In wake of the Corona Plague – One Should Recall the Words of Ramban and Radak Who Said: All Those Thousands That Fell By A Plague In the Days of David, Fell Only on Account that They Did Not Demand the Temple

The Wikipedia Model of the Second Temple

The last chapter of II Shmuel {Samuel} as translated by https://www.chabad.org/library/bible_cdo/aid/15884

1 And again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel and He moved David against them, saying, “Go count Israel and Judah.”
2 And the king said to Joab the captain of the host that was with him, “Go please, to and fro throughout all the tribes of Israel, from Dan as far as Beer-sheba and take census of the people, so that I may know the number of the people.”
3 And Joab said to the king, “May the Lord your God add to the people a hundredfold of whatsoever they may be, and the eyes of my lord, the king may see it; but my lord the king, why does he desire such a thing?”
4 But the word of the king prevailed against Joab, and against the captains of the host. And Joab and the captains of the host went out from the presence of the king, to number the people, the Israelites.
5 And they crossed the Jordan, and they camped in Aroer, to the right of the city that is [situated] in the middle of the valley of Gad, and to Jaezer.
6 And they came to Gilead, and to the land of Tahtim-hodshi; and they came to Dan to the city of Jaan and round about to Zidon.
7 And they came to the stronghold of Tyre, and to all the cities of the Hivites, and of the Canaanites; and they went out to the South of Judah, to Beer-sheba.
8 And they had gone to and fro throughout the entire land, and they came at the end of nine months and twenty days [back to] Jerusalem.
9 And Joab presented the sum of the number of the people to the king; And Israel consisted of eight hundred thousand valiant men that drew the sword; and the men of Judah were five hundred thousand men.
10 And David’s heart smote him after he had counted the people. And David said to the Lord: I have sinned greatly in what I have done; and now, ‘O Lord, put aside please, the iniquity of your servant, for I was very foolish!
11 And David rose up in the morning; and the word of the Lord came to Gad the Prophet, the seer of David, saying:
12 “Go and speak to David, ‘So says the Lord, “Three things I offer you, choose for yourself one of them, and I shall do it to you”.
13 And Gad came to David and he told him, and he said to him, “[Do you prefer] that seven years of famine in your land shall come upon you? or three months that you shall flee before your oppressor while he pursues you? or, that there be three days pestilence in your land? Now know and consider what I shall reply to Him that sent me.
14 And David said to Gad; “I am greatly oppressed; let us fall now into the hand of the Lord; for His mercies are great; but into the hand of man let me not fall.”
15 So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning until the appointed time; And there died of the people from Dan to Beer-sheba seventy thousand men.
16 And the angel stretched out his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, and the Lord regretted the evil, and he said to the angel that destroyed among the people, “It is enough; now stay your hand.” And the angel of the Lord was by the threshing-floor of Aravnah the Jebusite.
17 And David said to the Lord when he saw the angel that smote among the people, and he said, “Behold I have sinned, and have acted iniquitously; but these sheep, what have they done? I beg that Your hand be against me, and against my father’s house.”
18 And Gad came to David on that day, and said to him, “Go up to erect an altar to the Lord in the threshing-floor of Aravnah the Jebusite.”
19 And David went up according to the word of Gad, as the Lord had commanded.
20 And Aravnah looked afar and he saw the king and his servants passing on towards him: and Aravnah went out and he bowed down to the king with his face to the ground.
21 And Aravnah said, “Why has the lord my king come to his servant?” And David said, “To acquire from you the threshing-floor, in order to build an altar to the Lord, that the plague be stayed from the people.”
22 And Aravnah said to David, “Let my lord the king take and offer up what seems good in his eyes; behold the oxen for the burnt-offering and the threshing tools, and the [wooden] tools of the oxen for [fire] wood.”
23 All this Aravnah the king gave to the king. And Aravnah said to the king, “May the Lord your God accept you.”
24 And the king said to Aravnah, “No; for I will only buy it from you at a price; so that I will not offer to the Lord my God burnt-offerings [which I had received] for nothing.” And David bought the threshing-floor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver.
25 And David built there an altar to the Lord, and he offered up burnt-offerings and peace offerings. And the Lord was entreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel.

