We have completed sefer Bereishis, known as the Sefer of Creation, and are beginning sefer Shemos, the sefer of Galus. In this week’s parsha we learn of the oppression that Bnei Yisrael endured in Mitzrayim, and how they suffered. We also begin to see how the geula begins as well. We introduced to Moshe Rabbeinu who eventually is the messenger Hashem used to redeem us from that galus.
We too are in galus. Galus does not always begin with tyranny and torture. Rather often it begins with a slow process until it is too late. Such was the case in Mitzrayim. The Midrash tells us how Pharaoh schemed and plotted to get Bnei Yisrael to become subjugated under his dominion. This was despite the fact that they descended and were related to the greatest leader Mitzrayim ever had, Yosef. The Egyptians propagandized against them and degraded them to the point that they were considered the lowest echelons of society.
Once they became slaves in Mitzrayim, and the galus was in full force, they suffered inhumane torture and persecutions. And unfortunately, we have seen history repeat itself time and time again. Throughout our many years in galus we have been brutalized and persecuted by almost every world power that has existed. Beginning with the first galus of Bavel, to the evil Greeks, to the wicked Romans, and through the years in Europe culminating with the Holocaust, we have been oppressed, tormented, and slaughtered.
For the past number of decades there has been much religious tolerance and Jews have been able to serve their religion without fear, for the most part. That is not to overlook the anti-Semitic attacks that have still occurred, but as a whole we have enjoyed our religious freedoms. But one must be conscious of the alarming changes taking place around us. The so called progressive movement is taking root in this country very quickly and should have every religious person very concerned. The ideals and standards that those involved in this movement want to enforce and impose on society fly in the face of Torah values. They despise modesty and our definition of morality and seek to change society to reflect what they see as moral and just.
Raising children in a Democrat-run country will begin to become more difficult. I don’t think we are headed for a hard tyranny where we will be physically tortured and persecuted in this country. But there are many other things that can hinder our way of life.
We have already seen how New York State and City have tried to dictate to yeshivos what they can teach and for how long. Animal rights advocates are always trying to impede our religious laws and customs. And in general since the outbreak of Covid-19 many of our freedoms have been slowly slipping away. The outlook of the future of this country is becoming bleaker by the day.
Chazal tell us that our redemption will resemble that of the redemption from our first galus in Mitzrayim. What did we do then to merit the salvation? We prayed for it. The difference is then they were being tortured and they knew they were being oppressed. We, on the other hand, are in a galus that openly accepts us, and as a result we are not aware of the spiritual dangers we find ourselves in. We must realize that a spiritual attack is worse that a physical one, and that we desperately need Hashem to bring the yeshua. Once we wake up and realize the grave danger we find ourselves in we will be able to daven to Hashem and hopefully merit our salvation. Amein.