Terumah 5752: Every Jew Is–And Needs To Be–Wealthy

Upon leaving Mitzrayim, the Jewish people became wealthy. First, they asked for the valuables of the Egyptians (who, as we know, were happy to give them away as long as the Bnei Yisroel would leave and the plagues would end), and afterwards the wealth of the Egyptians who were drowned at the sea was gathered. The result: “there wasn’t a single member of Yisroel that didn’t have with him 90 Libyan donkeys laden with the silver and gold of Mitzrayim”.1

When we arrive to our parsha, the contributions to the building of the Mishkan, we find that the Torah tells us that Yisroel gave “gold, silver, and copper”. The question the Rebbe asks is: why begin with gold? More copper and silver were given, so why not go in order of quantity of donations? If in order of rarity, then precious stones should come first, but in fact they follow after the precious metals. Why start with gold, then proceed to lesser materials–silver and copper–and then list materials that are even more rare (which not every member of Bnei Yisroel possessed).

The Rebbe proceeds to answer that gold, silver and copper appear first because everyone had these materials to contribute and gold, being the most precious of these, appears first. More than that, we find a lesson that every Jew possesses the “gold-standard” of serving Hashem. A Jew is supposed to serve Hashem for His own sake (lishma), not for personal benefit. Nonetheless, our sages say that even if one is not holding on the level of lishma he should at least serve Hashem lo lishma (“not for His own sake”–for reward, or to avoid punishment) because this will lead him to eventually reach the level of lishma.

…the Rambam explains “therefore when one is teaching children and women and those lacking spiritual refinement (כלל עמי הארץ) one teaches them to serve out of fear, etc., until their knowledge will increase and they will become wiser…until they will grasp [the proper way] and [begin to] serve Hashem from love.” The reason is that from within “lo lishma“, meaning what is inside the (service of Hashem in a way of) “lo lishma” is “lishma“.

The level of serving Hashem “lishma“, the level of gold, is really found by every Jew.  By some it is revealed, by others it is still concealed.  But every Jew is “wealthy in his essence”, meaning it is inherently his, not received from another source2.  Furthermore, ones material wealth comes from the spiritual wealth a Jew inherently possesses.  Why is this so?  Because “even on the lowest levels, in the world that in its external aspect appears as a concealment on G-dliness, he is connected to the Holy One, blessed be He.”  This inherent connection is what makes every Jew rich, both spiritually and materially.  The implications for us are that:

Every single member of Yisroel needs to be in a state of wealth, both spiritually and materially — wealth in the simple sense!  More than that: not only that he needs this — but every single member of Yisroel has wealth in actuality.  Even if it is not found in a revealed state in physicality–this is not because it doesn’t exist, G-d forbid, but rather because the Jew needs to reveal it through his own effort…  It is certain that the Holy One, blessed be He, blesses every single member of Yisroel with wealth of gold materially and spiritually…

From this we immediately see an instruction–that a Jew needs to make an effort to be wealthy in actually in all of his matters, beginning with spiritual wealth, “there is no rich person except in knowledge”, to be wealthy in Torah and Mitzvos, until even material wealth, so that he can fulfill Torah and Mitzvos with peace of mind and comfortably, and so that he can give abundant tzedaka and fulfill Mitzvos in the most preferred manner (b’hiddur), to take advantage of this wealth in order to make his private home a dwelling place and mikdash for Hashem.

Since every Jew is in essence spiritually wealthy, and since material wealth derives from spiritual wealth, then if he will reveal his spiritual wealth through Torah and Mitzvos, it will follow that he will become materially wealthy as well!3


1) Bechoros 5b.

2) See Kuntres Yud-Alef Nissan 5751, Tefilla L’Moshe, ois 3.

