Israel Forever

For the week ending 30 April 2005 / 21 Nisan 5765

Who is the Master?

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll

On Pesach we sing the praises of the Hallel prayer in appreciation of G-ds having redeemed us from Egyptian bondage.

It would seem logical, our Talmudic Sages point out, for us to say Hallel on Purim, for if we are grateful for being rescued from slavery, should we not be even more appreciative of being rescued from the genocide of Haman?

One of the resolutions presented to the dilemma of no Hallel on Purim is that the Hallel prayer begins with the words Sing praise you servants of G-d. On Pesach this is appropriate because we can truly declare that we became servants of G-d and that our servitude to Pharaoh ended forever. On Purim, however, although we were saved from death, we remained servants of the Persian ruler Achashveirosh.

While it is true that Achashveirosh is long gone, and with him scores of rulers to whom we were subservient, there still persists the feeling that we are not yet as completely free as we were after the Exodus from Egypt. If foreign powers can so influence the policies of the government of the Jewish State, it is a reminder that we are still in Galut.

May our celebration of the Pesach Festival with all of its laws and customs make us worthy of an Exodus from this Galut for a people who are true servants of G-d in a truly independent Israel forever.

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