What distinguishes Am Yisroel from every other nation?
Every person and every nation, since the beginning of history, has had difficulties, trials, tribulations, sorrows, pain, trouble. It is unending.
Generally, people blame their troubles on someone else. Nations blame other nations and that is why there are unending wars. People blame other people and that is why there are unending conflicts.
There is one exception, Am Yisroel.
On Yom Kippur we klop “Al chait.” As Dovid ha Melech says, “Hashem is close to the brokenhearted; those crushed in spirit He saves.” (Tehillim 34)
When we have trouble, we look inside. We are not afraid to take the blame upon ourselves. We accept responsibility for our own inadequacies, and this is how we are able to soar above the world. We say in Selichos, “Let us examine our ways and … return to You, for Your right hand is extended to accept penitents….”
Avraham Avinu said to Yishmoel and Eliezer, “Sh’vu lachem po … you stay here with the donkey, while I and [my son Yitzchak] will go [to the Akeida].” (Beraishis 22:5) Am Yisroel is in a different universe from the rest of the world, only because we take upon ourselves responsibility for our shortcomings.
We are now at a crossroads in history. Please forgive me for the following. I am not in the business of giving advice, but I do believe that the handwriting is on the wall.
“Just then fingers of a human hand came forth and wrote on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace ... and the king saw the palm of the hand that was writing. The King’s appearance changed and his thoughts bewildered him. The belt around his waist opened and his knees knocked one against the other. The king cried aloud to bring the astrologers ….” (Daniel 5:5) But no one could interpret the writing on the wall until the Queen said to call Daniel, who interpreted the words and said to the king, “Your kingdom has been broken ….”
My friends, I want to say that we are entering a new period in history. When Moshe Rabbei-nu took our ancestors out of Mitzraim, they were able to leave only because Mitzraim, that mighty nation, collapsed. Only then did Hashem take His children out of spiritual and physical slavery to Har Sinai, where we received the Torah of Life.
What does that have to do with us?
Recently, the State of New York unleashed an attack upon the foundation of Jewish life by attacking the yeshiva system. This is not just a political maneuver. This is a seismic event. There is more: there are now daily vicious attacks on Yidden in New York City, where the perpetrators are consistently exonerated by the courts. The next day they attack again.
We have to know that the structure we have grown to know in the entire world of Golus is crumbling. A new chapter is opening; a new book is being written.
“A new king arose over Egypt, who did not know of Yosef.” (Shemos 1:8)
My friends, I believe it is time for the Jews to leave chutz l’Aretz.
This is not spiritual advice. I am not a rebbe. I do not know when Moshiach will come. I am saying simply that it is not safe for us now in the lands of the other nations. This is a matter of safety. It is time to leave.
Someone asked me last week, during a speech, whether there is room in Israel for every Jew. My friends, Hashem gave the land to us, and there is room for every Jew. The Land, if necessary, will expand for us, but we have to preserve our lives. A poisonous wind is blowing in the lands of our exile.
I am not saying Israel is paradise. Not yet. But it is the land of the future, and the lands of the Exile are crumbling. The handwriting is upon the wall.
Because we are unafraid to confront our own weakness, we can survive as spiritual people. Because we have the Torah, we can confront the Yetzer ha Ra. But we have to save our lives. It is not clear how long the Ruler of the Universe will tolerate the worldwide rebellion again Him and His Torah, but the ground is rumbling and the towers are shaking.
Hashem said to Avraham Avinu, “And the fourth generation shall return here, for the iniquity of the Amorite shall not yet be full until then.” (Beraishis 15:16)
I believe that the “iniquity of the Amorite” may be quite close to “full.”
May Hashem have mercy upon us. May He gather us together as one. May we accept responsibility for our own inadequacies and do teshuva, returning to Him and His Torah. May our Heavenly King soon rule over us. And may our earthly king, Moshiach ben Dovid, rule over us, in the Presence of the Shechina in the Holy Land of Israel.
It could happen this year.
May we be sealed in the Book of Life.