The Hebrew term “Shaliach” (emissary) has the numerical equivalent of 348, ten short of the term “Mashiach.”

“Mashiach” refers to the Nasi of the generation. When the Nasi charges his emissaries with their mission they become his messengers and when they commit their ten soul-powers and dedicate themselves to fulfilling their mission, they effect the revelation of the sender, the Mashiach (358).

Why is the Nasi equivalent to Mashiach? First of all the simple meaning of the term Mashiach is “anointed one,” which personifies the Nasi, who was chosen and anointed to be the Nasi and Shepherd of Israel.

I should not complain if you were to translate Mashiach as the “redeemer — our righteous Mashiach,” because in truth the Nasi of the generation is the redeemer of the generation.

The role of every generational Nasi and Shepherd of the Jewish People is to be the “Moshe Rabbeinu” of that generation. As the Zohar teaches,

An emanation from Moshe is present in every generation. So much so, that every genuine Torah scholar is also called a Moshe.

Inasmuch as Moshe was the first redeemer and will also be the ultimate redeemer, it follows that the Moshe of every generation, the Nasi or leader, is also the Mashiach, the redeemer of that generation.

Consequently, when the Nasi appoints his envoys and they stand in his stead and carry out their mission with commitment, devotion and meticulous care, using their ten soul-powers, then the “Shaliach” (348) plus his ten powers becomes “Mashiach.” In him the sender — Mashiach — is revealed and then the ultimate revelation of Mashiach will actually come.

Those who argue that they are incapable of grasping the profundity of this concept and are still grappling with the principle that the Nasi is Mashiach — no matter — let them simply carry out the directives of the Nasi by disseminating Torah, Yiddishkeit and the “wellsprings” to the outside. A timely expression of this outreach would be to go out to make Jews happy on Simchas Torah and to encourage them to increase all aspects of Yiddishkeit, Torah and mitzvos.

This includes strengthening the faith in the advent of Mashiach and the longing for his coming. As the Rambam rules, Mashiach will be a “King from the family of Dovid ...” in this physical, temporal world. And anyone who does not trust in his coming and does not long for Mashiach, it is as if he negates and denies the whole Torah.

At the same time, the belief in, and prayer for, Mashiach will speed his coming. For this reason we say three times daily: “Speedily cause the scion of Dovid Your servant to flourish....” [see Midrash, Radak, Chida and others.]

What actually is this connection between the emissaries and Mashiach? Mashiach’s neshamah is the general all-encompassing yechidah-soul of the Jewish people, which means that the yechidah-soul-level of every Jew is a part of the soul of Mashiach. Every Jew has a ‘spark’ of the soul of Mashiach.

This important component of the Jewish soul influences the essential being of the Jew. When properly developed and revealed it will effect an amazing ascension in the spiritual powers and faculties of the individual. The person must put his mind to the Divine service of revealing this inner spark so that it will illuminate his entire being — and as a result of the individual revelation — there will be more power to reveal the general yechidah-soul and bring Mashiach.

Should you wonder how his small individual spark will influence the totality of Mashiach!? The answer is that when you deal with an essentialunitaryentity (etzem), by taking hold of any part, you in effect grab the whole — for all parts are actually the essential unity.

The soul-level of “yechidah” houses the spark of actual G‑dliness — a ray of the Creator. Thus, the “spark” of the created (the part of yechidah in each person) is one with the “ray” of the Creator; in turn it is attached to the essence of G‑d.

Now, when we realize that the yechidah level of every Jew is the ray of the soul of Mashiach then every Jew has the ability through his small spark to have some influence on the total Mashiach.

Esoterics aside, we must say that every Jew has the power to bring Mashiach by the minutest act. For the Rambam rules that he must always view himself and the world as perfectly balanced between good and bad and:

If he fulfills one commandment, he turns the scale of merit in his favor and in that of the whole world and brings salvation and deliverance to all his fellow creatures and to himself. (Laws of Teshuvah 3:4)

By using the term “one commandment” the Rambam is clearly indicating that its size is not important — for if the balance is precise and delicate, then even the slightest change will weigh the balance completely to the side of good — and bring our righteous Mashiach.

At the same time that a Jew is involved in revealing the ray of Mashiach in his own soul he must also be involved in revealing G‑dliness in the world, to prepare for the fulfillment of the promise:

And the glory of the L‑rd shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together for the mouth of the L‑rd has spoken. (Yeshayahu 40:5)

The G‑dly spark in all created beings creates, enlivens and sustains all creations. This creative force, ex nihilo, is truly bound up with the essence of the Creator. However, as the world comes into being, the creative force is forcibly hidden. How can it be revealed? — through the Divine service of a Jew, who reveals and advertises the spirituality of the material world.

