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‘One word says it all’. D’var Torah for Parshat Korach.

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One word says it all.

Every single word of our Torah is sacred, and they all impart such beautiful, enduring messages.

But, so very often, the very beginning of a Parsha, imparts to us a crucial lesson for life – and this is so true of Parshat Korach.

The opening word of Korach actually encapsulates the whole reason why everything went wrong.

What is that opening word? ‘Vayikach’ – ‘he (Korach) took’.

What it means in that context is that Korach took himself aside, he separated himself from others and he contended with Moshe and Aharon, challenging their leadership.

This led to a split in the nation. It was horrific. It was tantamount to a brief civil war and as a result, Korach and his followers suffered an awful death.

But what was at the root of this machloket, this conflict?

For Korach it wasn’t a ‘machloket L’shem Shamayim’ – it was not for the sake of heaven, it was for the sake of himself.

‘Vayikach’ – he wanted to take power, importance, yichus, significance, wealth.

It was all self-serving, not a single element of his leadership had the welfare or the future of the nation in mind.

I think it happens quite often that leaders of all sorts have big egos.

It shouldn’t really be the case, but even where there’s a big ego, one still needs to be in a position of authority and leadership, for the sake of those whom one is serving.

In the event that there is a leader, who is in their position exclusively for their own sake – not only will the leader be in trouble, but the entire people will be.

Shabbat Shalom.

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