Israel Forever

For the week ending 18 December 2010 / 10 Tevet 5771

Whose Wall Is It?

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
Library Library Library

In Psalm 83 of Tehillim, which is recited in many synagogues throughout Israel and the world for the sake of security in the Holy Land, there is a dramatic description of a conspiracy of nations against the Jewish inhabitants of the Land.

Philistines and Ishmaelites join Assyrians and other classical enemies of Jewry in a declaration that "they will inherit the dwelling place of G-d" (83:13). The commentaries explain that this is a reference to the Beit Hamikdash, which is the Divine residence.

We are reminded of this threat by the recent publication of an official paper by the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Information that claims that the Kotel was never a part of the Temple Mount and really belongs to the Muslims. It was Muslim tolerance, says the paper's Palestinian author, which allowed Jews to stand in front of the Wall and weep over its destruction.

In this week's Torah portion the Patriarch Yaakov, in his blessing to his son Yehuda, prophesies that Jews will be connected to Yerushalayim and will build the Beit Hamikdash. (See Targum Onkeles on Bereishet 49:11).

It is the age-old connection of the Jewish People with Yerushalayim and the Kotel which conclusively refute the preposterous Arab claim and strengthens our resolve to maintain this city as the undivided capital of Israel forever.

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