The Ultimate Objective: Redemption
Since the Nation of Israel was born, its ultimate aspiration has been
the coming of Mashiach and the complete and final redemption. Unlike the
very partial goals of modern Zionism (safe-haven, peace, international
recognition, etc.) the goal of redemption is all-inclusive and redefines the
motivation for the return of the Jewish People to the Land of Israel. It
illuminates the life of the Nation with a new light, content and
consciousness – for the individual and for the whole.
Our Sages have defined various stages in the process leading to redemption.
These stages include establishing sovereignty, waging war against Israel's
mortal enemies, building the holy Temple on the Temple Mount and the
ingathering of the exiles. The culmination of the redemption process is, of
course, the Messianic era, when the world will be rectified and united in
its service of G-d.
These are the ultimate objectives of the Jewish state. Authentic Jewish
leaders must always have these ultimate goals before them so that they can
recognize historic opportunity when it arises. As the Sages (Rambam, Laws of
Kings and Wars 12:2) reiterate, though, we do not know exactly how these
stages will manifest in reality until they actually happen. What we can and
must do in the interim is to create the fertile ground in which these
ultimate objectives can flourish; a Jewish state whose shorter-term goals
propel us toward our ultimate goals.
Identity for the Jewish
Land of Israel
Religion and State
Will it Work?
Redemption is a Divine process that is already working! The redemptive
process is well under way, as exemplified by the many positive and
miraculous accomplishments of modern day Israel. We are pointing the way
toward the next stage of this Divine process. When we realign our national
goals with our ultimate, historic Jewish goals, we pave the way for
determination and decisiveness in implementing our objectives.
Clarity of purpose affords leaders with the tools that they need to
identify historic opportunities as they develop and to capitalize on them to
further the nation's goals. (If the goals are unclear, it is impossible to
recognize historic opportunities. This leads to near-sighted policies and
misreading of historic geopolitical developments -- as most aptly
demonstrated by current Israeli policy).
Determination to identify and capitalize on historic opportunities creates a
national leadership that is also responsible. Leading one's nation through
the redemptive process is daunting, and the leaders may be tempted to take
premature initiative to advance the nation's goals. However, the knowledge
that historic opportunities can and will arise as part of the Divine plan
gives the leaders the serenity and faith to lead the nation on a calculated
yet courageous path.
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