3) See Likutei Sichos volume I, p. 289: “The miraculous event [performed by Rashbi] of ‘valley, valley, fill with golden dinars’is that it occurred for Rashbi’s students who were still on a level of golus.  The proof–they were troubled by material matters (a colleague who went abroad and returned wealthy).  Whereas in the future it will be completely irrelevant to be troubled by such things, as the Rambam states that the longing of the sages for the days of Moshiach is not because of material abundance, since at that time they will be satisfied with a little.”

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Mishpatim 5752: Moshiach is Affecting the Nations of the World

On Erev Shabbos Mishpatim, 5752 (January 31, 1992) something was announced in the world that had no historic precedent: a decision by world leaders, in particular the leaders of the United States and of Russia, to reduce their weapons stockpiles.  The Rebbe speaks of this in the sicha, calling it a “new epoch in international relations — eliminating a state of wars between the countries of the world, illustrated by the reduction and destruction of weaponry…”  

We see a promise of such things in the prophecies of Geulah, such as “They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore”, which “is a matter which will be through the actions of Melech Hamoshiach himself.”  That Moshiach himself, the Rebbe explains, is the one who brings about peace between the nations, until the point of converting weapons into means for supporting the population.

While one could mistakenly view this as merely a political development, the Rebbe points out that this is “a clear sign of the beginning of the fulfillment of this promise in the true and complete Geulah via Moshiach Tzidkeinu…we already see (a taste) and the beginning of the actions of Melech Hamoshiach on the nations(!).  The prophet’s Messianic vision of peace between nations is beginning to be fulfilled, something which does not happen until the time of the true and complete Geulah, and which is brought about by Moshiach himself.  And it is happening in our times, in the eyes of the world!

The Rebbe further connects this with the Nosi of our generation, the Previous Rebbe, the Moshiach of our generation, because this development is connected with the United Nations, which was established in the same city in which the Previous Rebbe chose to settle.  [Note that the location of the United Nations building, United Nations Plaza on First Avenue in New York, was previously known by its street address: 770 First Avenue.]  That through the Rebbe’s efforts the task of refining the world has been completed “until the completion and finishing of all the avodah of our generation over 42 years…”, and we see it manifest in this decision of the nations of the world to reduce armaments, that “the entire world is fitting and prepared for the beginning of the actions of Melech Hamoshiach.”

There has to be, though, a recognition that it is not sufficient that such things as making peace and reducing arms make sense to the human mind, but that these are part of the promises of the Torah about the Messianic era.

The Rebbe drops another bombshell:

We could say that the decision and announcement by leaders of the nations of the world about the state of “beating swords into plowshares”, is a result of the decision and announcement of “the kings, the Rabbis” that “behold this one (Melech Hamoshiach) comes”, which begins with the halachic ruling (psak din) of my father-in-law Nosi Doreinu that we have long completed our deeds and avodah over the time of golus and we are already prepared to greet Moshiach Tzidkeinu, and also the psak din of the Rabbonim of the Jewish nation [who have ruled] that the time of the Geulah has arrived, “a king will stand up from the house of Dovid…we assume that he is Moshiach” until the state of “behold this is with certainty Moshiach” [Rambam, hilchos Melachim, ch. 11] — a ruling “from Sinai” which is drawn down and permeates the worldy dimension, to such an extent that the leaders of the nations of the world decide and announce in their own opinion about “beating their swords into plowshares”.

The leaders of the nations of the world came to their own conclusion that they should reduce armaments because a) the work of refining the world has been completed; and b) “as a result of the psak din* of Torah regarding the coming of Moshiach Tzidkeinu.”

We are witnessing the beginning of the fulfillment of a prophecy pertaining to the Geulah, which is being brought about by Moshiach himself through the instrument of the halachic ruling of Rabbonim. Because a halachic ruling is binding and creates the reality of the world, and a Rov must rule according to his own understanding and not “blind faith”, thus the psak din that Moshiach draws this down into the world with the power of Torah, creating a reality whereby the leaders of the nations of the world themselves begin to act in accordance with the prophecies of the Messianic era!


