Israel Forever

For the week ending 21 June 2008 / 18 Sivan 5768

The Power of Faith

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
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An entire generation of Jews forfeited their right to enter the Land promised to them because of their expressed doubts about whether it was for their benefit to inherit Eretz Yisrael. This is the sad account of the spies sent by Moshe to inspect the Land, which will be read in this week's Torah portion.

Almost forty years later, in reviewing this tragedy, Moshe chastises his people for failing to have faith in G-d regarding the Land despite all the wonderful miracles He performed for them.

One approach of the commentators is that the report of the spies about the extraordinary size of the Land's inhabitants instilled in the people a fear that Eretz Yisrael was fit only for supermen and would prove counterproductive for ordinary humans. They were therefore rebuked for failing to appreciate that if G-d wanted to give them this Land He would surely give them the ability to prosper in it.

This message should be a source of comfort for Jews living today in Eretz Yisrael that if we maintain our faith in G-d and observe His Torah, He will enable us to overcome all of the obstacles to enjoying peace and prosperity in Israel forever.

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