Sometimes we wonder how is it possible that we can sustain ourselves in the galus. We live in a world bombarded with all kinds of ideas— “isms” to no end. How are we to understand that our Judaism will last and persevere through it all? We are aware that the Jewish People have beaten the statistics, and are the longest-running nation/religion in history. But what is the source of this power for our “stick to it”-ness.
The Chidushei Harim tells us that when Klal Yisrael descends to galus, we have the ability to persevere because “vayechi Yaakov” – Yaakov is alive. Even in Egypt, the strength of Yaakov—the power of “titen emes l’Yaakov” (the Truth of Yaakov) will sustain.
I once heard the following thought: It is easier to remember one truth than many lies. The beauty of our religion is that we have nothing to hide. No spectacular events happened in private. Instead, the entire Truth of our religion was apparent to the whole world, from Mount Sinai, to the splitting of the Sea of Reeds. But not only are the “super” events are revealed to all, the Gemora too is filled with questions and positions that are eventually refuted. Yet even those refuted suggestions are Torah and part of the eternal Truth, just as the bottom-line psak halacha.
Shabbos Kodesh has this ability to ring true the purpose of Creation as we look back and see, without being partial, what is important and what isn’t. The Sfas Emes explains that this is the meaning of the words “m’ain olam haba” – the space where the plain truth is obvious.
As we conclude the section of the Torah dealing with the Avos, the beginning of our legacy, and we enter into the Egyptian Exile, we can be sure that the truth which is eternal will persevere. Just as in regard to the national galus, we need the power of Truth to persevere, so too in our personal lives if we look at ourselves objectively through the clear lens of Torah, we can become liberated.
Chazak chazak v’nischazek. Let the Emes of Bereishis lead us to our personal and national redemption.