dvar Korach 5782

parasha Korach 5782

“O G-d, the G-d of the spirits of all flesh, shall one man sin, and wilt Thou be wroth with all the congregation?” – Numbers 16:22, JPS 1917 Tanach

It is written in Pirkei Avos that every controversy that is for the sake of heaven will endure, while every argument that is not “in the name of Heaven” will not endure. The discussions between Shammai and Hillel are an example of those that endure. The dispute of Korach was a rebellious argument that was not destined to endure (Pirkei Avos 5:20). Rather, Korach was destined to be punished from the beginning of human history, inasmuch that the mouth of the earth that swallowed Korach and his followers is said to have been created on twilight of Shabbat Eve (Pirkei Avos 5:9).


Korach separated himself from the assembly of H’Shem. He purported to champion the people, inasmuch that he claimed that everyone was holy, saying that Moses and Aaron should not lift themselves “above the assembly of H’Shem” (Numbers 16:3, JPS 1917 Tanach); commentary explains that Korach wanted Aaron’s position of Kohein Gadol (High Priest) for himself. He did not recognize that both Moshe and Aaron were G-d appointed; rather, he felt that they unfairly took the positions of leadership for themselves. His accusation revealed his own intent.


With the rebellion looming over Moses and Aaron, poised to overthrow them, H’Shem told Moses and Aaron to separate themselves from the congregation, so that He might destroy the entire congregation. Yet, Moses interceded on behalf of the people; in doing so, he addressed G-d as “the G-d of the spirits of all flesh.” In other words, Moses appealed to G-d, Who knows the hearts of all men, including their thoughts, inasmuch that in this specific case, He knew who was loyal to Him, and who was disloyal. So, Moses pleaded on behalf of the people that G-d would distinguish between the conspirators, and those of the people who still trusted in Him. As a result of Moshe’s heartfelt prayer, G-d decided to limit the extent of the punishment only to the guilty. This connotes G-d’s sense of justice, as well as His attribute of mercy.

“Behold, the eye of the L-RD is toward them that fear Him, toward them that wait for His mercy.” = Psalm 33:18, JPS 1917 Tanach

Author: tzvifievel

My focus is on the synthesis of psychology, religion, and writing. I have undergraduate degrees in Psychology and English. Additionally, I hold a certificate in Rubenfeld Synergy (psychophysical re-education).

2 thoughts on “dvar Korach 5782”

  1. Were the wives and children of Korach saved and were the lives of some of the soldiers also spared if in their hearts they feared G-d?
    The village that they all lived in must have been devastated with so many workers deceased. Even the blameless must have suffered such a loss of contributors to their society. I think of the loss to the common good when people go along with what they think may be wrong and must suffer the consequences of not standing up for their beliefs essentially.
    J

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes. The wives and children of Korach were spared. In fact, there is at least one Psalm attributed to the sons of Korach. If by soldiers, you mean the men eligible for the Legion, they were also spared, if they had yiras H’Shem (fear of G-d) in their hearts. Torah records, that Korach and his followers were swallowed up by the earth, whereas the 250 rebellious firstborn who sided with him, were consumed by fire when they were put to the test mentioned by Moses, where they were told to bring individual incense offerings. Yes, I also agree that it is important to stand up for one’s beliefs. Simon Wiesenthal said, “”For evil to flourish, it only requires good men to do nothing.”

      Like

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