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We started out at the level of “chesed sh’bechesed,” which (translated as well as I can understand it) means the level at which we were the ultimate receivers of kindness. This was the chesed of Hashem, His unlimited kindness to us, when we were on a level so low that we didn’t even recognize His existence. We were like dumb animals that don’t know where their barley comes from.

By the time we reached Har Sinai, we were at the level of “malchus sh’bemalchus,” which means “the ultimate level of malchus, kingship.” What is a king? For Am Yisrael – and this is the paradigm meaning of kingship, because it is God’s definition of kingship as expressed in the Torah – it is a provider, a giver of kindness. Instead of being takers of barley, we had risen to the level at which we had become givers of kindness. Just as Hashem is the quintessential Giver – the Giver of life – so we, who are created in His image, are expected to imitate Him and become givers. This is the Jewish king, who is a giver.


Look at Dovid HaMelech. He is such a giver that when his people, thousands of years later, are looking for solace amid almost incomprehensible pain, they turn to his Tehillim, which provide sustenance amid terrible darkness, just the way Hashem provided His children sustenance amid terrible darkness in Mitzrayim.

This is a Jewish king, a descendant of Dovid HaMelech, who has learned to imitate Hashem, the Ultimate King and the Ultimate Giver. We have arisen from the dust of Egypt to the level of malchus, from the dust to the level of the givers.

And so every day of Pesach we sing, “Give praise, you servants of Hashem, praise the Name of Hashem…. High above all nations is Hashem, above the heavens is His glory. Who is like Hashem our God, Who is enthroned on high, yet deigns to look upon the heaven and the earth. He raises the needy from the dust, from the trash heaps He lifts the destitute. To seat them with nobles, with the nobles of His people. He transforms the barren wife into a glad mother of children, Hallelu-ka.” (Tehillim 113)

May we soon be privileged to become givers of kindness to each other and to bring offerings to the King of Kings in His Holy Temple, in the presence of Mashiach, the son of David, in the eternal City of Yerushalayim.


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Roy Neuberger’s latest book is “Working Toward Moshiach.” His book “2020 Vision” is available in English, Hebrew, Spanish, French, Russian, and Georgian. Roy is also the author of “From Central Park To Sinai: How I Found My Jewish Soul,” available in English, Hebrew, Russian, and Georgian, and “Worldstorm: Finding Meaning and Direction Amidst Today’s World Crisis.” Roy and his wife, Leah, speak publicly on topics related to his books and articles. E-mail: [email protected]. Website: