B”H

Sacrifices As Part of a Course of Redemption Even Though They Don’t Do Teshuva [ Repent ]

Excerpts from an article by Mr. Sh. Scheinman that received the written approval of Rabbi Yisrael Ariel, Head of the Temple Institute


First of all to remove any illusions over our future, we no longer have the ability of redemption in merit of our righteousness. As brought in the introduction to Kol Hator, [ the edition of year 5754, page 4 ] the view of the explanation of the Vilna Gaon to Tikunei Zohar, [126] “when they do not merit it we are dealing with [ we are dealing with a redemption that is not in the merit of our righteousness, and similarly, this is implied in Kol Hator chapter 1 section 15 ] “and in a generation that is entirely guilty, for there no longer is a possibility of redemption by means that they merit it”.

In the book of Rabbi Menachem Kasher, z.l., Hatekufa Hagdola, page 79, we learn that also Ramban recognized the possibility “that even though they don’t do Teshuva they are redeemed”. However, he did not establish by which means the redemption must come, and here’s a quote:

And Ramban in Sefer Hageula [ page 277, of the Chavel edition ] also holds that that the authoritative viewpoint is in accordance with the words of Rabbi Yehoshua. And here is a quote: And so too, for the matter of messiah, itself, our rabbis were in disagreement. Of them there was someone that said, if Israel does not do Teshuva, they are not redeemed and he is Rabbi Eliezer. And this viewpoint emanates from what I said, that the Lord does not provide good to someone who is not fit; and even though he admits that there is a determined time of the end, for there is no man from the men of our Torah that disagrees concerning this, yet he holds that the determined time of the end, itself is stated on the condition of Teshuva; therefore the Almighty lengthens [ the time we are not redeemed ] from generation to generation, even after the stated end time, until the fitting generation that does Teshuva arrives, as he has lengthened [ the time we are not redeemed ] from the generation of Chizkiyahu until now. And Rabbi Eliezer’s position gains assistance from the verses of the Torah where the future is dependent upon a condition of Teshuva and worship as explained.

And of them, that is I wish to say, of the sages of Israel, there is someone that agreed that even though they do not do Teshuva, they are redeemed. And he is, Rabbi Yehoshua and he prevailed over Rabbi Eliezer. [ From the scriptural passage that stated ] “And he raised up his right and his left unto heaven and he swore by the life of the universe for to a season, seasons and a half..... all this shall be completed”. {end quote}

This verse that proves that even when they don’t do Teshuva, they are redeemed, appears in the book of Daniel, chapter 12 verse 7.

In verses 8 till 12 of the same chapter, the following is written:

And I heard and I do not understand, and I said, my master, what is the end of these things? And he said, go Daniel, for these matters are blocked and sealed until the time of the end. They will be clarified and made lucid and many will be purged and the wicked will act wickedly and all wicked shall not understand and those of keen intellect will understand. And from the time of the removal of the Tamid and the placing of an abomination that makes desolate, 1290 days. Happy is he that waits and arrives at the days 1335.

In Sefer Hageula, [ attributed to Ramban, in accordance with the testimony of Rabbi Chavel ] Ramban, attempted to deduct from here, when would the time arrive, “that even though they don’t do Teshuva, they are redeemed”.

Ramban thought that the explanation of the words 1290 days that’s in the book of Daniel is 1290 years. According to Ramban 1290 years after the Tamid was removed at the time of the destruction of the Second Temple, begins the redemption of Messiah son of Ephraim and another 45 years later begins the redemption of Messiah son of David [ 1335 after the destruction of the Second Temple ].

The explanation of Ramban did not materialize in reality. Already more than 1900 years have passed since the destruction of the Second Temple [ and more than 1290 years since construction began on the dome of the rock in Jerusalem ] and the man, Messiah son of David, has not yet arrived.

If we assume that the redemption will come in a generation that is entirely guilty because there is no more possibility of redemption by means of meriting it, how then is it possible to explain Daniel 12:11, “And from the time of the removal of the Tamid and the placing of the abomination that makes desolate 1290 days”.

