Wednesday, June 24, 2015


Rabbi Doniel Staum, LMSW
Rabbi, Kehillat New Hempstead
Rebbe/Guidance Counselor – ASHAR
Principal – Ohr Naftoli- New Windsor


“This is the decree of the Torah… a completely red cow, without blemish…”[1]
Rashi explains that Satan and the nations would taunt Klal Yisroel about parah adumah. Therefore, the Torah states that it is ‘a decree of the Torah’; therefore no one has the right to question it.
There are many laws in the Torah for which we are not privy to reasons, such as shatnez and the prohibition of eating milk and meat together. Why did they specifically question parah adumah?
Rav Moshe Sternbuch shlita explains that offering the parah adumah entails many seemingly paradoxical components. The color red symbolizes blood and murder, so why is a completely red animal used as the offering to purify from tumah of a dead body?
In addition, when the ashes of the parah adumah were sprinkled, the pure sprinkler became impure while the impure recipients of the sprinkling become pure.  It is those inherent contradictory components that the nations question and mock.
On a deeper level, parah adumah represents the complexity and paradox of life. Klal Yisroel is the holiest and most elite of all nations, and yet there is no nation so persecuted and afflicted. We witness righteous people suffer and malicious sinners prosper. 
The nations scoff and mock us just as they mock the parah adumah. About both of them our response is “This is the decree of the Torah – it is a decree from before Me”.

The following is excerpted from תורת ממאור עינינו, a pamphlet of Torah thoughts from Rabbi Leible Chaitovsky delivered in Ashar[2], which I was privileged to author and disseminate at this year’s Ashar graduation:
“A number of years ago, a girl from Russia joined Ashar in 7th grade. At that time it was still prevalent for children coming out of the recently disbanded communist U.S.S.R. to come to yeshivos in America.
“This girl was an only child of her Russian parents. After not having had the opportunity to learn anything about Judaism in Russia, they very much wanted their daughter to receive a Jewish education.
“Her parents performed menial jobs which paid little, so they could afford the tuition payments to send her to Ashar.
“When she first arrived she barely spoke any English. She had a very difficult experience and it was completely an uphill climb for her. She didn’t understand much of what was taught in English, and she didn’t know one word of Hebrew.
“She would go home each night after school and try to review and understand what was taught in school.
“Her teachers offered her extra time and tried to help her along. She worked very hard and reviewed everything she learned, including to incorporate new words into her lexicon.
“At first she had no friends and would review each night with her parents.
“I had her as a student when she entered eighth grade. When I would teach she would stick her head out into the aisle and watch my eyes diligently watching my every move. I felt like she was a sponge absorbing everything I said.
“When the faculty met to discuss which student should be valedictorian, it was unanimously agreed that it should be her.
“At graduation when she got up to speak you could have heard a pin drop. It was one of the most moving speeches ever given in that old Ashar auditorium. She spoke about her parent’s struggle to maintain Judaism in Russia. She lauded her parents and thanked them for all they did for her.
“There was one thing she didn’t share, that we only found out later. Students often hang up pictures or mementos which excite or (rarely) inspire them in their lockers. In the back of her locker there was one small photo – it was of her parents. She said that every time she opened her locker she thought about how much sacrifice they invested to send her to a Jewish school where she could learn Torah. It would have been so much easier to send her to public school, but they accepted the challenge because it was important to them. She related that it was their selfless sacrifice that inspired her to do her utmost to be successful.

