Rabbi Yaacov Haber

Parshas Vayechi

What is the significance, meaning and implication of the “end of days”? The Talmud says that 48 Prophets and 7 Prophetesses spoke only about that time. The apocalypse, a Christian term for the end of days, is synonymous with doomsday, it refers to great or total devastation, and in our language it refers to nuclear war.

By contrast, Yaakov Avinu called together all of his sons and talked to them about the achris hayamim or the end of days. He spoke about blessing, he spoke about growth, and he spoke about greatness.

“Gather together and let me tell you what will happen to you at the end of days!” I have often pointed out that the word “yikoreh - happened" is spelled wrong it should have been spelled with a heh not an aleph. The real translation may be, “Gather together and let me tell you what will call to you at the end of days!” Yaakov explained to each one of his sons and to all the generations that would come forth from them what their calling would be. He told them that they are all different from each other because each one of them has a different purpose in this world. He told them to get in touch with their inner voices, and never try to achieve their brothers goals. ‘You were built different than your brothers, at the end of days you must become spiritually compliant.’

By our calculations we are also nearing the achris hayamim. What should we be doing? Where should we be going? The answer is inward; we have to go inward. We have to find our individual calling, our brocha and our individual purpose in this life. When we go to the doctor we have him or her do a physical. Go to your Rebbe and have him do a spiritual!

The day we wait for is not a doomsday. It is a day of life, cooperation and peace. May we all be privileged to see that wonderful time.

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