Rabi Yehudah Hanasi (the prince) known as Rebbe had an amazingly warm friendship with the Roman Caesar, Antoninus. The friendship began at the birth of the two men and continued until their dying days.
No matter what Zemira said and how much she implored Avinadav to tell her what was bothering him, he remained adamant in his silence.
I will stop by your place of business tomorrow and you can give me some money at that time.
When word reached the Jewish community they began to tremble. They knew only too well the meaning of the king’s threat.
You are called both sons and servants. When you carry out the desires of the Omnipresent, you are called ‘sons.’ When you do not carry out the desires of the Omnipresent, you are called, ‘servants.’
When the soldiers heard this they exclaimed happily: “You mean this is the sacred Jewish fruit? Hurry, get on the horse. You are coming with us to the palace.”
To his amazement and disappointment, however, David HaMelech showed not the slightest indication of stopping for even a moment.
“Leave me Zemira,” cried Raamyah, “I have shamed you and your family. I have deceived my child whom I love so much. Turn your back on me for I can offer you only tragedy and unhappiness.”
Oh, wise man, I have had a dream.
Finally, his wife came in with the dinner that she had hurriedly prepared and which was not comparable to the wonderful repast she had given away.
Our sages have advised us that we should repent one day before we die. Inasmuch as no persons knows when he is to die, he should therefore consider every day his last day.
In the third year of the reign of Yehoyakim, melech Yehuda, Nevuchadnezzar, melech Bavel, lay siege to Yerushalayim and conquered it. He took many treasures from the Beis HaMikdash back with him to the land of Shinar.
Certainly, the Jewish leader, even more than the layman, must have his answers and explanations ready at all times
In the days of the Second Beis Hamikdash the Romans ruled over Eretz Yisrael and installed a king by the name of Hordus, or Herod, to enforce their rule. Hordus was an evil and ambitious man, and was quick to do whatever the Romans requested of him, no matter how terrible the decree was. Because of this, the Jewish people hated him, and this in turn caused him to hate them even more.
After the Chasmonaim defeated the Greeks their descendants assumed the throne of Eretz Yisrael and ruled over Bnei Yisrael. In the first years of their reign, they followed the path of Hashem and He was good to them.
There lived in his time a Ukrainian Jew who had strayed from the path of Torah.
Herod or Hordos — as he is known in the Talmud — was a usurper who seized the throne of the Chashmonaim and caused a terrible tragedy to befall the Jewish people.
If you were to ask the average Jew who destroyed the Bais HaMikdash and who sent the Jewish people into galus, he would instantly answer, “The Romans.”
The great Shlomo HaMelech, wisest of all men, wrote that there is a time for all things. There is a time to be born and a time to die, a time to cry and a time to laugh, a time to preserve and a time to throw away.
As for myself, I can only answer that the yetzer hara has persuaded me to take the position because of the honor.
Yehudis understood that her only hope lay in her willingness to risk her very life.
“Wisdom is better than rubies, and all things desirable are not to be compared unto her” (Proverbs 8:2). Rabi Aha explained in the name of Rabi Tanchuma ben Rabi Chiya: “My desirable things and your desirable things are not to be compared to her.”
Whatever the heathens have made has not been for the good of the world but only for their own pleasures.
Once while Rabi Shimon ben Shetach was studying the Torah, a man entered his beis midrash and said, “I have something very important to discuss with you and I would like no one to be present.”
The sages asked them, “Why are you unwilling to instruct others?”
Czar Nicholas was a rabid anti-Semite and constantly sought means and methods to convert the Jews to Christianity. But the harsher the decrees he issued against the Jews, the more tenaciously they adhered to the tenets of their forefathers.
“I am your king, you fool!” he cried.
But the words would penetrate their hearts and each would say to himself: “But I, too, am doing this terrible thing.” In this way Reb Elimelech would inspire the people to teshuvah.
The simple man was very impressed with these stories and the following morning he told his wife that he was preparing a sumptuous feast for erev Yom Kippur.