One way, that it is possible to explain Daniel is in the following way. In the future we will act similarly to the Maapilim and go up and offer the Tamid sacrifice, until the years that are fitting for the arrival of Messiah son of David. Afterwards the wicked will succeed in removing the Tamid sacrifice from the Temple Mount and they’ll also place there, an abomination for a period of 1290 normal days [ 24 hours for each day ]. Add to this period another 1335 days or perhaps another 45 days and we will receive the blessing “Happy is he that waits and arrives at the days 1335”.

The above explanation, I did not bring as the only possible interpretation of Daniel, but rather as a defense against those that wish to hold back the Tamid sacrifice until we repent.

In summary, since the redemption will come in a generation that is entirely guilty, it is sufficient for us to have a small community of men of faith and integrity [men of Amana ] that are interested in sacrificing sacrifices, as it is written in Kol Hator chapter 2 section 131 :

And this is the means and the biggest and surest remedy to ease, and even remove all the pains of Gog and Magog and all the pains of the land of Israel: The rectification of character traits with the establishment of men of Amana [ men of faith and integrity ] in the holy city that by means of this there is redemption of the truth and sanctification of Hashem. That these are the main goals of all are acts in the atchalta degeula [the beginning of the redemption]. And we have already explained earlier on, in accordance with our rabbi [ the Gaon of Vilna ] that as the footsteps of messiah progress with the ingathering of exiles, the sitra achra [the other side] gets stronger with all its might in its chief task to deny and uproot the truth and the righteous as our sages have said, in the footsteps of messiah the truth is absent etc. In contrast to all this, upon us is to battle with all our might with the help of heaven, to overcome it [the sitra achra] with the acts and the rectifications as have been said and which will be explained later. {end quote}

Furthermore, I see fit to add, that even if you, the reader, believe that the redemption will come by means that they merit it, [not in accordance with the Vilna Gaon], nevertheless, one should still not push away the mitzva of sacrifices because of mockery from Jews that do not keep the Torah. For we learn in Be’ur Halacha on the words , he shall not be embarrassed, in siman 1 of the Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chaim :

"In a mitzva that he does for himself and people mock him, then certainly one should not be concerned at all about their mockery, nor should he quarrel with them. However, if he is standing in a place that has Apikorsim (heretics) that rise up against the Torah and wish to enact some regulations in the matters of the city, and by means of this they will bring the people to transgress the will of G-d; and he opened in peace, and his words were not obeyed. In such a situation the Beit Yosef did not speak of at all. And it is a mitzvah to hate them and quarrel with them and nullify their plotting with all that he has the ability to do. And King David, peace be unto him said, '' Do I not hate, Hashem, those that hate you and with those that rise up against you, I shall quarrel ! I hate them with an utmost hatred: I count them as my enemies''. (Psalms 139:21,22)

There is a precedent in the history of our nation for the offering of Sacrifices upon an altar on the Temple Mount at a time that the Temple is not built.

In chapter 3 of the book of Ezra we learn: And the seventh month arrived and the children of Israel were in the cities and the nation gathered themselves together as one man to Jerusalem. And Yeshua the son of Yotzadak arose, and his brothers the cohanim (priests, who are the descendants of Aaron) and Zerubbavel the son of She’alti’el and his brothers, built the altar of the Lord of Israel to offer upon it burnt offerings as it is written in the Torah of Moses the man of the Lord. And they set the altar on its bases, during [a time] with dread upon them from the nations of the lands ; and they offered burnt offerings upon it to Hashem, burnt offerings for the morning and for the evening. And they made the holiday of Succot as it is written and offered the daily burnt offerings by number according to the regulation of each day in its day. And afterwards the daily [tamid ] offering and at the times of the new moon offerings and at the times of the sacred appointed seasons of Hashem and for all who would offer a free will offering to Hashem. From the first day of the seventh month they began to offer burnt offerings to Hashem and the foundation of the Heichal of Hashem [the holiest building within the Temple Mount] was not yet laid. And they gave money to the stonecutters and the craftsmen and food and drink and oil to those of Tsidon and those of Tsor to bring cedar trees from the Levanon to the sea of Yafo in accordance with the official permission of Coresh, the king of Paras [Persia] upon them.

