I read a reference to this in Eim Habanim Semeichah, ch. 3,לג (though later editions give R’ Yonatan Eybeschutz’s Ahavat Yonatan here as the source; indeed same phraseology), but there's no source given. I've also heard it from a sichah but he doesn't know which one. I understand that part of the chevlei mashiach is the withering of the quill, that Torah scholars will diminish, but I'm looking for the specific source that Rav Teichtal was referring to, namely that David told Yisrael not everyone will be Torah scholars.

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    Can you clarify who David and Yisrael are? (Last names would help, to start.) (I assume you're not referring to the biblical personalities: their lifetimes didn't overlap.)
    – msh210
    Dec 24, 2018 at 9:35
  • Can you also clarify in which “sichah”, and by whom, you heard it from? (FTR, cf. Sanhedrin 97a)
    – Oliver
    Dec 24, 2018 at 19:57
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    Your comprehension of what Rav Teichtal wrote is incorrect. He does not write that David HaMelech is quoted in Midrash. He writes that David HaMelech states a support that both observant Jews and non-observant Jews form a symbiotic relationship that is beneficial or detrimental for them both. He points to Shmuel 1 for this. Rav Teichtal then says Midrash declares that many Jews at the time of Moshiach and the redemption will not be religiously observant. That is what the footnote states had been unknown to his son at publication. His son didn’t know what Midrash his father referred to. Dec 25, 2018 at 5:33
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    That Midrash is mentioned in my answer. The second portion of the Midrash quoted, which is also quoted by Rabbi Yehonatan Eibschitz in his commentary to the haftorah for parshat Terumah in Ahavat Yehonatan, actually originates in Pirkei Heichalot Rabbati, chapter 33:5 which is by Rabbi Yehoshuah HaKohen Gadol from the time of Rabbi Akiva like is found in Midrashei HaGeniza Batei Midrashot by Wertheimer. Dec 25, 2018 at 5:45
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    @YaacovDeane I think OP’s comprehension is correct. After quoting David’s ominous verse (in Samuel), R. Teichtal explicitly writes “ומפורש דבישר להם וכו׳” - “...he told them”. David is the “he”. The quoted midrash interpreted what David intended to foretell and not “declaring” on their own.
    – Oliver
    Jan 24, 2019 at 1:03

2 Answers 2


מָצָאתִי. בְּנוֹהֵג שֶׁבָּעוֹלָם, אֶלֶף נִכְנָסִים לְמִקְרָא, אֵין יוֹצְאִים מֵהֶם לְהַצְלִיחַ שֶׁרְאוּיִם לְמִשְׁנָה אֶלָּא מֵאָה, וְאוֹתָם מֵאָה שֶׁנִּכְנְסוּ לְמִשְׁנָה, אֵין יוֹצְאִים מֵהֶם לִגְמָרָא אֶלָּא עֲשָׂרָה, וְאוֹתָן עֲשָׂרָה שֶׁנִּכְנָסִין לִגְמָרָא, אֵין מַצְלִיחַ מֵהֶם אֶלָּא אֶחָד לְהוֹרָאָה, הֲרֵי אֶחָד מֵאֶלֶף: I have found. It is customary in the world, [that out of] a thousand who enter [a school] to [learn] Scripture, emerge from them— successful and capable of [the study of] Mishnah— only one hundred. And of those hundred who enter [to study] Mishnah, only ten of them emerge for [the study of] Gemara, and of those ten who enter to [study] Gemara, only one emerges who is capable of rendering decisions [pertaining to religious matters], the result being one out of a thousand.

https://www.sefaria.org/Rashi_on_Ecclesiastes.7.28.2 Rashi is qouting Koheles Rabba 7:28


This is brought in Sefer Avkat Rochel by Rabbi Makir ben Yitzchok, sefer rishon in the first sign beginning with the words from Hoshea 3:4:

כִּ֣י ׀ יָמִ֣ים רַבִּ֗ים יֵֽשְׁבוּ֙ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל אֵ֥ין מֶ֙לֶךְ֙ וְאֵ֣ין שָׂ֔ר וְאֵ֥ין זֶ֖בַח וְאֵ֣ין מַצֵּבָ֑ה וְאֵ֥ין אֵפ֖וֹד וּתְרָפִֽים׃

It then goes on to explain that there will be no Roshei Yeshivot or Gaon Yisroel (Gaonim) or faithful leaders or chassidim or kabbalists (Baalei HaShem) at that time.

This first sign was addressing the beginning of the second world war and the rise of the Axis powers.

It should be noted that it doesn’t mean literally there would be none of these individuals, but that they would not be effective (as they traditionally had been in each generation up until then) in protecting the generation from harm, like for example Mordechai and Esther.

This is one of the primary reasons why the previous Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Schneerson emphasized that the suffering that took place during the Holocaust was categorically different from anything that had occurred previously.

This Midrash is also found in Beit HaMidrash, Cheder Sheini, page 58, by Aharon Yellinek. It also can be found in volume two of Machzor Vitry.

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    -1: I don't see anything in this answer about a David telling a Yisrael anything, which is what the question asks about.
    – msh210
    Dec 24, 2018 at 19:59
  • @msh210 Please see my comments to the OP and what they write in their question. Dec 25, 2018 at 5:48

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