Why do we mention the idea of רשעים ביד צדיקים in ? Isn’t the miracle that it was רבים ביד מעטים, a multitude falling into the hands of the few?
Now pay attention. Two things are said in על הניסים. One is the נס of רבים ביד מעטים, the miracle of a multitude falling into the hands of the few.That’s a miracle. After all, the Greeks had a big strong army. And the Jews didn’t have any army at all. That’s one נס. The miracle of גבורים ביד חלשים and רבים ביד מעטים.
But the second נס is not only that the רשעים were defeated, but the added שמחה, the added happiness, that they were defeated by צדיקים. And that’s why we go out of our way to say רשעים ביד צדיקים. The wicked were defeated by the righteous. A tremendous קידוש השם!
Look, when a רשע is walking in the street and he falls down dead, ברוך השם. We say ברוך השם כן ירבו. But suppose a רשע would start up with a tzadik. He starts up with a chassidishe boy, a skinny little chassidishe boy. And this little boy takes his fist and gives the רשע a hit, and the רשע falls down dead. That’s a קידוש השם, no question about it! It’s רשעים ביד צדיקים. It’s a special שמחה!
So, one is the נס of רבים ביד מעטים, and the other is a נס that the צדיקים had their הצלחה, their success. We want to see צדיקים have הצלחה in this world. And therefore we say זדים ביד עוסקי תורתיך, the wicked sinners fell into the hands of those who study Your Torah. Because it’s a great שמחה to see the tzadikim win out in this world.
TAPE # E-211 (December 1999)