Radak’s Explanation on the Last Verse of this Chapter

25) And the Lord was entreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel. – And G-d accepted the prayer of the inhabitants of the land, and the midrashic statement about this incident, All these thousands that fell in the days of David only fell because they did not demand the Temple and behold the matter is a rule of logic from the simple case to the severe. And what if these that it wasn’t in their days and it was not destroyed in their days fell on account that they did not demand it. We that it was in our days and it was destroyed in our days, all the more so. Therefore the elders and the prophets enacted to implant this in the mouths of Israel to pray three times a day, return your Divine Presence and your Kingdom to Zion and the sacrificial service to Jerusalem, Amen, may it be his will, for eternity.

Ramban to Bamidbar (Numbers) Chapter 16

Now this is the way of those that seek mercy that they lighten the sin from the nation and put it upon the individual that caused it, for he is guilty in any case. And so too did David say (II Shmuel/Samuel 24:17) “Behold I have sinned, and have acted iniquitously; but these sheep, what have they done? I beg that Your hand be against me, and against my father’s house.” And this punishment was also on the nation for they too had sinned, for they should have given shekels from their own accord, if this punishment was due to this reason in accordance with the words of our rabbis (Brachot 62b). For the king did not command them to abstain from giving the shekel, for he was only interested in knowing the number of people {comment: that it did not matter to him if they arrived at the proper number by donating shekels} and their punishment and his punishment in this matter was equal. Furthermore besides the matter of the census there was a punishment upon the nation from the outset, as it is written (II Shmuel/Samuel 24:1) And again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel and He moved David against them, saying, “Go count Israel and Judah.”

Now Rashi wrote concerning this I do not know on account of what. But I say by way of logical presumption, that the punishment was upon Israel for delaying the building of the Temple, that the ark would go from tent to tent like a stranger in the land and the tribes were not awakened to say, let us seek out G-d and build a house to his name, as the matter that was stated, (Dvarim/Deuteronomy 12:5) “It is there that you shall go to seek His presence.”, until David awoke for the matter after many days and a very long time, for it was stated, (II Shmuel/Samuel 7:1,2)  And it came to pass, when the king dwelt in his house, and the Lord had given him rest round about from all his enemies. That the king said unto Nathan the prophet; “See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells within the curtains.”

Now behold David was prevented from this, for He told him you shall not build a House in My Name because you have shed much blood to the ground before Me (I Chronicles 22:8) and the building was delayed until the reign of Shlomo/Solomon.

Now if Israel had desired the matter and awakened to it at the ouset it would have been done in the days of one of the judges or in the days of Shaul/Saul, or also in the days of David; for if the tribes of Israel had awakened, he would not have been considered the builder, but Israel would be the builders. But when the nation was not concerned, and David was the one to be concerned and awakened and he was the one that prepared everything, he was considered the builder. And he was a man of justice and held tightly to the attribute of strict justice and was not fit for the house of mercy, and therefore the building was delayed all the days of David due to gross negligence of Israel and therefore the fierce wrath was upon them; and therefore the place that G-d would choose to set his Name there, there it became known by their punishment and their plague. Now scripture hints about all this, for it was stated, (II Shmuel/Samuel 7:6,7) For I have not dwelt in a house from the day that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, to this day, but have walked …etc. In all [the places] wherein I have walked with all the children of Israel, did I speak a word with any of the rulers of Israel whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying: ‘Why do you not build for me a house of cedar?’. Behold the scripture will find guilt, for the Divine Presence will go throughout all of Israel from tent to tent and from tabernacle to tabernacle and there was not one from all the judges of Israel that led them that awakened for the matter.

Further the  scripture also said, that also G-d too was distant from them and did not speak to any one of them to build the house, just now that you awakened, you did well that it was in your heart (II Chronicles 6:8) and I will now command to build it by means of Shlomo/Solomon your son, that will be a man of peace.

Isn’t It the Messiah’s Job to Build the Temple Absolving Us of Responsibility?

