Fundamentals of the Jewish Faith
Chapter Eight: The Redemption (Part 1)
Ramchal refers to our people as the nation that is “designated and
destined to attach unto G-d” in the end, and to be “crowned with great
garlands of holiness”. For there will come a time when “the Divine
Presence (the Shechina) will dwell upon (us) and attach itself unto (us)”,
and when we’ll become so “perfected” that we’ll “merit attaining the true
good”. (See 3:1-2 above for reference to this).
That is undoubtedly the glorious and wholly uncommon day which the prophet
Isaiah was referring to when he said, “And they will say on that
day, ‘Behold, this is our G-d whom we hoped for! …. Let us rejoice and be
happy with His deliverance!’” (Isaiah 25:9). And it’s the promise of just
such a day that lies at the root of the great and constant rumblings in
the Jewish heart for ultimate goodness, excellence, and full revelation.
Just know, however, that such an astonishing and divine moment will only
gradually unfold, and that it will come on the heels of a sure but
unhurried process of great spiritual maturation. It will begin with the
Messianic Era, which will be followed by The Resurrection of the Dead, and
it will result in The World to Come which is what’s alluded to above.
Ramchal only lightly touches upon this vast and tempestuous series of
events in this work, so we’ll expand upon his points with references to
other sources to round out the picture.
In any event, he starts off with the statement that while “each and every
person can merit attaining the true good” spoken of above “on his own,
based on his own actions”, the world at large will only come to that point
once our people achieve our full potential. For once that happens, and we
draw close to G-d in full, the world itself will evolve, and everyone will
be fully rewarded for his or her efforts.
Rabbi Yaakov Feldman has translated and commented upon "The Gates of Repentance", "The Path of the Just", and "The Duties of the Heart" (Jason
Aronson Publishers). His works are available in bookstores and in various
locations on the Web.