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Will We Still Have Free Choice When Moshiach Comes?

Will We Still Have Free Choice When Moshiach Comes?

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Question:

Will we still have freedom of choice when Moshiach comes? From what I've read, it seems like we will automatically do the right thing. And without any decisions to make, won't life be pretty boring?

Response:

I like this question. When Moshiach comes, there won't be the many layers of confusion that make life so difficult. Priorities will change. We will sense the importance and beauty of the Torah and Mitzvot. Being generous with others will be natural. Divine wisdom will shine through every aspect of the world. In the words of the prophet, "The entire world will be filled with knowledge of G‑d as waters cover the ocean."1

And with the truth so obvious, who will be able to do anything wrong?

However, good versus evil is not the only decision we make in life. There's another sort of free choice too—one that will even apply even when Moshiach comes: Good versus better.

Today, the question is often whether or not we do a certain good deed. When Moshiach comes, it will be to what extent we do that Mitzvah. Will we push ourselves to the max or just be satisfied with a regular job. Today, we choose between using our talents for good things or bad things. When Moshiach comes, we will choose between nurturing those talents even further or just letting them be.

I think this answers your second question. You are right. Obstacles give us excitement. They provide us with a drive for life. When Moshiach comes, that drive will be there—only in a different form.

Think of both an airplane and a rocket. They both require a form of resistance in order to fly. In the airplane, this resistance is provided through interplay with an external factor: the varied degrees of air pressure on both sides of the wings. Now, above a certain elevation this is no longer possible. You have to create your own resistance that pushes downwards. This is the rocket.

Today, our battle is between good and bad. With evil working against us, we make the right decisions and propel ourselves forward. But when Moshiach comes, we'll leave this atmosphere. Evil will become a no-brainer. We will need our own rockets - the challenge of good versus better. And we will use freedom of choice to decide just how high we want to soar.

As the Talmud tells us, "Tzadikim have no rest, neither in this world, nor in the next." In the words of the prophet, "They go from strength to strength."2

Footnotes
2.

Talmud, Brachot 64a

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olga January 22, 2014

awesome keep it coming Reply

Dr. Harry Hamburger Miami October 1, 2013

One little problem with Moshiach coming today There is a Hall of Souls where every soul must be born and fulfill its purpose before the coming of the Moshiach. Today we have a "little" problem, in that tens of thousands of babies are being aborted in the womb, so that their soul is not born and given a name (not referring to abortions done to save a mother's life). The Moshiach cannot come until this stops, and or all of the people this are destroyed. Just remember this....when you prevent a soul from being born, you delay the coming of Moshiach! Reply

joshua September 26, 2013

moshiach is coming soon I can sense the hope and joy of the writer. The Messianic Age has surely started. Reply

Robert Rubin Ballwin, Missouri September 9, 2012

Life on Earth when Moshiach comes Rabbi Cotlar the vision you describe of Life on Earth when Moshiach comes is awe inspiring and elegant in its simplicity.

The central question that must be answered is how will GOD create the conditions on Earth to fulfil your enlightened vision?

There is only one answer to this question: Judgement Day on Earth ! And in the time it takes for a single heartbeat GOD will destroy evil ! In the words of the prophet Isaiah " But with righteousness shall he judge the poor,and decide with equity for the humble of the Earth; and he shall strike the Earth with the rod of his mouth and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked."
November 24, 2012
Reply

Dr. Harry Hamburger Miami, Fl June 22, 2011

Such a thing as death? Good question Hodaya!

From G-d's perspective all is one, and we do not have independent existence, so cannot die. From our perspective, we have bodies/vessels that can die, and feel separate from Him. When the Moshiach comes, and we will be able to see the unfiltered light of G-d, and still exist. The subject of death then becomes irrelevant. Hope this helps? Reply

hodaya levi ny, brooklyn June 21, 2011

when mashiach comes is there going to be such thing as death? Reply

Raziela October 17, 2010

Better As more of us realise that it is indeed for our own good to do G-d's will, yes we will be living in a time of greater goods and better bests.

It's here now, so many people are already striving for this. Reply

Mr. Leon Anderson Jr. October 16, 2010

Today and Moshiach's tomorrow
"Today, our battle is between good and bad. With evil working against us, we make the right decisions and propel ourselves forward. But when Moshiach comes, we'll leave this atmosphere."

"Good versus better." What a blessing that will be. Imagine the news then that may be tweeted, twittered, texted, or whatever around the globe! Greater goods and betters! What a choice. Reply

Dr. Harry Hamburger Miami, Fl October 14, 2010

Freedom of Choice to Sin We only sin when in folly and confusion we forget that we are one with G-d and the entire universe. In reality, sinning is like biting off your own arm, and not feeling it. Pretty stupid, eh? But we still all do it!

