Parshat Shoftim 2018

Parshat Shoftim 
By: Rabbi Moshe Goodman, Kollel Ohr Shlomo, Hebron

בס”ד

לשכנו תדרשו
Inviting the Holy Presence in Our Holy Land
You Shall Appoint a King

“May You grow the sprout of David speedily… Blessed are You Hashem Who grows the horn of salvation.”

Numbers of opinions seem to differ in regard to the nature of Mashiach, the “sprout of David.” However, according to Ramhal’s teaching that there will be various stages of salvation and spiritual “evolution” spanning over thousands of years, it becomes easier to reconcile the differences between the opinions. In this way, we may say that in the beginning, there may only be the release of foreign power upon Israel, which is the opinion of Shmuel in the Talmud. At later stages, more miraculous events will occur, leading up to lofty spiritual states high beyond our grasp today. In any case this is a gradual process as hinted to by the ‘growth’ in the fore mentioned blessing.

Gradual growth also implies the continuity from the past to the future. This concept is hinted to by calling the Mashiah the sprout of “David” in the fore mentioned blessing, or the “other David,” as our Sages call Mashiah (Sanhedrin 98b). Therefore, by contemplating the ways of David as described in the prophets and by our Sages we gain important methods how to accelerate the “growth” of our salvation. By no doubt one of the important common factors between King David and Mashiach is the fact that both are “kings.” The kingship of David began with Hebron through which David also achieved his reign upon all Israel in Jerusalem. This also implies that important movement towards our future redemption flows through Hebron. Indeed, this is our prayer always: “and He remembers the kindness of the forefathers and brings a redeemer to their descendants for His Namesake with love.”

One of the important leaders of Hebron both on a spiritual and practical/organizational level was Rabbi Menahem Shmuel Slonim, of the famous Lubavitcher family, Slonim of Hebron. Rabbi M.S Slonim was born in Hebron in 5643 (1883). He became a pupil of Rabbi Mendel Naeh and also worked for Rabbi Hizkiya Medini. He married in 5661, and subsequently studied under the tutelage of Rabbi Yakov Orenstein in Jerusalem. When he returned to Hebron he instituted the “Bikur Holim Society”, and in 5667 he became the head of the newly established Anglo-Palestine-Company Bank in Hebron. During this period he made great strides towards enhancing the Jewish population in Hebron and in the towns in Hebron’s vicinity. He also brought skilled workers from Jerusalem to Hebron. Later, he moved to Jerusalem, where he continued to establish Jewish settlement. For example, he bought many lands in the newer neighborhoods of Jerusalem, upon which he established the neighborhoods “Romema”, “Ruhama”, and “Gefen Aderet.” After the Tarpat Massacre he moved to Tel Aviv, where he bought lands in Northern Tel Aviv and across the Yarkon River.

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Real Stories from the Holy Land #276

“One day I decided that I need to talk with a certain individual. Just after several hours I “happened” to meet that very person in a different location than my home-city or his home-city.”

Sources: Sefer Hebron p. 135

Comments, questions, and/or stories, email gmoshemoran613@gmail.com