Acharon Shel Pesach, 5749

(Sefer HaMaamarim Meluket III, p. 119ff)

By the Grace of G‑d

Acharon Shel Pesach, 5739

“As in the days of your exodus from Egypt I will show you wonders {in the Future Redemption}.” Michah 7:15.

In his discourse of this title,2 the Previous Rebbe notes that the Zohar’s3 emphasizes that the verse states “the days of your exodus” using a plural form, although the exodus from Egypt took one day. Indeed, with re­gard to [the commandment to] remember the redemption from Egypt, the Torah tells us,4 “so that you remember the day you left the land of Egypt,” (using a singular form for “day”). Why then does the verse originally cited use the plural form, “the days”?

In resolution, the Previous Rebbe explains,5 that the entire sequence of time from the time of the exodus until the Future Redemption is considered as “days of your exodus from Egypt.”

To explain that statement: The Hebrew for Egypt, Mitzrayim, is related to the term meitzar, which refers to boundaries and limitations.6 An exodus from Egypt thus involves redemption from all limitations, even [the subtle limitations that character­ize] the lofty [spiritual planes].

[The exodus from Egypt began the process leading to the attainment of this level.] Thus the interval from the time of the exodus until the Future Redemption is considered the “days of your exodus from Egypt.” Each and every day, we are redeemed from a more refined level of limitation,7 until [we reach] the ultimate peak, the true and complete Redemption which will be led by Mashiach. This will bring about the departure from all limita­tions,8 even the most subtle forms of restraint. [In this vein,] the verse,9 “The one who breaks through shall ascend before them,” is interpreted as a reference to Mashiach, implying that he will break through all the limitations [that exist].


In the discourse cited above, the Previous Rebbe continues: “‘I will show you wonders’ refers to the revelation of the Future Redemption. The Future Redemption will also be of this quality, but it shall be on a much higher level;”10 [i.e., the Future Redemption will, like the exodus from Egypt, represent a transcendence of our limits, but it will reflect a transcendence of a much higher level].

It is possible to explain [that the two concepts mentioned above are interrelated]. The Previous Rebbe cites the verse “I will show you wonders” which refers to the revelations of the Future Redemption, because this amplifies the explanation of why the plural form, “days,” is used in the verse, “As in the days of your exodus from Egypt,” although the verse mentioning the obligation to remember the exodus from Egypt, “so that you remember the day you left the land of Egypt,” employs a singular form.

[As mentioned,] in the Future Redemption (when “I will show you wonders”), the exodus from Egypt will be completed; we will transcend all limitations (even from the most subtle ones). To attain this revelation, one must experience daily the divine service of leaving Egypt. Each day, the person should rise above [his limitations, and on the morrow, rise above the new,] subtler limitations [in which he finds himself. To accentuate this point,] the verse uses the plural “the days.”

[This interpretation of the concept of] the exodus from Egypt, [i.e., all the steps in self-transcendence leading to the Future Redemption, does not negate the simple meaning of the term,] which refers to the initial exodus from Egypt ([when the Jews left that land] in one day). {On the contrary, the original exodus] is also relevant to the Future Redemption. As the Previous Rebbe explains in the discourse,11 the exodus from Egypt opened up the potential for redemption in general, making possible all future redemptions (those from the subsequent exiles [of the Jewish people]), and the Future Redemption.}

This [includes the spiritual dimension of] exodus which follows the actual (physical) exodus from Egypt. In this process, each day, one rises above subtler degrees of limitations, until [ultimately] one’s spiritual efforts [enable one to attain the level of the Future Redemption]. At that time, the exodus from Egypt will be complete; we will have departed from all limitations.

[Based on the above, we can understand why] the verse “so that you remember the day you left the land of Egypt all the days of your life,” from which we learn the obligation to remember the exodus from Egypt [twice] daily (during the day and at night),12 uses a singular form. The daily remembrance of the exodus from Egypt focuses primarily on one dimension of exo­dus, departing from the straits of unholiness;13 it highlights the exodus from the limitations that hinder Torah study and impede the performance of the mitzvos.

This relates to “the day you left the land of Egypt” (“day” — in the singular). For the exodus from Egypt caused the Jews to be designated as G‑d’s servants (and not Pharaoh’s slaves).14 The exodus empowers each and every Jew in his observance of the Torah and its mitzvos,1516 freeing him from all hindrances stemming from worldly matters. [Nothing, none of the obstacles created by] the exile17 [can prevent a Jew from observing the Torah], for “My writ has precedence.”18

The verse “As in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders,” by contrast, uses the plural form “days.” To attain the revelations of the Future Redemption,19 we must leave all limitations, even the limitations [within the realm] of holiness. This approach to divine service involves [a constant succession of leaving Egypt] — each and every day, one transcends more subtle limitations. [To accentuate this point,] the verse uses the plural form “the days.”


