<i>Vaera</I>: The Fifth Cup of Redemption

The terms of redemption.

Aloh Naaleh,

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aliyah-r.jpg
Arutz 7
The Jerusalem Talmud explains that the four cups of wine that we drink at the Seder commemorate the four terms that signify redemption mentioned at the beginning of our parsha: "I will bring you out... and I will deliver you... and I will redeem you... and I will take you to me for a people." (Shemot 6:6-7)

But the verses continue: "And I will bring you into the Land that I swore to give to Abraham Isaac and Jacob...." (Shemot 6:8) Why, then, are we not required to drink a fifth cup to commemorate a fifth term of redemption: "I will bring you into the Land"?

The Torah Temimah answers that it would be inappropriate in the Galut, while the Land of Israel was under foreign domination, to celebrate the promise of living the Land. A cup is
It was G-d himself who was redeeming Israel from Egypt.
left at the Seder for the prophet Elijah to remind us to hope for his arrival as a harbinger of the rebirth of the Nation and the Land of Israel.

The Meshech Hochmah notes a difference between the promise of the Land and the other terms of redemption. The promise of the Land is preceded by the words, "And you will know that I am the L-rd your G-d who brings you out of the burdens of Egypt." (Shemot 6:7) This was a commandment to the Jews to acknowledge that it was not a quirk of history, but rather it was G-d himself who was redeeming Israel from Egypt.

As opposed to the other four terms of redemption, which were unconditional, a Jew's decision to live in the Land of Israel requires - then as now - "knowledge" of G-d's role in history and faith in His unshakable commitment to Jewish redemption, despite what may seem to be insurmountable obstacles.
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Rabbi Jonatan Blass writes from Neve Tzuf.

The foregoing commentary was distributed by the Aloh Naaleh organization.




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