Monday, June 06, 2005

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The Answer That's Been Waiting 900 Years! - Part 1

Rashi (Rabbi Shlomo ben Yitzchak, 1040-1105) is considered the foundational commentator on the Torah...

Berashis Bara Elokim et Hashamayim v'et Haaretz - In the beginning, G-d created heaven and earth. - Berashis (Genesis 1:1)

900 years ago, the great sage, gadol and tzaddik (leader and saintly) Rashi wrote this comment about the opening verse of the Torah. As you will see, this comment was written for today!. This is my response to Gog (sorry, George) Bush and the nations of the world.

Rashi's Commentary:

"In the beginning": Declared Rabbi Yitzchak: The Torah ought not to have begun from any verse other than, "This month [Nissan] shall be the head month to you," which is the first mitzvah that the Jewish people were commanded. What is the reason, then, that the Torah opens with Bereishit—the account of creation? Because — "He related to His people the power of His works in order to give them the inheritance of the nations!"

For should the peoples of the world say to Israel, "You are robbers, for you took by conquest the lands of the seven nations [of Canaan]," Israel may reply to them: "The entire earth belongs to the Holy One, Blessed be He. He created it - and gave it to the one who was appropriate in His eyes. That He gave it to them was an expression of His will, and that He took it from them and gave it to us was an expression of His will."

(This needs to be understood in more depth, for who says that it wasn't then His will that the land be taken from Israel and given to others? The next posts on this topic (evenings this week, G-d willing) will bring a copmlete explanation.)

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