The Baal Shem Tov taught that when a Jew comes to a particular place he must realize that he is there for a reason. Divine providence placed him there to fulfill a mission, to bring G‑d’s Name to dwell in that place. Even a place which is “distant” from G‑dliness can become an abode for the revelation of the Name of G‑d — the in-dwelling of the Shechinah.

This was the practice of Avraham Avinu, the first Jew. The Torah tells us:

And there he called in the Name of G‑d, L‑rd of the Universe. (Bereishis 21:33)

On which the Gemara explains that he taught the inhabitants to call the Name of G‑d, Master of the world; he taught them to recognize and appreciate that G‑d is Creator and Master of the world; he revealed G‑dliness.

When Avraham bequeathed this attribute to his descendants he also gave us the responsibility to go out and follow in his footsteps to reveal G‑dliness in the distant places of the world. As a result it became clear that this mission cannot be accomplished by sitting at home but only by traveling out and reaching the distant points of the world and revealing G‑dliness there.

What is the special role of the Shaliach? We discussed the concept that the Nasi of the generation has the role of Mashiach of the generation. When the Nasi chooses someone and appoints him to the role of emissary, he stands in place of the sender. He goes to a spiritually distant place to spread Yiddishkeit and to make a dwelling for the Shechinah there. When the Shaliach does his mission with dedication and devotion, using his ten soul-powers, he then adds the number ten to the gematria of Shaliach — 348. This is the revelation of Mashiach in that generation.

To ease the burden of this work — one must be connected to the Nasi, the generational Mashiach. For G‑d reveals His secrets through His prophets, and the righteous of each generation bring about the revelation of G‑dliness. So many of us saw the previous Rebbe act in openly miraculous ways. When this connection is essential and intrinsic, it also helps to reveal the spark of Mashiach in himself — for that is the role of the Nasi.

The role of emissary is really pertinent for every Jew, but it depends on the individual whether he will assume the role and shoulder the responsibilities. In fact, the present Shluchim must realize that they have the responsibility to encourage others to assume the role of Shaliach — to spread Yiddishkeit and Torah in every place. The involvement to encourage others to step into the role of Shaliach, no matter what their previous position or level of Divine service, touches upon another aspect of revealing the essence of the Jew, for the revelation of the essence of G‑dliness will spread across the full gamut from the greatest to the smallest:

For they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them. (Yirmeyahu 31:33)

The revelation of the essential “Me” will be the same for the “least” and the “greatest.”

For those who till this moment may have had doubts about their role as emissary, let it be known from this point onwards that they may join the ranks and become Shluchim of the Nasi of our generation.

Additionally, since they have seriously agonized over this question of their eligibility, they should know that their ponderations prove that they are in fact true ambassadors, for if not, where would the doubt come from and why would they spend so much time thinking about it!?

Are you wondering why the matter is not certain in their minds? On the contrary — the word Sa’Fe’K’ (doubt) has the gematria of A’Ma’Le’K’ — (240). The doubt has crept into their minds to give them the opportunity to fulfill the mitzvah of eradicatingAmalek by absolutely wiping away the doubt completely.

Similarly, anyone who has presented a query concerning the matter of becoming a Shaliach, the purpose of all the doubts and questions is to be neutralized and removed from the mind. Just as we find in Tanya in connection with extraneous thoughts which plague a person during prayer:

This is like the example of a person praying with devotion, while facing him there stands a wicked heathen who chats and speaks to him in order to confuse him. Surely the thing to do in such a case would be not to answer him.... Rather he should adopt an attitude as if he neither knows nor hears.... (Tanya ch. 28)

Whatever the case, the first step is to get involved in the mission of spreading Yiddishkeit and the wellsprings, and thereby to bring the redemption!

The practical lesson for every Shaliach of the Nasi of our generation is to increase qualitatively and quantitatively all his efforts associated with carrying out his mission.

In this role we must include the aspect of being “illuminating lights” to spread Torah, Yiddishkeit and also Chassidus everywhere. It started with the Baal Shem Tov and the Alter Rebbe and was greatly emphasized and expanded by the Previous Rebbe. When this is done wholeheartedly, with the ten soul-powers, it will bring the revelation of Mashiach in reality.

The joy of Simchas Torah, which pierces all restrictions, will inspire them and invigorate them to carry out their mission and breach the walls of the diaspora.

What is the relationship of joy with the ultimate redemption; what is the meaning of “everlasting joy upon their heads”? (Yeshayahu 35:10) The answer: when joy pierces the walls of the galus the true and complete redemption at the hands of our righteous Mashiach will be effected.

May all the Jewish people leave the galus “with our youth and our elders ... our sons and daughters,” the complete nation, with the complete Torah, and in this manner proceed to our Holy Land — the complete land: “where the eyes of G‑d your L‑rd are on it at all times, from the beginning of the year until the end of the year.” (Devarim 11:12)

The complete and true redemption through our righteous Mashiach speedily and truly in our days, truly, truly!