web analytics
November 24, 2014 / 2 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



One Nation, United In Anguish

Have we cried? Have we shed tears of anguish? We know how to cry with real tears, but such prayer usually is reserved for ourselves and our own needs. How about crying for those boys with the same heartfelt feelings?
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

My column for this week’s Jewish Press was ready to go when, at the last minute, I decided to replace it.

How could I submit my normal column when three of our sons are lost in a dangerous jungle where decapitation and other forms of bestial behavior are daily occurrences?

Tragically, too many people shrug off horrors like this. “What can you do?” they ask. “It’s not the first and it’s not the last time things like this happen.” With a shrug of their shoulders they move on and it’s back to business as usual.

I want to cry out, “Wait a minute. This is not just a newspaper report – this is the story of my sons and your sons!”

Anxiously we await the news of our boys but the networks and newspapers are busy with other things. The story of three yeshiva boys kidnapped in Israel is low priority, it seems. As a matter of fact, I am ashamed to say that many of our own people are hardly losing sleep over it. Such is the painful reality of our generation. We are on the move! We are so busy! We have no time to stop! We have pressures, important business to attend to!

As my regular readers know, whenever I tackle questions I turn to our Torah for clarification.

When Pharaoh was scheming to annihilate our people he called in his three most important ministers and held a cabinet meeting. He was obsessed with exterminating our people and wanted to have input from his cabinet.

Bilam, the satanic prophet, volunteered without even batting an eye, “Kill them!” It was a simple solution Pharaoh was more than happy to embrace.

Yisro vehemently protested. “You cannot kill the Jews,” he said.

The third minister, Job, remained silent.

Consequently Yisro had to run for his life. Pharaoh in his rage wanted to kill him. Quickly he disappeared from the Egyptian scene.

Years later Yisro became Moshe Rabbeinu’s father-in-law. Bilam was killed by the sword. And Job became the wealthiest man of his time, blessed with a magnificent family. His home was always open to the poor. And then, suddenly, he lost his beautiful wife and children, his wealth, his home, even his own health. He was left devastated and alone. In anguish he cried out, “G-d, why? Why?!”

Soon the answer came from Above. “Job, did you cry out even once when Pharaoh schemed to exterminate My people?”

“Almighty G-d,” Job protested, “it wouldn’t have done any good. I saw what happened to Yisro. He had to run for his life. So to what end would I have spoken out? What would it have accomplished?”

What is the inner meaning of this Midrash?

If something really hurts you, your instinct is to howl from the pain. Say the dentist extracts your tooth without giving you Novocain. Of course you cry out in pain. You can’t help it; it’s a knee-jerk reaction. You could try to rationalize like Job – “Why should I cry out? It won’t help anyway.” But all the rationalizing in the world won’t help; the pain is so all-consuming that you have to scream. If you don’t react like that your nerves are dead.

By remaining silent while Pharaoh laid his plans for the extermination of the Jewish people, G-d told Job, you indicated that the nerves in your heart were dead. How could you have remained silent? Job had no answer to G-d’s challenge.

If we were similarly challenged, what would our answer be? How would we explain our silence? Do we feel the pain of the three yeshiva boys? Do we identify even for a second with their nightmare or with the anguish of their parents?

About the Author:


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.

2 Responses to “One Nation, United In Anguish”

  1. Israel needs to stand strong as One People/Ehad against the World Community. Please stay focus on rounding up all terrorist in Judea and Samaria and than go to Gaza and collect the rest. Find our boys/children & ignore the pressure of the World Community. Have Trust/Emuna & Faith that Hashem has our back.

  2. Her response is smart and right a propos.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Is that a chicken or Tzipi Livni ready to be sacrificed?
Coalition Plays ‘Chicken’ and Runs Away from New Elections
Latest Judaism Stories
Rabbi Avi Weiss

Yitzchak thought the Jewish people needed dual leadership: Eisav the physical; Yaakov the spiritual

Weiss-112114-Sufganiot

According to the Sefer Yetzirah, the nature of the month of Kislev is sleep.

Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

Though braggarts come across as conceited, their boasting often reflects a low sense of self-regard

Nimchinsky-112114-Learning

Not every child can live up to our hopes or expectations, but every child is loved by Hashem.

Leaders must always pay attention to the importance of timing.

While our leaders have been shepherds, the vast majority of the Children of Israel were farmers.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

If a man dies childless, the Torah commands the deceased’s brother to marry his brother’s widow in a ceremony known as yibum, or to perform a special form of divorce ceremony with her known as chalitzah.

Dovid turned to the other people sitting at his table. “I’m revoking my hefker of the Chumash,” he announced. “I want to keep it.”

Ever Vigilant
‘When Unworthy, One’s Number Of Years Is Reduced’
(Yevamos 50a)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Ramban interprets Korban as self-sacrifice, each Jew should attempt to recreate Akeidas Yitzchak.

Dr. Schwartz had no other alternatives up his sleeve. He suggested my mother go home and think about what she wanted to do.

Why does Lavan’s speaking before his father show that he was wicked? Disrespectful, yes. Rude, certainly. But a rasha?

We find that in certain circumstances before the Torah was actually given, people were permitted to make calculations as to what would better serve Hashem, even if it were against a mitzvah or aveirah.

More Articles from Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

When art and evil are intermingled, evil is elevated and made acceptable.

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

In BB, he said “You, my children are the angels of Shabbos and the licht are your beautiful eyes.”

Why does Hebrew refer to mothers-in-law as “sunshine” when society often calls them the opposite?

Boundaries must be set in every home. Parents and children are not pals. They are not equals.

The call of the shofar is eternal. It is not musical. Its magnetic allurement cannot be explained.

We recently marked the thirteenth anniversary of 9/11 – that terrible day when the symbols of man’s power and achievement crumbled before our eyes and disappeared in fire and smoke. For a very brief moment we lost our smugness. Our confidence was shaken. Many of us actually searched our ways. Some of us even learned […]

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

“There is nothing new under the sun” is as valid today as it was yesterday.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/rebbetzins-viewpointrebbetzin-jungreis/one-nation-united-in-anguish/2014/06/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: