By: Yekutiel Ben Yaakov
The Corona Virus continues to sweep across the globe trashing mighty empires, crashing leading economies, and instilling the fear of the G-d Israel in the hearts and souls of many who dare to connect the dots, as Teheran, Rome and China lead the world in Corona casualties.
China, Iran and Rome–an evil axis against G-d and His chosen people
China has the largest amount of atheists in the world who, on the one hand, deny the existence of G-d, while on the other hand, stands in solidarity with the religious Islamic fanatics of Iran, as they pursue the annihilation of the Jewish state. One need not spend extra words to explain Iran’s role in sponsoring terrorism around the world, particularly, but not only against Jews, as Iran’s Mullahs pledge day and night that they will destroy Israel and overrun Jerusalem. Let us not forget the third primary hub of the Corona Virus, none other than Italy. The Roman Catholic Church, infamous for their crusades and pogroms against Jews over the centuries; surpassing any other religion in their persecution against Jews throughout the ages.
This coming Passover, a mere three weeks away, there will be chilling significance, when we pour the wine glass of Elijah at our seder-meal, and utter King David’s words in Psalms 79;6-7 quoted in the text of the Hagadah:
“Pour out your wrath on the nations who have not known You, and on Kingdoms which have not called out Your Name, for they have devoured Jacob and they have made His abode desolate. “
And as the words echo off of our wine glass and ring closer than ever to home in all of their indignant clerity, “Pour out your fury upon them, and pursue them in Your anger.”
“Pursue them with anger, and annihilate them from beneath the heavens of Hashem”, Lamentations 3;66.
Messiah comes after G-d takes revenge against the nations
The Rabbis bring evidence form the Bible that revenge against the nations is a prerequisite and a precursor to the final redemption, Isaiah 63: “It is a day of vengeance for me–my year of redemption has come.”
Also in Egypt, G-d struck the Egyptians with plagues before liberating the Israelite slaves
This was also the case when the Jews were redeemed from Egypt following the plagues against their Egyptian oppressors. As our sages claim, the Exodus from Egypt is the prototype for all future redemptions.
Revenge against the nations, sanctifies His name
It is through the Lord’s vengeance against the nations, who persecuted Jews throughout the ages, that brings sanctification and recognition of His name. As we say in so many of our prayers, bring redemption not for our sake, because we don’t deserve it, but save us for Your Name sake- that has been so defiled by the persecution of Your people who have been scattered amongst the nations, and by the destruction of Your Temple, which is associated with Your Name.
Oppression of Jews – His chosen nation, is a desecration of His Name
As the Mechilta states, “When G-d pays-back the nations and punishes them, His Name is exalted and made great in the world.” And as Rashi further explains in Yehezkel, 36, the degradation of the Jewish people is a desecration to His name. Rav Meir Kahane HY”D would explain, chillul, the Hebrew word for desecration comes from the root chalal – meaning empty, void. The world is void of G-d’s name, so to speak, if the gentile and Jew alike can ask, “where is the G-d of Israel, if He has power, why is he too weak to save His chosen nation?”
His Name is represented through His nation and His House
This is the rationale behind the revenge which inevitably must precede the final redemption of the Jewish people. Because at that time, the world will recognize the G-d of Israel and His omnipotence manifested through the plagues and punishments exacted against His enemies – the enemies of His people who represent his name.
Thus when G-d pummels and “corona-sizes” the nations in the end of days there are two reasons why this is a great sign that Messiah is on his way. The first reason is to serve as a wake- up call for the Jews, to repent before the plague spreads to the Jews in Israel. The Jews, can only be redeemed, according to some, after they have repented. And moreover, the purpose of creation and the purpose of redemption are to sanctify His name.
Corona’s role in the redemption process
Most Rabbis agree that the Corona Virus is unprecedented and plays some sort of role in the final redemption, as do many other blatant signs that symbolize redemption and that pave the way as a wake- up call for us to repent before we suffer horrible consequences, G-d forbid. The Talmud in Sanhedrin maintains that there are two ways to bring Messiah, (Bieta in ints eventual time, or Ahishena – early–either by repenting on our own, showing faith in G-d and thereby ushering in a majestic and swift redemption, without needless suffering (Ahishena), or through nightmarish punishments against the Goyim that eventually spread to Israel , G-d forbid if we do not learn any lessons from their punishment, (Zefania), until we eventually wake up and repent, when we have nowhere else to turn but to G-d.
However, make no mistake, faith in G-d and repentance precedes Messiah’s coming. The only question is whether we will rise up to the occasion out of our own volition, and show our faith by following His Torah and taking actions that prove our faith in Him before the punishment reaches us, or will we bring upon ourselves horrible and unnecessary suffering, ( Bieta). Eventually, we finally awaken and repent. Regardless, Redemption comes, however we have free choice in which manner we choose to bring that final endgame.
