Dvar Torah - Mattot-Masei
As we reach the end of the book of Bamidbar, we can look back on everything that has happened with a sense of satisfaction and sadness. We got the Land of Israel, but a generation late. We will soon inherit what was promised to us, but at such a price. In this context, Moshe Rabbeinu reviews the various stages of our journey through the desert. We relive the trek through the desert, and hopefully, we learn its lessons. We know to manage ourselves better and not repeat our mistakes.
As we begin the month of Av, with its many historical calamities, we are saddened by what we hear. However, we are also on a journey to the day after. We approach Tish'a Be'av, and then one day later, we learn its lessons. Our Rabbis teach us that the Temple was destroyed because of disunity and baseless hatred. As we begin the last stage of our journey into the land united, we look back on the many fights of the desert and resolve not to repeat them. As we look back on the catastrophic loss of the Temple, we decide to continue forward in the spirit of community and peoplehood.