WTF is The Redemption in Judaism?
The Geulah Shleimah, also known as the complete redemption, is a concept in Jewish tradition that refers to the ultimate and final redemption of the Jewish people from all forms of oppression, persecution, and exile. It is a belief that has been central to Jewish faith and hope for thousands of years and is seen as the ultimate culmination of the Messianic era, in which HaKodesh Baruch Hu’s ultimate judgement and mercy will be revealed, and all things will be made right.
The concept of the Geulah Shelaima is deeply rooted in Jewish history, and is based on the prophecies of the Jewish Bible. These prophecies describe the coming of a Moshiach, a savior who will lead the Jewish people to freedom and the establishment of a perfect world. According to Jewish tradition, the Moshiach will be a descendant of King David and will usher in an era of peace, justice, and prosperity for all people.
For many Jews, the Geulah Shelaima is a source of hope and inspiration. It is a reminder that even in the darkest of times, there is always the possibility of redemption and a better future. The concept of the Geulah Shelaima has been a powerful force throughout Jewish history, inspiring countless individuals to work towards a better world, and to strive for justice and peace.
The concept of the Geulah Shelaima is not limited to a particular time or place. Rather, it is seen as an ongoing process that has been unfolding throughout history. Every act of kindness, every moment of compassion, and every step towards justice and righteousness brings us closer to the ultimate redemption. It is a reminder that every individual has the power to make a difference, and that even the smallest actions can have a profound impact on the world.
There are many reasons why the Geulah Shleimah, the ultimate and final redemption of the Jewish people, has not yet occurred. Here are five possible explanations:
Failure to fulfill the necessary conditions: According to some Jewish traditions, there are certain conditions that must be met before the Geulah can occur. The Gemara states that Moshiach will come in a generation that is either entirely righteous, or entirely transgressors. The Jewish nation will either be on an exalted spiritual level, and thus be deserving Moshiach, or on a very low madrega, or spiritual level, and thus at a point where there is no choice except for the Moshiach to come.
According to the Talmudic tradition, Moshiach will come in a generation that is either entirely righteous or entirely wicked. In other words, the Jewish people must either be on an exalted spiritual level or at a very low spiritual level for the Geulah to occur. This is because in a generation that is entirely righteous, the merit of the people will be sufficient to bring about the Geulah. Alternatively, in a generation that is entirely wicked, the need for redemption will be so great that the Moshiach will have no choice but to come.
This condition is linked to the concept of reward and punishment in Jewish thought. If the Jewish people are on an exalted spiritual level, it is believed that they will be rewarded with the coming of the Moshiach. However, if they are at a very low spiritual level, they will be punished for their sins and the Moshiach will come to redeem them.
In addition, the concept of the Jewish people being on an exalted spiritual level is linked to the idea of Tikun Olam, or the repair of the world. According to this view, the Jewish people have a responsibility to live moral and ethical lives and to work towards the betterment of the world. If they are able to fulfill this responsibility and elevate themselves to an exalted spiritual level, the world will be ready for the Moshiach to come and bring about the ultimate redemption.
The need for repentance: Another possible reason for the delay in the Geulah is the need for repentance. Some believe that the Jewish people must repent for their sins before the Geulah can come. This may require a collective effort to correct the wrongs of the past and strive for a better future.
The need for repentance is also a significant factor in Jewish thought regarding the coming of the Geulah. In Jewish tradition, repentance (Teshuvah) is a crucial step in the process of spiritual growth and returning to God. It involves acknowledging one’s sins, regretting them, and committing to making amends and not repeating them in the future.
According to this view, the Jewish people must engage in collective repentance in order to bring about the Geulah. This means that each individual must examine their actions and behavior, and make a sincere effort to correct any wrongs they have committed. It also involves working to rectify the damage caused by past sins and striving to live a more ethical and moral life.
In the Talmud (Yoma 86b), it is taught that repentance has the power to avert harsh decrees and to bring about salvation. This means that the process of repentance can help to bring about the Geulah by removing any spiritual obstacles that may be preventing it from happening.
In addition, the concept of repentance is closely tied to the idea of free will. Through the exercise of free will, individuals have the power to change their behavior and make amends for past mistakes. By doing so, they can contribute to the collective repentance that is necessary for the Geulah to occur.
Free will: Another possible explanation for the delay in the Geulah is the concept of free will. According to this idea, the Ribbono Shel Olam gave humans the ability to choose between good and evil. If humans choose evil, this may delay the arrival of the Geulah. Some believe that the current state of the world is a result of human actions and choices, which have delayed the redemption. The belief in free will is indeed an axiomatic principle in Jewish thought. According to this belief, human beings have the ability to make choices that are not predetermined by external factors or divine decree. This means that we are responsible for our actions and are accountable for the choices we make.
The concept of reward and punishment is closely linked to the idea of free will in Judaism. The Torah presents a clear set of guidelines and commandments that are designed to help us live moral and ethical lives. We are given the freedom to choose whether to follow these commandments or not, and our choices have consequences. If we choose to live according to the Torah’s precepts, we will be rewarded, and if we choose to disobey them, we will be punished.
As for the belief that some Jews do not want the Moshiach to come, this is a complex issue that has been debated by scholars and religious leaders for centuries. Some believe that this is due to a lack of understanding of the true nature of the Moshiach and the role that he will play in bringing about the ultimate redemption of the world.
Others argue that there may be psychological or emotional factors that make it difficult for some people to accept the idea of the Moshiach. For example, the concept of a perfect world can be daunting and may require people to make significant changes in their lives. Some may also fear that the arrival of the Moshiach will usher in a period of judgment and accountability, which can be frightening.
Lack of unity: Unity among the Jewish people is seen as a critical factor in bringing about the Geulah. However, throughout history, there has been much division and strife within the Jewish community. Some believe that this lack of unity has hindered the arrival of the redemption. principle in Judaism. The Gemara (Shabbos 88a) teaches that the Torah was given to the Jewish people as a united nation, and that it can only be upheld through the collective efforts of the entire community. This means that each individual Jew has a responsibility to contribute to the well-being of the community, and to strive for unity and harmony with their fellow Jews.
The concept of “one person with one heart” is a powerful metaphor for Jewish unity pointed out by Rashi. It suggests that the Jewish people at Mount Sinai were so united in their commitment to the Torah that they were like a single organism, with each individual part working together for a common goal. This level of unity is not easy to achieve, but it is a goal that every Jew should strive for.
Mystical reasons: The concept of the delay in the Geulah due to mystical or cosmic forces is a significant aspect of Jewish thought. There are many different interpretations of these forces, and they are often seen as beyond human understanding. One such interpretation is that the delay in the Geulah is due to the hidden spiritual reasons that are not immediately apparent to human beings.
In Sanhedrin 97a, it is stated that “Moshiach Ben-Dovid will come only when we divert our minds from it [Moshiach].” This statement has been interpreted in many different ways. Some believe that it means that the coming of the Moshiach is linked to the spiritual state of the Jewish people. If they are constantly focused on the coming of the Moshiach, it may be a sign that they are not ready for his arrival. Conversely, if they are able to divert their minds from the Moshiach and focus on spiritual growth and development, they may be more ready for his arrival.
Another possible interpretation is that the coming of the Moshiach is linked to the cosmic forces that are beyond human understanding.
According to this view, the delay in the Geulah may be due to the fact that the world is not yet ready for the Moshiach to come. The forces that govern the universe may need to align in a certain way before the Geulah can occur, and this may take time.
Either way, whatever is going to happen, there is one thing I know: that we must work together on this.
May we merit the geula shleima speedily in our days