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I heard once in a class where the Rabbi taught a teaching from the Vilna Gaon on Tehillim 20:8:

אֵ֣לֶּה בָ֭רֶכֶב וְאֵ֣לֶּה בַסּוּסִ֑ים וַאֲנַ֓חְנוּ ׀ בְּשֵׁם־יְהוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵ֣ינוּ נַזְכִּֽיר׃

They [call] on chariots, they [call] on horses, but we call on the name of the LORD our God.

I don't remember the details but something to the effect that אלה ברכב is referring to Eisav and אלה בסוסים refers to Yishmael, and something about how the 70 nations (I think the number of words in this chapter) will battle each other in the end of days, led by Eisav (Christianity) and Yishmael (Islam), and we'll only have Hashem.

Where is this teaching found, and what does it say exactly?

  • Perhaps you are thinking of the Megaleh Amukot (Lekh L'kha 16a) that all the 70 nations are subservient to either Esau or Ishmael. This is hinted to in the verse אלה ברכב ואלה בסוסים. Now אלה is numerically equivalent to 35 (+/- 1 as gematriyot go), so the two אלהs correspond to the half under Ishamel, and the half under Esau. || If you are interested, I will post this as an answer. – mevaqesh Aug 15 '17 at 3:21
  • @mevaqesh that seems to be a similar idea and if I'm not mistaken that work precedes the Vilna Gaon, but the Rabbi was definitely (so he thought) quoting the Vilna Gaon and not someone else. While it's good to know, I'd like to know the source from the Vilna Gaon. – robev Aug 15 '17 at 16:33

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