1. When we gather together on a fast day, a day which is called “a day of will,” it is proper to increase the expression of the true will of every Jew regarding relations with his fellowman as reflected in the commandment “Love your fellowman as yourself,” i.e., each person must love his fellowman exactly as he loves himself. Although it is customary to make a declaration accepting this mitzvah everyday — indeed, at the beginning of the day, at the very start of the prayer service — on fast days, “days of will,” there is a greater emphasis on this service.

This is reflected in the conclusion of the Haftorah recited on a fast day, “I will yet gather others to him besides those already gathered.” After the Jews have done everything they can to gather together1 all the remnants of the Jewish people, in an arousal from below, G‑d will then, in an arousal from Above,2 gather the Jews together in the most complete manner possible, the ingathering of the exiles. This will be in the Era of the Redemption, and more particular, in the most complete stage of the Redemption. This gathering will thus surpass the gatherings of the Jews in the eras of the First and Second Batei HaMikdashos.3

The concept of stages in the redemption relates to the difference of the Torah passages studied as Chitas on the day before Purim and on Purim. Today, the day before Purim, we read Moshe’s request for the revelation of the Thirteen Attributes of Mercy — which parallels the request for the redemption — while on Purim itself, we read about the actual revelation of these Attributes.

On this basis, we can appreciate a unique dimension of the present year, for today the Torah reading connected with a fast day fuses both these passages together into a single reading. The fusion of the preparation for the redemption and the redemption itself is reflected in the influence Purim has on the day that precedes it, causing the Tachanun prayers to be omitted in the afternoon service.

The above demonstrates how there will be several stages in the ultimate redemption, a redemption which surpasses other redemptions. Only in the complete and ultimate redemption, the highest level of redemption, will we merit the ingathering of the exiles. This ingathering of exiles is associated with a complete expression of ahavas Yisrael.

On the day preceding Purim, there is an unique emphasis on giving tzedakah. Thus, to hasten the coming of the ultimate redemption, each of you will be made a shliach to distribute money to tzedakah. We have already completed our service in exile, we have even “polished the buttons,” and through these gifts to tzedakah, we will hasten his actual coming.

Every activity in “spreading the wellsprings of Chassidus outward” is not merely a preparation for the coming of Mashiach, it represents, on a certain level, the coming of Mashiach. We are forced to say this. Since Mashiach promised the Baal Shem Tov that he would come when “the wellsprings are spread outward,” surely, after the extensive spread of the teachings of Chassidus — and particularly after those teachings have been internalized through the teachings of Chabad Chassidus — that promise must be fulfilled.

Thus, in essence, each spreading of Chassidus represents a coming of Mashiach. Nevertheless, we cannot content ourselves with the coming of Mashiach in the spiritual realms, we must have Mashiach’s actual coming. This will be hastened by our actual gifts to tzedakah. Indeed, may Mashiach come4 even before we can actually give tzedakah.

May everyone take on resolutions to carry out the mission with which the Jewish people have been charged by G‑d. This relates to Purim which is associated by our Sages with the Jews’ maintaining in actual deed the Torah which they accepted at Mount Sinai. On a basic level, each person should realize that no matter how complete his service was until now, he must make an increase. This will lead to the ultimate elevation of the Jewish people. Haman and his entire household will be obliterated; the remembrance of Amalek will wiped out entirely and all the seventy nations will assist in the ingathering of the exiles of the Jewish people who will proceed to the Third Beis HaMikdash, “the Sanctuary of G‑d established by Your hands.”