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Beit Midrash Shabbat and Holidays Jerusalem Day

The Crowns of Jerusalem

Jerusalem’s eminence stems from its being the city of the Holy Temple, the home of the kingdom of Israel, and the Torah center of the world. In liberating Jerusalem we merited advancing toward the full revelation of the greatness of the Holy City.
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The city of Jerusalem is adorned by three unique crowns: the Crown of the Torah, the Crown of the Priesthood (i.e, the Holy Temple), and the Crown of the Kingdom. Jerusalem is the home of all of these. Jerusalem is the capitol city of the kingdom of Israel, the Torah center of the world, and the home of the Holy Temple.

Jerusalem is the city of David’s kingdom. Therefore, the sages say that whoever does not mention the Davidic kingdom in the "Rebuild Jerusalem" blessing of the Grace After Meals has not fulfilled his obligation. We also take note of the Davidic reign in that blessing of the daily Amidah prayer which deals with the rebuilding of Jerusalem: "And to Jerusalem, Your city, may You compassionately return... May You rebuild it soon in our days as an eternal structure, and may You speedily establish the throne of David within it." The Davidic kingdom has been chosen by the Almighty and it possesses Divine standing. Hence, the sages say that even if king of Israel chooses to forego his own honor, his honor is not forgone. The reason for this is that the honor of an Israelite king is in fact the honor of Heaven - and a king cannot forgo the honor of Heaven. A Torah scholar can forgo his honor because the Torah knowledge he possesses is his own. But as far as a Jewish king goes, the kingdom is not his; he reigns as an emissary of the Almighty, and it follows that he cannot forego his honor. This, then, is the reason for the eminence of Jerusalem as the capitol of the Davidic kingdom.

Jerusalem is the Torah center of the world. The Sanhedrin high court was situated in the Holy Temple’s Chamber of Hewn Stone. Half was located in the holy area of the Temple Mount, while the other half was positioned in the non-holy area. From this structure instruction and guidance went out to the Jewish people. It is for this reason that the Temple Mount is also referred to as "Moriah," which means instruction. When the high court does not stand on its foundation it is forbidden to rule over cases of criminal law. That is, criminal law is annulled, and it is forbidden for any Jewish court to arbitrate over such cases. Jerusalem is the Torah center of the world, as the verse states, "From Zion the Torah will go out, and the word of God from Jerusalem." From this concept we learn that sanctification of the new moon can take place only in the Land of Israel. At first glance this is puzzling; considering the wording of the verse, we would expect the sanctification of the new moon to be possible in Jerusalem alone. We may infer from here that though the main source of sanctity is Jerusalem, in truth, the entirety of the Land of Israel is graced with this holiness. The sanctity of the Holy City flows over onto the entire Land of Israel.

Jerusalem is home to the Holy Temple. The explanation that sanctity of Jerusalem flows over onto the entire Land of Israel receives added support from the Mishnah: "There are ten [spheres of] sanctity: The Land of Israel is more holy than any other land, for the 'Omer' offering and the 'Two Loaves' wave offering are brought [only] from it." Strange. Why does the Mishnah not mention all of the other commandments which are dependent upon the Land of Israel? The reason for this is that the Mishnah is dealing with the sanctity which stems from the Holy Temple, and the final and furthest sphere of this sanctity is that of the Land of Israel from which the "Omer" and the "Two Loaves" are brought. This means that the holiness of Jerusalem flows out and saturates the entire Land of Israel.

So, the eminence of the Jerusalem stems from its being the city of the Holy Temple, the home of the Kingdom of Israel, and the world’s Torah center. By conquering and reclaiming Jerusalem the Jewish people merited advancing toward the full revelation of the greatness of the Holy City.
May it be God’s will that we merit seeing the complete goodness of Jerusalem revealed speedily in our time.
Rabbi Zalman Baruch Melamed
Rosh Yeshiva of the Bet El Yeshiva, was the head of the Yesha rabbis board and rabbi of Bet-El, founder and head of Arutz 7.
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