Daily Zohar # 1906 – Shoftim – Greatness
The following verse is from the advice Jethro gave Moses on how to deal with the issues brought before him by the people to make justice and correction.
“וְשָׁפְטוּ אֶת-הָעָם, בְּכָל-עֵת, וְהָיָה כָּל-הַדָּבָר הַגָּדֹל יָבִיאוּ אֵלֶיךָ, וְכָל-הַדָּבָר הַקָּטֹן יִשְׁפְּטוּ-הֵם; וְהָקֵל, מֵעָלֶיךָ, וְנָשְׂאוּ, אִתָּךְ”
“”Let them judge the people at all times; and let it be that every great (major) dispute they will bring to you, but every minor dispute they themselves will judge. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you.”
“וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל-מֹשֶׁה, אֶסְפָה-לִּי שִׁבְעִים אִישׁ מִזִּקְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, אֲשֶׁר יָדַעְתָּ, כִּי-הֵם זִקְנֵי הָעָם וְשֹׁטְרָיו; וְלָקַחְתָּ אֹתָם אֶל-אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד, וְהִתְיַצְּבוּ שָׁם עִמָּךְ”
“Then YHVH said to Moses, “Gather for me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom you know to be the elders of the people and officers over them, and bring them to the tent of meeting, and let them take their stand there with you.”
Rabbi Shimon explains that Moses himself is the best friend/helper of the ‘King’ and the aspect of the upper court of Binah. Aaron his brother is the best friend/helper of the Shechina.
Moses and Aaron were the heads of the 70 judges called ‘the Sanhedrin’, which was the great court. Together they were 72 as the numerical value of חסד Chessed as we explained in the previous study. Another name for Chessed is ‘great’ as we read in 1 Chronicles 29:11
“לְךָ יְהוָה הַגְּדֻלָּה וְהַגְּבוּרָה וְהַתִּפְאֶרֶת, וְהַנֵּצַח וְהַהוֹד, כִּי-כֹל, בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ: לְךָ יְהוָה הַמַּמְלָכָה, וְהַמִּתְנַשֵּׂא לְכֹל לְרֹאשׁ.”
“”Yours, O YHVH is the greatness (Chessed) and the power (Gevurah) and the glory (Tiferet) and the victory (Netzach) and the majesty (Hod), indeed everything (Yessod) that is in the heavens and the earth (Malchut); Yours is the dominion, O YHVH, and You exalt Yourself as head over all.”
The 70 judges represented the process of the seven sefirot, and their decisions were so powerful that they had full control over the Light that came down the lower seven sefirot. God requested exactly 70 people but Moses, at the level of Binah, and Aaron, at the level of Malchut, brought the aspect of Chessed that was needed to have mercy in the process.
Chessed from the Right as a bridge that connects the lower seven sefirot to the upper three, receives the Light from Binah at the Left and for that Chessed is also called גדולה ‘Great’ as King David expressed in the only place in the Bible where the Sefirot are mentioned literally.