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Can Moshiach be imminent?

Question:


How can the arrival of Moshiach be imminent? After all, most Jews are not even
Torah-observant.


Answer:
 

Even a fleeting instinct towards teshuvah may be enough to make a person meritorious and worthy of greeting Moshiach.

 

According to the Torah, Jews who were raised in a non-religious atmosphere and were not accorded a proper Jewish education are not held responsible for their lack of observance. On the other hand, many thousands of these Jews are rediscovering their heritage and making their way back to Jewish observance. This remarkable phenomenon is surely a sign of the coming of Moshiach when "He [Elijah] will turn back [to G-d] the hearts of fathers with [their] sons."

Moshiach's coming will not be delayed until every one of us is perfect. Every Jewish soul has its mission for which it was sent to Earth. It is entirely possible that a Jew who does not seem particularly observant is actually doing many good deeds and is well on his way to fulfilling his soul's unique mission. Maimonides writes that with even one thought of teshuvah, repentance, a Jew can be considered completely righteous, a Tzadik. Surely all Jews have had at least one moment of reflection, when they felt a deep inner desire to connect to G-d and their roots. Even this fleeting instinct towards teshuvah may be enough to make a person meritorious and worthy of greeting Moshiach. Furthermore, every Jew is a dearly beloved child to G-d. Surely it is not His desire to keep us in exile indefinitely.

It is not up us to determine which Jews are worthy of Moshiach and which are not. On the other hand, certainly it is our responsibility and privilege to help other Jews prepare themselves for the coming of Moshiach by increasing their Torah observance.

 

 


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