Section: Parshas HaShavua   Category: Quick Vort
Parshas Bamidbar: Rav Shimshon Pincus You Are Not Just A Statistic
Hashem tells Moshe to count the Bnei Yisroel, "BiMispar Sheimos", count the names (Bamidbar 1:2).  This language seems odd, since counting implies numbers not names. Rav Shimshon Pincus tells us that this shows how very important we are to Hashem in two ways. A brick in the wall is only important because without it the wall will fall.  The brick itself has no individual importance.  Similarly, when Bnei Yisroel went to war with Midyan, each Shevet sent 1,000 soldiers.  Each soldier was only a number that added up to the necessary total amount of troops needed to win the battle.  If one soldier is missing, the army is lacking and is not yet an army.

When a family has ten children, each child is a world unto itself.  Each child is not just important because he is a member of the total family of ten.  Each one has a name not a number. On the other hand, if a child is missing there is still a family because the family was not based on a specific total number.

When Hashem wanted a count of the Bnei Yisroel, the Torah says B’Mispar Sheimos.  Bnei Yisrael has value in their sum total, which causes Hashro’as HaShechina.  If even one is lacking then Bnei Yisrael is not Bnei Yisrael and cannot be a resting place for Hashem’s Shechina.  Even so, each individual is a treasure in his own right.  Each one has his own “name”.