The book , Torat Habayit, volume 1 chapter 6 section 7, brings in the name of the Kaftor VaPherach that in the sixth millennium [more than 1100 years after the destruction of the Second Temple] we also tried to offer sacrifices, even though at that time the control of the Temple Mount was in the hands of the Gentiles and there was no Temple there.

To quote the Kaftor VaPherech sixth chapter [page 15] :

My teacher, my rabbi Boruch Z.L., said to me that Rabbeinu Chananel [according to Rabbi Bar-Chaim it should be Yechiel and not Chananel] from Paris Z.L. sought to come to Jerusalem and he was in year 17 of the sixth millennium and he sought to offer sacrifices in this time. And I, because I was burdened, did not ask him, what shall we do about our Tuma, [ our state of ritual impurity] , and where is a cohain [a descendant of Aaron] with the proper proof of his lineage and fitness. I in the midst of my traveling recalled the Halacha that one should not be concerned about the Tuma [our state of ritual impurity] as said in Temura, Yesh B’korbanot..... That sacrifices of the community push away Tuma and Shabbat. And so too, in tractate Pesachim in the chapter Keitzad Tzolin; if the congregation became Ta’may [spiritually impure] etc., they should do it in a state of impurity; and in tractate Yoma, first chapter, it was taught : The Tuma [the spiritual impurity] that emanates from the dead, Rav Nachman said it is permissible among the community; Rav Sheshet said it is pushed away by the community. And so too, in the laws of Biat Mikdash (chapter 4 , halacha 10 ) in the Rambam’s writings and here is a quote “ All the sacrifices of the community , it is fixed for them a time, therefore they push away Shabbat and Tuma”(this is to be understood in reference to Tuma that emanates from the dead, alone).

Upon this, the book, Torat Habayit, adds “And since he did not mention at all , that you need a Tzeetz [ a metallic plate worn by the Cohain Hagadol that upon it, were the words, Holy to Hashem] to appease , in regards to the pushing away of the Tuma [spiritual impurity] as recounted by Rambam [there in halacha 9], this implies that he held that even when there is no Tzeetz to appease ,it does not hold back the sacrificial service; and we shall merit in our days to offer our obligatory sacrifices in our Temple, in the place of the divine presence of our Lord in Mount Moriah where there, Yitzchak [Isaac] our forefather, was bound to be offered as an unblemished offering and to atone over all our sins”.

The author of the Chafetz Chaim and Mishna Brura established as halacha [in Likutei Halachot, Zevach Toda] and his words are brought by Torat Habayit , the following point :

And we Sacrifice, even though there is no Temple, etc.; so rules the Rambam and so ruled all the Rishonim. And in Torat Hakodshim chapter 13 Hashochet Vihamaaleh [Zevachim page 66b] he wrote:

One that offers up a sacrifice in this time, outside of the proper place is guilty; for when the city of Jerusalem was chosen that there should be there the Temple and the altar , all the bamot [altars outside the sanctified area] were made forbidden and never again, will they be permissible, even though all has been destroyed, and we offer at this time sacrifices, even though there is no Temple; and we eat kodshim kalim [holy foods of a lighter degree] and the second tithe, within the whole city even though there is no wall; because the initial holiness of which the city and the Temple were sanctified by, sanctified these places for its time and for the future. And all this, is when the altar is built upon its place, however when there is no altar, it is obvious that one should not offer there any sacrifice and even the second tithe, one does not eat within the whole city when there is no altar.... And he added in Zevach Toda and even though we concluded inside, that we offer sacrifices in this time even though there is no Temple, nevertheless one has to consider carefully concerning the other requirements [ for sacrifices] such as the place of the altar, and the Tuma that emanates from the dead, and the Tzeetz, and whether we should rely on the presumption that our cohanim are fit cohanim and also regarding the Techelet [threads that were dyed blue]. And if Hashem helps us , we will explain every detail by its place. [Here ends the quote]

