Pinchas 473, 474
“וַיֵּשֶׁב יִשְׂרָאֵל, בַּשִּׁטִּים; וַיָּחֶל הָעָם, לִזְנוֹת אֶל-בְּנוֹת מוֹאָב”
“And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people (Erev Rav) began to commit harlotry with the daughters of Moab.”
“וַתִּקְרֶאןָ לָעָם, לְזִבְחֵי אֱלֹהֵיהֶן; וַיֹּאכַל הָעָם, וַיִּשְׁתַּחֲווּ לֵאלֹהֵיהֶן.”
“And they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods; and the people (Erev Rav) did eat, and bowed down to their gods”
“ וַיִּצָּמֶד יִשְׂרָאֵל, לְבַעַל פְּעוֹר; וַיִּחַר-אַף יְהוָה, בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל”
“And Israel joined came closer to the Baal of Peor; and the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel”
The Erev Rav was the first to get tempted from the sex offered by the daughters of Moab. We read in verse 2 above that they immediately followed them and submitted to their god, Baal Peor that was one of the lowest forms of idol worshiping. The Erev Rav brought offerings and bowed to him.
The Israelites that sinned with the women came close to Baal Peor but they didn’t make deeper connection to it. Because of that, Pinchas could save them.
The physical and material pleasures are the first cause of spiritual distraction. Serious lack or excessive desires for the material takes a person away from connection to the Light.
When we are in control of our desires we have better chance for spiritual growth.
It is easy for a woman to control a man through sex, and a couple that respects each other should schedule times to reduce or eliminate relationship imbalance.
Food can be a great spiritual connection but when it is not controlled the thoughts of a person get focused on the next meal rather than the next positive thing to do.
The sages taught us “איזה הוא גיבור הכובש את יצרו”, “”Who is a hero – that conquers his desires”.