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    After the plague – Pinchas

    “After the plague” God said to Moses, “Count the Children of Israel”.

    There must be a connection between the plague and the census.

    We find an answer if we look at our own generation and then go back to the Torah passage.

    Whatever word we use for the Holocaust, “plague” is the least horrific. Before the plague the world Jewish population was probably about 18 million, not a very large number but without the anti-Jewishness of the centuries there would have been at least 100 million Jews.

    But the fact was 18 million, and a census at the end of the Holocaust would have revealed that we were down to about 12 million. It’s now creeping up again.

    The figure is not just relevant in external terms but internally.

    Who were the survivors? What was their morale – depressed or determined?

    The answer is “Both at the same time”.

    Baruch HaShem our determination has prevailed and internally we are strong and committed.

    That’s what Moses was checking for his age. Were they despondent or determined?

    If they decided to stride boldly ahead and build a future, all would be well.

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