Upon this, adds the book, Torat Habayit:

And from the implications of his words, you see that our Rabbi was not in doubt as to the main principle and the mitzva and the obligation that we are obligated to offer sacrifices, therefore it is a mitzva to study in depth and to act in the matter of offering sacrifices at this time until we actually get this done, and we should not keep ourselves idle from this great mitzva. And regarding what our Rabbi raised concerning the question of Tuma [spiritual impurity] and other points, already many good people, have judged the matter; and they have concluded and offered solutions to the vast majority of the details of the mitzvas and the only thing lacking for us is the will and the opening of blind eyes to take out the prisoner from the jail, as if possible to describe it thusly, the divine presence in exile.

Is it fitting that we hold back on the performance of the Passover/Pessach sacrifice etc., until we improve in our performance of other mitzvas ?

It is important to recall that when our ancestors were in Egypt, immersed within 49 gates of spiritual impurity, precisely in a situation such as that , the Holy One Blessed be He, chose to command to us to slaughter the Pessach sacrifice; in contrast to other mitzvas, such as Sabbath and the Red Heifer, which we received at a later stage in Marah [ Rashi on Exodus/Shmot 15:25 ] . And here’s a quote of Rashi on Exodus/Shmot 12:6 :

And for what reason did he advance the taking [ of the animal ] before its slaughter , a period of four days, what was not commanded in a similar way, for the pessach of future times ?

Rabbi Matya ben Cheresh was saying about this : Behold he says [ in Ezekiel/Yechezkel chapter 16 ] “And I passed over you and I saw and behold, it was your time, a time of love” - the oath of which I swore to Avraham that I would redeem his children arrived; and there wasn’t any mitzvas in their hands to involve themselves with so that they could be redeemed. For it was said : And you were naked and bare [in the same chapter] . And he gave them two mitzvas, the blood of pessach and the blood of circumcision, for they circumcised in the same night, for it was said [same chapter ] “ wallowing in your bloods" - in two bloods. And he says [ Zecharia chapter 9 ] “Also you, by the blood of your covenant, I have sent your prisoners form the pit, there is no water within”. And because they were steeped in idolatry, he said to them : Draw out your hand and take for yourselves [ Exodus/Shmot 12:21] - Draw out your hand away from idolatry and take for yourselves lambs of mitzva.

Similarly in the future, we will merit redemption, according to Yalkut Shimoni on Ezekiel/Yechezkel chapter 16, precisely in the merit of the blood of Pessach and the blood of circumcision. For there it is written, Rabbi Eliezer says, “And for what reason did the Holy One Blessed be He, see fit, to say twice, by your bloods live, by your bloods live ? Rather, the Holy One Blessed be He said, in merit of the blood of pessach and the blood of circumcision you will be redeemed from Egypt and in their merit , in the future you will be redeemed at the end of the fourth kingdom.

So too, did Yechizkiyahu in II Chronicles/Divrei Hayamim, chapter 30, not hold back the pessach sacrifice in a time of sin . There it is explained that he established a decree to proclaim throughout all of Israel:

“From Be’er-sheva as far as Dan to come to do a pessach sacrifice to the Lord of Israel in Jerusalem for they had not done for many [years] as it is written”. And similarly, he says to them, “don’t be as your fathers and your brothers , who trespassed against Hashem”. And similarly, he says , “Now be not stiff-necked, as your fathers were, give a hand to Hashem and come to his Sanctuary, which he has sanctified for ever and serve Hashem, your Lord and he will turn away from you the fierceness of his anger ”.

