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  No Strength In Numbers 

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Posted by: Rabbi Elazar Meisels 7/20/2007 11:54 AM

“They took in their hands some fruit of the land and brought it down to us. They brought back word to us and said, ‘Good is the land that Hashem, our G-d, is giving us.’ ” 1:25

  • Good Is The Land That Hashem…Is Giving Us – Who were the ones who said this? Yehoshua and Calev – Rashi
  • Good Is The Land – If Yehoshua and Calev alone spoke well of the land, why should the people have listened when all the others spoke negatively of the land, and they too, were reputed to by righteous and trustworthy people? The answer is that originally they all spoke well of the land. The other spies however, argued that while the land was indeed wonderful, the natives were too strong to vanquish. Yehoshua and Calev contended that this was not so, and almost succeeded in convincing the people. It was at that point that the ten spies began to speak negatively of the land when not in the presence of Yehoshua, Calev, and Moshe. Based on their earlier positive reports, the people should have maintained their desire to enter the land and retained their faith in Hashem’s ability to help them overcome the inhabitants of the land. – Ramban

Principal among the numerous lessons worth extracting from the tragic story of the Meraglim (spies), is the idea that when a Jew knows the truth, he must not allow himself to be swayed by the masses who advocate otherwise. Human nature tends to place considerable weight on numbers, whereas Judaism teaches that rarely are numbers reliable indicators of right and wrong. Yehoshua and Calev’s opinion may have been in the minority, but the people knew the truth and should not have allowed themselves to be swayed by the popular opinion.

Copyright ©2007 Rabbi Elazar Meisels - Free Mp3 Torah Audio

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