Arie E. Pelta
Arie E. Pelta

Chanukas HaBayis – Dedicating A New House – In Israel (part 2 of 4)

Shechem in the morning. (couretsy)

Building A House In Israel – Demonstrates We Love G-d and Accept Him As Our G-d

Living here, is living the words of the Kriyas Shema.  We say, שמע ישראל “Listen Yisrael!,  Move here, use all of our body, money, and soul”.  Building our house here demonstrates that we love G-d and accept him as our G-d.

דברים ו:ה , פרשת ואתחנן

ואהבת את ה’ אלקיך, בכל לבבך, ובכל נפשך, ובכל מאדך.

And you should love Hashem your G-d, with all your heart, and all your should, and all your wealth (Devarim 6:5).

Here we have built our own home Eretz Yisrael with our entire heart and soul.  We can now  figuratively cling to G-d’s heart and soul בכל ליבי וכל נפשי.

Hashem has been waiting for us to take the next step of yishuv Eretz Yisrael, after Aliyah, by building our house here and we have done just that.  He did not want us to wait for Him to bring us here.  We did not wait, rather we came here of our own volition קומימיות לארצינו.  In this manner are now worthy to receive G-d’s divine assistance (pg.47, EHS).

Rav Eliyahu, The Av Beis Din of Greiditz, taught that when we initiate the process of redeeming the Land, then G-d will complete it.  There is an evil spiritual force , called a klipah, and its entire strength depends on Am Yisrael living in exile.  When this exile dissolves so will this evil klipah.

The Sefer Nefesh Chaya, states that there are Tzadikim who oppose yishuv Eretz Yisrael.  This is because the evil klipah of galus has become strong within them (EHS pg. 48).

Sefer Shaar Hagilgulim, teaches that the Shechina will return from galus, only when we gather all the souls that fell into the klipos.  Then Moshiach will come.   Clearly, the Aliyah process is a gathering these klipos.

We learn from Avraham Avinu, “Lech lecha” – you go to Israel; leave Chutz La’aretz. We have suffered enough in the galus and the Holocaust, now it’s a new phase of שיר חדש, “In your blood live, in your blood live”.

יחזקל טז:ו

וָאֶֽעֱבֹר עָלַיִךְ וָֽאֶרְאֵךְ מִתְבּוֹסֶסֶת בְּדָמָיִךְ וָאֹמַר לָךְ בְּדָמַיִךְ חֲיִי וָאֹמַר לָךְ בְּדָמַיִךְ חֲיִֽי:

And I passed by you and saw you downtrodden with your blood, and I said to you, ‘With your blood, live,’ and I said to you, ‘With your blood, live. ‘ (Yechezkel 16:6(

We built houses and our careers in Chutz La’aretz; however, the Torah tells us by these types of actions you will sow your seeds in vain.

ויקרא כו:טז, פרשת בחקתי

אַף אֲנִי אֶֽעֱשֶׂה זֹּאת לָכֶם וְהִפְקַדְתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם בֶּֽהָלָה אֶת הַשַּׁחֶפֶת וְאֶת הַקַּדַּחַת מְכַלּוֹת עֵינַיִם וּמְדִיבֹת נָפֶשׁ וּזְרַעְתֶּם לָרִיק זַרְעֲכֶם וַֽאֲכָלֻהוּ אֹֽיְבֵיכֶֽם:

Then I too, will do the same to you; I will order upon you shock, consumption, fever, and diseases that cause hopeless longing and depression. You will sow your seed in vain, and your enemies will eat it.     ( VaYikra 26:16)

Blood  דמים means two things – money and blood.   We gave our blood and money to build Europe, Spain, Poland , San Francisco, Los Angeles, NY, Atlanta.  The Navi Yechezkel tells us – in your blood live, in your blood live –“If you build a house in Eretz Yisrael , you and your children will dwell in it for many years (EHS pg.340).

The Chasam Sofer learns from Parshas Devarim, that we must come and possess the land, because we have no portion nor inheritance in this world other than Eretz Yisrael.  We have no ability to achieve a Tikun in Chutz La’aretz, rather only in Eretz Yisrael.

