The Fight is Part of the Mitzvah – The Jewish Press –

Posted By on May 18, 2022

I want you to think about a concept that nobody talks about. You wont hear your Rav speak about this on Shabbat. You wont read an article on this subject in any Jewish magazine, and you certainly wont hear any politician speak this way. I am referring to the important aspect of fighting the Jewish enemy and, while extremely difficult and painful, how it is an integral and necessary part of our national life.

When HaShem told Avraham the famous words; Lech Lecha why did He send Avraham to the busiest place on earth? 90% of the world was uninhabited at that time, yet HaShem sent Avraham to Eretz Yisrael where it immediately says, And the Canaanites were in the Land (Beresheit 12:6). Really? Couldnt HaShem have made a different part of the world holy and send Avraham there where his descendants wouldnt have to fight for every inch?

When HaShem spoke to Moshe for the first time by the burning bush, He said; I have come to rescue them from Egypts power. I will bring them out of that land to a good, spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the territory of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Yebusites (Beresheit 3:8) Really? I like the part about the good, spacious land, and I certainly love the part that its flowing with milk and honey (YUMMY!) but HaShem Himself said its the territory of 6 other nations (actually 10 other nations see Beresheit 15:19 where 4 additional nations are listed!!!) So, I ask a similar question as the paragraph before; Why didnt HaShem choose to send Am Yisrael to a part of the world that was empty where we wouldnt have to battle for our very survival?

When Yehoshua Bin-Nun took over the reign of leadership from Moshe, what is the first thing he did when he crossed the Jordan River with the Nation of Israel? He got the young, fresh, nation ready for war!!! He sent trustworthy spies on a reconnaissance mission. He prepared the people to fight for the city of Yericho. and they conquered the city. They destroyed everything that was in the city man and woman, youth and elder, ox and sheep and donkey by the edge of the sword. (Yehoshua 6:20-21) Really? Thats the first thing Am Yisrael did when they entered Eretz Yisrael kill every man, woman and child in Yericho? Allow me to ask the same question as above; Why didnt HaShem send us to a place where we could just live in peace, with no need for bloodshed? Why the wars and the commandment to wipe out the enemy? We were a new nation, in a new land shouldnt we be busy with farming, construction and finding a way how to support and educate our children? Why a war and years of wars from almost day 1??

I could give many more examples just read the TaNaCH and you will see that HaShem chose a bad neighborhood for His people to live. Throughout our history, there was almost no quiet in Eretz Yisrael and many people have struggled with the question of why? Even in our day, we see daily battles on the road, on the border and in the middle of Yerushalayim. In the last month we have seen terror in Bnei Brak, Tel Aviv and Elad. Our young men and women are drafted to the IDF and National Service and forced to risk their lives. So again why?

While I dont claim to be an expert and certainly dont have the answers to most troubling questions, I feel I do have the answer to this one: The fight is part of the Mitzvah. HaShem did not send us to an empty Australia where we could have lived in peace and harmony with some kangaroos. He purposely sent us to a land that needed to be conquered and paid for in Jewish blood. While this is very painful to the families of those heroic fighters, it is an absolute necessity when talking about the Land of Israel.

We are all familiar with the concept; Eretz Yisrael nikneyt byesurrim (the Land of Israel is acquired through suffering) This concept is stated in Talmud Berachot 5a and explained by the Vilna Gaon (Kol HaTur, chapter 1, paragraph 13) in 4 simple words; This is exactly how its acquired. There are no shortcuts and no way to avoid it. The suffering is the acquisition! However, nowhere does it state that we are to be led as lambs to the slaughter. On the contrary! We are to observe the Torah and simultaneously fight the enemy with every weapon available. When we do that HaShem promises that, You will chase away your enemies and they will fall before your sword. 5 of you will chase 100 and 100 of you will defeat 10,000, as your enemies fall before your sword. (VaYikra 26:7-8)

Dearest friends: This is a strong and powerful message and one that we need to focus on especially during these days of tragedy and terror. To deserve Israel is to fight for her. There will be times when battles will be lost, and holy soldiers will be buried. There will also be times when innocent Yidden sitting in a park will be murdered and we will look for answers. Our Father and King knows what He is doing and, while each drop of Jewish blood comes with oceans of tears, we continue the fight and the goal of wiping out our enemy and conquering the land, exactly as HaShem has commanded.

One final point. While the Talmud states that the Land of Israel is acquired through suffering, it does not state that about New York, London, Paris, Melbourne, or Toronto. In those areas, if Jews are in danger and they are the commandment is to get out of there as quickly as possible. There is no mitzvah to fight the Canaanites (or whatever theyre called) outside the Land. Therefore, while Jewish blood may be necessary for Eretz Yisrael, it is a complete and utter waste if shed in California, Argentina, Johannesburg, New Jersey, or Montreal. The Fight is part of the Mitzvah is in Israel only. Everywhere else, its not the fight thats important but the flight out of there and into the Promised Land.

May HaShem bless us with victory over our enemies in His one and only special place on earth.

Am Yisrael Chai!

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