• The Jews: “If Only we had Died in Egypt”

    We are all coming from Chodesh Nissan, the month we celebrate Yetzias Mitzrayim, the exodus from our first exile. A fascinating article by Rabbi Gershon Avtzon, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Lubavitch Cincinnati • Full Article

    Illustration Photo
    Illustration Photo

    A fascinating article by Rabbi Gershon Avtzon, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Lubavitch Cincinnati.

    We are all coming from Chodesh Nissan, the month we celebrate Yetzias Mitzrayim, the exodus from our first exile. The Torah tells us that when the Jewish people left Egypt, they ran out of food and thought that they would be starving in the desert.

    The Torah (beshalach 16:1) tells us: “They journeyed from Elim, and the entire community of the children of Israel came to the desert of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month (Iyar) after their departure from the land of Egypt. The entire community of the children of Israel complained against Moshe and against Aaron in the desert. The children of Israel said to them, If only we had died by the hand of Hashem in the land of Egypt, when we sat by pots of meat, when we ate bread to our fill! For you have brought us out into this desert, to starve this entire congregation to death.

    So Hashem said to Moshe, Behold! I am going to rain down for you bread from heaven, and the people shall go out and gather what is needed for the day, so that I can test them, whether or not they will follow My teaching.”

    It was this “Bread from Heaven” that kept the Jewish people sustained until they finally entered Eretz Yisrael. They went out and collected the Manna daily, so that they and their families would survive the years in the desert.

    Dear Fellow Chassidim!

    We are living in a very tough – and special time – time. In 1991, we “were taken out of Egypt”. The Rebbe told us a clear prophecy (shoftim) that “Behold – Moshiach is coming”. We were given the “job” of bringing Moshiach (28 Nissan) and were told clearly (chaya sara 5752) that the Shlichus of our time to be “Mekabel Pnei Moshiach Tzidkeinu Bepoel Mamash!” But we know that in order to reach Eretz Yisroel (Moshiach), we need to travel and survive in the desert (a very hard trial on concealment).

    Yet, 24 years later, we (may) feel that “we are on empty – our bread has run out” and that “we are starving in the desert”. We do not feel that our natural reservoir of Koach is enough to allow us to survive.

    I have good news to tell (remind) you! Please remember what happened “on the fifteenth day of the second month (Iyar)” of the year 5751. That night, the Rebbe came down to Shul in 770, and personally gave each and every Chassid a special Kuntres. It was the Kuntres of “Dvar Malchus – Sichos that discuss the the belief in Melech HaMoshiach and laws of the times of Moshiach”.  After the Rebbe gave out the Kuntres, the inspired crowed starting singing “Yechi” to the encouragement of the Rebbe.

    Dearest Friends!

    Learning the Dvar Malchus – and all Sichos about Moshiach – is our “Bread from heaven”, which is supposed to give us the sustenance that we need in order to survive – and thrive – in our current desert! But – there is always a “But”… – there are two conditions: 1) We have to “gather enough for our whole family”. It is not enough that we learn about Moshiach, we must teach our entire family. This includes our children and our community. 2) The “bread from heaven” needs to be gathered daily. It is not enough that we learn about Moshiach “once in a while”, we must “go out and gather” – put an effort – to learn daily.

    The Rebbe states clearly (Tazria – Metzorah 5751):

    “The question is: Since we’ve already completed “our actions and service throughout the duration of exile” – what is the “straightforward path” (the easiest and fastest among all the paths of Torah) that all the Jewish people, who have concluded their service, should choose to realize the revelation and coming of Moshiach?

    This increase in learning the Torah concerned with Moshiach and Redemption (“Malchus sh’b’Tiferes”) is the “straightforward path” to actually cause the revelation and coming of Moshiach and Redemption.

    My intention here is action – and certainly the following will be publicized everywhere: In order to realize the immediate revelation and coming of Moshiach – each and every Jew (the men, whether they are dwellers in the tent (Yisachar) or men of business (Zevulun), and the women and children, each one according to his ability) should increase their learning of Torah, particularly the subjects of Moshiach and Redemption.

    It would be even better if they would learn (in public) with ten others because, in addition to the advantage that “ten who sit and occupy themselves with Torah, the Divine Presence dwells among them,” there is a particular advantage when learning about Moshiach and the Redemption in public. Such public learning affects the excitement and the heart-felt joy through which comes an increasing desire and anticipation for the coming of Moshiach.”


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