Weekly Inspiration

Why Is Israel The Safest Place?
July 4th, 2024
Why Is Israel The Safest Place?

Someone recently asked a Gadol why he says that Israel is the safest place in the world. 

Please listen carefully to his answer: “Everything in Israel is in the nature of a nes; the entire life in Eretz Yisroel is miraculous, but the rest of the world operates according to the laws of nature. That being the case, we can say that Israel is the safest place in the world.” 

From the standpoint of the world’s “logic,” Israel is the most dangerous place in the world. Eretz Yisroel is the size of New Jersey, a land in which the Jews are surrounded by hundreds of millions of savage enemies. On the west is the sea, which is open to the warships of every nation. We are vastly outnumbered and universally hated. 

Yes, the entire world is against us, but the Master of the World is with us! 

Since the dawn of our history, every empire has sought to destroy us. “Bechol dor vador … in every generation they have come against us to destroy us!” (Pesach Haggadah) It has been said that the greatest and most obvious miracle in the world is the continued existence of the Children of Israel. It is a “pele,” a marvel. All the most powerful nations in history have tried to destroy us, the tiniest nation. And what is the result? We are still here and they are gone – all of them -- swept into the dustbin of history. 

I will repeat the famous words of Mark Twain – a non-Jew -- on this subject: 

“If the statistics are right, the Jews constitute but one percent of the human race.  It suggests a nebulous dim puff of stardust lost in the blaze of the Milky Way.  Properly the Jew ought hardly to be heard of; but he is heard of, has always been heard of.  He is as prominent on the planet as any other people.  He has made a marvelous fight in this world, in all the ages; and he has done it with hands tied behind him… The Egyptian, the Babylonian and the Persian rose, filled the planet with sound and splendor, then faded to dreamstuff and passed away; the Greek and the Roman followed, and made a vast noise, and they are gone; other peoples have sprung up and held their torch high for a time, but it burned out, and they sit in twilight now, or have vanished.  The Jew saw them all, beat them all, and is now what he always was, exhibiting no decadence, no infirmities of age, no weakening of his parts, no slowing of his energies, no dulling of his alert and aggressive mind.  All things are mortal but the Jew; all other forces pass, but he remains.  What is the secret of his immortality?” (Harper’s Magazine, 1897)

The secret of our immortality is clear, but it is beyond the grasp of other nations: our eternal bond with Hashem, which spans the entire life of this world and remains with us forever into the World to Come. Only we, who grasp the Torah close to us as we walk through the pathways of life, can understand this. In the eternal words of Dovid Hamelech, “[Hashem] relates His Word to Yaakov, His statutes and judgments to Israel. He did not do so for any other nation. They do not know [His] judgments!” (Tehillim 147)

They do not know His judgments and thus they are like straw that crumbles and vanishes in the wind. We, lehavdil, are a living fountain of Torah. “A righteous man will flourish like a date palm, like a cedar in Lebanon he will grow tall. Planted in the House of Hashem, in the courtyards of our G-d they will flourish….” (Tehillim 92)

This week we read the incomprehensible story of Korach! Yes, I know what the commentaries say: if we had been there, we might also have been swayed by Korach’s subtle and evil rhetoric. Yes, it takes iron determination to stick to the Words of Torah in this dark world of temptation. But, if we want to live -- if we want to survive – and not wind up in the dustbin of history, then we have no choice. 

We have to fight our own Yetzer ha Ra to stick to Hashem and His Torah.

At the end of Shacharis, the Siddur presents words for us to say as we enter the frightening, hefker world around us: “N’chaini … Hashem guide me in Your righteousness because of my watchful enemies. Make Your way straight before me.” (Tehillim 5) 

It is up to us to call upon G-d as we walk the dark streets of life. There are stories of how Gadolim walked to freedom through Nazi Germany, saying constantly to themselves, “Ain od milvado …. There is no one but Hashem.” As we walk the streets of life, it is up to us to call upon Hashem. We are surrounded by “watchful enemies” whose gunsights are trained upon us at every moment. 

But Hashem destroys the enemies of His People. Am Yisroel will survive if we train ourselves to navigate constantly by the Light of the Torah. “Even though I walk in the valley of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me….” (Tehillim 23)

The miraglim never entered the Holy Land nor witnessed the Light of Redemption, but we can learn from their catastrophic mistake. May we greet Moshiach ben Dovid and see the rebuilt Bais Hamikdosh soon in our days! 


Dovid Ha Melech: King David
Gadol: great rabbi 
Korach: someone who challenged the authority of Moses
Nes: miracle
Shacharis: morning prayers
Siddur: prayer book
Tehillim: Book of Psalms
Yetzer ha ra: evil inclination

Back to previous page

More Inspiration