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Moshiach in the Parsha

"Appoint for yourself judges and officers in all your settlements..."

(Shoftim 16:18)


"Judges" refers to those qualified and appointed to render judgments in accord with the dictates of the Torah. "Officers" refers to those judges, if necessary even by forceful compulsion.

Of the era of the redemption it is said: "I shall restore your judges as at first, and your counselors as at the beginning." (Isaiah 1:26) This verse mentions "judges" but not "officers". Instead of the latter there will be "counselors".

The task of the counselors is to explain and clarify to litigants the words and decisions of the judge so that they will understand and realize how those decisions are in the peoples' best interest and for their own benefit. Thus they themselves will want to follow the court's judgments.

It follows, then, that in the Messianic era there will no longer be a need for officers to enforce the law, for all shall willingly live up to their obligations.

In fact, even before the actual redemption, in the present era when everything is already ready for the redemption, we no longer need "officers" forcing us to carry out our duties and obligations. Even now all is ready to carry out the word of the "judge" willingly and
voluntarily. 

"For man is [like] the tree of the field"

(Shoftim 20:19)

Man is compared to a tree. A tree produces fruits which in turn cause other fruit producing trees to grow. In like manner, we are not to suffice with personal growth in matters of Torah and good deeds. We must produce fruits with seeds for new trees and new fruits.

We must exert positive influence upon our environment - upon friends, acquaintances, and anyone we happen to meet - that they, too, produce "fruits". This will cause all of creation to blossom, thus bringing about the redemption.

The Talmud lists a number of signs for the approaching redemption and concludes that the most manifest sign is when "You, mountains of Israel, you shall shoot forth your branches and yield your fruit..."  (Ezekiel 36:8)

To be like the trees of the field, that "the shoots taken from you will be like unto you," to blossom and cause a chain-reaction of self perpetuating fruits of Torah and mitzvot in oneself and others, is an assured way to bring about the speedy coming of Moshiach.

This applies especially to the study and application of the teachings of "Pnimiyut Hatorah" - the deeper, inner dimension of the Torah - which is referred to a the "Tree of Life"...

 

 


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