And how did the nation react to the words of Yechizkiyahu ? There it is written :

“And it was, that the runners passed from city to city in the land of Ephraim and Menashe as far as Zevulune and they were making sport of them and mocking them. Yet men from Asher and from Menashe and from Zevulune humbled themselves and came to Jerusalem”. And it is written, “For there were many in the congregation who were not sanctified : therefore the Levites were appointed over the slaughtering of the pessach sacrifices for all that were not purified to sanctify to Hashem. For a majority of the nation, many of Ephraim and Menashe, Yissakhar and Zevulune did not purify themselves for they ate the pessach without as it is written for Yechizkiyahu prayed concerning them saying , Hashem the good, should atone on behalf”. And in Radak’s commentary on the chapter the following is stated : “should atone on behalf of those that ate the pessach in Tuma [impurity] and not within the purification state fit for holiness, meaning that even though they ate, not within the purification state fit for holiness, Chizkiya prayed that Hashem should atone for them, since they prepared their hearts to seek the Lord”

The implication from all of this is that we should not hold back pessach sacrifice on account of the spiritual state of our generation.

What is the reason for the mitzva of Slaughtering the Pessach Sacrifice?

According to the viewpoint of Sefer Hachinuch [mitzva 5] “the root of this mitzva is in order that the Jews remember forever, the great miracles that the Holy One Blessed be He, did for them during the exodus from Egypt”.

Even though it seems obvious to me, there are those that find it difficult to understand how the slaughtering of the Pessach sacrifice helps us to remember the great miracles that Hashem did for the Jews during the exodus from Egypt. Therefore, I will quote from the midrash [Shmot Rabba 16:3] to clarify the connection, between the two concepts.

Another explanation,” Draw out [your hand] and take for yourselves lambs”, this pertains to what is written [ Psalms/Tehillim chapter 97 ] “let all the idol worshippers be embarrassed”. At the time that the Holy One Blessed be He, said to Moshe to slaughter the pessach, Moshe responded, Master of the Universe, this thing how can I do this ? Is it not known to you that the lambs are the gods of Egypt. For it was said [Exodus/Shmot chapter 8 ] “could we sacrifice the abomination of Egypt, before their eyes and they would not stone us?”

The Holy One Blessed be He, said to him, by your life! [the nation of] Israel does not go out from here until they sacrifice the gods of Egypt before their eyes that I make it known to them that their gods are of no significance.

And thus do we find, that he did. That in that very night he smote the first-born of the Egyptians and in that night Israel slaughtered their pessach lambs and ate. And the Egyptians were seeing their first-borns slain and their gods slaughtered and they were not able to do anything. For it was said [ Numbers/Bamidbar 33 ] “And Egypt was burying them which Hashem had smitten among them, every first-born and against their gods, Hashem executed judgments”. Namely, “let all the idol worshippers be embarrassed”.

So too, for the subject of eating the pessach sacrifice, it is written in Rashi on the phrase “in order that you remember the day of your going out from Egypt all the days of your life”, [ Deuteronomy/Dvarim 16:3 ] , “by means of eating the pessach and the matza”.

What is the reason for the daily Tamid sacrifice?

One of the reasons [and there are more] for the daily/Tamid sacrifice is as a remembrance of the binding of Isaac/Yitzchak [akeidat Yitzchak] . And this is a quote of Vayikra Rabba, Parsha 2 , Section 11 :

“They said, At the time that Avraham our forefather bound Yitzchak, his son, the Holy One Blessed be He enacted two lambs, one for the morning and one for the latter part of the day. And all this, for what purpose? That at the time that [the people of] Israel were sacrificing the Tamid upon the altar and reciting this scriptural passage “Tzafona, before Hashem... the Holy One Blessed be He, recalls the binding of Yitzchak”.

And the following is a quote from Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan's translation of the Bible, Genesis chapter 22 (concerning the binding of Yitzchak):

Do not harm the boy. Do not do anything to him. For now I know that you fear G-d. You have not withheld your only son from him. Avraham (Abraham) then looked up and saw a ram caught by its horns in a thicket. He went and got the ram, sacrificing it as an all-burned offering in his son's place. Avraham named the place "G-d will see". Today, it is therefore said, "In G-d's Mountain, He will be seen."

