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Section: Parshas HaShavua   Category: Life Lessons
Parshas Matos: Reb Yeruchom - Moshe the Humblest of All Men... Not Always

Bnei Yisroel's war with Midyan in the aftermath of the Baal Pe'or scandal was unique. Instead of sending their full army of 600,000 soldiers, only an elite group of 1,000 of the greatest Tzaddikim from each Shevet went to battle. These soldiers incredible tzidkus did the job as they achieved an astounding victory, and destroyed an entire nation and five kings. They brought back prisoners in in excess of 100,000 (according to Reb Yeruchom's deduction) as well as livestock in excess of of 750,000.

One would think that Moshe Rabbeinu would give them credit and a bit of leeway when criticizing them for allowing the women to remain alive, and would talk to them more gently. Yet Moshe before congratulating them, sharply criticizes them without any hesitation. What happened to the great humility?

Rav Yeruchom Levovitz the Mirrer Mashgiach explains that real middos are like everything else in Avodas Hashem. They are tools that we control and use to serve Hashem, when and as appropriate. If someone is humble all the time and in all circumstances, this is proof that he does not own the Midda of anava but rather it owns him. It is no different than an animal instinct.

Moshe was indeed the humblest of all men. In every situation he considered the midda of anava and used it when appropriate to its fullest extent. After the war with Midyan, which was in revenge for the Midyanite women's promiscuity in luring Bnei Yisroel to aveira, Moshe considered anava before criticizing the holy soldiers, yet decided this was not the time or place. Moshe truly owned the most powerful kind anava, the kind that he controlled and was not a puppet of.

RELATED ARTICLES:anivus  Midyan  Moshe Rabbeinu  Parshas Matos  Reb Yeruchom Levovitz

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