During the Korach’s rebellion against his cousin Moshe Rabbeinu, not only did he attack Moshe for denying him his supposed rightful position, but he also questioned Moshe’s authority to issue halachic decisions.

According to Midrash Rabbah (18:3) Korach confronted Moshe with the following question: “Is it necessary to place a mezuzah on the doorpost of a room filled with Sifrei Torah?” Moshe replied affirmatively, and Korach argued, “If the whole Torah which contains 275 parshiot cannot exempt the house, how is it possible that a mezuzah which contains only two parshiot exempts it?!” “Your ruling does not make sense,” he declared.

Logically, Korach’s reasoning made sense: Why should a room filled with Sifrei Torah require a mezuzah on the outside?

The slogan of the early Reform movement in Germany was “Yehudi beveitecha ve’adam betzeitecha” — “Be a true Jew at home, but on the outside be a person like everyone else.” Similarly, Korach said of the Jewish people “Kol ha’eidah kulam kedoshim” — “The entire community is holy” — “uvetocham Hashem — “and G‑d is among them” (16:3). He meant that the Jews were all holy since they all had G‑d “betocham” — in their hearts. He asserted, thus, that it is sufficient to be a good Jew on the “inside” without openly showing it on the outside.

Thus if the interior of a home is filled with Torah, it should be sufficient and there is no need to demonstrate the Jewishness also on the exterior.

Moshe vehemently disagreed and insisted that even if a home or individual is saturated with Torah, one must also manifest one’s Torah convictions in public, to let the world know that the home is a Jewish one with a mezuzah. From the subsequent events, it was apparent that Hashem agreed with Moshe.

The Torah tells us that “Uvenei Korach lo meitu” — “But the son of Korach did not die” (26:11). Homiletically, this is interpreted to mean that the Korach philosophy, unfortunately, is still rampant. Many of our brethren and sisters are still not prepared to publicize their Jewish convictions and affiliation, and proudly say of themselves, “I am a Jew in my heart.”

(Incidentally, a wise man once said that a reason why there are so many heart ailments in our times is because there are too many “cardiac Jews” — who put the entire weight of their Jewishness on their heart and thus overburden it.)

Living in America, however, has, thank G‑d, afforded the Jew much freedom to live and practice as he wishes. We are witness today to Torah-adherent Jews who proudly demonstrate their Jewishness in all realms of the professional world. How exhilarating is it to see not only lawyers with yarmulkas but also bearded judges who are Chassidic Jews. The sight of doctors with beards and peiyot and tzitzit hanging out is a sight never envisioned as possible by those who many years ago declared America as a treife medinah — a place where everything is non-kosher.

It is my fervent wish that you, dear Chatan and Kallah, will resolve that your home should be a Sanctuary within and without. The true Torah spirit should not only prevail in the environs of the home itself, but also on the outside, i.e., wherever you are, it should be recognizable by everyone that you are a Jewish couple with ties to authentic Judaism. Be assured, that if you build such a home and live such a lifestyle, Hashem will reciprocate by resting His Divine Presence in your midst.