“And Yaakov beheld the countenance of Lavan, and, behold, it was not toward him as beforetime.And the LORD said unto Yaakov: ‘Return unto the land of thy fathers, and to thy kindred; and I will be with thee.’” Genesis 31:2-3 (The Israel Bible™)
UNESCO denies the Jewish connection to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall. The Arab League, Germany and the US dispute Israel’s claim to the Golan Heights. Reports reveal trends in escalating anti-Semitism worldwide.
Breaking Israel News spoke with Rabbi Pinchas Winston about the connection between rising anti-Semitism and the End of Days. Rabbi Winston began by discussing the supernatural nature of anti-Semitism. “If anti-Semitism is simply hatred of the Jewish people, you just have to stay out of the way. If it’s a Divine message then we can assume that God is saying something specific. Every time we ignore it, everything gets worse and we suffer terribly in the end.”
“Everybody who thinks seriously about anti-Semitism clearly sees there is no logic behind it. God wanted to make His point stark, so he sent the Arabs to the rest of the world to do to the rest of the world what they have done to the Jews in Israel,” he explained.
We can plainly see that it changed nothing, Rabbi Winston continued. Anti-Semitism exists even when the world can see what Israel has to contend with. “Anti-Semitism is a hatred that goes beyond the everyday reasons for racial hatred,” he concluded.
If anti-Semitism makes no logical sense, the Bible-based person is led to ask whether it makes spiritual sense. Rabbi Winston explained, “Once there is no logic, then it’s supernatural.”
In elaborating on the spiritual significance of anti-Semitism to Breaking Israel News, Rabbi Winston asserted that God is taking the Jewish people through a process known as birur. Birur is a mystical Jewish concept, involving sifting, choosing, separating and refining the Jewish people.
There are currently approximately 15 million people worldwide who identify themselves as Jews. With the End of Days so close, Rabbi Winston explained that God is in the process of identifying who, among the Jewish people, will survive the coming changes. “If a person is in Israel and connected to the idea of geula [the final redemption of the Jewish people], that person has the best chance of surviving.
“We see from the past that religious observance was not a guaranteed ticket to freedom and protection. Being in the right place at the right time when an exile comes to an end has worked for the religious and secular alike. Many want to believe that there is no imperative to be in Israel today, or at least to dream of living there. But if one follows the trend over the last couple of hundred years, he or she will see that Divine Providence has quietly at times, and not so quietly at other times, been moving the Jewish people back in that direction.”
According to Rabbi Winston, anti-Semitism is God’s way of “forcing a Jew to choose to be on one side or the other. History is wrapping up. We each have to decide, ‘Who do you belong to?’”
He went further by suggesting that “perhaps Bernie Sanders’ presidential bid is part of that process, to pull people in one direction or the other.”
“Hashem (God) wants the Jews to come home. God is ready to lower the boom. We have to distance ourselves from the nitty gritty politics that distracts people. We, as a people, have to look at the bigger, historical picture.”
Rabbi Winston suggests two possibilities for the future. One is that God has a fantastic miracle in store – a plan to put awareness of the spiritual reality into the heads of all Jews everywhere. The other, darker scenario “is a major national disaster to take the Jewish people out of America. Until now, the latter has usually been the means of Divine choice.”
Rabbi Winston suggested that, “The right response [to rapidly rising anti-Semitism] would be that the Jewish people would say that it’s happening again and pick up and leave.”
In other words, anti-Semitism is God’s way of pushing the Jews outside of Israel to unequivocally decide whether they want to remain part of the Jewish people in the next stage of history. In Rabbi Winston’s view, God is urging the Jews who still live outside of Israel, “Don’t wait any longer! In the past, we always felt there would be another opportunity to go. We have been wrong each time. You just can’t wait. If you see it, that’s your opportunity. Don’t listen to that voice that says you’ll have more time.”
Rabbi Winston used an analogy from the Passover story to further explain why the Jews of North America need to take action now instead of waiting until things become intolerable. “Instead of calling out to Hashem, we kept adapting [to the slavery] in Mitzrayim (Egypt). We kept thinking that it could always be worse.” He implied that the Jews in North America are making the same mistake, by denying the trend of increased anti-Semitism and increased anti-Israel sentiment.
In a recent essay on this topic, Rabbi Winston issued a stern warning about the necessity to see today’s anti-Semitism as God’s End of Days message to the Jews who don’t yet live in Israel.
“The common thread running back to the very first anti-Semites? Jew hatred for no good reason. A disgust of things Jewish that defies logic. A willingness to downgrade the status of the Jews until they become a virus that needs eradication.
“It’s all there today. If we don’t recognize it for what it is and deal with it as we should, at least acknowledging that the fourth and final exile has reached its long awaited conclusion, we’re just going let history repeat itself again. Is anyone looking forward to that?”