An article on Breaking Israel News about foxes being sighted on the Temple Mount has already garnered over a quarter million reads, leading one influential rabbi to note that the phenomenon coupled with the reaction are sure signs that “more prophecies are on the way.” The sighting comes during the nine-day period of austerity culminating in the Ninth of Av when Jews read the Book of Lamentations which includes a verse about foxes on the Temple Mount.
BY ADAM ELIYAHU BERKOWITZ
Lamentations: Foxes on the Temple Mount a Precursor to Return
The article, the most-read Breaking Israel News article of the year, reports that visitors to the area of the Temple Mount observed a group of about a dozen foxes in the southwestern area of the Western Wall for the last three days in the early hours of the day. The image of foxes on the Temple Mount was described in the Book of Lamentations, which some Biblical scholars believe was written by the Prophet Jeremiah.
Because of Mount Tzion, which lies desolate; Jackals prowl over it. Lamentations 5:18
The Hebrew word used in this verse (שׁוּעָלִים) is most accurately translated as ‘foxes.’ This verse appears in the fifth and final chapter of Lamentations which culminates in the prophecy that Jerusalem will return to its former days of glory.
For truly, You have rejected us, Bitterly raged against us. Take us back, Hashem, to Yourself, And let us come back; Renew our days as of old! Lamentations 5:22
It is important to note that this sighting comes during the nine-day period of austerity preceding Tisha B’Av, (the ninth day of the Hebrew month of Av) on which the Jews fast and mourn for the destruction of the First and Second Temples which were both destroyed on that day. Part of the Tisha B’Av service is a public reading of the Book of Lamentations.
Rabbi Yosef Berger, the rabbi of King David’s Tomb on Mount Zion, emphasized that the huge interest in what is ostensibly a minor event is, in itself, an essential element of geula (redemption).
“When God created the world, he ‘hid’ Himself in nature,” Rabbi Berger explained. “This was, of course, necessary to give us free choice which is an opportunity for us to discover God. Many people can look at the foxes and say it is nothing, a natural event, that there is no difference between foxes or rabbits. But the fact is that the reason the Bible described foxes is that they only live in places of total desolation and loneliness. Yet Jerusalem today is a bustling city and it is truly remarkable that foxes suddenly appear. And they seem to be happily playing.”
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