“When Moshe and Aharon appeared before Pharaoh demanding that he release the Jews from Egypt, the first sign they displayed was Aharon’s staff transforming into a snake. But the real miracle was when Aharon’s staff swallowed the Pharaoh’s and the Egyptian advisors’ staffs. Incredibly, even after it swallowed the other staffs Aharon’s staff did not expand or change at all.
“That miracle was reminiscent of another event which occurred in Egypt a few centuries earlier. At the beginning of Parshas Miketz, the Torah relates the dream of Pharaoh in which seven skinny stalks swallowed seven healthier stalks and yet they remained the same.
“That dream symbolized Yosef himself – the greatest underdog story in the history of the world. A Jew alone in jail, cast away and abandoned, then became second to the king literally overnight.
“The miracle of Aharon’s stick swallowing their sticks wasn’t meant to scare Pharaoh and the Egyptians, although it almost invariably did. It was meant to symbolize to Moshe and Aharon themselves – don’t think there’s no chance here. Don’t think the situation is beyond repair! Remember Yosef’s dream! The Jews will yet swallow up all of Egypt. Former slaves will assume dominance over the country, and no one from ancient Egypt will remain.
“We need to maintain a mental image in our metaphorical lockers of our parents, grandparents, and great grandparents who risked so much, who gave their blood, so that we could learn Torah today, so that we can recite berachos, so that we can wear tefillin and tzitzis without fear, so that we can daven together in unison. We need to keep that mental image in our minds; it needs to inspire us.
“Moshe and Aharon were encouraged by the dreams and saga of Yosef, and so should we be as well!”

The Parah Adumah symbolizes to us the paradoxical eternity of our people. Though we have never had it easy we have always persevered because we have never forgotten the sacrifices of those who have given all so that we can continue to bear the banner of Torah. It may be a long and arduous journey but we live with the confidence of knowing that the day will come when Aharon’s staff will again swallow the staffs of all the scoffers and all will know the truth.

“The seven thin sheaves swallowed the seven healthy sheaves”
“This is the decree of the Torah”

[1] Bamidbar 19:2
[2] Yeshivas Hadar Avrohom Tzvi - known as “Ashar” - is the yeshiva where I am privileged to serve as fifth grade rebbe and Guidance Counselor

Thursday, June 18, 2015


Rabbi Doniel Staum, LMSW
Rabbi, Kehillat New Hempstead
Rebbe/Guidance Counselor – ASHAR
Principal – Ohr Naftoli- New Windsor


"If I Were The Devil"
Paul Harvey

I would gain control of the most powerful nation in the world;
I would delude their minds into thinking that they had come from man's effort, instead of G-d's blessings;
I would promote an attitude of loving things and using people, instead of the other way around;
I would dupe entire states into relying on gambling for their state revenue;
I would convince people that character is not an issue when it comes to leadership;
I would make it legal to take the life of unborn babies;
I would make it socially acceptable to take one's own life, and invent machines to make it convenient;
I would cheapen human life as much as possible so that lives of animals are valued more than human beings;
I would take G-d out of the schools, where even the mention of His name was grounds for a lawsuit;
I would come up with drugs that sedate the mind and target the young, and I would get sports heroes to advertise them;
I would get control of the media, so that every night I could pollute the minds of every family member for my agenda;
I would attack the family, the backbone of any nation.
I would make divorce acceptable and easy, even fashionable. If the family crumbles, so does the nation;
I would compel people to express their most depraved fantasies on canvas and movies screens, and I would call it art;
I would convince the world that same-gender marriage is natural, and that their lifestyles should be accepted and marveled;
I would convince the people that right and wrong are determined by a few who call themselves authorities and refer to their agendas as politically correct;
I would persuade people that religion is irrelevant and out of date; the Bible is for the naïve;
I would dull the minds of believers, and make them believe that prayer is not important, and that faithfulness and obedience are optional;


