The passuk says (Shmos 13,3) Remember this day that you left Mitzrayim and slave bondage because with a strong hand Hashem took you out from this and eating chametz is prohibited. Take notice that the passuk first says you went out and ends with Hashem took you out? What is also the connection between going out of Mitzrayim and not eating chametz? Chazal tell us that Hashem created the world with Ten sayings. The creation of the עולם which is rooted in the word העלם which means hidden, describes a veil of concealment and hiding of Hashem’s constant intervention and ongoing vital support of the world. This is symbolized by the name of אלהים which is gematriah הטבע – nature. The Ten sayings in essence were the tools through which there came about the creation of a physical world rooted in the spiritual worlds, all of which emanate from Hashem’s will to benefit man, he who merits seeing and recognizing Hashem behind the cloak of nature and obeys His commands.
The name of יהו’ represents the will of Hashem before the creation of this veil and concealment of Hashem’s Light. Nature אלהים , is intrinsically infused with the Name of הויה, and Man’s mission is to recognize and reveal this infusion through his actions and discipline of his yetzer harah. It is as if Hashem created the game of Hide and Seek, He hides and Man has to seek out Hashem’s intervention and Hashgacha in creation. The word creation is rooted in Lashon Hakodesh in the wordקרי which means happenstance. With the creation of nature and its scientific laws one can easily make a grave error and think that the world exists solely on laws and therefore everything that occurs just happens to be that way. Such a perspective of life removes and ignores the name of הויה which sustains creation every moment. The Ten plagues were a removal of this cloak of nature thereby revealing the name of הויה.
The seforim explain that matzah and chometz parallel these two names of Hashem. Chametz parallels the name אלהים and הטבע nature. The dough of Chametz rises by itself after you shape it as if it possesses its own force. Those who see in the world only the laws of nature see only the name of אלהים. They have no motivation to observe Hashem’s will because He is not involved or concerned with the lower world functions, nor with Man’s moral choices. Those who recognize the name of הויה however, realize that nature is only a concealment of Hashem who is hiding behind it waiting to be discovered and recruited with every endeavor and movement of Man’s life.
The word חמץ also means to steal as Rashi points out (Yeshaya 1,17). Vinegar is called חומץ because it stole the taste of wine and became soured. The Chidushei Harim writes that the mitzvah of וידוי confession over one’s sins is found specifically in the issur of גזל stealing because every sin is in reality stealing from Hashem His constant energy flow of life, and Man channels this life force into actions that oppose Hashem’s will and command. Every aveirah stems from one’s non recognition of the name of יהוה. This could be the reason why the 13 Middos of Rachamim begin with the repetition of Hashem’s name ofיהו’ even though it is not a middah. We beseech Hashem’s mercy because of our failure to recognize Hashem’s intervention with us which caused us to sin against Him.
Matzah in contrast does not rise from its former height, size and shape. It comes out of the oven the same way it was placed inside. It represents the emunah of a Yid in the name of הויה which testifies that it is Hashem who is control of nature which is infused with הויה.
Now we can understand the passuk כי הוציא הויה אתכם מארץ מצרים ולא יאכל חמץ. The second part of the passuk does not pose a contradiction to the first part as to who took Yisrael out of galus. For the name of Hashem in this phrase הוציא ה’ is not a subject but the recipient of Hashem’s taking out. It can be translated as that (Hashem) הוציא הויה took out the revelation of the source of creation called הויה for the purpose of your redemption. For the Ten plagues were a revelation of Hashem removing the cloak of אלהים and recognizing the name of הויה. With the revelation of יהו’ there comes the eradication of chometz which symbolizes ego, and the haughty Man who steps out from Hashem. This is hinted in the words הוציא הויה which is gematriah חמץ.
An allusion to all of this is revealed in the gematriah of יהו’ by using a special system of gematriah by the letter times itself. The name יהו’ is ten times ten, five times five, six times six and five times five which add up to 186. The sefarim tell us that the word מקום is also the same gematriah. This refers to the Chazal that explain that Hashem is called by the name מקום because He alone is the place of the universe. In order to exist, everything has to have a place. Hashem is that place for everything created. This hints to the concept that the name הויה gives support to all that is nature, the veiled façade by אלהים.
Let us carry this idea one step further. If one spells the word מקום with its inner letters מם קוף וו מם he will arrive at the gematriah of 358 the same as משיח. This is the fulfillment of the passuk ביום ההוא יהיה הויה אחד ושמו אחד that when Moshiach will come he will herald in a time of recognition that nature is only a veil and that Hashem was always intervening in the happenings of creation. His name will be one and the אלהים name of Hashem will not be viewed as a separate functioning entity. This is meant by the final geulahמשיח the same gematriah as the inner recognition that Hashem is the Makom of the universe. צמח which is the name of משיח (את צמח דוד עבדך) will completely rid from us the חמץ that resides inside.
The letters of יהו’ represent the three segments of time, past היה, הוה present, and יהיה future. This full recognition will happen also during the time of משיח as the Beni Yissaschor points out on the passuk הויה מלך הויה מלך הויה ימלך which contains these three segments of time and is gematriah משיח .
Why is the minhag to begin the Kiddush of Shabbos with the words ויהי ערב? We start the recitation of Kiddush with יום הששי ויכולו השמים in order to form the acronym of the name of יהו’. Why? Wasn’t the world created with the Ten sayings with the name of אלהים? Why is the Torah hinting to the seventh day of creation with the name of הויה? The answer is that the purpose of the world is to strive to remove the mask that conceals Hashem’s hiding and to uncover the יהו’ . By doing so, he will achieve the ridding of the חמץ in Man which is his yeter hara that distracts one from his search of Hashem. Shabbos is the antidote to this. For even within the Ten Sayings it possesses the power to reveal Hashem’s hiding place. That is why if one spells חמץ with its inner letters like this חית מם צדיק the gematriah is 702 the same as שבת! By recognizing on Shabbos the name of יהו’ we return to Hashem all of what we have stolen during the week and which we have channeled into our selfish actions. That is why the first two letters of שבת isשבת to return.
During the week the yetzer harah makes us see ourselves as being “apart” from Hashem. However during Shabbos, the neshama yeseirah is what makes us see ourselves as “a part” of Hashem.
– Rav Brazil