Kenneth Cohen

Never Give Up

Probably the most important message of the Purim story is that we must never “give up.” If we continue to have faith in Hashem, as bleak as the situation might be, things can change in a moment.

The situation in Shushan, was about as bleak as one could imagine. As Haman said to Achaahveirosh, “There is a nation that is scattered among the nations, and it is not worthwhile for the king, to allow them to live.” The commentators tell us that Haman was saying that because of their lack of unity, and being spread out all over the kingdom, nobody would even notice if they were annihilated.

Mordechai became aware of just how serious the situation was. He realized that the fate of the Jewish people could change if they were united, and they repented, and sincerely called out to G-d.

There was heavy mourning for the Jewish people, with weeping, fasting and sadness. All of this changed in a moment. The impossible salvation had come. The sadness turned to incredible joy and celebration, and the rest is history.

As individuals, we sometimes go through difficult periods where our problems seem to be insurmountable. We must never give up. The Rabbis say, ישועת ה׳ כהרף עין, “The salvation from Hashem, is like the blink of an eye.” The Purim story urges us to keep plugging away. Never lose hope and never give up. Things can change in a moment.

About the Author
Rabbi Cohen has been a Torah instructor at Machon Meir, Jerusalem, for over twenty years while also teaching a Talmud class in the Shtieblach of Old Katamon. Before coming to Israel, he was the founding rabbi of Young Israel of Century City, Los Angeles. He recently published a series of Hebrew language-learning apps, which are available at