Love of the Land

People of The Land 28

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Love of the Land

Selections from classical Torah sources
which express the special relationship between
the People of Israel and Eretz Yisrael


For the close to four centuries of Jewish settlement in Eretz Yisrael, before the anointment of a king, the Jewish nation was led by shoftim (judges). One of these judges, who led his people for twenty years, was Shimshon, who is best known to casual Bible readers for his extraordinary demonstrations of physical prowess in his battles with the Philistines.

Shimshon was from the Tribe of Dan, and it was in regard to him that the founder of his tribe received a prophetic blessing from his father, the Patriarch Yaakov, that his descendant would be "like a serpent on the road who bites the heel of the horse and causes its rider to fall." (Bereishet 49:17) This prophecy was fulfilled when Shimson, a captive of the Philistines who had deprived him of his strength and blinded him, was brought from his prison cell to be mocked by thousands of Philistines who had gathered in the temple of their idol to celebrate their triumph over their formidable foe. Praying to Hashem to "let me die with the Philistines," Shimshon gathered up his remaining strength, shook the pillars which supported the building and succeeded, in his death, in slaying more of the enemies of his people than he did in his lifetime. (Shoftim 16:23-30)

Love of the Land Archives

Written by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach, Dean, Ohr Somayach Institutions
General Editor: Rabbi Moshe Newman
Web Production: Binyamin Rosenstock
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