G-d's angel called to Avraham from heaven a second time, and said, "G-d declares, 'I have sworn by My own Essence, that because you performed this act, and did not hold back your only son, I will bless you greatly, and increase your offspring like the stars of the sky and the sand of the seashore. Your offspring shall inherit their enemies' gate. All the nations of the world shall be blessed through your descendants - all because you obeyed My voice.'"

Here, I will add that according to the Rashbam’s commentary on Genesis/Bereshit 22:1 Hashem distressed Avraham our forefather with the binding of Yitzchak to teach a lesson. That Hashem did not agree with Avraham’s assumptions, that eventually caused Avraham to make concessions in exchange for peace with Avimelech.

In our times, after we’ve signed peace treaties with the “Philistines” of our days we have a double reason to sacrifice the daily Tamid sacrifice, as a remembrance of the binding of Yitzchak.

A New Addition: The Value Gained By Recalling the Binding Of Yitzchak
A Quote from a Prayer Book:

Master of the Universe! May it be Your will, Hashem, our L-rd and the L-rd of our fathers, to recall for our sake the covenant of our fathers. Just as our father, Avraham suppressed his mercy for his only son and wanted to slaughter him to do Your will, similarly, may you Your mercy overcome Your anger against us; and may your mercy prevail over Your [other] attributes to deal with us more leniently than the letter of Your law; and deal with us, Hashem, our L-rd with the attribute of kindness and the attribute of mercy; and in Your great goodness, turn your fierce anger away from your nation and from your city, and from your land and from your territorial heritage; and fulfill for us, Hashem our L-rd, the promise that You made through your servant Moshe, as was said, "And I will recall My covenant with Yaacov, also my covenant with Yitzchak and also my covenant with Avraham will I recall, and I will recall the land".

The Opinion of the Vilna Gaon

The book Me’otzrote Ha-Gra Uvate Midrasho, page 62, brings the opinion of the rabbinic genius, Rabbi Chaim of Volozhin who speaks in the name of the Gaon of Vilna on the subject. There it is written : “ And the rabbinic genius, Rabbi Chaim of Volozhin said in the name of the Gaon of Vilna :If we act similarly to the Maapilim [see Numbers/Bamidbar 14:44 for a better understanding of the word] and we offer up on the Temple Mount even one time, the daily, Tamid sacrifice behold this will already be the “Redemption” [ HaGaon Hachasid page 247].

To read Rabbi Ariel's Haskama to this article in Hebrew, Press Here!

Below are links to some of the More Popular articles at http://www.vilnagaon.org
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B"H

A Light Unto the Nations
Evidence For the Existence of
G-d[Hashem]
Book 1: Is G-d a Good Gamble?
  1. The Big Bang Theory- Proof or Disproof For G-d ?
  2. Rabbi Akiva’s Proof For the Existence of Hashem[G-d]
  3. Hashem Continues to Supervise Human Affairs
  4. Are the Commandments of Judaism, Demands , I Would Expect from an Omnipotent Creator?
  5. An Insurance Policy For Someone Who Still Has His Doubts
  6. The Jewish View on Heaven and Hell
  7. The Experience of People Who Were Clinically Dead And Came Back to Life
  8. The Chafetz Chaim Hated Russian Communist Leaders
  9. Miracles of the Gulf War
  10. Divine Assistance
  11. Why the Holocaust ?
  12. Torah Codes by Professor Daniel Michelson
  13. Redemption Even Though They Don’t Do Teshuva [ Repent ]
  14. Why G-d Let Bin-Laden Succeed!
Book 2: Interpretation of the Bible
  1. Messianic Movements That Failed
  2. False Prophet
  3. The Tradition
  4. The Mitzva To Appoint Judges and Officials to Enforce the Law
  5. Let Us Make Man... (Genesis 1:26)
  6. The Man That Blasphemed
  7. The Task of the Spy, Eli Cohen, H"YD. - A Torah Hint About This
  8. Resurrection of the Dead
  9. Most of The Prohibitions of The Bible Do Not Apply To Gentiles
  10. Anthology of the Views of The Vilna Gaon


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