Hashem Will Never Forsake Us | By Rabbi Dovid Abenson

Scary things are happening in the world. We face the reality that Israel may be on the brink of destruction from two fronts, chas v’shalom. From the outside, we fear Iran, who may have nuclear weapons very soon. They openly say they wish to destroy Israel, a country that comprises over 6 million Jews.

From the inside, the defeat of the left wing parties has caused tremendous political upheaval, demonstrations and protests. What do they really want? They want Israel to be a completely non-religious country. They want to live like Gentiles, satisfying their desires, doing as they please without rules or limitations from Hashem. The sad fact that Tel Aviv has become the “Gay center” of the world shows us where this is headed. If the High Court wins, we will no longer have a Jewish state. In a nutshell, the secular Jews are looking to nullify the Covenant that Hashem made with Avraham, making us the chosen people and a light to the world.

Is Hashen forsaking us??

Last Shabbos I found a beautiful midrash that was a source of comfort.

מדרש רבה אסתר פתיחתא סימן ד

שמואל פתח: (ויקרא כו, מד): “וְאַף גַּם זֹאת בִּהְיוֹתָם בְּאֶרֶץ אֹיְבֵיהֶם לֹא מְאַסְתִּים וְלֹא גְעַלְתִּים לְכַלֹּתָם לְהָפֵר בְּרִיתִי אִתָּם כִּי אֲנִי האֱלֹקיהֶם” “לֹא מְאַסְתִּים” – בבבל, “וְלֹא גְעַלְתִּים” – במדי, “לְכַלֹּתָם” – ביון, “לְהָפֵר בְּרִיתִי אִתָּם” …-

Shmuel opened his lecture on Megillas Esther quoting Parshas Bechukosai (Vayikra 26:44). After listing the punishments for disobeying Hashem, the Torah ends with comfort. “When they are in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them or abhor them so as to destroy them completely, breaking my covenant with them. I am the LORD their God.”. The Midrash states that these four words: ”גְעַלְתִּים”,“לְכַלֹּתָם”,“לְהָפֵר” and “מְאַסְתִּים”, each refer to one of the four exiles. “I will not reject them” refers to Babylon, “abhor them” refers to the exile of Persia-Medea, “destroy them completely” refers to the exile of Greece, and “breaking my covenant with them” is Rome.

Eitz Yosef explains further. Because Hashem exiled us to Bavel from Israel, it appears He rejected us. So Hashem says מְאַסְתִּים, I will not reject them in Bavel. He established Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azriah, who found favor and kindness and were granted wisdom over all the wise men in Babylon. Hashem performed open miracles for them as proof that Hashem did not reject the Jews.

גְעַלְתִּיםI abhor” means despised, made lower. This refers to Persia-Medea as it states in Megillas Esther (3:8), Haman said to King Achashverosh “there is a certain group scattered and spread among all the nationalities in all the lands of your Empire… it’s not worthwhile for the king to tolerate them”. Yet Hashem established Mordechai and Esther to bring the Jews back from the brink of extinction, and regain their respect.

The Greeks wanted to destroy our souls by abolishing Torah and mitzvos and forcing assimilation. But Hashem said לְכַלֹּתָם I will not destroy. He established Shimon Hatzadddik, Matisyahu ben Yochanan the Kohen Gadol and his sons who restored Torah and mitzvos to the Jewish people.

Finally, the midrash talks of Rome, the modern day Western Society. This exile might give the impression that Hashem has nullified His Covenant as it has lasted so long and seems to be without end. However, throughout it, Hashem has given us Torah scholars and great tzaddikim in every generation. This is clear evidence that He remains with us forever.

Even if the Jewish people fall to their lowest point, Hashem will not abrogate His Covenant with us.

Rabbi Ezriel Tauber writes in his book “Days Are Coming” that the Torah (Devarim 30:1) says that at the end of days all Jews will be in the midst of the nations to which they were exiled. This may be understood not only literally but figuratively. The Jews will have tried every fad, every philosophy, every culture. They will have indulged in everything the other nations offered. They will have explored everything except what lies within their hearts. However, from that very self-alienation, they will return to their roots with greater determination. Rabbi Tauber quotes the Sforno on that posuk that eventually we will reflect and be struck by the sharp contrast between truth of Torah and falsehood of our surrounding cultures and that will make us perceive how distant and alienated we are from Hashem and His Torah. Of this final repentance, our Sages say שמגעת עד כסא הכבוד, it reaches the Throne of Glory.

