"Pinchas ben Elazar ... diverted My anger (heishiv es chamosi) from on the B'nei Yisrael ... " (25:11)
Citing the G'ro, the P'ninim mi'Shulchan ha'G'ro explains the words "heishiv es chamosi, which literally means 'turned my anger round', with the adage of Chazal that Tzadikim are called 'alive', even after their death, whereas even during their lifetime, Resha'im are called dead. What they mean, says the G'ro, is that whilst in the case of the former, it is only their bodies that have died, but their Souls remain alive, in the latter case, it is only their bodies that live; their inner souls have already died. Take the word "chamosi", and you will find that its inner letters (denoting the Neshamah) spell 'meis', its outer letters (the body) 'chai'. What Pinchas therefore did was to turn the word "chamosi" round, from its current format (where the Neshamah is dead, and the body alive), to 'michyas', whose inner letters spell 'chai' . See also Parshah Pearls vol. 7 'Changing the tracks'.


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