web analytics
September 19, 2014 / 24 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



Home » Judaism » Parsha »

We’re All In This Together

Lenny1

 

Rabbi Sendic then quoted Rav Sosevsky of Ohr Yerushalayim in arguing that every Shul and Bet Hamidrash is, in effect, a spiritual “embassy” of Israel, and when we come to daven together in a shul, it is as if we now stand on Israeli soil, that much closer to being among those who are davening on the battlefield.

 

I wanted to extend this beautiful idea just a little bit.   Certainly one the reasons for the efficacy of this prayer was due to the shared sense of mission between those who fought and those who prayed.   They were equal parts of a whole – Elef Lamateh, Elef Lamateh – the same exact words repeated twice, underscoring the unity in spirit and mission between them.

 

In our Jewish world today, some of our young men go to fight the wars in the IDF, and some learn Torah full time.   This ought to hold true for ALL parts of Klal Yisroel.   Rashi on Bamidbar 31:4 takes pains to point out “לרבות שבט לוי”, that the tribe of Levi, who normally were exempted from many communal responsibilities, were equally called upon to fight when it was a Milchemes Mitzva, an obligatory war, which unquestionably applies to wars to defend the Jewish people. The tribe of Levi also gave their three thousand finest young men, together with the rest of Klal Yisrael. * When a severe crisis threatens all of Israel, all of Israel needs to contribute equally in Torah, Tefillah, and fighting.

 

In our world today, such elementary thinking is not practical, I will be told.   Many parts of Klal Yisrael are not engaged in Tefillah or Torah, so other parts must compensate and provide the Torah and Tefillah for those who are not engaged in such.  While this is most certainly true in regard to Torah, I am less convinced that Tefilah is not shared very widely, even by those who perhaps do not pray in the traditional way.  (I note that the quoted Midrash says nothing about “One thousand for Torah study”, but surely there are other sources that speak of the importance of Limud HaTorah for the protection of Klal Yisroel.   Reasons for the omission here are beyond the scope of this essay, but the omission is certainly interesting).  Clearly, however, all factions ought to feel a shared sense of mission and purpose at such a time.

 

Our shul, and many other shuls, feel that the prayer for Tzahal is crucially important in expressing this unified mission.  Many other shuls, for a variety of reasons – some reasonable and some to this writer’s mind inexcusable –  omit this prayer.  Let us hope, however, that no matter what form that prayer takes, we show our appreciation for the soldiers who are courageously doing their part in this mission, and find ways to assure them that we are so very grateful to them, and offer our fervent and incessant prayer for their success in battle and safe return home.
—–
* The Imrei Emes provides a beautiful explanation of how the tribe of Levi is counted if the next verse refers to only 12,000 being given over.  He says that all the tribes were hesitant in coming for the draft, because they knew that Moshe would die soon after the war.  Shevet Levi, however, as they did at the Golden Calf, ignored their personal feelings and relationships (they were the closest to Moshe) and with a מי לה’ אלי spirit, came forward immediately.   That is why it says in the next verse – about the other twelve tribes –    וימסרו מאלפי בנ”י that they were “given over” or had to be coerced,  שנים עשרה אלף the remaining 12,000, besides the 1,000 (x3) of Shevet Levi.

About the Author: Rabbi Yehuda Leonard Oppenheimer is the Rabbi of the Young Israel of Forest Hills, and a practicing attorney. He has an extensive background in Jewish Outreach, and is particularly grateful to have been the Rav of Kesser Israel in Portland, Oregon for ten years. He has long and deep connections with the land of Israel, where he lived for many years and where most of his family and children reside, and thus blogs at http://libibamizrach.blogspot.com/


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

One Response to “We’re All In This Together”

  1. Only Hashem can protect the brave members of Tzahal!

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Sen. Ted Cruz acts senate for unanimous consent to pass the Expatriate Terrorist Act. Sept. 18, 2014.
Ds Reject Voting to Strip Citizenship From US Jihadi ISIS Volunteers
Latest Judaism Stories
Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

“he’s my rabbi” the Black painter said with pride, pulling out a photo of the Rebbe from his wallet

Rabbi Avi Weiss, head of theYeshivat Chovevei Torah. Rabbi Asher Lopatin will be replacing him as head of the school.

The Torah notes that even when we are dispersed God will return us to Him.

Rabbi Sacks

Simply, for Rambam the number 14 (2×7) was his favored organizing principle.

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

One of the cornerstones of our Jewish life is chesed, kindness. Chesed can only be taught by example

Our understanding of what is and what is not possible creates imagined ceilings of opportunity for us.

This young, innocent child gave me a powerful, warm surge of energy and strength.

The Chafetz Chaim answered that there are two forms of teshuvah; teshuvah m’ahava and teshuvah m’yirah.

Question: I recently loaned money to a friend who has been able to repay only part of it. This was an interest-free loan. We exchanged a signed IOU, not a proper shtar with witnesses, since I have always trusted her integrity and only wanted a document that confirms what was loaned and what was repaid. Now that shemittah is approaching, what should I do? Should I forgive the loan? And if my friend is not able to repay it, may I deduct the unpaid money from my ma’aser requirement?

Name Withheld

A Role Reversal
‘Return, O Wayward Sons…’
(Chagigah 15a)

When the Kleins returned, however, they were dismayed to see that the renters did a poor job cleaning up after themselves.

In Parshas Re’eh the Torah tells us about the bechira to adhere to the commandments of Hashem and refrain from sin. In Parshas Nitzavim, the Torah tells us that we have the choice to repent after we have sinned.

As Moshe is about to die, why does God tell him about how the Israelites will ruin everything?

Jonah objected to God accepting repentance based on ulterior motives and likely for short duration.

This week’s parsha offers a new covenant; a covenant that speaks to national life unlike any other

All Jews are inherently righteous and that is why we all have a portion in the World to Come.

More Articles from Rabbi Lenny Oppenheimer
A Jewish wedding.

Kollel life:A wonderful aspiration, but not the only one that young women should consider.

Lenny1

Here in Israel there are the many who load up their cars with food, and drink and candy and books to deliver them to soldiers and communities in the south.

Will Your brothers go to war, while you sit (in peace) here? (Bamidbar 32:6)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/parsha/were-all-in-this-together/2014/07/23/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: