CAN YISRAEL BE REDEEMED WITHOUT TESHUVAH? (cont.)
(Continuation of Beraisa #2 - R. Eliezer): It says "Im Tashuv Yisrael..." (this implies that they must do Teshuvah on their own)!
R. Yehoshua: It says "ha'Ish Levush ha'Badim... l'Mo'ed Mo'adim... Tichlenah Chol Eleh" (there is a fixed time for the redemption)!
R. Eliezer was silent.
WHEN MASHI'ACH WILL COME
(R. Aba): The Ketz is very explicit - "Harei Yisrael Anpechem Titenu u'Feryechem Tis'u l'Ami Yisrael" (Eretz Yisrael will yield fruit right before Am Yisrael will return).
R. Elazar: Will you say that that is more explicit than "Lifnei ha'Yamim ha'Hem Sechar ha'Adam Lo Nihyeh u'Schar ha'Behemah Einenah (when no one has money) vela'Yotzei ula'Ba Ein Shalom Min ha'Tzar"? Then, Mashi'ach will come!
Question: What does it mean "vela'Yotzei ula'Ba Ein Shalom Min ha'Tzar"?
Answer #1 (Rav): Chachamim, who should have Shalom, will not, due to the afflictions (alternatively - due to the Yetzer ha'Ra).
Answer #2 (Shmuel): Prices of all foods will be equal (Ben Yehoyada - and merchants cannot profit; Aruch - all measures will be the same, for no one is corrupt; Maharsha - all the gates will be equal (there will not be special gates for entry and others for exit), because there is no Shalom from the oppressor).
(R. Chanina): Ben David will not come until they will seek fish for a sick person and not find it - "Ashki'a Meimeihem v'Naharoseihem ka'Shemen Olich (the rivers will be as thick as oil, fish cannot live in them) ba'Yom ha'Hu Atzmi'ach Keren l'Veis Yisrael."
(R. Chama bar Chanina): Ben David will not come until Yisrael will not have even the lightest authority (Rashi; Maharsha - until the disgraced kingdom (Edom) will be eradicated) - "v'Charas ha'Zalzalim... ba'Es ha'Hi Yuval Shai la'Shem Tzevakos Am Memushach u'Morat."
(Ze'iri): Ben David will not come until haughty people cease from Yisrael - "Az Asir mi'Kirbech Alizei Ga'avasech... v'Hish'arti b'Kirbech Am Oni va'Dal v'Chasu b'Shem Hash-m."
(R. Simlai): Ben David will not come until all judges and officers cease from Yisrael - "v'Ashivah Yadi Alayich... v'Ashivah Shoftayich."
(Ula): Yerushalayim (Rambam - Yisrael) will only be redeemed through Tzedakah - "Tziyon b'Mishpat Tipadeh v'Shaveha bi'Tzdakah."
(Rav Papa): If haughty people cease, the Amgushi (Parsi witches that afflict Yisrael; alternatively - enticers, avid idolaters that constantly blaspheme) will cease - "v'Etzrof ka'Bor Sigayich v'Asirah Kol Bedilayich";
If judges cease, your enemy will cease - "Hesir Hash-m Mishpatayich Pinah Oyvayech."
(R. Yochanan): If you see the generation declining, wait for Mashi'ach - "v'Es Am Oni Toshi'a."
(R. Yochanan): If you see many afflictions besetting the generation like a river, wait for Mashi'ach - "Ki Yavo cha'Nahar Tzar... u'Vo l'Tziyon Go'el."
(R. Yochanan): Ben David will only come in a generation that is totally worthy or totally guilty:
He can come in a totally worthy generation - "v'Amcha Kulam Tzadikim l'Olam Yirshu Aretz";
He can come in a totally unworthy generation - "va'Yar Ki Ein Ish... Lema'ani E'eseh."
Contradiction (R. Alexandri): "B'Itah" connotes that Mashi'ach will come in the proper time. "Achishenu" connotes that Hash-m will bring him early!
Resolution: If we merit, He will bring him early. If not, he will come in the proper time.
Contradiction (R. Alexandri): It says "va'Aru Im Ananei Shmaya..." (Mashi'ach will come quickly", and it says "Oni v'Rochev Al Chamor" (lazily)!
Resolution: If we merit, he will come quickly. If not, he will come slowly.
