Monday, June 23, 2014

TEHILIM Psalm # 2: Israel, a newborn baby

ה ' אָמַר אֵלַי בְּנִי אַתָּה אֲנִי, הַיּוֹם יְלִדְתִּיךָ

This Mizmor was composed by King David at the beginning of his kingdom. All the kings of Philistines (pelishtim), fearful of the new Jewish King, got together and conspired against David and his people.  The Philistines thought that they could easily defeat David and were singing their own praise.  In verse 2:4 David describes what was happening in heaven while the enemies of Israel were bragging about destroying us. 

יושב בשמים ישחק " [God] the One Who sits in His heavenly [throne] laughs"... at their thoughts.  This powerful literary motif, "HaShem's laughing" is used here to express that the enemies of Israel, when they plan their battles and attacks against us, they are oblivious of Hashem's intervention to protect us.

David haMelekh says that although Hashem intervenes in all areas of our personal life, His oversight is absolutely critical when our enemies conspire against us.

In 2:7 David haMelekh explains "how" HaShem protects Israel.

ה' אמר אלי בני אתה "HaShem told me You are My child". First, we learn that Hashem loves us as a parent loves his or her child.  But then, David haMelekh takes us to a deeper level of understanding of God's love for us.    אני היום ילידתיך  "I gave birth to you today".

Two different motifs are expressed in this verse, a child and a newborn baby. Why?

1. Imagine a mother with her nine years old child in the park. While he would be playing with other kids or on his own, the mother will supervise him. And she will assist him just upon his request. A baby is different than a child.  A newborn baby demands 24/7 attention, supervision and total-care.  The mother would not abandon her newborn child even for single moment. The mother would nurture, help and assist her baby all the time. Even when the baby would not be asking for anything.

2. A nine years old child knows what he needs and recognizes his mother's intervention in helping him. A baby is not conscious of what he needs. The mother feeds him, nurtures him and protects him without him been aware of his mother intervention!

David haMelekh says that HaShem's ultimate level of protection is when He takes care of us like a loving mother takes care of her newborn baby. 

I think about "Israel" as a baby under haShem's constant invisible supervision. We all know that many bad things happen all the time. But think about this: Medinat Israel is in the midst of the most volatile area of the planet. Surrounded by the most violent people on earth. Kamikazes, who don't mind to immolate themselves if they would kill a Jew in the process. People for whom the desire to destroy Israel is the only thing stronger than the desire to destroy each other. And many of those live within Israel. We are all very, very sad for all the bad things happening in Israel right now. But at the same time we need to be in awe, and very grateful to haShem, for all the many tragedies that are not happening in Israel, and we are not even aware of.  Our incredible IDF has a great part in this endeavor, and they are surely acting as agents of HaShem in protecting our people. But above every human effort, it is HaShem who protects us in ways that we, like a newborn baby, can't even begin to realize.

In honor of  Eyal Yifrach, Gil-ad Shaar, Naftali Frenkel ה' ישמרם ויחייהם

אחינו כל בית ישראל, הנתונים בצרה ובשביה, 
העומדים בין בים ובין ביבשה
המקום ירחם עליהם ויוציאם מצרה לרווחה
ומאפילה לאורה ומשעבוד לגאולה
השתא בעגלא ובזמן קריב