The Zohar[1] writes that when Korach incited a coup d’état against Moshe, he challenged “peace” itself. In so doing, he also challenged Shabbos and Torah, both of which are referred to as ‘peace’.
What does the Zohar mean? How can one physically challenge “peace” and what is the connection with Shabbos and Torah?
The Nesivos Shalom explains that “shalom - peace” is not merely the absence of divisiveness and discord. G-d created the world in a fashion that it exists based on a ‘giver-taker’ joint relationship. The moon reflects the light of the sun, and the earth is nourished from the rain which descends from the sky[2].  Human relationships, primarily the male-female relationship, also contain this type of synergistic relationship. The male’s role is to provide, while the female’s role is to accept what the male contributes and to then enhance and develop it[3]. The world itself also includes this form of relationship, as this world is merely an anteroom to the World to Come.
The only ‘force’ that is completely sovereign and independent is G-d Himself. The rest of creation however, requires a dynamic giver-taker relationship. On a spiritual level too, every generation is guided and led by its leaders who are privy to a greater level of clarity of Torah knowledge. Therefore, the masses must look to its sagacious scholars for guidance and direction about what are the Torah’s expectations in every given situation. In fact the transmission and perpetuation of Torah has always been from teacher to student, father to son.
The Zohar explains that all physical blessings are granted as a result of Shabbos observance. The Ohr Hachaim Hakadosh[4] explains that when G-d created the world He only instilled it with the ability to exist for six days. After that time, the world should have instantly reverted back to a nebulous wisp of nothingness.  It is only the observance of Shabbos which infuses the world with a resurgence of energy that allows the world to exist for another six days[5].
When Korach challenged Moshe and Aharon, he was challenging and seeking to undermine the leadership of the nation. Korach countered that although at Sinai Moshe was needed to transmit the Torah, that was in the past. From Sinai onward, it was no longer necessary to be taught and guided by a teacher. “For the entire nation is holy and in their midst is G-d. So why have you raised yourself above the assembly of G-d?”
In doing so, Korach unwittingly challenged the very fabric of creation. The ramifications of his arguments were not only a challenge to authority of the nation but of the very foundation of the world which is only sustained through a system of hierarchy and submission to other powers/forces which nurture and provide.
The Torah defines peace as our ability to maintain that status of homeostasis in creation, wherein the world and all of its components uphold and maintain the giver-taker relationship. That relationship requires a sense of selflessness to provide for others, as well as a sense of deferential submission to supreme powers. Thus, Korach’s rebellion was an attack on “peace” itself.
In the same vein, Korach’s claims posed an indirect challenge against the Torah and Shabbos, because they too are the spiritual providers of Klal Yisroel. We submit ourselves to the Torah and seek to observe Shabbos properly, at times at great personal sacrifice. The attitude that Korach perpetuated undermined those basic tenets of Judaism. He claimed that every Jew could be spiritually self-sufficient. That attitude stands in direct contrast to the essence of Torah study and Shabbos observance.

I once heard the following beautiful observation: There are two bodies of water within the borders of Eretz Yisroel: the Kinneret and the Dead Sea. The waters of the Kinneret have a crystal blue appearance and are sweet and healthy, providing much of the country’s water. The Dead Sea on the other hand, lives up to its name. Its waters are salty and bitter and it cannot sustain any life.
What is the difference between these two bodies of water? The Kinneret has water feeding into it and flowing from it[6]. The Dead Sea however, only has water flowing into it[7], but no water flows from the Dead Sea.
When something provides and gives of itself to others the nurturance that it itself received, that is a testament to its vitality and vigor, like the Kinneret which both receives and provides. However, when something/someone hordes what was given to it, and does not give to others, that indicates that there is spiritual death and sterility. The Dead Sea receives but does not provide and therefore it cannot sustain life.

The Torah gives a specific warning, “You shall not be like Korach and his assembly[8]” in order to caution us to be very wary of the ramifications of his insurgence. Our ability to cling and connect with G-d is inextricably bound with our ability to cling and connect with our leaders who are our guides. Without their council the world becomes an ill society replete with depravity and lawless anarchy. 
It is only a nation led with humility and selflessness, leaders such as Moshe and Aharon, that is destined to produce a holy G-dly nation. 