WHEN MASHI'ACH WILL COME (cont.)
Shevor Malka: You say that Mashi'ach will come on a donkey. I will send him my most beautiful (or fastest) horse!
Shmuel: Do you have a horse of 100 colors? (We may not derive that Mashi'ach's horse will have 100 colors. This was a mere retort to a disrespectful comment.)
R. Yehoshua ben Levi found Eliyahu by the cave in which R. Shimon hid for 13 years. He asked 'will I come to the world to come?'
Eliyahu: If Hash-m wants, you will.
R. Yehoshua ben Levi: I see only the two of us, but I heard a third voice! (The Shechinah was there.) When will Mashi'ach come?
Eliyahu: Ask Mashi'ach himself!
R. Yehoshua ben Levi: Where is he?
Eliyahu: He is at the gate of (Rashi - Gan Eden that faces) the city.
R. Yehoshua ben Levi: How will I recognize him?
Eliyahu: He is sitting among poor Metzora'im. They undo all their bandages at the same time (to clean the wounds) and retie them. He opens only one at a time, to minimize the delay (to retie them) in case he will suddenly be called to redeem Yisrael.
R. Yehoshua ben Levi (to Mashi'ach): Shalom to you, my Rebbi and teacher!
Mashi'ach: Shalom to you, son of Levi!
R. Yehoshua ben Levi: When will Rebbi come?
R. Yehoshua ben Levi told Eliyahu that Mashi'ach answered 'Shalom to you, son of Levi.' Eliyahu said that this shows that he and his father will both be in the world to come.
R. Yehoshua ben Levi: He lied to me! He said 'I am coming today', but he did not!
Eliyahu: He meant "ha'Yom Im b'Kolo Sishma'u (today, if you will heed His voice)."
R. Yosi ben Kisma's Talmidim: When will Mashi'ach come?
R. Yosi ben Kisma: I fear that you will request a sign (a miracle to prove the truth of my words)!
Talmidim: We will not!
R. Yosi: The gate (of Romi) will fall three times, and they will rebuild it twice. Before they will rebuild it the third time, he will come.
Talmidim: Give us a sign!
R. Yosi: You said that you will not request one!
Talmidim: Nevertheless, please give one!
R. Yosi: The water of the Pamyus (the source of the Yarden river) should turn to blood. (It did.)
Just before R. Yosi ben Kisma died, he requested that they bury his coffin very deep, for the Parsi'im (in the war of Gog and Magog) will have a horse tied to every tree in Bavel (which they will conquer before invading Eretz Yisrael), and they will dig up all the coffins in Eretz Yisrael to use for feeding troughs for their horses.
THE PERIOD BEFORE MASHI'ACH
(Rav): "Yitnem Ad Es Yoledah" - Ben David will not come until the kingdom (Romi) spreads over Yisrael (who are scattered over the entire world) for nine months.
Ula and Rabah: Mashi'ach should come, but I should not be there (to experience the suffering)!
Rav Yosef: Mashi'ach should come, and may I merit to sit in the shade of the dung of his donkey!
Abaye (to Rabah): Why don't you want to witness Mashi'ach? Is it due to the suffering? You have Torah and Chesed, so you will be spared!
(Beraisa): One who wants to be spared the suffering that will accompany Mashi'ach should engage in Torah and Chesed.
Rabah: Perhaps I will not be spared due to sin.
Contradiction (R. Yakov): Hash-m promised Yakov "u'Shmarticha b'Chol Asher Telech", yet "Va'Yira Yakov Me'od"!
Answer: He was afraid that he had forfeited the promise due to sin.
"Ad Ya'avor Hash-m" refers to Yisrael's first entry into Eretz Yisrael (with Yehoshua). "Ad Ya'avor Am Zu Kanisa" refers to the second entry (with Ezra);
This teaches that Yisrael were worthy to enter the second time amidst miracles like the first time. They did not, because they sinned.
R. Yochanan: Mashi'ach should come, and I should not be there.
Suggestion (Reish Lakish): Are you afraid of "Ka'asher Yanus Ish Mipnei ha'Ari u'Fga'o ha'Dov... u'Nshacho Nachash"?
You should not fear this. Even now, we have afflictions like this! One who encounters a Santer (an official authorized to mark off the borders) in the field is afraid like one who sees a lion (lest he shorten his field). In the city he encounters the tax collector. This is like encountering a bear. He returns home and sees his children hungry. This is like being bitten by a snake!
