Dedicated by Rabbi Dovid Refson in gratitude.
Shabbos Hagadol Derasha Young Israel Century City
The Two Dips of Jewish History
The Dip that Creates Exile; and the Dip that Ends It: The Tragic Story that Came Full Circle on the Night of Pesach
This was a "Shabbos Hagadol Derasha (Sermon)" by Rabbi YY Jacobson addressing the Young Israel of Century City, CA, on Sunday, 8 Nissan, 5781, March 21, 2021. Three of the four questions we ask at the Seder are answered during the night, if only indirectly. But not the fourth question. “On all other nights, we don't dip even once. Why on this night do we dip twice? One time, karaps—a vegetable—in salt water; the second time, maror in charoses, bitter herbs (or Romaine Lettuce) in the sweet mixture of apples, pears, nuts and wine.” During the entire seder, it seems, we never get an answer to this question. What is the answer? Why do we dip twice? There are two dips that characterize Jewish history—one was the beginning of our exile, and one created the end of our exile. Both involved blood and goats. Joseph’s brothers dipped his coat into the blood of a goat, and that is how our exile began. The Jews dipped a hyssop plant into the goat’s blood on the eve of Passover—and that is how redemption began! What do these two dips represent? There is the dip that creates Jewish exile; and the dip that ends it. Of all the slanders about Jews throughout history, the Blood Libel stands out as the most insane. How could have this ever taken root? The last thing a Jew would ever eat is blood. The Torah categorically prohibits a Jew from eating blood. What is more, there is a heavenly death penalty for a Jew eating blood! Reb Elchanan Wasserman suggested a daring explanation.