BS”D Parashat Toldot
Midrash Yalkut Shimoni, Yechezkel 358:
שאלו לחכמה חוטא מהו ענשו א”ל חטאים תרדף רעה, שאלו לנבואה חוטא מהו ענשו, א”ל הנפש החוטאת היא תמות, שאלו לתורה חוטא מהו ענשו א”ל יביא אשם ויתכפר לו, שאלו להקב”ה חוטא מהו ענשו א”ל יעשה תשובה ויתכפר לו
They inquired of Wisdom, how should the wicked be punished in order for them to obtain forgiveness? And Wisdom replied (Mishlay 13,27) “Evil (misery) pursues the sinner”.
They asked Prophecy, how should the wicked be punished in order for them to obtain forgiveness? And Prophecy relied, “The one who sins is the one who will die”.
They asked the Torah, how should the wicked be punished in order for them to obtain forgiveness? And the Torah replied, “Let him bring a sin sacrifice and he will be atoned”.
They asked the Holy One Blessed Be He, how should the wicked be punished in order for them to obtain forgiveness? And He replied, “Let him repent and he will be atoned”.
The Holy One Blessed Be He created Wisdom, Prophecy and the Torah, with each one representing its own approach to sin and the sinner. Wisdom (logic) demands that the sinner who violated the Creator’s will shall suffer in order to attain his atonement. Prophecy lays down death as the prior condition for his atonement. And the Torah requires the bringing of a sacrifice or any of the other punishments present in the Torah such as a monetary fine, flogging, or exile.
But the only one who has the authority to be compassionate to the sinner is the Holy One Blessed Be He.
It must be emphasized that the sacrifices and financial fines of the Torah and the compassion of HaShem who accepts teshuva relate only to the sons and daughters of HaShem’s chosen people. Leaving the gentile nations to deal with the “Misery” dictated by “Wisdom” and “Death” demanded by Prophecy.
How should a young man in Israel or anywhere else in the world prepare for his or her future? High marks in high school are important. Being accepted into a major university is also an important factor, and even excelling in sports could make a difference.
But for an Arab in Israel, the rules are a bit different. If you come from a poor family and thus suffer from poor health and lack of education, simply take a kitchen knife and implant it in the back of a Jew, preferably a soldier. Causing a wound might not do the job, but murder will certainly get you far.
The perpetrator will be caught, tried and sentenced to life imprisonment or to many years of incarceration. While in prison, he will receive the best health care available. If his hearing is impaired, he will receive an expensive hearing aid. If he needs glasses, he will receive them. He will enjoy five meals a day and look better than he ever did on the “outside”. He will receive free schooling leading up to a BA, MA and Doctorate. His family will be free to visit him, that is if he can pull himself away from the color TV in his comfortable cell.
And all this with the knowledge that one day he will be freed.
He would never have gotten so far in life had he not stuck the knife in the back of a Jew.
Tonight the government freed 26 hardcore Arab murderers. They are healthy, happy and ready again to plan and use their pent-up hatred on the hand that fed them.
This is not the Jewish way!
As stated above, the leniencies of the Torah and of HaShem towards the sinner relate only to Am Yisrael, while the harsh treatment meted out by Wisdom and Prophecy are for the gentile sinner.
According to the historic ways of the Torah, a terrorist would never live to see a prison and certainly not to await his release and return to the comforts of his home.
When King Shaul had pity on the Amalekite King Agag, the prophet Shmuel killed Agag and informed Shaul that HaShem regretted having appointed him as King of Israel. HaShem then sent Shmuel to anoint David son of Yishai as the next monarch.
This is the same Shmuel the Prophet who judges Am Yisrael with compassion and piety.
The Book of Shmuel 2 chapter 8,2 relates that when the King of Moav killed David’s father and family, the Jewish King reacted:
ויך את מואב וימדדם בחבל השכב אותם ארצה וימדד שני חבלים להמית ומלא החבל להחיות ותהי מואב לדוד לעבדים נשאי מנחה:
David defeated the Moabites. He made them (all the males) lie down on the ground and measured them off with a length of cord. Every two lengths of them were put to death, and the third length was allowed to live. So the Moabites became subjugated to David and brought him tribute.
This is the same King David who authored the sacred Book of Tehillim and whose performance in bringing mishpat u’tzedaka (justice and charity) to Am Yisrael was more favorable in HaShem’s eyes than even the Bet HaMikdash (Talmud Yerushalmi, Shekalim end of chap. two).
The proper way to deal with terrorists is to: (1) negate any claim that they have human rights, (2) kill them on the spot, (3) expel their families – immediate and extended – from the land, and give all the family assets to the Jewish victims and (4) seize any Arab village or town whose citizens perpetrate a second terrorist attack, permitting only Jews to resettle it.
Our government did not want to free Arab murderers. However, the United States administration and the European Union forced it upon us with implied or implicit threats of economic and political boycotts. The United States kills thousands of innocent civilians by use of their unmanned drones; but if an Israeli soldier pushes or insults an Arab, then the Security Council rushes into session. This is antisemitism and the world’s attempt to de-legitimize the State of Israel and still maintain its hypocritical posture of civility and defense of human rights.
The situation can be prevented through the lessons learned from the following Yiddish story.
A melamed (teacher of young children) wished to change his profession by becoming a wagon driver. However, the wagon drivers’ guild objected and took the matter to the rabbi.
The guild claimed that they were wagon drivers and sons of wagon drivers for generations. As experts in the field, they feared that their reputation would be soiled if this new inexperienced driver were allowed to join them.
The rabbi then directed the guild to test the new man’s ability to be a wagon driver.
The head of the guild asked the man what he would do if the wagon got stuck in 10 centimeters of mud? The man replied that he would place a board or stone under the wheel to get out of the mud.
The next question related to mud of 20 centimeters and then to 30, and the new driver gave satisfactory answers to each situation.
The head of the guild asked him a final question. What would he do if the wagon got stuck in a full meter of mud? The man thought for a long while and then admitted that he had no operative plan to solve this problem.
At this point, the guild’s head turned to the rabbi and said, “You see rabbi, I told you that he was not competent to be a driver”.
When the rabbi asked the guild’s head what he would do under those impossible circumstances, he replied: “A seasoned wagon driver would never get into such a situation”.
When dealing with Aisav and Yishmael who became Aisav’s father-in-law in this week’s parasha, today’s Ya’akov (Medinat Yisrael) has to be wise and cautious never to be entrapped by the evils of our enemies and the stupidity of our friends.
Copyright © 5774/2013 Nachman Kahana