Mazel Tov On Jerusalem

Today, Jerusalem has been recognized as the capital of Israel–Mazel tov!


– 70 years after President Truman instructed the State Department to support the U.N. partition plan.


– 50 years since the Six Day War in which Jerusalem was reunified.


– 22 years after the Jerusalem Embassy Act was passed for relocating the U.S. Embassy to the capital, Jerusalem.


Everyone has been patient and waited a long time for this.


As President Trump stated, we are recognizing the reality, the obvious, and “it is the right thing to do!”


Yes, Israel is a sovereign nation with the right to determine their own capital as every nation does. 


And Jerusalem is that capital today as it has been historically from the times of the Bible. 


We are blessed to be witnessing in our time the miraculous fulfillment of G-d’s promise for the quintessential return of the Israelites to the Promised Land, and toward the ultimate redemption.


From the ashes of the Holocaust, G-d has resurrected and brought us alive again.


Many that I have spoken with today express genuine fear about the ramifications of this announcement of recognition. 


But as President Trump displayed today, we must all go forward together courageously and in celebration. 


The State of Israel is blooming from its agricultural fields to the incredible medical and technological innovations that are helping people throughout the world.


We must never forget that it is only with G-d’s blessing and under his watchful eye.


May we all pray for peace and security, and let their not be war or terrorism anymore! 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal via White House)

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Our Forefathers Were Planners And So Are We

Thank you to Rabbi Haim Ovadia for his speech today at Magen David Synagogue on the topic of how our forefathers in the Bible were planners and so are we today. (Note: some of the thoughts below are directly from Rabbi Ovadia and others are added by me.)


In the Biblical story of Jacob, there are numerous examples teaching us the importance of planning.


1) Shepherds vs Hunters:  Jacob was a shepherd versus his brother Esau who was a hunter.  Shepherds have a long-term outlook with their animals, tending to them and caring for them over the long-term, while hunters go out for the kills to eat for that day. 


2) Working for Rachel and Leah vs. Selling the Pottage:  Jacob worked for 7 years for Rachel and another 7 for Leah–this was the long-term view and commitment to work for Lavan in order to marry his daughters. In comparison, Esau came in hungry from the field and sold his birthright for the immediate gratification of a bowl of pottage.


3) The Plan to Take Esau’s Blessing: Rebekah worked with Jacob to prepare meat for Isaac and put hair and clothes on Jacob that made him look and seem like Esau, so Jacob could get the blessing from Isaac, while Esau was still out hunting in the field. 


4) Dividing his Camp in Two: Jacob sent messengers (i.e. reconnaissance) to see and plan for what Esau was doing in coming to meet him. When the messengers returned with word that Esau was coming with 400 men, Jacob planned for the worst, dividing his camp in two, so should one peril the other could survive. Additionally, Jacob prayed and sent rounds of gifts to Esau and also presented himself to Esau before his beloved wife Rachel and son Joseph in the safety of the rear. 


Long-term planning has been fundamental to the Jewish people throughout history and to modern times:


1) “People of the Book” – The Jewish people are known as “the people off the book” for the devotion to Torah study, learning, and continually investing in education, which is a view for long-term investment and success.   


2) Good Deeds to Inherit The World To Come – Fundamental to Jewish belief is that this earthly world is just a “corridor” to the World to Come.  We do charity and good deeds, not only because it’s the right thing to do (certainly!), but also because we believe that these merits will help us long-term when we pass, and go to the spiritual next world, Heaven. 


3) Believing and Praying for the Return to The Promised Land – For 2,000, the Jewish people never gave up hoping and praying on the deliverance of G-d’s promise to return them from exile to the Promised Land.  This was a long-term view that helped sustain the Jewish people throughout their far-flung exile and through millennium of persecution and genocide.

Ezekiel 11:17: “Thus says the Lord God: I will gather you from the peoples, and assemble you out of the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel.”

4) Waiting 6,000 years for the Messiah: For 6,000 years, the Jews have maintain faith and plan for the coming of the Messiah, the rebuilding of the Temple and the ultimate redemption of the world.  

“(Ani Ma’amin) I believe in complete faith in the coming of the Messiah…Even tough he may tarry, none-the-less, I will wait for him.”

Like our forefathers, it is critical to maintain faith in the Almighty and practice long-term planning as keys to success in life. 


If we take the long-view, we can overcome so many short-term challenges, obstacles and even suffering–believing, praying planning, and doing for a better, brighter future. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

G-d Holds All The Keys

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So what is there to fear in this world. 


Whatever happens, happens. 


And G-d is the master over it all. 


He holds all the keys. 


G-d opens doors. 


When we are being challenged, look toward the Heavens. 


There is a door there somewhere. 


What can ANY man do to us?


When G-d reigns over ALL men.


In G-d, there is salvation and mercy. 


G-d will watch over His people.


And He will bless them in peace! 😉


(Source Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

Between A Liberal Rock and A Conservative Hard Place

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On the alt-liberal left–a “radical Islamist” leaning and violent Antifa. 


On the ultra-conservative right–Neo-Nazi and White Supremacists.


And in the middle (regardless of political beliefs)–good people of faith and integrity with seemingly nowhere to turn.

________


{And I don’t know what this is, but this is what I am hearing…}


Behold and fear a great fear.


Evil and violence will soon be upon you.


The forces of crushing hate will collide and spread throughout the face of the earth.


And the people will suffer a very great suffering.


And they will call out to the L-rd, and they will repent from their misguided wayward ways.

And the L-rd will see their judgement and he will cause a great stirring in man.


Great weapons will be released and a very great cleansing of man’s hearts will occur.


I say to you redemption is upon you.


Redemption first by great pain and suffering, and then by great joy and exaltation.

And peace and morality will be restored on Earth.