When the Safed (Tzfat) faction of the disciples of the Vilna Gaon sent out emissaries hoping to find the remnants of the Ten Lost Tribes in order to get their help in moving the redemption forward, they sent out a letter defining what they considered to be the Vilna Gaon’s ideology.
https://www.sefaria.org.il/Vilna_Gaon’s_students_letter_to_the_Lost_Tribes_of_Israel.16?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en

Furthermore, we have a tradition from the sages of the Talmud (maaser sheni chapter 8) that the temple will be rebuilt before the dynasty of David will be restored, and R Shimon bar Yohai also revealed to us that Hashem first rebuilds Jerusalem and then gathers in the exiles {end of quote}

Rashi Also Derives From the Biblical Text That the Redeemer Does Not Come While Zion is in Ruins

Yishayahu – Isaiah – Chapter 59 verse 20

And a redeemer shall come to Zion, and to those who repent of rebellious transgression in Yaakov {Jacob}, says Hashem.

Rashi deduces And a redeemer shall come to ZionAs long as Zion is in ruins, the redeemer has not yet come.

What About the Possibility That the Messiah Will Build the Temple Before He is Recognized As Messiah?

There are indeed a number of different scenarios on how the Temple will be rebuilt. But even this scenario, becomes more likely to become reality, when the nation first awakens to want the Temple. Indeed according to Ramban, this was exactly the problem in Israel until King David decided that a permanent Temple was needed. That is to say they shoved away the issue of the Temple to the distant future instead of trying to do their best at arriving at solutions.

Gentiles Should Also Use Political Pressure for the Building of the Temple.

There are a number of possible scenarios that predict in which manner the Temple will be built in the future. Here I will present a scenario that is not so well known, without predicting if indeed it will actually occur.

 

Rabbeinu Bacheyei brings this scenario down in his commentary to Vayikra/Leviticus Chapter 11

And Midrash Tanchuma contends, why was this kingdom compared in a parable to the Chazir animal. For in the future the Holy One Blessed be He will put back on them (in Hebrew, LehaChazir) the strict attribute of justice. There are other versions in which it is written in them: That in the future it will put will put back (in Hebrew, LehaChazir) the crown to its old position. And the matter is that the 2 Temples were built by Israel, the First Temple, Shlomo (Solomon) built, who was from the seed of Yehuda (Judah), the 2nd Temple, Zerubavel built, who was also from the seed of Yehuda (Judah) for it was stated (Zechariah 4:8) “the hands of Zerubavel have founded”, etc. and it was done by Coresh (Cyrus) who gave permission in this matter; but the 3rd Temple, in the future will be built by this nation. And that is what they stated: “That in the future it will put will put back (in Hebrew, LehaChazir) the crown to its old position”. Because this one (kingdom) destroyed it. {end of quote}

In Jewish thought, Christianity generally came to be associated with the Kingdom of Rome, because that religion became the official religion of the oppressive empire. I do not know if this Midrash believed the biological descendants of Rome would restore the Temple or did it mean the religion adopted by Rome would restore the Temple to the Jews.

At Some Point in the Future the Prophet Yishayahu/Isaiah Chapter 60 (12,13) Predicts Destruction of Some of the Nations And Singles Out Their Crime

For the nation and the kingdom that shall not serve you shall perish, and the nations shall be destroyed.

The glory of the Lebanon shall come to you, box trees, firs, and cypresses together, to glorify the place of My sanctuary, and the place of My feet I will honor.

Music

Yaakov Sheweky has an emotionally arousing music video about Jerusalem in English at https://music.hidabroot.org/v_5731_%D7%99%D7%A2%D7%A7%D7%91-%D7%A9%D7%95%D7%95%D7%90%D7%A7%D7%99—CRY-NO-MORE-%D7%9E%D7%AA%D7%95%D7%A8%D7%92%D7%9D

Those who understand Hebrew are invited to listen to Aharon Razel’s video song based on Tehillim\Psalms 132 which encourages love for Jerusalem by pressing here


post wriiten by Shlomo Moshe Scheinman

permission is granted at the outset to anyone who is friendly to the Temple to reprint this article or post on another web site.