1. Our Rabbis teach, “Open with blessing.” The 25th of the month, כה in Hebrew, relates to the Priestly Blessing which begins “In this manner koh (כה), bless the children of Israel.” The Priestly Blessing has the positive qualities of both blessing and prayer as explained on previous occasions.

This will be enhanced by the influence of the present month, the eleventh month which reflects a transcendent influence.1 And from Shvat, we proceed to Adar, a month whose mazal (source of influence) is healthy, implying that it is a source of healthy influence for every single Jew.

The influence of Adar begins at present, for all matters associated with a month are drawn down on Shabbos Mevarchim (the Shabbos on which the month is blessed). Since the preparations for Shabbos begin on the preceding days (and we have already reciting the evening service associated with the day preceding the Shabbos), the positive influences associated with a “healthy mazal” are already present.

The above is enhanced by the recurring influence of Shabbos Mevarchim which is associated with the renewal of the moon and also with the ultimate renewal of every member of the Jewish people — men, women, and children — which will take place in the Era of the Redemption.2

All the more emphasis on the above exists in the present year, a leap year which our Sages refer to as “a perfect year.”3 In particular, this relates to the month of Adar, for there are two Adars in a leap year, indicating that all the positive influences associated with Adar are of twofold intensity.

The positive nature of the present time is also reflected in this week’s Torah portion, Parshas Mishpatim. As mentioned at our last gathering,4 Parshas Mishpatim is associated with those aspects of Torah that can be comprehended by human intellect. Accordingly, there is a necessity to emphasize that cases governed by these laws must be judged before a Jewish court, and not before gentiles. “Even when one knows that in a particular instance the secular law will parallel Jewish law, one may not judge the case before their authorities.” Although the result of the judgment would be the same in both courts, we are required to judge the case only before a Jewish court.

There is a point of connection to this concept in the events of the preceding days. To explain: One of the prophecies concerning the Era of the Redemption is, “Nations shall not lift up a sword against other nations.... They shall beat their swords into plowshares.” From “swords,” which refers to the totality of armaments and weapons, they will make “plowshares,” instruments which cultivate the earth and produce food.

In this context, there is a unique significance to the statements made by the leader of this country who announced that funds which were previously allocated to the production of arms will be used to produce food. This clearly emphasizes the thrust towards a total negation of armament and war.

Since “the law of the land is your law,” there is significance to the statements made by the leader of this country, a country of kindness.5 This is particularly true since they were immediately accepted by the majority of the representatives chosen by the people. Hence, these statements now have the authority of Torah law.

They are relevant, not only within the national and international sphere, but also within the realm of our interpersonal relations. This adds further emphasis to the importance of following the example of Aharon the Priest, who “loved the created beings and drew them close to the Torah.” Even when one has reason to be displeased with a colleague’s conduct,6 one should relate to him with love. Indeed, this thrust towards love and charity is one which should be emulated by both Jews and gentiles alike.7

These concepts are relevant at present, for as mentioned on previous occasions,8 we are at the pinnacle of Jewish history, the time most appropriate for the Redemption. And this will cause the very next moment to be the last moment of the exile and the first moment of the Redemption, when “as in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders.”9

And at this time, we will merit the revelation of “the new [dimensions of the] Torah that will emerge from Me.” Herein, there is a connection to the opening words of Parshas Mishpatim, v’eileh hamishpatim, which, as Rashi relates, come to emphasize how the laws related in this Torah portion are a continuation of the revelation of Sinai. Similarly, the Torah which we study every day and the Torah to be revealed in the Era of the Redemption are a continuation of that revelation.

At that time, we — together with the entire Jewish people — will proceed to our Holy Land, in Jerusalem, and to the Beis HaMikdash. Herein, there is a connection to the Torah portion of the coming week Parshas Terumah which begins with the command, “And you shall make Me a Sanctuary and I will dwell within.” For the ultimate fulfillment of this command will be in the Era of the Redemption, with the construction of the Third Beis HaMikdash. May this take place immediately — with all the significance implied by the word “immediately.”10 And may we — with the Nasi of our generation at our head — proceed to the true and ultimate Redemption, led by Mashiach.