Sunday, March 11, 2007

Daf Yomi - Megillah 31 - Shabbos in the Daf

by Reb Ben

Megillah 31a

The Gemara states that wherever one finds the greatness of HaShem, that is where one finds His humility. This is truly a fascinating concept. The sefarim write that Hashem is infinite, yet He created the world by constricting Himself, so to speak, into the world, thus allowing a finite world to come into existence. This idea can be applied to Shabbos. On Shabbos, HaShem reveals Himself as a king, and if we were to contempt this phenomenon, we would be overwhelmed with the thought that we are preparing ourselves to accept and delight in HaShem’s kingship. Yet, HaShem bestowed upon the Jewish People this wondrous present called Shabbos, and in His humility, He allowed us to become partners, so to speak, in creation, as the Gemara (Shabbos 118b) teaches us that one who recites vayechulu Friday night is akin to being a partner in creation. This idea is manifest in the morning prayers of Shabbos, when we declare: Shochen ad marom vekadosh shemo, He Who abides forever, exalted and holy is His Name. We then recite the words: Vechasuv: ranenu tzaddikim baHaShem layesharim naavah sehillah, and it is written: (Tehillim 33:1) ‘sing joyfully, O righteous, before HaShem, for the upright, praise is fitting.’ We initially declare that HaShem is exalted and holy, and then we say that the righteous and upright sing before Him and praise Him. This indicates that despite HaShem’s greatness, He humbles Himself and allows the righteous and upright to praise Him. Similarly, later in the Shacharis prayers we recite the words laKel asher shavas mikol hamaasim bayom hashevii nisalah veyashav al kisei kevodo, to the G-d Who rested from all activity, on the seventh day He sat on His throne of glory. Although Hashem sits on His throne of glory, he allows us to delight in the Shabbos. We should take advantage of this opportunity where HaShem allows us to delight in His gift, His precious and holy Shabbos.