For thousands of years, Jews always knew that in times of trouble, our only way
to salvation is to call out to G-d and put our faith and trust in Him Alone! Only when
the Jews in Mitzrayim cried out to G-d to help them, were their prayers answered
and Moshe Rabbeinu was sent to take them out.
Yet for some sad reason, while the US president concludes every address to the
American people with “G-d bless America” and the Moslems always scream “Allah
Akhbar,” the Israeli prime minister cannot bring himself to mention G-d in any of his
speeches. While the US was founded on the principles of separation of church and
state, the cornerstone of America rests on its belief in a Creator and every dollar bill
reads “In G-d we trust.” Yet Israel’s “Hatikva,” its National Anthem of hope, fails to
even mention our faith in G-d but instead substitutes the word “Rock of Israel.”
While President George Bush is not ashamed to call for G-d’s help in winning the
war against terrorism, our Israeli prime minister hasn’t mentioned Hashem’s Name
even once. We’ve put our faith in might and power rather than in G-d! While, we
are permitted to use might and power to defeat our enemies, we must know that it is
G-d who makes our armies victorious. But when there is no mention of G-d and we
put our full faith in the strength of our army alone, we‘re making a terrible mistake!
A Jew must always know that נזכיר א’ ה’ בשם ואנחנו בסוסים ואלה ברכב אלה
A look throughout Jewish History should convince us that our deliverance and
salvation comes only when we cry out to G-d for His help. This is what our Father
Yaakov did when faced with Esav and his army of four hundred men. This is how
Mordechai defeated Haman in ancient times. This is how King Chizkiyahu won the
battle against the vast armies of Shancherev who besieged Yerushalayim. And this
has been our secret weapon throughout the ages. If we would only use this powerful
weapon, then no power on earth would be able to harm us!
וַנִּצְעַק אֶל ה’ אֱלקֵֹי אֲבותֵֹינוּ – And We Cried Out to Hashem
An enslaved person loses his most prized possession which is his TIME. Every
moment he must be ready to serve his master and he doesn’t seem to have any time
The Jews in Mitzrayim couldn’t even find the few seconds to pray to Hashem.
Prayer takes concentration. It was only upon Pharaoh’s death when they were finally
given a few moments of freedom in order to weep for him, that they were finally able
to catch their breath and cry out to Hashem as it says אבתינוּ אלקי ה’ אל .ונצעק
Sometimes we are so enslaved in our struggle to earn a living and survive, that
we don’t seem to find the time to properly concentrate our hearts in prayer and
cry out to G-d. Our thoughts are occupied with worldly requests rather than with
spiritual matters. The Baal Shem Tov would say that where ones thoughts are, that’s
where we are really found.
The longer we remained enslaved in Mitzrayim, which was the center of immorality
and decadence of the ancient world, the greater the chance and danger that we
become influenced by their culture and their way of life and begin to assimilate
and become integrated into Egyptian society. Over time, the spiritual dangers to
our morals and values were slowly compromised and one’s life style slowly begins
to change. It was only because some Jews didn’t change their names, their dress,
and their language, that they were able to remain apart. Just take a look at what’s
unfortunately happening here in the USA. Jews have only come to these shores a
little more than one hundred years ago and assimilation has allredy reached epidemic
Chometz symbolizes slavery since it takes time for dough to rise and slavery steals
a person’s time. Matzah symbolizes speed which was so essential for our freedom.
Every moment we spent as slaves in Egypt robbed us of our precious time which we
could never make up.
Today, too, we are experiencing mass dropouts from Judaism. Even in Israel,
we have lost thousands upon thousands who no longer believe in our exodus from
Egypt and are ashamed of their religion. Our own brothers have become filled with
hatred toward us and have discarded all semblance of Judaism. A reform Rabbi (?)
in California is not ashamed to publicly deny our exodus from Egypt. The fifth son
is busy watching a movie or going to the theater and cannot be found at the seder
table. There is a total lack of communication. Thousands of Israeli children who
attend Israeli schools know more about today’s rock stars and football players than
lhavdil about Moshe Rabbeinu. Instead of calling out to Hashem to help us defeat
our enemies, they put their full faith in Israel’s Defense Forces. Even upon Arafat’s
death they didn’t seem to know whom to thank and to whom to pray.