דברים א:ו

ה’ אֱלֹקינוּ דִּבֶּר אֵלֵינוּ בְּחֹרֵב לֵאמֹר רַב־לָכֶם שֶׁבֶת בָּהָר הַזֶּֽה: פְּנוּ וּסְעוּ לָכֶם וּבֹאוּ הַר הָֽאֱמֹרִי וְאֶל כָּל שְׁכֵנָיו בָּֽעֲרָבָה בָהָר וּבַשְּׁפֵלָה וּבַנֶּגֶב וּבְחוֹף הַיָּם אֶרֶץ הַכְּנַֽעֲנִי וְהַלְּבָנוֹן עַד הַנָּהָר הַגָּדֹל נְהַר פְּרָֽת: רְאֵה נָתַתִּי לִפְנֵיכֶם אֶת הָאָרֶץ בֹּאוּ וּרְשׁוּ אֶת הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נִשְׁבַּע ה’ לַֽאֲבֹתֵיכֶם לְאַבְרָהָם לְיִצְחָק וּלְיַֽעֲקֹב לָתֵת לָהֶם וּלְזַרְעָם אַחֲרֵיהֶֽם:

Hashem our G-d spoke to us in Chorev, saying, ‘You have dwelt long enough at this mountain. Turn and journey, and come to the mountain of the Amorites and to all its neighboring places, in the plain, on the mountain, and in the lowland, and in the south and by the seashore, the land of the Canaanites, and the Lebanon, until the great river, the Euphrates River. See, I have set the land before you; come and possess the land which Hashem swore to your forefathers, to Avraham, to Yitzchak, and to Yaakov, to give them and their descendants after them. (Devarim 1:6-8)

We learn from the story of Lavan the first real Anti-Semite, that at a certain point the Jew, Yaakov, must get up and return to Israel and build his own home.

בראשית ל:ל, פרשת ויצא

כִּי מְעַט אֲשֶׁר הָיָה לְךָ לְפָנַי וַיִּפְרֹץ לָרֹב, וַיְבָרֶךְ ה’ אֹֽתְךָ לְרַגְלִי וְעַתָּה מָתַי אֶֽעֱשֶׂה גַם אָֽנֹכי לְבֵיתִֽי:

[Yakov to Lavan] For the little that you had before me has increased in multitude, and Hashem you upon my arrival; but now, when will I, too, provide [something] for my household? ” (Bereishis 30:30)

We are following in the footsteps of our forefathers and we choose life, possess the land and build a house (Derashot Chasam Sofer vol. 2, pg. 306a)

All situations or planned by G-d for the good, including the process of building our house in Ganei HaEylah. Everything is for the good כל מה דעביד רחמנא לטב עביד.   The Dubno Magid explains that seemingly bad things happen, because of the hardships     יסורין  that G-d builds for us. We don’t always understand the ways of G-d.  We may think that these hardships are ruining our life, when in actuality G-d is in the process of building it.

תהילים כח:ה

כִּי לֹא יָבִינוּ אֶל פְּעֻלֹּת ה’ וְאֶל מַֽעֲשֵׂה יָדָיו יֶֽהֶרְסֵם וְלֹא יִבְנֵֽם:

For they [the wicked] do not understand the works of Hashem or the deeds of His hands. He shall break them down and not build them up. (Tehillim 28:5)

One usually does not have a strong to devotion to G-d when things are going well. In Tehillim, when discussing hardships we state that G-d is with us כי אתה עמדי.

תהילים כג: א,ד

מִזְמוֹר לְדָוִד ה’ רֹעִי לֹא אֶחְסָֽר… גַּם כִּֽי אֵלֵךְ בְּגֵיא צַלְמָוֶת לֹא אִירָא רָע כִּי אַתָּה עִמָּדִי שִׁבְטְךָ וּמִשְׁעַנְתֶּךָ הֵמָּה יְנַֽחֲמֻֽנִי:

A song of David. Hashem is my shepherd; I shall not want… Even when I walk in the valley of darkness, I will fear no evil for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff – they comfort me. (Tehillim 23:1, 4)

We Strive to thank G-d when all is going well.  In this manner we won’t need harsh measures to remind us that everything comes from G-d. We currently are thanking Hashem for our house that we have acquired with a lot of hardships (with a rod and staff); and we thank Hashem for everything.

