Days of Ikveta Dimshiha and the Wars of Gog Umagog - Part 2 of 2
Translation of this essay is continued from here.
And also the Targum Yonatan ben Uziel translates and mentions in his translation the country of Italy wherein Rome is located from where Xtianity started. And all Xtian nations today are called "Rome" since they represent the Xtian faith which started in Rome. And in practicality, in this verse, it is written that there will be a war between the Xtian countries (Rome) and Arab countries (Yishmael) which is the wars that exist today in Syria and Iraq where nations from the Xtian faith are fighting and trying to destroy the ISIS organization as is brought down also in the Zohar at the end of Parashat Va'era as was brought down at the beginning of this essay. And in the Targum Yonatan ben Uziel, it is written at the end of this verse that the end of these and these - i.e., the Xtian countries today and Arab countries - they will all fall in the hands of the King Mashiah. And we see from here that we are currently in the final war whose conclusion will be the revelation of Mashiah Tzidkeinu who will fight them and overpower them. And also the Ramban, in his commentary on this verse, writes that this is a great and awesome day against the nations. And we see that this war is already the beginning of the vengeance that Hashem will avenge against the nations of the world for what they did to the nation of Israel throughout the exile. And also the Malbim in his commentary on the Torah called HaTorah VeHaMitzvah explains there on the verse that in the End of Days, the Romans (which is Xtian countries today) will come and capture the Ishmaelite countries, which are the Arab countries today - Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen - as today America and Russia have come and are capturing those places and are fighting the ISIS organization and other terror organizations of the children of Yishmael - the Arabs - today.
And whoever contemplates the world today sees the prophecies of Bil'am about the final war - that will come about, wherein Mashiah Tzidkeinu will come - in a clear manner that is occurring in the world. And also in the prophecy of Daniel chapter 2, where, as is known, Nevuchadnetzar, king of Bavel, dreamt a terrible dream wherein his saw a large idol whose head was made of gold, its body made of copper, and its legs from silver. And he saw in his dream that suddenly a large stone rose up and broke the idol completely. And Daniel interpreted the dream for him that HKB"H showed him what will occur in the world from the time of his kingdom until the coming of Mashiah. And the idol
that he saw hints at the 4 kingdoms that will rule in the world - each one it its time - until the coming of Mashiah. And the stone that he saw hints to "Even Yisrael" which will rise up through HKB"H and it will destroy all the kingdoms. And this is as the commentaries explain there that the reference is to the King Mashiah who will destroy all the nations. And the Malbim on verse 45 explains that the nations of the world - Edom and Yishmael - will destroy each other and such will be the wars of Gog Umagog that will gather all the children of Edom (today's Xtians) to fight against the children of Yishmael (today's Arabs) and they will destroy each other. And we see the matters occurring in a clear manner today.
And if we will summarize that which was written, we are forced to see from the words of Haza"l in the Zohar (Va'era 32) and in the prophecy of Daniel in chapters 2 and 11 and in the prophecy of Bil'am about the final war that will come at the End of Days wherein Mashiah Tzidkeinu will come - it will be between the nations of Edom/Rome (today's Xtians) and the children of Yishmael (today's Arabs). And the main part of the war will be in Ashur - which is today's Iraq - and in across the Euphrates River, which today is the country of Syria and also the Land of Israel. And these matters are occurring in the world in a clear manner to those who contemplate them.