The above explanation (that the exodus from Egypt is a continuous thrust within our divine service, motivating a deeper dimension of self-transcendence each day) enables us to understand a further point: that in the time of exile our exodus from limitations involves a departure from more subtle limits than the limits which [the Jews] had to transcend during the era of the Beis HaMikdash. Within the era of exile itself, the generations of ikvesa diMeshicha, the age when Mashiach’s approaching foot­steps can be heard, and more particularly the last generation in that era, are given the challenge of transcending the most subtle forms of limitations.

[To explain:] Every subsequent day sees the purification and elevation of more and more sparks of holiness, which in turn draws us closer to the arrival of Mashiach.2021 Moreover, each day leads to an exodus from a subtler state of Egypt; i.e., a more-inclusive departure from limitation.

Through making the exodus from Egypt [a functional dynamic] in our divine service during the final days before Mashiach’s arrival — and thus transcending even the subtlest forms of limitation — we will merit the Future Redemption in the immediate future. And this will bring about a departure from all limitations whatsoever.

To clarify this concept — that the revelation of the Future Redemption will come about (primarily) because of the divine service at the end of exile — it is first necessary to explain the idea that the Future Redemption involves transcending all limitations, even the subtlest forms of restraint.

This concept can be understood in the following manner. As [the Previous Rebbe] explains in his discourse,22 all of the worlds (even the refined) are termed mitzrayim, “straits,” since they confine and conceal [G‑dliness]. More particularly, there are two reasons why they are called “straits”: a) because they themselves are limited in nature; b) because it is [only] through the con­cealment of Divine light that they could come into existence.

As is renowned,23 the First Tzimtzum, ([the first and most fundamental stage in the process of self-contraction of the Or Ein Sof, “G‑d’s infinite light”,] which made possible the existence of the worlds) reflects total withdrawal, the complete concealment of all illumination. This parallels24 the Mitzrayim of unholiness (Egypt as it exists within our material world), [where G‑dliness is] concealed.

On this basis, we can understand why [the Previous Rebbe] continues25 [explaining the relationship between the limits of our world and the concept of Mitzrayim] by stating that there are three implications of the Hebrew term for “world,” olam : a) the simple meaning of the term “world” that denotes [the existence of a realm defined by] time and space;26 b) the dimension associated with the Hebrew word helam , meaning “concealment”27 (the aspect of hester, hiddeness28); c) and the dimension associated with the Hebrew word ilem 29 which connotes “youthfulness” and “strength.”

The Previous Rebbe explains the connection between these three interpretations {of the word olam as follows}: the conceal­ment and hiddeness [of G‑dliness] within our world (which is defined by time and space) is very forceful and vigorous. It is possible to explain that [to demonstrate the parallel between our world and Mitzrayim] it is not sufficient to explain the concept of “world” in its simple sense (that the world is defined by time and space); it is necessary to add the connection between olam and the terms helam and ilem. For the fact that their existence is de­fined by time and space explains only why the worlds are deemed to be Mitzrayim, a limited realm. In order to explain that the degree of limitation that characterizes the worlds (can be compared to the concealment and hiddeness of actual Egypt30), it is necessary to add that the word olam relates to the words helam and ilem — implying that the concealment and hiddeness [of G‑dliness] within the worlds is vigorous and forceful.


The Previous Rebbe’s discourse31 continues, explaining that the creation of the worlds has its source in the Kav [the narrow vector of Divine illumination that shined forth after the First Tzimtzum]. For the Divine illumination that preceded the tzimtzum was so great [that it was impossible] for the worlds to have been created (in their present state).

At present, the worlds exist within a framework that recog­nizes higher and lower levels. {This defines the aspect of space in terms of spiritual existence.} The Divine illumination preceding the tzimtzum, by contrast, had neither a beginning nor an end, nor did it recognize any higher or lower levels.

Moreover, the general light preceding the tzimtzum is an illumination which is included in His Essence, and a light that is included within its source is entirely nullified, to the extent that it should not be referred to as “light” at all.32 Thus, it is impossi­ble for it to serve as a source for the existence of the worlds. It is possible for an entity to serve as a source for the existence of another entity, only when the existence of the original entity is itself distinct [from its own source].

This was achieved by the light of the kav. Since it is drawn through the tzimtzum, it became a distinct light, possessing higher and lower levels. Therefore, it can serve as a source for the creation of worlds.

