"LIVING WITH MOSHIACH,"
Parshat Teruma, 5760
5 Adar I, 5760
Feb. 11, 2000
Please pray for the immediate and complete recovery of
Horav Chaim Yehuda Kalman Ben Rochel Marlow Shlita,
head of the Bet-Din (Rabbinical Court) of Crown Heights
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
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"I BELIEVE WITH COMPLETE FAITH IN THE ARRIVAL OF THE MOSHIACH.
"AND THOUGH HE MAY TARRY, I SHALL WAIT EACH DAY, ANTICIPATING HIS
Maimonides, Principles of the Faith, No. 12
THIS PUBLICATION IS DEDICATED
TO THE REBBE,
RABBI MENACHEM M. SCHNEERSON
Click here, to see pictures
of the Rebbe
The Daily Sicha (in Real Audio)
- Listen to selected excerpts of the Rebbe's Sichos
[talks] which are relevant to the particular day.
We are pleased to present, to the visually impaired and the blind, our weekly
publication, Living With Moshiach.
In this week's issue, we focus on the Seventh of
Adar.(1) The Seventh of Adar I, Sunday, Feb.
13, is the birthday and yahrtzeit of Moshe Rabbeinu (Moshe
The Jewish year that has recently begun is the year 5760 since Creation.
The Hebrew letters are Hei-Tav-Shin-Samech. Over a decade ago, in
the year 5742, the Rebbe stated that the Hebrew letters for that year were
an acronym for "This should be the year of the coming of Moshiach."
Since that time, the Rebbe has publicized a phrase describing the year according
to the acrostic of its Hebrew letters. This year has been designated by the
Rebbe's followers as "Hoyo T'hei Shnas Segulah," meaning "It will
surely be an auspicious year."
Our sincere appreciation to
publication, published by the Lubavitch Youth Organization, for allowing
us to use their material.
Also, many thanks to our copy editor, Reb
his tireless efforts.
It is our fervent hope that our learning about Moshiach and the Redemption
will hasten the coming of Moshiach, NOW!
Rabbi Yosef Y. Shagalov,
Committee for the Blind
2 Adar I, 5760
Brooklyn, New York
1. "In a leap year, such as our current year, there is a difference of opinion
as to whether we commemorate this date in the first or second month of
Adar. Since both opinions are "the words of the Living G-d" it is
appropriate to commemorate the date in both months."
(The Rebbe, 7 Adar I, 5752/1992)
This week's Torah portion, Teruma, tells of G-d's command to the Jewish
People to erect for Him a Tabernacle. The purpose of the Tabernacle is alluded
to in its name, "Mishkan," meaning a dwelling place, a place where
G-dliness would be revealed. Indeed, G-d Himself stated openly, "They shall
make Me a Holy Place and I shall dwell within them."
The great value and significance of the Tabernacle (and after it, the Holy
Temple in Jerusalem) lies in the fact that there was a constant revelation
of the Holy Presence there. It was also there that G-d spoke to Moses, and
that the Children of Israel saw wonderful revelations of G-dliness. Through
the existence of the Tabernacle and Temple the Holy Presence was able to
be felt by each and every Jew.
This also explains why the Tabernacle--and the Holy Temple--occupies such
a central role in Judaism, so much so that we still pray three times each
day for its rebuilding and restoration. We beseech G-d that He should return
and cause His Presence to dwell and be revealed among us, and that we should
be worthy of seeing the revelation of His strength and might through the
means of the Holy Temple.
G-d said, "They shall make Me a Holy Place, and I shall dwell within them,"
and not, as would seem more grammatically correct, "within it." The reason
for this grammatical incongruity is, as our sages explained, that G-d dwells
"within each and every Jew." By building the Tabernacle and the Holy Temple,
G-dliness was revealed within each of us.
Although the Tabernacle and Holy Temple do not exist today in the physical
world, the function which they served--revealing G-dliness within every Jew--is
eternal and timely for us in any era.
How do we make ourselves a dwelling place for G-d? By following the same
building plan that the Jews used for building the Tabernacle. By taking physical
materials--gold, silver, copper, acacia wood, animal skins, etc.--and using
them to make a house for G-d; the physical materials themselves were made
holy and were transformed into the Tabernacle. This is what we must do today.
We must take everything that we come in contact with in our physical world
and use it for the sake of Heaven, and thus will we build a dwelling place
for G-d in our midst.
A true dwelling place for G-d is achieved by sanctifying everything we do.