“Korach unwittingly challenged the very fabric of creation”
“You shall not be like Korach and his assembly”

[1] Chelek 3, 176
[2] The cycle then continues with the clouds being formed based on evaporation from the earth and condensation forming in the air.
[3] The most obvious example of this is in regards to procreation.
[4] Parshas Bereishis 2:1
[5] The Ohr Hachaim demonstrates that from the beginning of creation there was always at least one individual who observed the Shabbos and thereby ensured the continuity of creation each week.
[6] The Jordan River flows into the Kinneret, and then continues to flow from it.
[7] The Jordan River empties into the Dead Sea
[8] Bamidbar 17:5

Thursday, June 11, 2015


Rabbi Doniel Staum, LMSW
Rabbi, Kehillat New Hempstead
Rebbe/Guidance Counselor – ASHAR
Principal – Ohr Naftoli- New Windsor

Dave[1] had finished college. A young, restless, and vivacious American teenager, he decided that it would be an experience to bike across Europe. He spent weeks traveling from country to country with nothing more than a backpack, some money, and his bike. After touring much of Europe he decided that, being Jewish and all, he should bike to Israel.
Eventually he made it to Jerusalem. As he stared at ‘the wall’ wondering about its uniqueness, he was approached by a religious looking fellow who asked him if he would be interested in attending a class about Judaism. Dave figured that a rendezvous with Judaism would be interesting and he agreed. 
The class was intriguing, and like nothing he ever experienced before. So Dave stayed on for a few more classes, and eventually decided to stay for a few days.
Time passed quickly. Dave enjoyed yeshiva and found meaning in Judaism. He began to avidly study rudimentary Hebrew, Jewish philosophy, and Mishna. He devoted five months to studying before concluding that it was time to heed his parents' requests to return home. Dave’s Rabbeim tried to dissuade him from leaving, countering that his commitment to Judaism was not yet strong enough to leave the spiritually safe confines of the yeshiva. But when they saw that Dave was insistent they blessed him and wished him well.
When Dave walked off the plane his parents thought he had been out in the sun too long. The son that had left to bike across a continent embarked off the plane dressed in typical yeshiva student garb. Nevertheless they allowed him the latitude to make his own decisions.
Friday night arrived; time for the family’s weekly excursion to the movies. They were surprised when Dave informed them that he would no longer be joining them because he was now Shabbos observant. Reluctantly they all packed into the car and left Dave home alone. Dave was committed and he sat at the table with his store-bought Shabbos kosher food, singing zemiros to himself, and reading about the weekly parsha.
The following Friday night the scene repeated itself. This time Dave felt a bit more despondent. However, he insisted to himself that he would be able to do it and again he transformed his lonely Shabbos meal into a somewhat spiritual experience.
By the third Friday night however, Dave felt his resolve weakening. As he sat in the stillness of his home he finally felt himself caving in. “Give me a sign G-d” he thought, “or else I’m out of here!” He waited five, ten, twenty minutes. The clock ticked monotonously. Finally, Dave got up and walked into his den and flipped on the TV. “Late Night with David Letterman” immediately popped onto the screen. Letterman was always entertaining and Dave could use a few laughs at that moment.
The show was actually a re-run that had aired some time previously, but Dave did not know that. The second segment of the show featured a noted actor[2] who had just completed acting in a movie which was filmed in Jerusalem. “Jerusalem” thought Dave amusedly, “how ironic!”
The host asked his famous guest what he thought about Jerusalem. The actor replied that he found the affability of the Jerusalemites to be most pleasant. “Saturday is a holiday in Israel, called Shabbat. On Shabbat everyone greets each other and wishes each other ‘Shabbat Shalom’.”
Dave began shifting very uncomfortably in his chair. A guest on David Letterman was talking about Shabbat? That was surely strange! But the biggest shock was yet to come. As if on cue, the famous actor looked at the noted host and exclaimed, “Shabbat Shalom, Dave!”  Within a few moments the entire audience became involved in the excitement as they too began to chant, “Shabbat Shalom Dave”.
And then as the segment was about to conclude, the camera zoomed in on the actor’s face. The entire screen was filled with his lips smiling and saying, “Shabbat Shalom Dave!”
Dave had received his ‘sign’. That event sparked the fire in his soul, which eventually lead to his return to Israel and to a full commitment to Torah, which he continues to perpetuate today.
    In Dave’s own words the message is: “If you think G-d is not watching over you EVERY moment of the day, every day of your life, and that He doesn't love you more than you can imagine, and doesn't want you near (and doesn't have a sense of humor tailor made for each one us...), then you are blind, because I lived it (and hopefully still do...).”
“The Children of Israel were in the wilderness and they found a man gathering wood on Shabbos day… Hashem said to Moshe, ‘The man shall be put to death; the entire assembly shall pelt him with stones outside the camp’.”
Rashi writes that in recounting this story the Torah is relating the degradation of the nation. “They only observed the first Shabbos, and on the second one this man came and desecrated it.” 
How was one person’s iniquity considered the degradation of the entire nation? It would seem that Rashi should have come to the opposite conclusion. Out of an entire nation this was the solitary individual to desecrate the Shabbos. In addition, Sifrei notes that Moshe designated guards to ensure the proper observance of Shabbos. If so, why did this isolated act reflect negatively upon the entire nation?
Rabbi Yosef Zundel Salant zt’l explained that the commandment to observe Shabbos is one of the Ten Commandments recorded on the Luchos. On the first Luchos, the Torah commands that one must “Remember (Zachor) the Shabbos day to sanctify it,” while on the second Luchos the Torah enjoins that one must “Safeguard (Shamor) the Shabbos day to sanctify it”. 
The sages explain that when G-d commanded about the observance of Shabbos, both ‘zachor’ and ‘shamor’ were said in one utterance. Thus, both aspects of Shabbos -‘remembering’ it and ‘safeguarding’ it are inextricably connected. 
Remembering Shabbos means that every individual must himself sanctify Shabbos. He must ensure that Shabbos is observed in his home with regality and holiness. Safeguarding Shabbos entails that one strive to ensure that Shabbos is observed by others too. It is not sufficient that I am vigilant in my personal Shabbos observance. I must also do all in my power to ensure that the day is observed by other Jews as well. One who is lax in this regard (shamor) is tantamount to being lax in his own Shabbos observance (zachor).      
The entire nation was held responsible for the Shabbos desecration in the desert by virtue of the fact that they did not prevent the event from happening. The guards should have physically restrained him from committing the sin before he had a chance to do so. The fact that they did not reflected a lack on the part of the entire nation. They did not feel enough of a responsibility to ensure that the Shabbos is observed by every Jew. Therefore, they were all held accountable.
Every Jew has a responsibility to try to bring Shabbos to other Jews. We have an obligation to try to share the beauty of Shabbos with our ignorant brethren who were never privy to recognizing the radiance of a Shabbos. In addition, we have a responsibility to learn and perpetuate the study of the laws of Shabbos, to elevate our own understanding of the many complexities involved in proper Shabbos observance, as well as to help others learn those laws.   

