The medrash on the words וחמושים עלו ממצרים says that only one out of fifty went out of Mitzrayim. Is this to be understood literally, and if yes, why was it so?
When the rasha asked a question in the way that shows he wasn’t so loyal, so the father had to say, אילו היה שם לא היה נגאל – had he been there he wouldn’t have been redeemed. So you see that only the good ones were redeemed. Now how many? Echad m’chamishim, one out of fifty, could be just a loshon, an expression, but really we don’t know exactly how many. But there’s no question that not everybody was redeemed from Mitzrayim. Some say guzma’os, exaggerations: the Mechilta says that chamushim is אחד מחמש מאות – that only one in five hundred came out! It’s very hard to understand that. But whatever it was, not everybody left Mitzrayim.
What happened to the others? They were destroyed; they went lost. A tragedy of tragedies. The Torah doesn’t blame them because they were under the influence of a shibud for two hundred and ten years. Two hundred and ten years is a very long time and it’s very hard to be to be tested for so long and be omed b’nisayon, to survive. They were all bnei olam haboh, no question about it, but they didn’t fully utilize the opportunity.
But there were those who did utilize shibud; those who utilized all that Hakodosh Boruch Hu did for them, and for them the difficulties they encountered in Egypt were of greatest benefit for them. All the persecutions made them feel that they were privileged more and more, that they were the ones set apart for Hashem. לפום צערא אגרא – According to the difficulties, so is the reward. V’lo shinu, v’lo shinu, v’lo shinu! “We’re not changing a thing,” they said. They didn’t change their names. Even their clothing, they didn’t change. And therefore, those who went out of Mitzrayim were the ones who deserved to go out because they fought back against the environment.
But as far as exactly how many didn’t go out? We don’t know. But we know enough to say that it was a tragedy that there were people who didn’t fulfill the main purpose of life of fighting back against the environment. They fought back, but not enough; not enough.
And Hakodosh Boruch Hu wants of us that we should all our lives build up a strong conviction that Hakodosh Boruch Hu is with us, כי עמנו א-ל, that Hashem is with us forever and ever, and thereby gain the strength to fight back against the outside environment that creeps into our lives.
TAPE # E-104
In today’s generation will everyone merit the geulah when Moshiach comes? I mean will it be like Mitzrayim where some were left behind or will today be different?
Absolutely not! No, it won’t be different. In order to be zoche to the geulah, you have to want the geulah. If people are facing Hawaii, if they’re facing far away, then Hashem says, “Stay there.” Now, it could be that the people who were born in Hawaii, they don’t know, they’re tinok shenishba, so מקבץ נדחי עמו – Hakodosh Boruch Hu will gather them together. He’ll gather them together. But those who are trying to get lost, will succeed in getting lost.
And therefore it’s so important to make sure that you get found without waiting till it’s too late. When the time will come, it’ll be too late then. Just like in Mitzrayim; when they went out of Mitzrayim those who had to remain behind said, “I changed my mind. I want to go out.” Ha, nothing doing. You missed the boat. They missed the boat. When the time comes to go out, you have to be ready for the call. You have to be prepared.
And therefore, you have to be מצפה לישועה every day. Every day! They’re going to ask you when you come to the next world: צפית לישועה – Did you hope for the yeshua? You have to hope for the yeshua. So when you say the bracha, don’t just say the words. Say, “I’m hoping for Moshiach to come. Every day, I’m hoping.”
There’s a lot of work to be done; oh yes! I mean it. There’s a very great amount of work to be done! What can we do? That’s our purpose in this world. And if you utilize this world to achieve all of the great Torah ideals with emunah chushis – it means you actually feel them and live with them – then you’re living for a purpose.
TAPE # E-104