Passover 2020 by: Rabbi Moshe Goodman, Kollel Ohr Shlomo, Hebron בס"ד
Discover the Holy Presence in the Holy Land
“May the Merciful One grant us a day that is entirely good, a day that the righteous sit with crowns on their heads, benefitting from the splendor of the Holy Presence, and may our portion be among them.” This supplication, said uniquely in the Birkat Hamazon on Seder Night reminds us of our potential and our true essence as princes before Hashem, i.e “sons” of the King of Kings. At the Exodus, Hashem told Moshe to say at the outset that Israel is the “firstborn of Hashem” and therefore Hashem is going to kill the firstborn of Pharaoh for stopping their departure from Egypt. The actual demonstration of this expression occurred on Seder Night when Israel was redeemed and taken as the nation of Hashem, i.e as the “firstborn children” of Hashem, while the firstborn of the Egyptians were killed. This differentiation was achieved by what we call “Pesah” which means that the Israelites were “skipped over.”
Another meaning of Pesah is mercy as Onkelos translates the term “pasah.” This means that Hashem had mercy upon Israel, even though they were in 50 degrees of impurity in Egypt, nevertheless Hashem remembered His covenant with the Patriarchs of Hebron and mercy on their offspring. Therefore, Pesah is a time to awaken Hashem’s mercy upon us.
We may also combine the two aforementioned explanations of the term Pesah by saying that through inherent quality of Jews that possess the qualities of compassion and doers of loving-kindness to all those in need, so too may Hashem have compassion on Israel and “skip over” Israel from any plague or evil, God willing, amen.
Miracles from the Holy Land:
Taking Back Mount Zion: During the Independence War, Ira Rappaport’s Israeli platoon fought the Jordanian military for Mount Zion and found themselves surrounded by hundreds with only twenty-five bullets left. With a sad end seemingly near, the men agreed to go out with a bang and readied themselves to make good use of every last bullet. Then, just when the small platoon were about to face the inevitable, something incredible happened. The Jordanian soldiers dropped their weapons and began suddenly running away, screaming “ABRAHAM!”. Several years later, Ira would come across a familiar face with an unlikely answer, as to what had actually occurred on that miraculous day. This was a former Jordanian soldier who had fought against Ira on Mount Zion. According to him, his army all witnessed a vision of Abraham defending the Jews in the sky above the Israeli platoon and had no choice, but to drop their weapons.