Rabbi Shimshon Pinkus zt’l notes that it is perplexing that the punishment for violating Shabbos is so severe. An individual who performed a seemingly trivial act on Shabbos was stoned to death. On the other hand, one who burns a Torah scroll or eats pork is not liable for the death penalty. In fact, even one who guilty of murder, although liable for death at the behest of the Jewish Courts is killed in a less severe manner than stoning.  Why is desecrating Shabbos punished so severely?
Rabbi Pinkus explains that it is analogous to a fellow who breaks his hand or foot and requires surgery to repair the limb. If in surgery the doctor cuts an extra centimeter from the wound, although it may cause added scarring, it is not life-threatening.
One who requires open heart surgery however, requires a far more precise and exact surgery. If the doctor makes his incision a half meter off the results can be fatal. This is because the heart pumps and regulates the blood throughout the body. Therefore, the implications of even a miniscule mishap in the heart are far more severe than on other organs.
All mitzvos of the Torah are vital to the spiritual connection of a Jew. However, Shabbos is tantamount to the heart. It encompasses the fundamental belief system of a Jew in so many ways. Therefore, one who desecrates Shabbos has done egregious damage to his soul. He has breached the source of his spirituality and therefore is punished accordingly.
The inverse is no less true. One who is meticulous to observe Shabbos properly and to keep all of its laws with alacrity and vigilance increases his connection with his spiritual source.