It is possible to explain that these two aspects of the kav mentioned above [— that it possesses higher and lower levels; and that it is a distinct light —] parallel the two dimensions of the world mentioned above — [that the world possesses limits and that it conceals G‑dliness]. The existence of higher and lower levels within the Kav that parallels the limitations within the world. The concept that the Kav is a distinct light (i.e., it is not entirely nullified) is reflected in the concealment and hid­deness [of G‑dliness which characterizes] the world (and causes feelings of self).

Based on the above concept — that the worlds are called Mitzrayim because: a) they are characterized by limitations; b) they are not nullified and are conscious of their selves — it is possible to explain that the kav as well is included in the category of Mitzrayim. [This implies that the ultimate conception of] the exodus from Egypt, the liberation from all limitations, is through the revelation of the essence of the Or Ein Sof (G‑d’s infinite light) that transcends the tzimtzum.

This explains why the Future Redemption will complete the exodus from Egypt (liberating [mankind] from all limitations), for then the illumination of the Divine radiance that preceded the tzimtzum will be manifest [throughout all existence]. Within this illumination itself will be manifest the infinite light that tran­scends the light that has [even a subtle] connection to the worlds. And ultimately, there will be the revelation of G‑d’s Essence.


The transcendence of all limitations that will characterize the Era of the Redemption will be all-encompassing. Therefore, all entities will exist on an infinitely higher plane during that era than they exist at present. [This will affect both the world at large and the realm of Torah.] With regard to the world, there will then be a “new heaven and a new earth.”33 With regard to the Torah [the medium through which the world was created — “He gazed into Torah and created the world”34], “New [dimensions of] the Torah will emerge from Me.”35

This also applies with regard to the revelation of G‑dliness. In the Era of the Redemption, there will be an entirely new de­gree of revelation, infinitely higher than the present degree. All the revelations of the present era have their source in the external level of Atik, while in the Era of the Redemption, the revela­tion will stem from the inner dimensions of Atik.36

On this basis, we can understand why the Future Redemption will come about primarily through the divine service performed during the concluding period of the exile. Since all matters in the Era of the Redemption will be of an entirely new nature, the divine service that draws them down must be a new form of service as well.

To explain: In the time of the Beis HaMikdash, G‑dliness was revealed; “Ten miracles were wrought for our ancestors in the Beis HaMikdash.”37 There were miracles apparent to the naked eye, many of them beheld even by the common people. Therefore, the divine service of observing the Torah and its mitzvos was an outgrowth of man’s ordinary thinking processes. Then as well there was the command38 of “You shall love... [your G‑d], with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your might,” [and as explained in Chassidus, “with all your might” refers to an unbounded commitment, to the point of mesirus nefesh, “complete self-sacrifice”]. Nevertheless, since G‑dliness was palpably revealed, even the mesirus nefesh that existed in that era could be [understood39 by and therefore,] limited by man’s ordinary thinking processes. This concept holds true as well with regard to those periods of exile when the darkness [of unholiness] was not that overwhelming.

This is not the case in [the present generation], the generation that immediately precedes Mashiach’s arrival. For at present, the forces of darkness increase daily,40 and there are many challenges {that have to be overcome}, in particular, the challenge of “Do not be embarrassed by those who scoff.”41 This challenge is made especially difficult to bear by the fact that these scoffers are base and ignoble individuals.42 The ability to overcome these challenges stems from the divine service of mesirus nefesh that transcends [all] limitation and bounds.

This is why the divine service of the generation that immediately precedes Mashiach’s arrival — and within this generation itself, the divine service at the very conclusion of the period of exile — contains a (certain) dimension of superiority — and in this context, an incomparable advantage — over the divine service accomplished [by the Jewish people] in previous generations.43 It is so radically different, that it is considered a new divine service. For the divine service in previous generations was related to reason and logic (the limitations of our revealed [soul] powers). The divine service at the conclusion of the period of exile, by contrast, reflects mesirus nefesh which emanates from the innermost level of the soul.

Through our divine service in the time of exile in general, and especially through our service at the very end of the exile, at which time the service is from the innermost degree of the soul, we draw down influence from the innermost level Above, includ­ing the inner dimension of Atik. This will evoke a new dimension within the Torah as well, (“the new [dimensions of the] Torah that will emerge from Me”), i.e., a new approach to the Torah reflecting the connection to the Giver of Torah.

{It is possible to explain that this aspect as well is accomplished through the divine service at the conclusion of the exile. For when the service is in a manner of mesirus nefesh then one’s Torah study is lishmah, for its own sake.44}

The new dimension of Torah study will in turn lead to a novel aspect in creation as well (for “He gazed into Torah and created the world”), bringing about “a new heaven and a new earth.”

May it be G‑d’s will that this occur most speedily; that our present deeds and divine service45 hasten the time when we will greet our Righteous Mashiach. And then, we will witness the actual fulfillment of the prophecy, “As in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders.”