Love of the Land

For the week ending 12 November 2011 / 14 Heshvan 5772

Eretz Chemda - A Pleasant Land

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
Library Library Library

This name, familiar to us from the second blessing in our Grace after Meals, is found in Tanach both in references to the past and to the future.

In Tehillim (106:24) King David recalls the sin of the nation in accepting the slander of Eretz Yisrael perpetrated by the spies and thus being guilty of "despising the pleasant land" and being compelled to wander for forty years in the wilderness before inheriting it.

The Prophet Yirmiyahu (3:18-19), on the other hand, envisions the end of exile when "the House of Yehuda shall walk with the House of Yisrael and they shall come together out of the land of the north to that land that I have given for an inheritance to your fathers, a pleasant land, the finest heritage of all the nations."

Jews throughout history have atoned for the mistake of "despising the pleasant land" by appreciating its pleasantness in the worst of times and praying for its ultimate return to maximal pleasantness as promised by the Prophet.

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