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Tehillim Tools: Beit haLevi: Psalm 88:2

The 4th of Iyar is the Yahrtzeit of Rav Yosef Dov (Yoshe Ber) Solovetchik of Brisk, the Beis Halevi: “God, Lord of my salvation, I cried out by day, and by night before You. Let my prayer come before You, inclined Your ear to my supplication (Psalms 88:2-3).” What does he mean when he says, “by night before You”?


It appears, based on the Talmud, (Tamid 32) that teaches: all who toil in Torah at night will find the Divine Presence with him, as the verse says, “Arrives, cry out at night in the beginning of the watches! Pour out your heart like water in the presence of the Lord; lift up your hands to Him for the life of your young children, who swoon from hunger at every street corner (Lamentations 2:19).” One who rises to cry out at night will find himself in the presence of the Lord.

This is what King David is teaching in this verse: “I cried out by day,” meaning in prayer. “And by night before You,” meaning in Torah study. Because he is studying at night it is, “before You,” in the Presence of God. Therefore, he feels confident saying, “let my prayer comment before You,” because he has merited to stand in the Divine Presents. “Incline Your ear to my supplication,” meaning to the Torah I have studied.

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