Photo Credit: Flash 90
The million people’s rally in support of the judicial reform in Jerusalem, April 27, 2023.

In the Shabbat morning tefillot we say “ –  ובמקהלות רבבות עמך בית ישראל – In the myriad assemblies of Your House of Israel shall your Name be glorified. . . for this is the duty of all mankind.”

Perhaps, as we quickly pass over this refrain to reach the ישתבח and ברכו, lost is the magnitude of the appeal for the glorification and sanctification of Gd‘s Great Name.


In the recent myriad assembly of the supporters of judicial reform in Israel under debate since the election of the new government, the gathering heard Harav Shmuel Eliyahu broadcast in a clear, distinct call to unity as he repeated the Sh’ma Yisrael, Hear O Israel, our Gd is One! in the “courtyard” of Supreme Court of Israel and within a stone’s throw from the Kotel,

The thunderous crowd dutifully repeated this affirmation after which the Chief Rabbi of Tzfat continued with the follow through, “Gd is King, Gd reigns, Gd will reign forever.  Once again, the estimated 600,000 voices repeated this mantra literally in once voice, into the brisk Jerusalem night air.

This combination of the Sh’ma and the declaration of Gd’s Kingship is repeated each year as we close the Yom Kippur services, tired and hungry, but rest assured that our tefillot were accepted and we look forward to another good year.

I got a chill as I flashed back to Ma’amad Har Sinai when the Torah, in the presence of the 600,000 male adults that just left Egypt on the way to Eretz Yisrael, was given to mankind with Yisrael as guarantors when they repeat this Sh’ma Yisrael every morning.

Never, in Yisrael’s long and bitter exile, was this massive glorification repeated and heard literally by the entire world in this age of instant communication, and certainly never in Yerushalayim, Gd’s holy city!

Even as of this writing and while the debate rages on incessantly, the Sh’ma and proclamation of Gd’s Kingship heard that night, still reverberates in the vastness of this universe awaiting the Malchut Beit David. Events on the ground tend to indicate we’re half-way there with the return of more than 6 million people back to our homeland and destiny.

Whatever the future brings and amidst the frustrating challenges of the totality of Klal Yisrael at this time, the mighty affirmation that night stands witness to the continuity of Gd’s holy nation on the road to perfection through redemption.

May repeating Sh’ma Yisrael every day, by the myriad assemblies of the House of Israel,  help bring that utopian messianic end-game* that much closer.

* Title of Rabbi Schwartz’ forthcoming book

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Rabbi Yehuda Schwartz discusses current issues on Eretz Yisrael from a Torah perspective gained from the many years drinking from the wellspring of the Great Gaon Harav Chaim Zimmerman, זצ"ל.