Apr 4 2015, Divar Torah 2nd night of Pessach, Aish Hatorah
If we wanted to describe Chag Hapessach in two words, it certainly would be “Ziman Chay’ru’tay’nu”. Yes after 210 years as Uvodim to Pharoh, they had had enough. Even the name Pharoh says it all.
The first and last letters spell “peh”, while the middle two letters spell
“ra” or evil. Yes he had an evil mouth, that constantly issued evil decrees against B’Nai Yisroayl
Is it any wonder, why they wanted now to be Uvodim to Hashem, as opposed to Pharoh, and if so, they hoped and prayed, that Hashem would take them out of Mitzrayim. But wait, how could they expect that? Would Hashem change His mind. After all, He said that B’Nai Yisrael would be Uvodim in Mitzrayim for 400 years. If my calculations are correct, this would mean they had another 190 years, to serve as Uvodim to Pharoh. And this is what “Matzah” is there to remind us of. for if you spell out the letters of Matzah, that is ” mem tzadi and hey”, would you believe the gematria is “190”.
But before Hashem would shorten their stay as Uvodim, He had to see, that they were ready to leave. And how did He test them? It was on Shabbas, the 10th day of Nissan, that He commanded B’Nai Yisrael to take a lamb, which was the god of the Egyptians, keep it for four days, following which they would bring same as a korban to Hashem. And so B’Nai Yisroayl followed His instructions.
But what about Pharoh and the Mitzrim, what did they do? The Mitzrim went to Pharoh, and asked that he release B’Nai Yisrael. Pharoh refused. These Egyptians attacked Pharoh, and the ones who were the most antagonistic against us were killed.
Thus B’Nai Yisrael passed the test. This why their heroic act, is always observed on Shabbat, because of the miracle that occured on that Shabbat.
Now I ask you, where else in the Ha ggadah, do we find the term “Chai’rut”. The gematria of chai’rut is 624. Now if you multiply the gematria of Kos Yayin by four, you will also arrive at “624”. The same as “lechem Oni multipied by three. And what is significant about the number 624? If we add 6 + 2 + 4 = 12. Yes, all 12 shevotim were to be released.
And today, we s till yearn for freedom. How do we see this a t the seder? We fill up a c up of wine, and set a place for Eliyohu, who we hope will grace our seder, drink the wine, and thus herald the coming of Moshiach. And I suggest, we set aside a second cup, and a second place at the table, for someone we all hope and pray, will soon also be free. I speak of Jonathan Pollard. What a tremendous lift his release, would give to B’Nai Yisrael!!!
Now can you try to visualize this scenerio. Jonathan Pollard is released. The Medina sends over a large Jet, to pick him up. On board, there are enough men to make a minyan, so he can both daven and learn, as he travels home.
Now let us proceed. The plane lands at Ben Gurion Airport, and who is there to meet him? Or shall we put it another way, who is not there!! Our PM is here, and by the way, I am not certain as to the significance of this, but the rosha tayvot of Benjamin Netanyohu is “52”, the same as the gematria of Eliyohu.
Standing beside the Prime Minister, on one side is Esther, Jonathan’s Aishet Chayil, and on the other side, is the Chief Rabbi of Israel. The entire knesset is also there, and at least 200,000 people, being all that could be accomodated. But there is more
What was it, that was the signal to Hashem, that B’Nai Yisrael was ready to receive the Torah? I believe it was this posuk “Va’yichan sham tachat hahar. They being B’Nai Yisrael encamped under the mountain, being Har Sinai. But note va’yican is in the singular, although we are speaking of 600,000 Jews. Yes, they used the right term, for there was uchdut amongst all the people, and because of that uchdut, they deserved to receive the Torah.
And thus what will B’Nai Yisrael deserve now, that when Jonathan Pollard arrived, there was also uchdut. Maybe this is the time for Eliyohu to welcome Moshiach for us.
Now having said the aforesaid, is it only a dream, that he can be released? No, I think not. This is the month of Nissan, the month of miracles. And where did we see a similar miracle? If we take the rosha tayvot of the first two letters of Pollard, they have a gematria of “110”. And when I hear the number “110”, I immediately think of Yosef Ha’tzaddik, who lived one hundred and ten years. And see how similar were the situations of Yosef and Yehonatan
Yosef was also in prison, for no valid reason. He was released on a moment’s notice, because Hashem assisted him in interpreting dreams. And in no time, he was second in command to Pharoh. What does the future hold for our Yehonatan!! What is our role?
We cannot bring karbonot, as they no longer exist. But what what was the purpose of bringing a korban? Just look to the first three letters. They spell “karayv”, or come close to Hashem, and ask for forgiveness, or give thanks etc.
So what has replaced Korbanot today, if not tefillot. And while we say our tefillot for him, here are the reasons why he deserves to be released. Despite being in prison for thirty years, he explicitly stated, he does not want to be exchanged for a terrorist. In addition, he spends most of his day engrossed in tefillot and learning. And how can we forget Esther his wife, a true tzadday’kus. And finally i this short list, what we are asking for, is Cherut for him.
What a meaniful word cherut is. The first two letters spell Chai. Yes give him life, so he can be a leader and believer, just as Ruth was, as the last three letters of Cherut spell Ruth.
And thus, as we are now going to proceed with our Maariv tefillot, let us daven with kavana and with tears. Why tears? It is said, that following the chet ha’aygel, all the gates in heaven were closed, save and except for the gates of tears.
So let us hope and pray, that this miracle will occur shortly, and as Yehonatan comes “home”, we can truly say, this is the Chag of ziman chay’ru’taynu. And may it happen soon. Amen!!!