THE YOM TOV OF PESACH BEHIND THE SCENE
(מדרש תהלים קיג) עמד לו פרעה והלך לו אצל משה ואהרן בלילה, שנאמר (שמות יב, לא) ויקרא פרעה למשה ולאהרן לילה. והיה דופק פרעה על פתחו של משה ואהרן בלילה. אמרו לו, שוטה, בלילה אנו עומדין וכי גנבים אנחנו שנלך בלילה, בבקר אנו יוצאין, המתן עד הבקר שכך אמר לנו הקב”ה, (שם, כב) ואתם לא תצאו איש מפתח ביתו עד בקר. אמר להם, הרי מתו כל מצרים, שנאמר (שם, לג) ותחזק מצרים על העם. אמרו לו, ומבקש אתה לכלות את המכה הזאת ממך. אמור, הרי אתם בני חורין הרי אתם ברשותכם הרי אתם עבדים של הקב”ה. התחיל פרעה צווח ואומר, לשעבר הייתם עבדי אבל עכשיו הרי אתם בני חורין, הרי אתם ברשותכם, והרי אתם עבדיו של הקב”ה, צריכים אתם להלל לו שאתם עבדיו, שנאמר, הללויה הללו עבדי ה’:
The Medrash tells us that after Pharaoh declared Am Yisrael’s freedom from Mitzrayim he said You are servants of Hashem. You need to sing Hallel to Him that you are His servants. What insight did Pharaoh give and what role was he playing in directing Moshe and Yisrael to sing to Hashem? Wouldn’t Klal Yisrael have sung anyway since they possess the middah of Hakaras Hatov?
Part of the Hallel is הללו את ה’ כל גויים שבחוהו כל העמים כי גבר עלינו חסדו. We ask the nations of the world at the time of the final geulah that they should go forward and praise Hashem because He showered His chesed upon us. This will be followed with הודו לה’ כי טוב כי לעולם חסדו יאמר נא ישראל כי לעולם חסדו Yisrael taking their turn to thank Hashem for His kindness bestowed upon them. Shouldn’t it have been more proper for Am Yisrael to thank Hashem first before the nations of the world?
The same question can be asked on the passuk (Tehillim 126,2) אז ימלא שחוק פינו ולשוננו רינה אז יאמרו בגויים הגדיל ה’ לעשות עם אלה הגדיל ה’ לעשות עמנו היינו שמחים
Here too we find that the nations of the world are going to be the first to praise Hashem for the miracles that He performed on behalf of His nation and only afterwards His nation will praise Hashem for the salvations He sent their way?
The answer is that of course Am YIsrael will be the first on line to thank Hashem for His chesed that He showered upon them. But then there are the behind the scenes miracles that we are not aware of, like the bombs that were intended for Am Yisrael but instead exploded accidentally behind enemy territory killing them and foiling their murderous plot. We never receive news about such miracles even though many Jewish lives miraculously averted death. Take for instance the parsha of Balak who hired Bilaam to curse Bnei Yisrael and Hashem turned every intended curse into a berachah. Had the Torah not written in detail the entire parsha we would never have known of the evil danger lurking behind the scenes.
The same theme is found by Yisro who explained to Moshe his son in law אשר זדו עליהם the middah keneged middah of retribution that the Egyptians received for their bitter enslavement of Am Yisrael. Only Yisro was privy to such information because he was one of the three main advisors of Pharaoh at that time. Without him we would not have known Hashem’s constant concern for our behalf in every minute way.
It is only after recounting those miracles of which we know and experienced first hand, we then turn to the world and ask of them to praise Hashem for the unknown miracles that He performed on our behalf. Once we hear testimonials from them we ourselves are once again replenished with hakaras tova to start thanking Hashem for those newly revealed miracles as well יאמר נא ישראל .
During the Maakos Am Yisrael were not privy to hear the intense hardships and severe toll that the Ten Plagues had on Mitzrayim since they did not experience them first hand. So even though during the night of the Seder in Mitzrayim we thanked Hashem for the miracles He gave to us and we experienced, we were still unable to pay full gratitude for the behind the scene miracles of which only they were cognizant of. This is what Pharaoh added to his previous statement of You are servants of Hashem. Go now and praise Him for meriting for being a servant to such a great Hashem. Pharaoh was telling them that I am aware what you are not privy to know for as king I get all the news. Let me tell you that you are incredibly lucky to have a Hashem who constantly works behind the scene without your slightest awareness. Go praise Him for those miracles as well. It could very well be that Pharaoh at that time related some of those yet unrevealed wonders to Moshe and Ahron.
Pharoah was actually momentarily experiencing an inspiration of humbleness and acquiescence before Hashem, and related Hashem’s all mightiness and the very special privilege of meriting to be His servant. It could very well be that the name of Hallel Hamitzri originated here. The accepted understanding of the word Mitzri is that this part of Tehillim concerns the subject Yetzias Mitzrayim בצאת ישראל ממצרים. Also it is the Hallel they said in Mitzrayim. But we can also say that it alludes to Pharaoh since he was the one who gave the ability to Yisrael to sing Hallel on those miracles that they were unaware of. הללו את ה’ כל גויים כי גבר עלינו חסדו.
Dovid Hamelech says in the Hallel Hagadol (Tehillim 134,6)
לעושה נפלאות גדולות לבדו כי לעולם חסדו
Hashem performs miracles by Himself and does not need any celestial help. However this passuk can be explained to mean that Hashem bestows miracles to Am Yisrael by Himself behind the scenes and without their awareness. The miracles of which we are aware reveal the Name of Hashem הויה. The hidden miracles and nature טבע are manifestations of the Name אלהים which is gematriah הטבע. Yaakov Avinu requested from Hashemושבתי בשלום אל בית אבי והיה הויה לי לאלקים . He wanted to live his life conscious and with the recognition of הויה of אין עוד in every aspect of existence instead of אלהים, of living with a habitual unnoticeable world of concealment called טבע . When one has reached that level then he is constantly realizing לעושה נפלאות גדולות לבדו כי לעולם חסדו. Incredible that the gematriah of the passukim of ושבתי בשלום andלעושה נפלאות each equal 1760.
The Bnei Yissaschor brings that the month of ניסן is gematria 170 equal to two times the word פה. According to our explanation this alludes to the two types of appreciation and gratitude we must have to Hashem for showering His chesed and miracles upon us. One is for the miracles we know and the other is for those that as yet we do not know of.
There is no question that included in those behind the scene miracles are those overlooked taken for granted ones that are happening daily in our lives, hour to hour, minute to minute, second to second, breath to breath. כל הנשמה תהלל קה הללויה Yes on every breath we should be praising Hashem for giving us that second of life.
ועל נפלאותיך וטובותיך שבכל עת ערב ובוקר וצהרים
Esav, Edom, and Amalek strive with all their strength that Am Yisrael should not view the world as divine miracles but rather just a plain one hundred percent all natural nature. This is hinted in the acronym of עשו which spells וטובתיך שבכל עת ערב ובקר וצהרים . Doing the contrary will hasten the geulah and redeem us from Galus Edom.
בפסח נגאלו ובפסח עתידין ליגאל
Gut Shabbos, Rav Brazil