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Friday, April 27, 2012

The Miracle of The Jewish State

At our Shiloh Israeli Independence Day Celebrations, Rabbi Elchanan Bin-Nun spoke at twilight, when Memorial Day faded into Independence Day.  That's the custom here in Shiloh.  Everyone  begins gathering for Mincha (the afternoon prayer) in the enormous main shul which is modeled after the Biblical Mishkan Tabernacle.  By the time Rav Elchanan is finished his shiur it's time for the festive Evening Prayers and the synagogue is packed.

One of the last things Rav Elchanan said, and I'm pretty sure I've heard him say it before, is that the greatest miracle was the actual declaration of a Jewish State.  Considering that many Jews in Israel were against it, either for what they considered religious reasons, like the Chareidim, or they had less faith in G-d and feared that declaring a state would further endanger us, until Ben-Gurion actually declared our independence, there were too many doubts.

And here we are, sixty-four years after that fateful day, and we still have state, admittedly imperfect, but as long as we're breathing we can improve, do teshuva, repent.

In Shiloh we say the Hallel Prayer with a blessing, unlike in some places.  This year the Chief Rabbi Amar announced not to say the blessing, but obviously Rav Elchanan's rabbinic authority disagrees.

Here are some videos I took of the prayers.


NormanF said...

If the Jewish State was established at the "wrong" time, G-d would not have allowed to become a fact in the world.

If one makes a marital contract on the Sabbbat, that's a sin but a valid contract nevertheless is honored.

Israel may not have been established for g-dly reasons (its founders were atheists) but it has moved in the right direction to greater faith.

Which is why Avrum Burg is worried about it enough to want to reverse it. As individuals, sinners can repent and draw closer to G-d, all the more so it is true of a country!

May Israel have many more years of independence and grow from strength to strength!

Batya said...

Norman, I don't really like the use of the word "secular" to describe the "founders." Remember it was a coalition with some very G-d fearing men. And I can't see those early Zionists as that far removed from G-d or they would have gone to an easier life like Australia, South Africa or the Americas.