|Will Moshiach Reveal a New Torah?
Published: Tuesday, May 24, 2011 06:35:38 PM
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"And Moshe took his wife and sons and mounted them on the donkey."(Ex. 4:20) Rashi makes the cryptic comment;" the donkey that Moshiach will utilize to usher in the Final Redemption. How do we understand this strange comment of Rashi? Can a donkey live for thousands of years? The explanation is that when G-d appointed Moshe to be the Redeemer of Israel, He set those cosmic forces in motion that will culminate and climax with the coming of Moshiach and the Final Redemption.
One of the central prophecies of the Final Redemption is that “a Torah will go forth from Me” (Isaiah 51:4). On this verse the Midrash Vayikra Rabba Chapter 13explains that
“G-d will reveal a New Torah” through the Moshiach.
Then we have another puzzling verse in Jeremiah Ch. 31:v.30 “Days are coming”, says G-d, “when I will cut a new treaty (Brit Chadashah) with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.”
This needs explanation. According to the Halachic ruling in the Rambam, the Torah, given to us at Sinai, is eternal and will never be changed or replaced. This is according to the verse in Sefer Devorim, “Everything that I command you, you shall keep to do; do not add to it or take away from it”.There is another verse in Sefer Devorim, “ the revealed things (of the Torah) are for us and our children forever to carry out all the words of this Torah”. This teaches us that all the Mitzvot of the Torah were given to us forever and will never change.
Therefore, we must understand what Isaiah and Jeremiah mean when they speak about “a new Torah and a new covenant. The Talmud and Rambam rule that no prophet can contradict the words and Mitzvos of the Torah. Thus, we have a dilemma.
We must understand the nature of this “New Torah” and “New Covenant” that the prophets spoke about which will take place in the Messianic Era. The Rambam in his “Thirteen Principles of Faith” states that nothing can ever replace or even supplement the Torah that G-d gave us on Mount Sinai.
The key to this mystery is that the Torah, given to us at Sinai, is infinite and cannot be fully apprehended and grasped by our intellect. Every generation of Torah scholars tried their hand at interpreting the Torah’s mysteries and constantly developed new insights and innovations in the Torah’s teaching. Regardless of the many interpretations that have already been brought forth, there are still deeper levels that have yet to be revealed. This is because, according to The Talmud Bavli,Tractate Shabbat, page. 109, the Torah is.an expression of G-d’s mind and soul. “Ana Nafshi Ketavit Yehavit” This is an acronym of the word “Anochi”, “I” which is the first word in the Ten Commandments. This means that G-d says, “My soul, I wrote it (into the Torah); I give it (to you)”. Thus, just as G-d is Ein Sof (Infinite and Endless), so too is the Torah.
This is the “New Torah” that Moshiach will teach. The Torah will not, G-d forbid, be replaced or modified. However, Moshiach will teach Torah on a profoundly deep level that we have never been able to see or grasp before. All of Moshiach’s teachings will be based on the same general rules that G-d handed down to Moses at Sinai but will appear new to us. It is considered a “New Torah”, because these revelations are completely beyond anything that we have comprehended and learned until now.