Shabbos observance connects us with a transcendent world beyond all physical confines. It is a taste into a world in which the omnipotence of G-d is clear. In that world there is no disparagement or confusion. Rather, it is a world of peace and clarity. In a word, it is a world of “Shabbos Shalom”.   

“Remember/ Safeguard the Shabbos day to sanctify it”
“Shabbat Shalom Dave!”

[1] The following extraordinary story has “made its rounds”, even being published in a book. However, ever the skeptic, I always wanted to verify the story. A number of years ago I related the story to a group of students visiting our shul from LA. After I concluded speaking one of the listeners mentioned that he knew the subject of the story. I excitedly took down the name and tracked down his email address. The recipient of that email graciously replied that he was indeed the subject of the story and that that it was true, albeit not exactly as it had been written. He granted me permission to record the story, but requested anonymity. Still, I can now comfortably say that I know first-hand that the story is true.

[2] I was informed that the movie was called Every Time We Say Goodbye (1986) and the actor was Tom Hanks.

Thursday, June 4, 2015


Rabbi Doniel Staum, LMSW
Rabbi, Kehillat New Hempstead
Rebbe/Guidance Counselor – ASHAR
Principal – Ohr Naftoli- New Windsor


          Whenever I speak to young students about the concept of friendship, I begin by asking them to describe the character traits they look for in a friend. They are quick to mention the obvious traits - “nice”, “playful”, “share”, “fun”, “helping”, etc. After they have told me their answers I mention two integral traits that they consistently overlook: “respect” and “trust”. Respect means that my friend respects me for who I am as an individual. Trust means that I feel comfortable and secure that my friend knows many personal things about me which I would not necessarily share with others. I trust that he will respect my confidentiality. A friendship/relationship that lacks trust is not much of a friendship at all.

          At the conclusion of parshas Beha’aloscha the Torah relates the debacle of Miriam speaking loshon hora (slander) about Moshe. Tzipporah, Moshe’s wife, mentioned to Miriam that Moshe maintained a certain distance from her. Not realizing that it was Divinely decreed, Miriam felt that it was an affront to Tzipporah. She repeated the information to Aharon who agreed with Miriam’s conclusion. They felt that they too were prophets and yet they did not separate from their wives, so Moshe should not have done so either[1].
          G-d immediately responded by chastising them for speaking against Moshe. Moshe had a higher level of prophecy than they did and therefore needed to maintain a more elevated level of separation. “Hear now my words. If there shall be prophets among you, in a vision shall I, G-d, make Myself known to him; in a dream shall I speak with him. Not so is My servant Moshe; in My entire house he is the trusted one. Mouth to mouth do I speak to him, in a clear vision and not in riddles, at the image of G-d does he gaze. Why did you not fear to speak against My servant Moshe?”[2]

