Parshas Pinchas

Parshas Pinchas

By Rabbi Shmuel Gluck

Pinchos is given a Bris Sholom, a treaty of peace, with Hashem, as a reward for his killing Zimri and stopping the plague that enveloped Klal Yisroel. Pinchos certainly deserved a reward for what he did, but peace would seem to be a misplaced reward for killing two people, even if it was done for the right reasons.

Understanding this requires an accurate definition of Sholom. Sholom, peace, is similar to the word Sholaim, whole. To be whole requires two conditions; nothing to be missing and nothing extra. Imagine a ball that is missing a piece, or has something attached to it. It won’t be able to roll properly.

That is why the Torah, in Parshas Eikev, discusses Baal Tigra and Baal Tosef, the issue of subtracting or adding something to a Mitzvoh, such as having only 3 Tzitzis, or adding a fifth, in the same Posuk. Both remove the Mitzvoh of Tzitzis’s Shelaimus, its wholeness.

For Klal Yisroel to be whole and have peace, requires the removal of anything extra. The killing of Zimri, which seems to be an act of violence, was really an act to bring Shelaimus back to Klal Yisroel, and which then brought back Sholom.

For Klal Yisroel to be whole and have peace, requires the removal of anything extra. The killing of Zimri, which seems to be an act of violence, was really an act to bring Shelaimus back to Klal Yisroel, and which then brought back Sholom.

Any aggressive move on the part of individuals requires that they ask a Rebbi, advisor etc. before they act on it, just as Pinchos asked Moshe Rabbeinu before approaching Zimri. People must realize that what is being asked of them may not always be an act of pleasantry and kindness. Shelaimus requires thought in “both directions”, whether they have to add or subtract.

What people should strive for is true Sholom. This is especially important in the Chinuch of children, but it is also applicable to adults. The right decision may require acts of kindness, but it may also require people to act tough, and even callous. In some cases acting callous may be an act of Sholom, which is why Pinchus merited a Bris of Sholom.

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