NY andadditional ofces. Postmaster: send addresschanges to Beis Moshiach 744 Eastern Parkway,Brooklyn, NY 11213-3409. Copyright 2013 byBeis Moshiach, Inc.Beis Moshiach is not responsible or the contentand Kashruth o the advertisements.
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BetWeeN luBaVitcHaNd YerusHalaYiM
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D’var Malchus
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Shleimus HaAretz
“Regarding he fac ha “hey embalmed” him– (hi i becaue) i appeared o hem ha hehad died, bu he wa acually alive.” tha i oay ha even hi body did no die. * sourcemaerial compiled by Rabbi shloma Majeki.tranlaion are in bold. Underlining i heemphai of he compiler.
Translated and presented by Boruch Merkur
On a similar basis, the Riff onEin Yaakov comments on Rebbi Yochanan’s statement, “Yaakov  Avinu did not die,” explaininghow the spirit of Yaakov Avinudid not fully depart from his body:
“Thus said Rebbi Yochanan: Yaakov Avinu did not die.”Regarding Yaakov the Torahdoes not employ the term“death” – “and he faded and
” – as stated with regard to Avrohom and Yitzchok. Rather,it says, “he faded and was
,” meaning that thelife-force of Yaakov’s Nefeshremained in his body; hisNefesh did not separate fromhis body [as is the case with thepassing of other people]. Although Yaakov said, “Iam dying and the L-rd shallsurely visit, etc.” – he saidthis without knowing what will be [i.e., he did not know that he would live on after his
]. He thought, rather,that he would die and hisNefesh would separate from hisbody as with everyone else.Thus, Rav Nachman wasperplexed: “Was it in vain thenthat they…embalmed him?”Since his Nefesh continued tocleave to his body, there wasno concern of decompositionor infestation of worms in thebody, for the Nefesh wouldguard him, just as the Nefeshof a living person guards hisflesh and preserves it fromrotting. Similarly with regardto Rav Nachman’s questioning why Yaakov was eulogized andburied: The main reason forburial is in order to facilitatethe deterioration of the flesh.But since Yaakov’s Nefeshremained cleaving to his body,it would not decompose.“Rav Yitzchok replied:I derive this teaching fromScripture … ‘behold I amsaving you from afar.’” That is, were it not for this Scripturalproof linking Yaakov to hisdescendants [teaching that“just as his descendants arealive, so is he alive”], one would make the followingsupposition: Yaakov did in factdie. And the verse, “beholdI am saving you from afar,”means that when the Jewishpeople suffer, the Avos suffer[with them] in the grave, butat the time of their redemption, Yaakov will be elated, rejoicingin [their] salvation.The Scriptural connectionbetween Yaakov and hisdescendants, however, teachesthat “he too is alive,” forthroughout this entire period, Yaakov’s Nefesh remainsbound to his body. [The latterdistinction goes well with theRashi cited above: “‘
So is he alive
’ – for Yaakov will bebrought to the Diaspora inorder that his children will beredeemed before his eyes, as we find regarding [the exodusfrom] Egypt: ‘And Yisroel saw,etc.’”]The reason why Yaakov was buried and eulogized isbecause he had lost the powerof movement. Thus it states,
D’vaR MalchUs
13 Tammuz 5773
“and he drew his legs up to thebed and faded,” as a person who faints and is immobile,like a rock that lies inert.However, they did not know that his Nefesh remained withinhim. Thus, they [erroneously]embalmed, eulogized, andburied him.Nevertheless, it is said of thetime of the redemption, ‘beholdI am saving you [Yaakov] fromafar,’” at the end of days. Thatis, your salvation [Yaakov] isdestined [to coincide] with theredemption of your children, forindeed, you live on in Nefesh:“just as his descendants arealive, so is he alive.”
The Rebbe speaks aboutthis Gemara in the first
 Likkutei Sichos
Vol. 26 (pg. 7-8):
The Gemara’s question,“Was it in vain then that theyeulogized, embalmed, andburied him?” is answered with the statement, “just ashis descendants are alive, so ishe alive.” But it is difficult tounderstand how this answersthe question.There are commentariesthat explain that the answeris intended to clarify that thestatement “Yaakov Avinu didnot die” does not refer to hisphysical life*; his physical life was indeed subject to death.Rather, “certainly this refers tohis Nefesh [i.e., his soul liveson after death, but his body haddied].” According to this approach,however [saying that his soullives on after death], the answeris still not understood: Whatis special about Yaakov that“[his soul] did not die” isstated specifically about him?The Nefesh of every
iseternal!Certainly then, theinnovation in saying “Yaakov Avinu did not die” is withregard to his physical life,something that is not said of other
. Since Yaakovis identified with the attributeof truth – as stated in the verse, “grant truth to Yaakov”(Mika, end) – it is, therefore,obligatory to say that Yaakov’slife is eternal in all respects[for truth is immutable andeternal], even in the
 realm.Thus the Gemara asks,“Was it in vain then that theyeulogized, embalmed, andburied him?” That is, how can we say that “he did notdie” physically when theyembalmed Yaakov’s body? TheGemara answers, “just as his
are alive, so is
 alive”: Since “his descendantsare alive” (the survival andexistence of the Jewish peopleis something that is eternal;there can be no interruption,G-d forbid, in their perpetuity;the children of Yaakov cannotbe annihilated, G-d forbid**),therefore, “so is
alive,”because the “life” of his“descendants” is not somethingdifferent than
Yaakov’s life
.(Rather, Yaakov’s life (andsoul) is manifest (and invested within) “his descendants.”)In fact, the reason why “hisdescendants are alive” (in aneverlasting way) is because
is alive.” On account of the [eternal] life of Yaakov, theattribute of truth, there can beno interruption in the “life” of the Jewish people.It comes out that Yaakov’slife is something that iseverlasting even in
the physical world
.*Footnote 66: However,
in the commentary of Rashi
 (Taanis, ibid), “regarding thefact that “they embalmed” him– (this is because) it
 to them that he had died,
but he was actually alive
.” Thatis to say that even his bodydid not die. (So it is inferredfrom Tosafos ibid. See alsoIyun Yaakov, HaRif, Eitz Yosef,among other commentariesin Ein Yaakov there. See alsoMaharsha’s Chiddushei Agadosibid, as well as
 Likkutei Sichos
  Vol. 4 pg. 1260 ff.) This iselucidated in the sicha of Chaf Menachem-Av 5731.**Footnote 71: See BavaBasra (115b, beg.): “It istaught that a
cannotbe annihilated.” Rashbamcomments: “A proof for this isthe verse in Malachi (3:6), “ForI am G-d, I have not changed,and you are the children of  Yaakov, you have not reachedthe end [or in this context, “youshall not be annihilated”].”
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