          The Netziv explains the meaning of the words, “B’chol basee ne’eman hu- In My entire house he is the trusted one”, as follows: “He (Moshe) knows the Ineffable Name (of G-d) which was used to create heaven and earth. However, with the steadfastness of his heart, he doesn’t do anything (with the Name)[3]. The title “ne’eman  - trusted one” is only applicable to one who has the ability to do, but doesn’t!”
          Rabbi Avrohom Pam zt’l illustrated this idea by comparing it to a king who had an extremely loyal and devoted advisor. The advisor served the king dutifully and faithfully for decades and was privy to the innermost secrets involving the entire kingdom, including the keys that contained the king’s vast treasures and wealth. Yet the servant never tried to open the combination, because the king never instructed him to do so.
That is the meaning of a ne’eman; someone who completely subjugates himself to the will of his master and can be relied upon to never betray that trust.
          Rabbi Pam continued that with this in mind we have an added insight into the customary blessing bestowed upon every bride and groom, “May you merit to build a bayis ne’eman b’Yisroel[4]”. When two individuals live together they learn about the innermost aspects of each other’s personalities. They see their true natures, including their faults, weaknesses, and vulnerabilities.
The job of each spouse is to compliment the other by building up their strengths and helping them overcome their challenges. A marriage that is “ne’eman” is one in which both spouses never betrays that trust. No matter how difficult things may become, despite all the vicissitudes they are confronted with, they will never disloyally unlock the combination that contains the intimate aspects of the other. A bayis ne’eman is a home that contains the trust that both spouses are dedicated to the preservation of the relationship through building each other!           

The gemara[5] mentions that there were four individuals who never committed a sin during their lifetimes: Binyamin the son of Yaakov, Amram the father of Moshe, Yishai the father of Dovid, and Kalev the son of Dovid.
If these four individuals never sinned why are they not the Patriarchs of Israel? Why do we commence our prayers by acknowledging the “G-d of Avrohom, the G-d of Yitzchok, and the G-d of Yaakov”, and not the “G-d of Binyamin, Amram, Yishai, and Kalev”?  
           Chasam Sofer explained that truthfully if we utilize a quantitative measure, those four individuals were greater. However, they all lived a relatively hermitical lifestyle. They were not thrust into leadership positions which forced them to deal with the frustrations of leadership[6]. The patriarchs however, all lived lives that involved interpersonal relationships. In fact, much of their lives consisted of the struggle to live among extremely challenging individuals.
Ultimately our job is not to overcome sin but to transcend the pitfalls and challenges of life. In that regard our Patriarchs are our paragons.  
          The “Seven Shepherds[7]” of Klal Yisroel are our greatest leaders, not because they never sinned, but because they triumphed over the perennial struggles of life. Therefore, our prayers begin by specifically declaring the Divinity of the Patriarchs for their example serves as our lodestars.
On Shabbos morning we state: “Moshe rejoiced with the gift of his portion (i.e. the Torah which he transmitted) because he was called a faithful servant.” All of the esoteric secrets of the universe are hidden in the Torah, including all of human history[8]. Although we are not privy to understanding how to decipher those secrets, Moshe Rabbeinu was. Moshe was titled the faithful servant because G-d was able to place His confidence in Moshe that he would not breach the ‘trust’ of knowing G-d’s greatest secrets vis-à-vis this world. Moshe’s joy was inextricably connected with his being titled a trustworthy Servant of G-d.  

          In regards to our relationships as well, we must seek to be a ne’eman, never backing down in the face of a challenge and yet always being someone whom others can trust.

          “One who has the ability to do, but doesn’t!”
“My servant Moshe; in My entire house he is the trusted one”

[1] Despite the fact that Miriam and Aharon loved Moshe unconditionally, and despite the fact that Miriam only spoke out of sincere concern, it was considered loshon hara and she was stricken with tzara’as. Miriam’s ‘mistake’ is the symbol for how vigilant one must be in regards to gossiping and slandering others. 
[2] Bamidbar 12:6-8
[3] In other words, since G-d created the world by uttering His Name, as it were, one who knows G-d’s Ineffable Name has the ability to perform miracles and alter the course of nature if he so desires. Despite the fact that Moshe was quite familiar with those Names and could have performed miracles at will, he never did so. He adhered to G-d’s Word and never beyond! 
[4] Literally – “A trustworthy home in Israel;”
[5] Shabbos 55b
[6] This is not a criticism of them. This was simply not their allotted role in life.
[7] The Patriarchs, Moshe, Aharon, Yosef, and Dovid
[8] It is legendary that the Vilna Gaon knew where he himself was alluded to in the Torah, as well as others.