Naphtali Perlberger

World of Lies

Before the world of truth can come, the world of lies must disappear” – Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Kook

We are living in prophetic times. Most of us don’t know it. Many of us don’t believe it, even if we are aware of the signs that are right in our faces! What we are doing is living in a world of lies, and they are of our own doing. The most apparent lie rooted in our own self-deception is the significance of contemporary world events, primarily in the personage of Iran.
We are forebodingly within eyesight of a nuclear Iran. This potentiality for Armageddon was predicted as early as the Yalkut Shimoni, written as much as 800-1000 years ago (the precise author or date of this seminal work, cited by rabbinic authorities for generations, is suggested, but not known):

“In the year the King Moshiach will be revealed, the kings of all the nations of the world will struggle with each other: the king of Persia [Iran] will provoke the Arabian king[Saudia Arabia]; the Arabian king will go to Edom [historically, the Roman Empire and the precursor of the Western world] for advice. All the nations of the world will be in turmoil and terror; they will fall on their faces, seized by pains like the pangs of childbirth. Israel will also be in turmoil and terror, saying, “Where shall we come and where shall we go?” [G-d] will say to them, “My children, do not be afraid, all that I have done, I have done only for you sake. Why are you afraid? Do not fear, the time for your Redemption has arrived. It will not be like the earlier Redemptions, this final Redemption, because suffering and subjection to other nations followed the earlier Redemptions. But the final Redemption will not be followed by any suffering and subjection to other nations. Do not fear for everything that I have done is for your benefit, to destroy the evil kingdom of Edom and eradicate evil from this world so that Messiah can come, your time of redemption is now.” Yeshayahu, remez 499

Seen as three stages, two have already occurred:

Stage 1 – Iran threatens and antagonizes Saudia Arabia

Stage 2 – Saudia Arabia turns to the West (and secretly, to Israel) for support.

What about Stage 3 – War?

Eight years ago, on September 25, 2007 Ahmadinejad spoke at the UN Assembly and said that “Soon the regimes of the Western world will fall and be destroyed.” Since then cries of “Death to Israel” and “Death to America” are daily found in the Islamic press and speeches to the masses.

This threat is not just an ideology. We know based on Israeli and world intelligence, and now a given in the news that hits us each day, that Iran is committed and hurriedly developing its nuclear capability, incredibly with the blessing of the West, and spearheaded by the passive policies of the current Administration. Despite Congressional action to require “approval”, the full license to complete its program is nearly inevitable.

Looking from the outside – helpless to change the tide of political suicide and, as I wrote in earlier postings, reminiscent of Europe’s gullibility as Nazi Germany prepared for World War II – there is comfort in knowing that these events may be the fulfillment of ancient prophecy and the completion of a world scenario taught in the Talmud.

In many ways, the events of the last year are illuminating. The historic speech given by PM Netanyahu to Congress, preceded by his visit to the Kotel, explicitly was delivered to warn America (and the world) of the Iran threat to world peace, alluding to the parallel times of Haman, Mordechai and Esther. Europe’s Jewry is precariously vulnerable to rising Anti-Semitism, ISIS is malignantly spreading throughout the Middle East and on the doorstep of the Golan Heights, the Israeli Foreign Minister declares that Judea and Samaria do not need US consent but rooted in Torah, and the US Supreme Court has judicially stamped its approval to barring the issuance of passports and birth certificates identifying Israel as the place of birth for U.S. citizens born in Jerusalem. It is all there!

According to our Sages, the coming of the Moshiach will be preceded by days of spiritual decline and trouble:

1. Insolence will be prevalent in the generation of the Moshiach, including the rise of the young to challenge and mock the ways of the elders.

2. Government will turn atheistic and truth will vanish. Sanhedrin 97a, Sotah 49b.

3. Scientific and technological advancements will have the power to destroy the world. Midrash Rabbah, Shir HaShirim 2:29.

4. Ishmaelites will arise and people around the world, first teaming up with Edom against the Jewish people, and later against the Christians. Pirkei D’Rabbi Eliezer, 28, 32, 36:32; Eitz HaDaat Tov, 124; Malbim on Daniel 7:4, 25 and Baal HaTurim, Genesis 25:18; Ibn Ezra on Genesis 27:40; Ezekiel 38:3.

5. Israel’s enemies will target Jerusalem, but G-d will bring Redemption, as was done at the time of Egypt. Zechariah 14:1-14; Yalkut Shimoni 2:806.

Sound familiar?

Sounds bleak! But, the good news is that our mesorah teaches that prophecy is two-fold: prophecy that is of a positive nature must come true in order for the prophet to be believed; but, negative prophecy (e.g., Book of Jonah) need not come true but is only a warning of things to come, if Jews do not do teshuvah.

Going back to the quote from Rav Kook at the beginning of this article, I would humbly posit that that awakening, that heeding the negative, in order to nullify its tragic and horrific consequences , lies in denying and combating the “world of lies”. This means seeing Iran for what it is. This means seeing ISIS for what it is. This means seeing our Moslem alliances for what they are. This means sending out messages of truth to neutralize or at least answer the lies of world leaders, politicians, influential spokesmen and the mass media. We must, as I have advocated before, win the war of words, and speak out against the lies that form and advance policies that ignore history and our Biblical sources spoken hundreds and thousands of years ago, echoing the Word of G-d.

About the Author
Naphtali Perlberger is a senior lecturer for AISH HaTorah and gives weekly shiurim at Chabad of Golden Beach and Aish Chaim of the Main Line. He is one of the founders and a past president of the Philadelphia Community Kollel. He is Founder & President of Philadelphia Chapter of Children of the Holocaust, and past FJA Chairman of Men's Organizations; past President of Kosloff Torah Academy; and, talk show host for a radio show, "G-d is Listening".