Who is a peacemaker?
The answer to this controversial question can be found in the opening passages of this week's Torah portion.
"Therefore," Moshe was informed by G-d, "I grant him My covenant of peace."
Pinchas, the grandson of Aharon Hakohen, had courageously slain the great public sinner Zimri, head of the Tribe of Shimon, and thus brought an end to the plague that had claimed 24,000 lives as punishment for the orgy of immorality with the Moabite and Midianite women. There were rumblings amongst the people accusing Pinchas of wanton murder of a tribal head, and it was therefore necessary for G-d to remind everyone that Pinchas, the grandson of Aharon who personified love of his people and the pursuit of peace, was following in his grandfather's footsteps by restoring peace between G-d and His people.
At a time when so much attention is being focused on peacemaking, it is important to remember that only by bringing about peace between Israel and its G-d can we secure Israel forever.