* The Rebbe is referring to a halachic ruling (psak din) signed in 5751 (1991) by a number of Rabbonim that Moshiach should be revealed.  Read the details in the booklet “The Facts Behind the Psak”.  In addition, there is a more recent Psak Din that the Rebbe is Moshiach, signed by over 100 Rabbinic figures, among them R’ Yoram Abergel, z”l, and the Biala Rebbe.  This Psak Din is  viewable here]

 Text of the Psak Din referred to by the Rebbe:
We, the undersigned, have already issued a clear p’sak din that in e, the undersigned, have already issued a clear p’sak din that in accordance with the Torah of Truth, the coming of Moshiach and the ccordance with the Torah of Truth, the coming of Moshiach and the 32 building of the Third Beis HaMikdash must happen immediately mamash. uilding of the Third Beis HaMikdash must happen immediately mamash. All the appointed times have passed, the Jewish people have already done ll the appointed times have passed, the Jewish people have already done t’shuva, and all the other required conditions for the coming of Moshiach ‘shuva, and all the other required conditions for the coming of Moshiach have been fulfilled, as explained in the aforementioned p’sak din. Many ave been fulfilled, as explained in the aforementioned p’sak din. Many of the great poskim of our generation in Jewish communities from every f the great poskim of our generation in Jewish communities from every corner of the world have joined [this effort] and have signed this p’sak orner of the world have joined [this effort] and have signed this p’sak din.
Furthermore, according to the Rambam’s clear p’sak din in “Hilchos urthermore, according to the Rambam’s clear p’sak din in “Hilchos Melachim” 11:4, “If there should arise a king from the House of Dovid, elachim” 11:4, “If there should arise a king from the House of Dovid, who is expert in Torah, involved in mitzvos as Dovid his father, in ho is expert in Torah, involved in mitzvos as Dovid his father, in accordance with the Written and Oral Torah, compels all of Israel to go ccordance with the Written and Oral Torah, compels all of Israel to go in its path and strengthen it, and fights the battles of G-d, he is presumed n its path and strengthen it, and fights the battles of G-d, he is presumed to be Moshiach. If he succeeds and builds the Beis HaMikdash in its o be Moshiach. If he succeeds and builds the Beis HaMikdash in its place and gathers Jews from afar, he is certainly Moshiach.” lace and gathers Jews from afar, he is certainly Moshiach.”
According to the law of the Torah of Truth, it is clear that this halacha ccording to the law of the Torah of Truth, it is clear that this halacha of “presumed to be Moshiach” applies to the Rebbe shlita, as all the f “presumed to be Moshiach” applies to the Rebbe shlita, as all the aforementioned conditions listed in Rambam have been fulfilled in the forementioned conditions listed in Rambam have been fulfilled in the Rebbe shlita. ebbe shlita.
According to the law of our Holy Torah, the time of the Redemption ccording to the law of our Holy Torah, the time of the Redemption has already arrived, as declared in piskei din by the great poskim of as already arrived, as declared in piskei din by the great poskim of our generation mentioned above (and the Rebbe shlita accepted these ur generation mentioned above (and the Rebbe shlita accepted these piskei din as halacha, as he said publicly on numerous occasions during iskei din as halacha, as he said publicly on numerous occasions during farbrengens). This means that the stage of “presumed to be Moshiach” arbrengens). This means that the stage of “presumed to be Moshiach” has already been completed. If so, it is clear that according to the law of as already been completed. If so, it is clear that according to the law of our Holy Torah in practical halacha, the time for the fulfillment of the ur Holy Torah in practical halacha, the time for the fulfillment of the continuation of this halacha has arrived: the process of the Redemption ontinuation of this halacha has arrived: the process of the Redemption of Israel in actual deed, which will be completed with the building of the f Israel in actual deed, which will be completed with the building of the Third Beis HaMikdash and the gathering of Jews from the Exile.