When the Moshiach comes, not only will we know that everyone shares the same arm, but it will really, really hurt if we bite it, and thereby we will not do it! Reply

Shahid October 13, 2010

Enlightening! Thanks for such an enlightening description! Reply

Raziela October 12, 2010

to James sure our conscience does speak to us but no one's conscience is going to tell them to pray 3 x a day or how to keep shabbos. There are laws that need to be learned. Unless maybe one is on a very high level.

But again soon even quantum physics will 'See" why the finer details of Kosher and Shabbos for eg are so vitally important. Subtle realities are becomig clear to all and not only to those who have toiled to make their souls great. Sad and sweet Reply

Raziela October 12, 2010

free will I already feel that our free choice is less and our effort required is also less.

We have Jewish history, quantum physics, explosions of consciousness and technology all which make knowing G-d as real virtually impossible to deny and make learning Torah much easier to understand. If you can use a computer program to completely within seconds homiletically understand Torah on all the levels our effort goes out the window so how do we grow?

The beauty of Torah and mitzot is already clear and really we are already in the Age of Moshiach in the sense that we are growing from strength to strength in our consciousness. Anyone at all spiritually aware can not deny the oneness of G-d and what follows is the beauty of Torah. Reply

Anonymous ???? October 12, 2010

A few questions with a twist If there is no evil, then what happens to the Satan? Isn't he also the prosecutor in the Heavenly Court?
And if there is no evil, can human beings physically exist?
And if there is no evil how can there be any choice or free will?
When we pray for Moshiach to arrive, are we not essentially praying for the precursor of the extinction of our species in this world?
I'm sure the answers are in the Zohar.
Can someone who is pure in faith answer without speculation? Reply

Anonymous earth, earth October 12, 2010

We will not just have understanding, but experience of understanding.
Utterly delightful and no loss of free will. Reply

Gavriel ben-Yisrael Manaus, Brazil October 12, 2010

This article was very instructive. I knew that life in Mashiach's days will be the best in the world, but I had no way to explain this clearly to myself or other people. This clarified my mind. Reply

Ms. LAURA MUSHKAT October 12, 2010

great answer kinda wondered about this myself and I think that you gave the ritght response

enough said Reply

Manny Lax June 9, 2009

Moshiach and Ethical Choice I read, when Moshiach comes, evil, which had become internalized with Adam and Chava will be removed from our makeup and be easily recognized for what it is. Your question really asks will we have ethical choice after Moshiach, i.e. will we be rewarded for doing good if good and evil will be easily recognized. Based upon what I have read, G-d examines everything and searches to bestow "credit" for all mitzvot whether they are hard or easy to perform. Though evil will be eventually externalized, Jews could still opt to do the wrong thing - so there will still be reward and punishment of a degree. Interestingly, because evil is currently internalized in our makeup and hard to recognize and because we are constantly bombarded with secular distractions, the reward for our generation is greatly heightened for choosing to do the right thing nevertheless. So though we may be spiritual midgets on the shoulders of our forefathers, any mitzvah greatly hastens Moshiach. Reply

Yosef Y. Muchnik May 17, 2009

Excellent article! Yisroel Cotlar continues to inspire and enighten, I have always, and will continue to be stimulated intellectually by his wonderful explanations, Bravo!
May Moshiach come NOW! Reply

James March 19, 2009

Free Choice........ Moshiach, He dwells within each and every person alive on the planet, but being that we choose to ignore spiritual promptings and condition ourselves to not hear HIS voice, what we call conscience. When one begins to do something that is against G_ds will, something within (conscience) tells us "This is wrong," or "don't do this", or flat out "STOP". This is G_ds voice. We choose to listen or not. We all know what is righteous behavior, we all KNOW when we've done something that is considered to be sin. If something is in your mind that makes you feel guilt, or remorse, or anger or any of the other so called negative emotions, it is G_ods way of saying the issue has not been dealt with in the proper way. For instance, I use the subway to get around the Boston area, and there is a man who sells hot dogs. One day I told the man, "I'm hungry and have no money." he said "I'll give you a hot dog, but you owe me a dollar." I agreed to pay him, and yesterday I did. My conscience is cleared. Reply

Anonymous accra, Ghana March 18, 2009

Hope for the world Yes we will have free choice but excluding an evil choice. For the former things will not be remembered or come to mind. Every one of us will be righteous all of a sudden. Just like how our operating system on our computers run. They run smoothly. And there shall be no more death. There is a Law that the Moshiach is going to bring into the world. The Holy One of Israel advertised His intentions about this Law in Isaiah 2:3, Isaiah 51:4, Jeremiah 31:31-34, Isaiah 42:4. There is a Law that is going to do the trick. Where the wolf will dwell with the Lamb, and the Lion will eat straw like the ox. The Moshiach is actually in. We thank G-d. Reply