Here are some incredible sources from the Bible and the Talmud regarding the final redemption:
The Midrash in Shir Hashrim says that there will be a big plague before Messiah comes.
The Rabbis teach us that faith brings redemption which can be brought by all of Israel observing two Sabbaths – the day that represents our faith in G-d’s creating of the world in six days. By us resting on the seventh day we testify to and reaffirm our faith in creation. Resting on the Sabbath is also a test of faith–that we can work for six days and sustain ourselves for seven. There were periods in history when Jews would be fired for refusing to work on Saturday.
When we are not frightened of isolation and to stand alone, with faith in G-d we merit redemption
The greatest test of faith for the Jew in Israel is exemplified by observing those “dangerous” commandments which require real faith in G-d, such as driving out our enemies, unlimited Jewish settlement in the land of Israel, no retreat from Jewish Land, and the building of the Temple or exercising Jewish sovereignty on the Temple Mount, Judaism’s Holiest site. It is these mitzvoth that frighten the timid Jewish leaders of little faith. They fear the reaction of the gentile and they are obsessed over the fear of sanctions and diplomatic isolation. They place their faith in Washington and not in G-d, who they fear is too weak to deliver us from the hands of the gentiles, if we dare follow His provocative commandments.
For the Jew in the Exile, he exhibits his faith by making Aliya to Israel. Aliya is the litmus test of faith for the Jew in the Diaspora. Aliya proves that one truly believes that G-d will provide for him, in spite of all of the apparent economic and social challenges inherent in beginning a new life, in a foreign land, surrounded by a sea of enemies, etc..
Circumcision and killing the god of Egypt were the necessary yardsticks of faith required before redemption
We forget that the key to redemption lays in our showing our unwavering faith in G-d. The Rabbis teach us that the Jews were only rescued from bondage in Egypt, when the Jews carried out blatant acts of faith, just as it shall be in all future redemptions (Midrash Beshalach). What were the two acts of faith sited by the Rabbis? -The blood of the circumcision and the blood of the paschal lamb.
Rabbi Meir Kahane in his book, Sefer HaMacabbi. Shemot, page 317, (Hebrew edition): explains what was so special about those two mitzvoth of circumcision and sacrificing the lamb. They are both extreme acts of self-sacrifice which symbolize “knowing G-d”. Taking the lamb, which symbolized the G-d of Egypt, tying it to the bed posts for 4 days, before slaughtering it, is the ultimate act of provocation to their god and shows ultimate faith in Hashem. Also, agreeing to circumcise oneself days before leaving Egypt, weakening themselves, just when they would need their strength to fight, is an act of heroic faith in G-d.
For this reason, Rabbi Kahane sites, that we must roast the lamb whole and not boil it in water, so that it retains its genuine and whole form and does not fall apart in the water and lose its form. We must not eat a part of it, raw, or deep and hidden in a pot, but rather cook it all, whole, where it remains visible and identifiable to all.
It is fascinating to read the Rashi on that very verse in Exodus:
Exodus chapter 12, verse 9, You must not eat the offering raw…Rashi says: coro na in (Arabic). Many have claimed that this rashi is a remez – a hint, in the Torah about Corona that they say has plagued China because they eat live animal limbs, raw, in violation of the seven laws of Noah that all goyim are obligated to adhere to. They site a geamtria – ever min Hachai equalling Corona.
This is a valid idea, but why would that impact Jews, if the Chinese violate their commandment? Why should we suffer in Israel? There are far deeper concepts that are symbolized in the Paschal sacrifice and in this mysterious Rashi. The underlining concept behind this mitzvah is a great lesson of faith and redemption. Rabbi Kahane would say that there is a great Jewish Idea behind this ritual. The Corona is a punishment to the Chinese perhaps for their dietary culinary preferences/ However for the Jew, it represents a punishment for our lack of faith and our unwillingness to fulfil the mitzvoth that represent faith.
It is no coincidence that the headlines blared with the news about the Corona virus on the same day that the Jews celebrated the Trump Deal of the Century which would have us surrender 70 percent of Judea and Samaria and the Temple Mount to Muslim rule. And as Bibi repeatedly has said, he won’t even permit Jewish prayer on the mount on Saturday so as not to infuriate the Arabs. Bibi has missed the whole point. He has failed to understand the cure to Corona – isolation and standing tall with faith in G-d despite fear of international sanctions and isolation.
We Jews are obsessed with international opinion for we fear isolation and sanctions, so G-d has given us isolation and quarantine, until we connect the punishment with the crime.
That is the lesson of Passover, the Paschal Lamb and Corona. It is also not coincidental that Corona and the Trump Deal have the same gematria. And that Corona and “messiah coming” also share the same equivalent numeric gematria.