We are therefore in the Gog Umagog War wherein Mashiah comes. And we see the words of the Hafetz Hayim ZYA"A who said this about 100 years ago being fulfilled in a clear manner before our eyes. And in the year 5775, Rav Tzvi Meir Ziberberg Shlit"a said in a speech of encouragement that he gave in Yeshivat Or Elhanan in Yerushalayim that he heard from elderly people who heard from Rav Elchonon Wasserman when he was in America in the year 5699 that he said that we need to wait every day for the coming of Mashiah. This is like the words of Haza"l that if the nation of Israel will merit, the Redemption can come any day. And he added that he has a tradition from "Ru'ah Hakodesh" (he didn't say from whom, but apparently it was words that he heard from the Hafetz Hayim) that after the harsh war that will be (he said these words close to the Holocaust), there will be an aspect of 10 Shemitot which are 70 years of preparation for Mashiah and afterwards will come the 3rd part of Gog Umagog. [YY - see also here and here.] And after all we mentioned earlier regarding what is going on today in the world, the matter is simple that we are already in the third part of Gog Umagog. And it's possible to add also that in these years, the country of Russia is participating in the wars near the children of Yishmael, which is a part of the process of the Gog Umagog War. And the known tradition form the students of the Vilna Gaon ZYA"A in his name is being fulfilled - where he said that if Russian ships will pass the Bosporus Strait, we need to wear Shabbat clothes to greet Mashiah Tzidkeinu. And really, in recent years, warships have passed the Bosporus Strait in Turkey on their way to the Mediterranean and reached Syria and there, they participated in wars on the side of the Syrian president and helped him in wars that exist there against the rebels. And we see how exactly in this era that according to all the aforementioned words, we are very close to the Final Redemption - as the words of the Vilna Gaon are being fulfilled since if they will be fulfilled, it's a sign that we need to prepare for the coming of Mashiah Tzidkeinu.
And there are those who might say after reading this essay, "Good! Mashiah is coming! But what's the problem? I am already prepared for his arrival, and I will accept him with joy!" The gemara in Sanhedrin (98b) says that Ribbi Yohanan, Ula, and Rabba said that they do not want to be around at the time that Mashiah Tzidkeinu comes and they were afraid that they would not be worthy to pass this time period peacefully. And the gemara there brings down that Abaye asked Rabba [his rabbi], "Why are you afraid to be around at the time of the coming of Mashiah if Ribbi Elazar said that one who busies himself with Torah and acts of kindness will be saved from the birthpangs of Mashiah and you (Rabba) have both busied yourself with Torah and with acts of kindness! Rabba answered him that he is afraid of those days of the coming of Mashiah since perhaps, sin will have caused him to not be worthy of being redeemed. And if those Amora'im - supremely holy men who were able to revive the dead - were afraid of the time of the coming of Mashiah, how are we able able to be so self-assured that we are totally worthy and we have nothing to rectify? If we would examine our actions, wouldn't we see that our situation is not so simple?
And in the prophecies of the prophet Malachi to the nation of Israel, it says the following (Malachi 3:2): "But who may abide the day of his coming? And who shall stand when he appeareth? For he is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap". And there, it is referring to the time in which Mashiah Tzidkeinu will come. And the Rada"k there explains like this:
Who will tolerate the day of his coming? Since the day of his coming, many will be refined.And in the continuation of the verse, he writes the following:
In other words, that day will be like the fire that refines the slag from the silver. Similarly will the wicked be separated from the good - and the wicked will be destroyed while the righteous will remain. And it says such in the prophecy of Zecharia: "And I will bring the third part through the fire".And there, the prophet Zecharia prophesies that two thirds of the world's population will die in the Gog Umagog War, and the third that remains - the Creator of the world will refine just as metals are refined in fire. And the righteous and those that trust in the Creator of the world will merit to be saved.
And therefore, we need during this time period to grab onto the paths of repentance - that everyone is able to return to Hashem and the Creator of the world is waiting for us constantly to repent. And it is known that there are 3 main parts of repentance that are mandatory. They are: 1) regretting one's sins, 2) supplications, and 3) resolutions for the future to better one's ways and taking a small resolution that one is able to withstand. And this is the order of repentance that everyone is able to do. (And of course, there is much one can say about this, but these are just the main points for the sake of brevity.) And it seems that this is what is incumbent upon us to do in this time period. And the saying of Haza"l is known that HKB"H says to the nation of Israel: "Open up an opening for Me the size of the sharp part of a needle and I will open up for you the size of the doorway of a banquet hall." And a man who grabs onto the pathways of repentance and wants to better his ways and accepts upon himself a small resolution to strengthen himself, from now on he already opened a small opening and one who comes to be purified receives help from heaven. And may it be Hashem's will that we will merit to see very soon Hashem's return to Zion with great mercy.