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Moshe had complained to God that since the Lord had sent him on a mission to the Pharaoh, the situation of the Jewish people had not only not improved but in fact had worsened. Moshe’s view of the matter was that somehow the Lord had not fulfilled the Divine part of the bargain. This opinion was based on Moshe’s human logic and understanding, which, even though Moshe was on such a high level, was still only a human response.
He is described later in Scripture as being “slightly less than Divine” and that “slightly” is the difference between the created and the Creator. No matter how long our life span may be, we all realize that there are limits. Therefore we view time and schedules in a compressed, immediate and demanding manner. The one human trait that is perhaps most common with all of us is the lack of patience.
When personal computers first appeared on the market only a few decades ago, we thought it miraculous that in 30 seconds we could be connected to the whole world. Today any computer that takes 30 seconds to reach the Internet is absolutely obsolete, unmarketable and assigned either to the trash or to a computer museum.
The governing word in human society is “now.” Only things and ideas that are “now” are to be treasured and respected. However, the Lord of history is not bound by our standards. Here Moshe is taught a basic lesson, that God’s promises are always fulfilled but on the basis of Divine and not human scheduling and time.
Later, when Moshe glimpses Divinity and is taught the 13 attributes of God, so to speak, one of these attributes is inordinate patience. It is one of the supreme traits of the Divine that we are privileged to witness. And, it is not within the purview of our own life spans, at least not within the serious study of human and Jewish history. It is our human impatience that causes our lack of faith and belief in the fulfillment of prophecy and Godly promises.
A famous English statesman once stated that “the wheels of history grind exceedingly slow but they grind exceedingly fine.” Generations upon generations of Jews longed to see the events that we are now experience and even take for granted. The state of Israel and the strength of Torah life in our time after one of the worst tragedies in the history of the Jewish people, are events that are historically breathtaking and nothing short of miraculous.
Yet we are impatient for more and for quicker developments. We are hard-pressed to take a long-term view of life and history. But we should take to heart the Lord’s response to Moshe that patience is a Godly virtue meant to be emulated by humans. History is a process and so is Jewish history and Jewish life. There was a famous phrase in Yiddish that a workman should never show a simpleton a job that is still in progress. Well, our job is still in progress and snap judgments on its accomplishments should be held in abeyance.
Shabbat shalom

Rabbi Berel Wein 

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