When we eat it should not be merely to satisfy our personal cravings; rather,
we must make sure that the food we eat is kosher food. When we work,
it should not be for the purpose of amassing a personal fortune and for the
money itself. We should work with the intention of providing for our families,
being able to give charity, and performing mitzvot in an exemplary
fashion. When this attitude prevails in our lives, holiness can permeate
every detail of our daily lives, transforming the world into a dwelling place
Our homes can also become small "tabernacles" by doing mitzvot in
them--helping the needy, studying Torah, inviting guests, observing
By doing all of the above, we create a "tabernacle" whose holiness encompasses
all our surroundings and deeds. May this serve as a preparation for the building
of the biggest Tabernacle of them all--the Third Holy Temple, speedily in
The Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson of Lubavitch, issued a call that
"The time of our Redemption has arrived!" and "Moshiach is on his
The Rebbe stressed that he is saying this
prophecy, and asks us all to prepare ourselves for the Redemption,
through increasing acts of goodness and kindness.
Let us all heed the Rebbe's call.
The Seventh of Adar I, Sunday, Feb. 13, is the birthday and
yahrtzeit of Moshe Rabbeinu (Moshe our teacher).
The Rebbe has spoken numerous times about the significance of this date in
our G-dly service. In one of the Rebbe's last public addresses, on 7
Adar I, 5752/1992, the Rebbe delved further into the significance
of this date.
In a leap year, such as our current year, there is a difference of opinion
as to whether we commemorate this date in the first or second month of
Adar. Since both opinions are "the words of the Living G-d" it is
appropriate to commemorate the date in both months.
On a person's birthday, "his mazal (source of influence) shines
powerfully." If this concept applies to the birthday of any Jew, surely it
applies with regard to the birthday of a nasi (leader) of the Jewish
people. Nor is this relevant merely as an event in the past. Instead, each
year, the positive influence associated with the Seventh of Adar is
increased, reaching a level immeasurably higher than in previous years.
The birthday of a nasi affects every member of the Jewish people,
for the nasi is the source of influence through whom G-d's blessings
are drawn down for the entire people.
Seven is symbolic of a complete cycle. Thus, the Seventh of Adar should
inspire every Jew to carry out his service in a complete manner. The positive
influence of the month of Adar will facilitate the performance of
Similarly, these positive influences will hasten the coming of the Redemption.
It is of utmost importance that the Redemption come sooner, even a moment
sooner, for the Divine Presence and the Jewish people are in exile. Therefore,
it is important to hasten the coming of the Redemption; every single moment
its coming can be speeded is significant. The potential for this certainly
exists: the very next moment can be the last moment of the exile, and the
moment that follows, the first moment of Redemption.
* * *
Jewish teachings (Shemos Rabba) state that "Moshe is the first redeemer
and he is also the final redeemer." This does not mean that Moshe himself
will be the "final redeemer." For, Moshe belongs to the tribe of Levi, while
Moshiach is from the tribe of Judah.
However, many traditional sources view the redemption from Egypt as the prototype
of the Final Redemption, based on the verse in our Prophets: "As in the days
of your exodus from the land of Egypt, I will show you wonders."
In this way, Moshe--who was the leader of the Jewish people in his generation--is
the prototype of every Jewish leader and ultimately, of Moshiach.
Thus, for example, in Egypt, first G-d appointed the redeemer--Moshe. He
spoke to the Children of Israel, telling them that G-d had remembered them
and that the time had come for them to leave Egypt. Only afterward did Moshe
redeem the Children of Israel and take them out of Egypt. Similarly, first
Moshiach informs us that the time of the Redemption has arrived, and only
afterward does the actual Redemption take place (Sfas Emes).
In one of his kabbalistic works, Rabbi Chaim Vital describes Moshiach as
a tzaddik, a human being born of human parents, and writes that he
will receive the soul of Moshiach that has been stored in the Garden of Eden.
Rabbi Chaim Vital then explains how this may be compared to Moshe and his
progression to self-perfection.
The Chatam Sofer, as well, describes Moshe, the first redeemer, and
then compares him to the final redeemer, "And when the time comes, G-d will
reveal Himself to him, and the spirit of Moshiach, which has been hidden
in the higher worlds until his coming, will light upon him."
The story of Moses taking the Children of Israel out of the land of Egypt
is well known, but long before he emerged as the redeemer of the Jewish people
his life was full of wonders and miracles.
Times were bitter for the Jews. Their favored status as Joseph's people had
long ago been replaced by the degradation of a harsh and cruel slavery. Pharaoh's
star-gazers had foreseen the birth of a baby boy who would one day lead the
Jewish slaves to freedom, but would die because of water. Pharaoh would forestall
that possibility by ordering the death by drowning of every boy born to the
Jews. He would make sure the Jews would never leave Egypt.
Jewish women refused to despair. They beautified themselves and went out
to the fields where their husbands labored in the burning sun. "Do not despair,
do not give up hope," they would tell their husbands. "G-d will not forget
us forever." They gave birth in secret, hiding the babies as long as possible.