Here this and hear it well, the time is short and good people must ready.


Gather yourselves together and prepare for the end of days and the beginning of days.


Those that are good and gathered will see peace and survive the onslaught before my mercy while many others will perish.


{Then the streaming tapers off…}

________


I don’t understand the call for a gathering–aren’t we safer perhaps spread out?  


Perhaps the gathering refers to G-d’s promise to gather His people from the four corners of the Earth.


– And they will walk the sacred middle ground through the Red Sea to the promised Holy Land. 


The liberal left and conservative right have been overtaken by violent nutty extremists and radicals.


They have “split” from normal thinking and doing the correct thing–they have gone over the top!


A new righteous center–driven by faith and a moral compass –desperately needs to emerge now.


Hopefully, this will bring us to a new peace and prosperity–because the current isn’t working. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Behold, The Day Cometh

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{I don’t know what this is, but it came to me, and it just feels important to share…I start to feel spiritually overwhelmed, very emotional, and then all choked up…and so it starts}


Behold, the day cometh when the earth will open it’s mouth.


And there will be a very great slaughter. 


And the earth will shake and tremble before the Holy One blessed be he. 


He walks before the nation of Israel. 


Ready to strike with the all-powerful tip of His spear. 


Like a bolt of lightening without warning.


Magnificent in beauty and damning in tumultuous energy. 


The sky thunders before His majesty. 


The angels stir and flee before the All-Mighty Creator. 


His holiness envelopes the earth and stars. 


His eyes are full of mercy, but justice is in his mighty outstretched arm. 


Those that stand in evil before His glory will soon be buried in a very great rubble. 


The skies are darkening; the day is arriving. 


And all the people will know that G-d dost live, and His people shall live. 


Evil will be obliterated from off the face of the earth, and His holiness will manifest in peace and redemption. 


The implements of war will be smashed to smithereens, engulfed within the insides of the earth. 


And their makers buried beside them, crushed and utterly destroyed.


A mass grave to the east and to the west, and then a great rebuilding. 


From the L-rd goeth forth justice to his enemies and mercy to His children.


{The streaming stops suddenly…I want it to continue…but it’s over…I try my own words, but they are not His…I give up for today.}


(Source Photo: Minna Blumenthal)

We Remember and Cry

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Today the Rabbi spoke about that on Monday night is the solemn night of Tisha B’Av (the 9th day of the Hebrew month of Av).


It is the day that Jews remember and cry about the destruction of both temples in Jerusalem–on the exact same day in history almost 700 years apart–in 586 BCE and and 70 AD. 


Tisha B’Av is also the date when Germany entered World War I which as we know started a series of events that led to the catastrophe of the Holocaust. 


We remember and cry on Tisha B’Av as we went from freedom to worship and live in Jerusalem to the exile and servitude to the Babylonians and the Romans. 


It the polar opposite of the holiday of Passover, where we celebrate and commemorate going from servitude under the Egyptians to freedom and redemption to get the Torah and enter and settle the Holy Land. 

By the rivers of Babylon
There we sat (and) also wept
When we remembered Zion
On willows in its midst
We hanged up our harps
For there our captors asked of us
(For) words of songs and tormented us (with) mirth:
‘Sing to us from the song of Zion’
How will we sing the song of God
On a foreign land? 

If I will forget you Jerusalem
My right hand will forget (its skill)
My tongue will stick to the roof of my mouth
If I will not remember you
If I will not raise Jerusalem
Above my happiness

We as a people have been through so much…servitude, expulsions, crusades, inquisitions, pogroms, genocide…thousands of years of discrimination, torture, rape, and murder–yet, Israel Doth Live!


As the L-rd promised the Jews–after exile would come redemption, and so it is!


For thousands of years, the Jewish people yearned for a homeland where we could live in peace and security and for the rebuilding of the Holy temple–please G-d in our days soon.


From the rivers of Babylon to the Nile in Egypt and the Rhine in Germany–we have paid the ultimate price and sacrifice to G-d and we pray that the Jewish people can once again be free to live and worship as foretold “from the River in Egypt to the Euphrates River.” (Exodus 23:31) 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Hitler Is Kaput

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So I was surprised when a great friend wrote to me the other day about Hitler. 


And he said that some people say that he won!


He wanted to destroy the Jews and he did manage to kill 6,000,000 of us!


He wanted to conquer Europe (and the world) and he sparked a world war that killed between 50 million and 80 million people, spread fascism, and Germany still today remains the economic powerhouse of Europe.


But killing people, spreading evil, and causing world war is not the sign of a winner by any means–quite the contrary! 


And I replied to my friend:


Hitler and the Nazis are gone, dead, and destroyed, and we are here–what a miracle that from the ashes and depths of the Holocaust, the Israelites were redeemed after 2,000 years of exile–and just as the prophecy foretold, Israel was reborn, lives and thrives!


The sick hatred, evil, and fascist values of Hitler and his Third Reich Germany are gone into the dustbin of history and moreover, their very mention or memory evokes disdain and contempt as being the antiChrist and archetype of evil in the world.


Over the weekend, I watched the movie, The Zookeepers Wife and it was terrific. 


While the Nazi’s perpetrated every conceivable evil on mankind, the righteous among the nations still managed to stand up in the face of evil and save innocent lives, and even when it put their own lives and that of their loved ones in jeopardy–that is true goodness!


The movie showed not only the Zookeeper and his wife who saved over 300 Jews during the Holocaust, but their young son yelled out after the miserable Nazi and said, “Hitler is kaput” or Hitler is finished!


Yes, Hitler and his evil cohorts are destroyed, but in every generation, there are new threats of evil and hate that arise, and to those, we still must bravely and with steadfast determination and strength confront–and those must be made kaput as well. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)