Rejection: Rather, he fears "...Ra'isi Chol Gever... ka'Yoledah v'Nehefchu Chol Panim l'Yerakon."
Question: What does it mean "Ra'isi Chol Gever..."?
Version #1 - Rashi - Answer (Rava bar Yitzchak): (Hash-m), who has all Gevurah (strength, will feel pain over the destruction of the Nochrim like a woman in labor).
Version #2 - Ramah - Answer (Rava bar Yitzchak): The strongest man will be afraid like a woman in labor.
Question: What does it mean "Chol Panim l'Yerakon"?
Answer (R. Yochanan): Both angels and Yisrael will turn green when Hash-m says 'both Yisrael and the Nochrim are My creations. How can I destroy one for the sake of the other?!'
Version #1 - Rashi - (Rav Papa): This is like people say, when the ox fell, its owner uses a horse in its stead and lets the horse eat from the ox' trough. (When the ox recovers, he feels bad about kicking out the horse. Likewise, Hash-m gave power to Nochrim when Yisrael sinned. When Yisrael repent, He feels bad about having to demote them.)
Version #2 - Ramah - (Rav Papa): This is like people say, an ox falls when it runs and tries to gore a horse, but in the end it will gore it in its trough. (Likewise, Hash-m has not yet destroyed the Nochrim (seemingly, He does not want to), but in the end He will for the sake of Yisrael.)
(Rav Gidal): In the future, Yisrael will enjoy the satiation of Yemos ha'Mashi'ach.
Objection (Rav Yosef): This is obvious. Who else would enjoy it?!
Answer: Rav Gidal comes to argue with R. Hillel, who says that the prophecies of Yemos ha'Mashi'ach were already fulfilled in the days of Chizkiyah.
(Rav): The world was created for the sake of David (Rashi - who sang so many praises to Hash-m; Ran - the epitome of this physical world was in his days).
(Shmuel): It was created for the sake of Moshe (who received the Torah).
(R. Yochanan): It was created for the sake of Mashi'ach.
WHO WILL BE MASHI'ACH?
Question: What is the name of Mashi'ach?
Answer #1 (d'Vei R. Shila): His name is Shilo - "Ad Ki Yavo Shilo."
Answer #2 (d'Vei R. Yanai): It is Yinun - "Yinun Shemo."
Answer #3 (d'Vei R. Chaninah): It is Chaninah - "Lo Eten Lachem Chaninah."
Answer #4: Some say, it is Menachem ben Chizkiyah - "Rochak Mimeni Menachem Meshiv Nafshi." (Maharsha - Mashi'ach was born in the days of Yirmeyah, but Hash-m withdrew him to Gan Eden until the proper time. Tradition teaches that his father was Chizkiyah.)
Answer #5 (Rabanan): It is Chivara d'Vei Rebbi - "Chalayenu Hu Nasa... Chashavnuhu Nagu'a Mukeh Elokim." (People thought that he was a Metzora, whose skin turns very Chiver (white). He will be from the house of Rebbi.)
(Rav Nachman): If Mashi'ach is alive today, it is someone like me - "v'Hayah Adiro Mimenu u'Moshlo mi'Kirbo Yetzei." (Rav Nachman married the daughter of the Reish Galusa, so he was very powerful.)
(Rav): If Mashi'ach is alive today, it is (someone like - one explanation in Rashi deletes this) Rebbi. If he is dead, it is (someone like) Daniel. (Both were great Tzadikim who were greatly afflicted).
(Rav Yehudah): Hash-m will establish another (king like) David - "v'Ovdu Es Hash-m Elokeihem v'Es David Malkam Asher Akim Lahem";
It does not say 'Hekim' (established), rather, "Akim" (I will establish).
Question (Rav Papa): It says "v'David Avdi Nasi Lahem l'Olam"!
Answer (Abaye): It says that David will be Nasi (not Melech). He will be second to the new king.
(R. Simlai): "Hoy ha'Mis'avim Es Yom Hash-m... Choshech v'Lo Or" - woe to Nochrim who await Mashi'ach!
A parable explains this. A rooster and a bat were awaiting dawn. The rooster said, I await the light, for I can see. (You cannot see. Why do you wait for the light?!