Random Quote #75 topic: hebraic, Translations from the Talmud, Midrashim and Kabbala
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As the last-mentioned personage, Rabbi Yoshua, entered paradise
"not by the door," but some "other way," it may be interesting
to not a few to know how he succeeded, and here accordingly we
append the story of the feat. As Rabbi Yoshua's earthly career
drew to a close, the angel of death was instructed to wait upon
him, and at the same time show all respect for his wishes. The
Rabbi, remarking the courteous demeanor of his visitant,
requested him, before he despatched him, to favor him with a
glimpse of the place he was to occupy in paradise above, and
meantime commit to him his sword, as a gage that he would grant
his petition and not take advantage of him on the journey. This
request being granted and the sword delivered up, the Rabbi and
his attendant took the road, pacing along till they halted
together just outside the gates of the celestial city. Here the
angel assisted the Rabbi to climb the wall, and proceeded to
point out the place he would occupy some day in the future, when
deftly throwing himself over, he left the angel standing outside
and holding him fast by the skirt of his garment. When pressed
to return, he swore he would not go back, protesting that, as he
had never sought to be relieved of the obligation of his oath on
earth, he would not be cajoled or coerced into an act of perjury
within the precincts of heaven. He declined at first to give up
the sword of the angel, and would have stood to his point but
for the echo of a voice which peremptorily ordered its immediate
restoration. (See _Kethuboth_ fol. 77, col. 2.)

Where is it taught that when ten join together in prayer the Shechinah
is with them? In Ps. lxxxii. 4, where it is said, "God standeth in the
congregation of the mighty."

THE TALMUD, _Berachoth_, fol. 6, col. 1.



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