This prophecy has already started. It will surely continue. But this doesn’t mean that we should simply sit back and wait. We have to do our responsibility and show Hashem we really want to come back home.

On a recent trip to Eretz Yisroel, I noticed remarkable changes. I had not been to Israel for over 30 years and I found Yerushalyim to be unrecognizable with new buildings, roads and trams, and the height of Tel Aviv’s skyscrapers were dizzying. The Kosel tunnel museums were remarkable and the views from the Aish HaTorah balcony were breath- taking. One thing hadn’t changed: the huge schism between the religious and the non-religious Jews.

When I was studying in yeshiva in Eretz Yisroel in the 1980s, there were 180 missionary groups. Today, according to Rabbi Skobac, founder of Jews for Judaism, there are at least 300. Have we correspondingly doubled the number of organizations bringing Jews back to Torah? There is Chabad at Ben Gurion airport doing their wonderful work of encouraging non-religious Jews to don tefillin as early as 5.30am. Breslover Chassidim showing their simchas Hashem by dancing outside on streets in Yerushalayim with the goal of doing Kiruv. There are the great Aish Hatorah and Ohr Somayach institutions who do phenomenal jobs. But I also observed this 30 years ago. Other than a few more Kiruv organizations trying to do outreach, I did not see inherent Kiruv on the streets by frum Yidden. I observed the 2 sectors living side by side, but separately, focusing inward to their own world. With the dire matzav Klal Yisroel is in currently, it is incumbent upon us to do more.

In the Pesach Haggadah we sing “Kol Dichfin”, we invite all who are hungry to come and eat. Why is this part of the Haggadah in Aramaic whilst the rest is in Hebrew? Because that was the language spoken by the ordinary Jew. The Haggadah wants to teach us we should invite any Jew who is hungry to come eat with us, regardless of their background.

So too, if anyone is hungry for Torah, we must openly invite them into our houses and we will teach them! As Jews, we are responsible for each and every one of them regardless of their situation, and we have to make sure they are given the opportunity to delve into the beauty of Torah. We have to bring back those who have left the derech, and make sure our children stay on the derech.

When I was a bochur, I remember Rav Schach ztz”l closed his yeshiva during the elections in Israel. All the students had to go out to vote for his political party, for the purpose of saving Klal Yisroel. In a similar vein, I would like to suggest that all yeshivas in Israel should dedicate several days each year to travel throughout Israel, speaking to unaffiliated Jews and bringing them back, spreading the message, “We love you, we love the Torah, let us teach it to you. We are both the same side of one coin.”

In Meah Shearim, I noticed little has changed in 30 years. The same signs are displayed on the building walls asking people to dress modestly. Imagine if instead, the signs read:

כל היהודים שרוצים ללמוד את התורה הקדושה, בואו נשמח ללמד אתכם

All Jews who want to learn the holy Torah, come, we will be happy to teach you.

Shavuos is around the corner, and this is the time when ALL klal Yisroel were united in receiving the Torah from Moshe Rabbeinu and no one was left out. Let us rekindle the spark of our fellow brethren, whether it be a neighbor, co-worker or any unaffiliated Jew you may find on the street, and show them that they are part of this nation Yisroel. Kol Areivim Zeh le Zeh.


Live interview with Rabbi Abenson conducted by Zev Brenner

Here is the link:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0MI4hn5EuI

May this be a tremendous merit for Yehoshua ben Moshe a”h.*

Here is the link: https://youtu.be/-Gr0e_yJwSU

*Correction; It was an accidental overdose that led to Yehoshua ben Moshe a”h’s death.

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Coming soon:

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For more information please contact

Rabbi Dovid Abenson

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Tel. 15147393629

Cell/Whatsapp 15149935300

Email: [email protected]

Website: https://shaarhatalmud.com

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  1. Keep on dreaming Rabbi from America. Why don’t you move to ארץ ישראל not to Isreal as you call it and do the work yourself!

  2. I am in EY, and Lev L’achim is booming- there is a great thirst for Torah among the non frum and traditional sector- the media just wont publicize it. I live next to pisgat zeev, a secular neighborhood in Yerushalayim, and there are over 5 batei midrashim that host learning sessions for non frum Jews and they are often looking for more Yungerleit to come and learn with them. The movement is growing- they shuttle Yungerleit from the frum neighborhoods to the secular/traditional ones to learn, and there is also bussing and tuition funding for children attend Torah schools for those from families that cannot or will not pay for the private expenses. This is one of the reasons that the secular are so mad, they see the trend and cannot stop it, for they have nothing to offer.

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