Sermon Sparks: Pesach – the 5th Cup
Spark: On Passover, we recall the 4 words of redemption in the Torah that correspond to the 4 cups of wine we drink. However, there are actually five words of redemption, which should correspond to the fifth cup. The fifth word of redemption is והבאתי – I will bring you [to the land of Israel]. Most Jews in the world today are safe from oppression, discrimination, slavery, etc. But our redemption is not complete until we are brought to Israel. Does redemption only come when we are literally brought to Israel to live there or can we bring ourselves to Israel in different ways? What still needs to be brought to Israel to make our redemption complete?
The 4 words/4 cups
וְהוֹצֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם מִתַּחַת סִבְלֹת מִצְרַיִם, וְהִצַּלְתִּי אֶתְכֶם מֵעֲבֹדָתָם; וְגָאַלְתִּי אֶתְכֶם בִּזְרוֹעַ נְטוּיָה, וּבִשְׁפָטִים גְּדֹלִים. וְלָקַחְתִּי אֶתְכֶם לִי לְעָם, וְהָיִיתִי לָכֶם לֵאלֹהִים.
I shall take you out from under the burdens of Egypt; I shall save you from their service; I shall redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great punishments; I shall take you to me as a People, and I shall be a G-d to you;…’ “
The 5th word/cup
וְהֵבֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם, אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר נָשָׂאתִי אֶת-יָדִי, לָתֵת אֹתָהּ לְאַבְרָהָם לְיִצְחָק וּלְיַעֲקֹב;
“And I shall bring you to the Land which I have sworn to give to Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov; And I have now given it as an inheritance to you, I am the L-rd.”
What might the fifth cup, וְהֵבֵאתִי, mean to you?
- Bringing Jews to live in Israel, via Aliyah.
- Bringing a spiritual awareness to Israel.
- Bringing the Jewish people into connection with Israel.
- Bringing the some of the values of the global Jewish people, perhaps a passion for tikkun olam, into Israel.
Words from the Pesach Musaf Amida: “Va-havi’einu le-Tziyon ircha be-rinah…Unite our scattered people from among the nations; gather our dispersed from the far ends of the earth. Bring us to Zion, Your city, with exalted song and to Yerushalayim with everlasting joy…”
“One cannot understand daily realities in Israel unless you accept the possibility of miracles occurring” – David Ben Gurion
Jewish Agency for Israel – Tentative Final Immigration Figures for 2010
The year 2010 will end with a 16% increase in the number of new immigrants to Israel.
More than 19,000 olim chose to make their home in Israel.
There are significant increases in the numbers of olim from Latin America, Belgium, Australia and New Zealand, Switzerland and even India.
According to figures from the Jewish Agency and the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption, the year 2010 is expected to end with a 16% increase in the number of new immigrants. This is the second year in a row showing an increase in the number of new immigrants, following 10 years of declining numbers. By the end of December, the total number of olim this year from around the world will have reached 19,130. The total number in 2009 was 16,465 and in 2008 – 15,452.
Around 7,700 new immigrants, making up 40% of the total number of olim this year, came from the FSU (Former Soviet Union), eastern Europe and Germany, as opposed to 7,133 last year (an increase of 8%). From North America, the number stands at 3,980, as compared to 3,767 last year (a 6% rise). The number of olim from Latin America is to reach 1,470, compared to 1,200 last year – this is a significant rise of 19%; France: 2,040 as opposed to 1,894 last year (8% increase); Great Britain: 760 (down from 853 last year). From Ethiopia the number stands at 1,650, the rate of immigration from there being set by the government; the number last year stood at 240.