Yocheved and Miriam, popular midwives, were commanded to kill the babies,
but what could they do, they dissembled, "The Jewish women give birth quickly,
before we can even get to them."
Soon, it was Yocheved's turn to hide her precious little boy. For a few months
she succeeded, but she knew the attempt was futile. The Egyptians had spies
everywhere. When there was the slightest suspicion, they would bring an Egyptian
baby into the Jewish house and pinch it to make it cry. It was impossible
to quiet the Jewish baby who would wail in response. Then the soldiers would
seize the child from his helpless parents and toss him into the Nile.
Yocheved had an idea. In a desperate attempt to save her son's life, she
set him afloat in a little reed basket, which she lovingly prepared to withstand
the waters of the Nile.
"Go and watch your brother, and see what will happen to him," she instructed
Miriam. Obediently, she stood on the banks of the Nile where she watched
her beloved brother's fate unfold.
Batya, Pharaoh's daughter, had just come down to the river to bathe and,
startled by a baby's cry coming from the direction of some reeds, she sent
her servant girl to fetch the semi-hidden basket.
When she opened it, a bright light emanated from the child's face and he
peered at her with a mature intelligence. She knew it must be a Hebrew child,
but she couldn't bear the thought of this beautiful boy being killed.
"Go, bring me a wet-nurse," she commanded, but when the Egyptian woman arrived,
the starving baby refused to drink. At that point Miriam saw her chance.
"If you wish, I will bring a nurse from the Hebrew women," she offered, and
without a moment's pause, Batya agreed.
And so, G-d's plan unfolded in unexpected ways. Yocheved was not only able
to bring up her beloved child in her own home, but she had the explicit
permission of Pharaoh's daughter--she was even paid for her "services."
* * *
Moses was a beautiful child--radiant, intelligent, the favored child on whom
the princess lavished her love and attention.
One day, the young child was brought to a royal banquet--the first time he
witnessed such a gala event. Everyone assembled sparkled in all their finery.
Suddenly, baby Moses reached out his little hand and seized, of all things,
the king's golden crown. And what's more, he set the glittering symbol of
kingship on his own tiny head! The shocked gasps were audible throughout
the great hall. The king's advisors saw that this act boded ill for the monarchy.
"Put the child to death before he grows up and seizes your throne!" they
said. But then one other voice was heard, that of Jethro, the Priest of Midian,
a highly respected sage and great magician.
"Your majesty, it is a known fact that every child will reach out for a
glittering object. Why should you assume that this child is intelligent enough
to discern the great meaning of your majesty's crown. Why should you take
away your daughter's beloved child if this is just a childish whim? I suggest
that you put him to the test: Put before him a piece of burning coal and
your crown. See which he will grab. If he reaches for the coal, which is
shinier than the golden crown, you will know he has no understanding of his
Jethro's advice seemed sensible enough, and a burning coal was brought and
put in front of the child. Moses, however, was not a child like all others;
he knowingly extended his hand toward the crown. Suddenly his hand moved,
pushed by an angel, and he seized the coal and put it into his mouth. He
screamed in pain, and Batya's heart jumped--Moses was hurt, but he would
live. The proof was incontrovertible, the child simply liked glittering objects.
Moses, the great redeemer of the Jewish people, was raised in the king's
palace, tutored in the ways of royalty and even bounced on his would-be
murderer's own knee, until the time arrived for him to begin his mission.
The Rebbe's slogan is: "The main thing is the deed." We therefore present
from the Rebbe's talks suggestions what we can do to complete his work of
bringing the Redemption.
Make Others Happy:
As we are now in the 60 days of happiness comprised of the two months of
Adar, we should endeavor to make others happy.
The Rebbe explained, "We should proceed to spread joy and happiness in the
most literal sense, making efforts to assure that the members of one's household
and similarly, all of those with whom one comes in contact, experience great
joy. And this will lead to the ultimate joy, the coming of the Redemption.
May it take place in the immediate future."
Jewish Women and Girls Light Shabbat
For local candle lighting times:
consult your local Rabbi, Chabad-Lubavitch Center,
or call: (718) 774-3000.
For a free candle lighting kit:
contact your local Chabad-Lubavitch Center.
For a listing of the Centers in your area:
In the USA, call: 1-800-Lubavitch (1-800-582-2848).
Times shown are for Metro NY - NJ
Friday, Feb. 11, Erev Shabbat Parshat Teruma:
Light Shabbat Candles,(2) by 5:06 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 12, Shabbat Parshat Teruma:
Shabbat ends at nightfall, at 6:09 p.m.
2. The Shabbat candles must be lit 18 minutes
before sunset. It is prohibited and is a desecration
of the Shabbat to light the candles after sunset.
Laws of Shabbat Candle
Lighting for the Blind
"Let There Be
Light" - The Jewish Women's Guide to Lighting Shabbat Candles.