The Sifrei in Parshas Reah, quotes the Tosefta from Avoda Zarah stating that the mitzvah of settling Eretz Yisrael is equivalent to the mitzvos of the entire Torah.

תוספתא מסכת עבודה זרה פרק ה,ב

ישרה אדם בארץ ישראל אפילו בעיר שרובה עובדי כוכבים ולא בחו”ל אפי’ בעיר שכולה ישראל, מלמד שישיבת ארץ ישראל שקולה כנגד כל מצות שבתורה.

A person [Jew] should settle in Eretz Yisrael, even in a city mostly of non-Jews and not in Chutz La’aretz even in a city of all Jews.  This teaches that settling Eretz Yisrael is equivalent to all the mitztzvos in the Torah (Sifrei, Tosefta)

The unity אחדות  of the Jewish people can only really be established in Eretz Yisrael.  Rav Shimon bar Yochai (Zohar 3:93b) teaches, based on the pasuk in Shmuel, we are only one nation when we are located in Eretz Yisrael; “Who is like your people, Israel one nation in the land.

שמואל ב, ז:כג

וּמִי כְעַמְּךָ כְּיִשְׂרָאֵל גּוֹי אֶחָד בָּאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר הָלְכֽוּ אֱלֹקִים לִפְדּֽוֹת לוֹ לְעָם וְלָשֹוּם לוֹ שֵׁם            וְלַעֲשֹוֹת לָכֶם הַגְּדוּלָּה נֹֽרָאוֹת לְאַרְצֶךָ מִפְּנֵי עַמְּךָ אֲשֶׁר פָּדִיתָ לְּךָ מִמִּצְרַיִם גּוֹיִם וֵאלֹקיו:

And who is like Your people, like Israel, one nation in The Land, whom G-d went to redeem for Himself as a people, and to make Him a name, also to accomplish for you the greatness and fearful things for Your land, [in driving out] from before Your people, whom You did redeem for Yourself out of Egypt, [the] nations and their gods?( Shmuel II 7:23)

The Menorah symbolizes Jewish unity (Seforno Bamidbar 8:2-4).  Celebrating Chanukah in Israel is unity – אחדות. We get together for a house dedication חנוכת הבית  to create unity among our Jewish neighbors, in Israel.

The Talmud Bavli is not very praiseworthy of Jews who decide to live in Chutz La’Aretz.  Rav Shimon compares living out of Israel to nothing less than idol worship, but with pure intensions.

תלמוד בבלי , עבודה זרה דף ח עמוד א

תניא: רבי שמעון בן אלעזר אומר: ישראל שבחוצה לארץ עובדי עבודת כוכבים בטהרה הן.

It was taught in a Baraisa: Rav Shimon Ben Elazar said: The Jews outside the Land of Israel are idol worshipers with pure intensions. (Talmud Bavli, Avodah Zarah 8a)

By moving here and building our house we demonstrate that G-d is our G-d. We left Egypt, thousands of years ago, in order eventually live in Israel.  As we say in the Shema prayer, You took us out of Egypt, to be a G-d for us.  This is clarified in Parashas Behar, where it states we were specifically taken out of Egypt in order to serve G-d in Eretz Yisrael.

במדבר טו:מא, פרשת שלח (פרשת מרגלים)

אני ה’ אלקיכם אשר הוצאתי אתכם מארץ מצרים, להיות לכם לאלקים, אני ה’  אלקיכם:

I am Hashem Your G-d who took you out of Egypt, to be for you a G-d, I am Hashem Your G-d (Bamidbar 15:41).

ויקרא כה: לח, פרשת בהר

אני ה’  אלקיכם אשר הוצאתי אתכם מארץ מצרים, לתת לכם את ארץ כנען להיות לכם לאלקים:

I am Hashem Your G-d who took you out of Egypt, to give you the Land of Canaan, to be for you a G-d (Vayikra 25:38).

About the Author
Arie E. Pelta, M.D., a Board Certified General and Colorectal Surgeon from the USA , made aliyah with his wife and 7 children in 2013. Received Rabbinical ordination in 1997. He is also a active Medical Corps Officer holding the rank of Captain in the IDF Reserves. Currently practicing in Laniado Hospital in Netanya; speciaizing in the surgical care of all problems of the colon, rectum and anus.
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