Monday, April 18, 2011

A Few Words About Passover

Tonight, at the Passover seder, Jews recite the Haggadah, the story of the Exodus and celebrate our freedom, our relationship with G-d and the real start of the Jewish nation.

Every year, that story takes on new meaning, and this year is no exception, as a new Pharaoh and his accomplices try to take steps to deny the Jews their freedom and their nationhood...even trying to deny them the right to live and build homes in David's City, Jerusalem.

Only someone would no respect or knowledge of the Jews and of history would seek to do so.

Over the long stream of time, every Pharaoh the Jews have run into, overwhelmed by his own ego and hubris, has hardened his heart and sought to deny them their liberty, their lives and their land. And every one of them has seen his chariots destroyed and his power humbled before the righteousness of G-d's Covenant with the Jewish people.

Passover is the ultimate festival of freedom, a time of not only physical liberty but mental and spiritual liberty. It is a time to cast off physical shackles as well as the mental shackles that enslave us.

Some resist that liberty to the very end. The Torah tells us of Jews who remained in Egypt, despite the clear sign of G-d's miracles and chose to remain enslaved to their oppressors. Pessah is a call to cast off those chains and become truly free, secure in the knowledge that G-d will fulfill the Covenant and lead the Jewish people home.

That hope is echoed in the last words of the seder every year, 'לשנה הבאה בירושלים'...'next year in Jerusalem!'

The idea behind that heartfelt wish is not merely a longing for a place. It is a prayer for a time of peace, freedom and dignity. Those words were spoken both by the Jews remaining in Israel and by the Jews suffering through years of exile with the same idea - that one day, Almighty G-d would again perform a miracle on behalf of his Covenant with the Jewish people.

That miracle happened after centuries of blood, toil and pain and with G-d's help and Israel's strength and sacrifice, it will prevail. Of that I have no doubt whatsoever.

Just for fun, here are the maniacs over at with `Matzoh Rap'!

Personalize funny videos and birthday

My best wishes for a happy, kosher and wonderful Passover, and may you too celebrate as free men and women - Chag Pesach Sameach!

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