During both the day and night services, the blessings after Shema start with the word “emes” (true). In the morning we say Emes V’Yatziv (true and established), while at night we say Emes V’Emuna (true and faithful). What significance do these variations have in connection with their assigned time?
“To speak about His kindness in the morning and His Faithfulness at night” (Tehillim 92). In the daytime, when the world is filled with light and everything is clear, we can easily perceive Hashem’s kindness. For this reason during the morning prayers we say Emes V’Yatziv, describing all of the open miracles that G-d did for us during the Exodus from Egypt.
During the night, which represents the dark times in our lives, the good in Hashem’s actions is much less apparent. Night is a time of emuna, because even when we cannot understand what is taking place, we have trust in G-d that He is leading the world towards the final redemption. For this reason, at night we say Emes V’Emuna, a blessing that foretells the miracles of the future, which will be even greater than those we experienced when leaving Egypt (Rashi and Tosfos Brachos 12a).
Because of the direct connection between each of these blessings and the time of day they are recited, one should be very careful to say each one in its proper time. What if one accidentally mixed them up, and started Emes V’Emuna in the morning or Emes V’Yatziv in the evening? As long as one has not yet said Hashem’s Name at the end of the blessing, he should start again. If one already mentioned Hashem’s Name, he should complete the blessing and move on (Mishna Berura 66,53).
Text Copyright © 2009 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org