11 June 2021

Reb Neuberger : KORACH – A Hole in the Ground


A HOLE IN THE GROUND


This is the monumental rebellion.

 

How on earth can Korach rebel against his cousin, his friend, his leader, his beloved Rebbe, Moshe Rabbeinu? Can you imagine!

 

The generation of the Midbar merited to live with Moshe Rabbeinu, to learn from Moshe Rabbeinu, to be led by Moshe Rabbeinu. How could they rebel against Moshe Rabbeinu, especially because he was so clearly chosen by Hashem?

 

Moshe Rabbeinu took Am Yisroel out of Mitzraim!

 

This is incomprehensible!

 

My friends, I want to offer a thought.

 

In our days, the Land of Israel is more isolated every day. This is consistent with prophesy and the words of our Rabbis, who told us this would come about in the Days Before Moshiach. Additionally, within the Land of Israel, there is unprecedented political turmoil, party against party, faction against faction, Jew against Jew.

 

Please understand: I am not comparing political turmoil within the Land of Israel to the rebellion of Korach. Today we do not have a Moshe Rabbeinu, but let’s try to get perspective. We can look back on the ingathering of the Exiles to the Holy Land after two thousand years of Golus and we can wonder….

 

Is it not clear as day?

 

Why did we come back to the Holy Land after two thousand years if it were not to keep the Torah in Eretz Yisroel? Is there any doubt that the Land of Israel is the Land of Torah?

 

Since 1948, the State of Israel has been led by politicians. I am sorry, but let’s be real.

 

Israel needs the leadership of Moshe Rabbeinu, not Korach!

 

Ego is nothing. Hashem is everything! “Ain od milvado … There is none beside Him.” (Dvarim 4:35) From Korach we learned the suicidal thought that we can have a leader other than the Torah Leader!

 

Why are we rebelling against Hashem and His Torah? Do we hate ourselves?

 

Hashem has led us from the days of Avraham Avinu to this very day. This is the biggest story in the history of the world. There is no reality for us but the reality of the Torah. Okay, there is a constant struggle with our yetzer ha ra, but who in his right mind can say that this is not the Truth? Who can say anything but that we are Hashem’s People and the Torah is our only guide?

 

Why is Israel today not governed by the Torah?

 

How can there be political battles over whether to accept the Torah as our guide?

 

What is wrong with us?

 

This is the evil of Korach!

 

The result of all rebellion against Hashem is when a hole opens in the ground. Gehenom opens beneath us and the earth swallows us alive!

 

This week – the week of Parshas Korach! -- my wife and I were in Shaarei Tzedek Hospital in Yerushalayim. A few hours after we left, a sinkhole opened where we had just been walking, swallowing up many cars. Miraculously, no one was hurt, but the message is clear: Am Yisroel is walking on dangerous ground. This time, no one was swallowed alive, but….

 

We have to stop fighting Hashem and we have to stop fighting each other.

 

“When you are in distress and all these things have befallen you in the end of days, you will return unto Hashem, your G-d and hearken to His voice. For Hashem, your G-d, is a merciful G-d. He will not abandon you nor destroy you and He will not forget the covenant of your forefathers that He swore to them. …. You shall observe His decrees and His commandments that I command you this day, so that He will do good to you and to your children after you and so that you will prolong your days on the Land that Hashem your G-d gives you for all the days!” (Dvarim 4:30-40)

 

How long will it take us to do good for ourselves?

 

My friends, the Three Weeks are coming. Danger surrounds us. There is only One Place to turn and that is to return to Our Father in Shomayim with tears of teshuva! We have to overcome sinas chinom before the earth opens!

 

Every night, before going to bed, our last tefilla begins with these words: “Master of the Universe, I hereby forgive anyone who angered or antagonized me or who sinned against me ….” Every day there are countless cases of people who hurt each other.

 

But it is possible to still the voice of hatred in our hearts. I find it most useful to remember that, if I feel hatred toward someone else, the trait I think I hate in them is to be found in me! That is why I feel hatred, because I hate that trait in myself.

 

It is all on me! They are not the problem. I am the problem!

 

Maybe we can all do teshuva and bring Moshiach right away. We desperately need achdus. With achdus we can heal everything. “Hear Oh Israel: today you cross the Yarden, to come and drive out nations that are greater and mightier than you, cities that are great and fortified up to the heavens, great and lofty people, children of giants …. But Hashem, your G-d, crosses before you, a consuming fire. He will destroy them and he will subjugate them before you ….” (Dvarim 9:1ff)

 

Let’s be good to ourselves.

 

I know there are millions of Jews out there who are not listening to these words, but Hashem is shaking the world and opening the ground so that our hearts will open. If we try to eliminate sinas chinom and clean up our insides, then Hashem will immediately send our king and redeemer, Moshiach ben Dovid, who will lead us to our hearts’ desire, Binyan Bais Hamikdosh and the return of the Shechinah to Tzion!

 

 

 

GLOSSARY

Achdus: unity, specifically among Am Yisroel, the Jewish People

Binyan Bais Hamikdosh: Building of the Holy Temple

Midbar: The Sinai Desert

Shechina: The Presence of G-d

Sinas Chinom: gratuitous hatred between Jew and Jew

The Three Weeks: The period of greatest tragedy in the Jewish year

Tzion: The Temple Mount

 

 


A hole in the ground


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