27 April 2014

Where is Mashiach?


27 Nisan 5774
12 days of the Omer

Where is Mashiach in the counting of the omer?  He is found hidden within the nightly prayer which concludes the count:
“O Compassionate One! May He return for us the Service of the Temple to its Place speedily and in our time. Amen; Selah.”
Because everyone knows that when the Temple is rebuilt, Mashiach will have already come.

Note to the readers:  Someone commented and asked why, if I believe that Mashiach is in the world today, I continue to speak of his "coming." Suppose your parents are alive in the world, yet living at a great distance from you, and you are expecting them to arrive soon to your home. Is it incorrect to speak of their "coming" to your house?  Does it mean they are any less alive in the world?  Perhaps, it would be clearer to speak of their "arrival" or in the case of Mashiach, of his "revelation" since his identity is currently hidden.  

When I speak of Mashiach's "coming," I'm referring to his arrival to Yerushalayim and the revelation of his identity.

Wishing you all a profitable and successful omer accounting,

20 April 2014

Mashiach's Meal


20 Nisan 5774
Chol HaMoed Pesach

Why Pesach is a time to toast the Messiah
By Rabbi Yitzchak Schochet

As the final hours of the eight-day festival of Pesach draw to a close, many Chasidim gather for a final round of matzah and four cups of wine. This custom, instituted by Rabbi Israel Ba’al Shem Tov (1698-1760), is a special celebratory meal known as seudat Mashiach — or the messianic feast.

The whole festival of Pesach brings to the fore of our consciousness the concept of redemption. At the Seder we reflect on how we were enslaved in a foreign land from which no man had ever escaped, let alone a nation, yet against all odds we were liberated.
Today, we see a world riddled with chaos, war and famine, and yet again believe that we are in an irredeemable state. But the message of Pesach is one of hope, deliverance and the fulfillment of the dream for a better tomorrow.

Read the rest here.

11 April 2014

Shabbat HaGadol


11 Nisan 5774
Erev Shabbat HaGadol

Shabbat Hagadol and Pesach
by Rabbi Dr. Meir Tamari

The Tur in Orech Hayim writes that the Shabbat before Pesach is called Shabbat HaGadol because a great miracle was performed for Israel. Each family took a lamb, the god of Egypt, and tied it to their doorposts and kept it there for four days. They told the Egyptians they were going to slaughter it on the 14th of Nisan and the Egyptians were powerless to do anything to them. That year the 10th of Nisan was a Shabbat.

There are many questions that have to be raised in connection with this. We call the Shabbat before Pesach Shabbat HaGadol, even though in some years it does not fall on the 10th of Nisan. It seems we should rather call the 10th of Nisan, irrespecitive of what day of the week it falls, Ha’asiri HaGadol. We also know that many miracles were done for Israel in Egypt before they were commanded to take the Pascal lamb. Those miracles were very great ones in which the forces of nature were radically changed and shown to be powerless before HaShems’ will. Therefore, those days should be known as HaGadol.; alternatively, if we wish to go to the end of everything, then the day of Makat Bechorot, should be known as HaGadol.

Read the rest here.