Erev Shabbos Kodesh Nitzavim Inspiration 5775

In a few days will be Rosh HaShanah, and the primary mitzvah that we perform on these two days is blowing Shofar. One must wonder, however, what is the significance of blowing Shofar. The Gemara (Rosh HaShanah 16a) states that we blow Shofar to crown HaShem and that our remembrance should come before Him for good. Why is this necessary? The entire year we pray to HaShem with our mouths, and now we need a ram’s horn to effect our prayers?

To answer this question, it is worthwhile to examine a Gemara regarding Shabbos observance. The Gemara states that one who observes the Shabbos properly, even if he is steeped in idol worship like the generation of Enosh, will have his sins forgiven. The Taz (Orach Chaim 242) wonders how this works. If one repents from his sins, he does not require  Shabbos observance for atonement. If he does not repent from his sins, how does Shabbos observance help?

We can suggest that the word שבת is derived from the word שוב, which means to repent. Thus, Shabbos is essentially an extension of the mitzvah of Teshuva, repentance. Shabbos is what gives our repentance  a boost to gain complete atonement. In a similar vein, the Shofar is an extension of our mouths, and allows for all of our unanswered prayers that we recited throughout the year to ascend heavenward, and to be for a good remembrance.

This year, HaShem, please allow for our repentance and prayers to be accepted upon high, and we should merit a Ksiva Vachasima Tova, a Gut Gebenchted Yohr and all good things, with the arrival of Moshiach Tzidkeinu, speedily, in our days!

Have an “Ascending and Pushing for Ever Higher Spiritual Levels” Shabbos!

Rabbi Adler

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