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Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Sanhedrin 97b Referring to the End of Galut Yishmael?

Sanhedrin 97b (text and enhanced translation from Sefaria):
תניא רבי נתן אומר מקרא זה נוקב ויורד עד תהום (חבקוק ב, ג) כי עוד חזון למועד ויפח לקץ ולא יכזב אם יתמהמה חכה לו כי בא יבא לא יאחר

לא כרבותינו שהיו דורשין (דניאל ז, כה) עד עידן עידנין ופלג עידן

ולא כר' שמלאי שהיה דורש (תהלים פ, ו) האכלתם לחם דמעה ותשקמו בדמעות שליש

ולא כרבי עקיבא שהיה דורש (חגי ב, ו) עוד אחת מעט היא ואני מרעיש את השמים ואת הארץ

אלא מלכות ראשון שבעים שנה מלכות שניה חמשים ושתים ומלכות בן כוזיבא שתי שנים ומחצה

It is taught in a baraita that Rabbi Natan says: This verse penetrates and descends until the depths; just as the depths are unfathomable, so too, the period depicted in the following verse is unquantifiable. “For the vision is yet for the appointed time; and it declares of the end, and does not lie; though it tarry, wait for it, because it will surely come; it will not delay” (Habakkuk 2:3).

The Messiah will come not in accordance with the opinion of our Rabbis, who would interpret the verse: “For a period and periods and a half period”(Daniel 7:25), to mean that the duration of the ultimate exile will be three and a half times the duration of the period of the exile in Egypt.

And the Messiah will come not in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Simlai, who would interpret the verse: “You have fed them with the bread of tears and have given them tears to drink in great measure [shalish]” (Psalms 80:6), to mean that the duration of the ultimate exile will be three times the duration of the period of the exile in Egypt.

And the Messiah will come not in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Akiva, who would interpret the verse: “Yet once, it is a little while, and I will shake the heavens and the earth” (Haggai 2:6), to mean that the redemption would transpire soon after the destruction of the Temple.

Rather, the first, great, Hasmonean monarchy ruled seventy years. The second kingdom, of Herod and his descendants, ruled fifty-two years,and the duration of the monarchy of bar Koziva, or bar Kokheva, was two and a half years. The duration of the exile that follows is unknown.
Rashi explains:
לא כרבותינו - אל תצפו לאותו קץ שהיו רבותינו דורשין:,עד עידן עידנין ופלג עידן - עידן כעידן הגלות של מצרים והיינו ד' מאות ב' עידנין ח' מאות היינו י"ב מאות ופלג עידן ב' מאות סך הכל אלף וד' מאות:

ותשקמו בדמעות שליש - כלומר השקה אותם הקב"ה בין גלות מצרים לגלות בבל שליש גלות אדום כי קץ גלות אדום זה יהיה לסוף ג' פעמים ת' שנים וג' פעמים ע' שנה כנגד גלות בבל דהיינו לסוף אלף וארבע מאות ועשר שנים כבר עברו ולא היה כך מצאתי כתוב בשם הרב רבי שמואל בר דוד ז"ל:

Rashi explains that according to the rabbis, a period is 400 years so multiply be 3.5 and you get 1400 years. Rashi explains that according to Ribbi Simla'i, the Egyptian and Babylonian exiles are one-third of the Edomite exile, which would make the Edomite exile 1410 years ((400 + 70) x 3).  (It wasn't Rashi, but a later editor who said: כבר עברו ולא היה - that the time already passed and didn't come to fruition and the Vilna Ga'on removes these words from the Rashi text.)

But what if the Edomite exile that Rashi refers to is really referring to not Edom, but the exile from Yishmael.  As we know from Daniel chapter 2, and Rav Sa'adia Ga'on's and the Malbim's interpretations in particular, the Yishmaelite Exile is a main component of the fourth exile, but can be considered an exile in its own right.  Perhaps, we are to start the calculation from the beginning of the Yishmaelite Exile.  Judging based on who controls Har Habayit, this is the exile we still suffer from to this day.

But when did this exile begin?

One could possibly say that it began when the Muslims conquered Yerushalayim in the year 636 CE.  However, there is an earlier Yishmael-like capture of Yerushalayim in the year 614 CE - or 4374 - by the Sassanid Persian Empire.  The Persians can be identified with the name "Yishmael" since we have many sources that employ such an identification (Malbim Daniel 2:45, Tosefot Rid, Maharal).

So, 4374 + 1400 (the Ketz of the rabbis) = 5774.
And 4374 + 1410 (the Ketz of Ribbi Simla'i) = 5784.

So again, assuming the beginning points of the calculations of these Kitzim began when the Persians first conquered Yerushalayim, we are currently smack between the 2 Kitzim.  Perhaps, Ribbi Natan was trying to tell us that it will not be like the Ketz of Ribbi Akiva, who says it will be right after 4374.  Nor will it be like the Ketz of the rabbis or like the Ketz of Ribbi Simla'i, but it will rather be right between them.  Alternatively, it will not be like any of these Kitzim if we calculate from the Hurban - but rather it can be close to them if we calculate from the beginning of Galut Yishmael.

The verse Ribbi Natan uses is כי עוד חזון למועד.  Perhaps, he is saying that there is an additional 71 years (gematria of חזון) to the Mo'ed of what occurred in 5708, which marked the beginning of the end of Galut Yishmael.

May it be so.


At Tue Jul 30, 03:07:00 AM 2019, Blogger Jesterhead45 said...

However the short-lived Sassanid Persia rule also coincided with the Jewish revolt against Heraclius that included short-lived Jewish control over Jerusalem. While the than ongoing Roman/Byzantine-Persian Wars was but one factor in the fall of Jerusalem along with the Zoroastrian Sassanids to the Arab Empire, it is possible Persian betrayal of the Jews meant they ultimately lost whatever merit they had at the time to survive against the Arabs unlike the Romans/Europe.

One could also argue the Yishmaelite exile began during the lifetime of Muhammad during his wars against the Jews in Medina and general Hejaz area, up to his deathbed where it declared no Jew or Christian shall reside in the Hejaz / Arabia. The dates ranging from as early as 624 with Invasion of Banu Qaynuqa up to 628 with Battle of Khaybar to as late as 632 with Muhammad's death. (from Wikipedia so not all of it is accurate)

At Tue Jul 30, 10:47:00 AM 2019, Blogger Neshama said...

So where does 5780 come into this? If it does?
We still have to count back from 6000, including Techias HaMeitim, and whatever else is included? It takes time to build a Beis Hamikdash, we we have to allow for this too (in that we begin building in Jerusalem and Hashem sends us the Kedusha.

At Tue Jul 30, 12:23:00 PM 2019, Blogger CKHL said...

5780 = 17 x 17 x 10 x 2

17 = tov (good)
10 = completion

so it's tov she'be tov, completed AND doubled for good measure!


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