Shemoneh Esrei: Blessings 11, 12, & 13: Blessing for Justice, Against Heretics, and For Righteous Ones
Shemoneh Esrei: 11th Blessing – For Justice
- Torah government demands ruling bodies. Those ruling bodies were never to be the ultimate arbiters. HaShem was the Judge.
- This blessing is a petition for the reestablishment of a Sanhedrin.
- From a number of passages, it is clear that there must be a Sanhedrin in the timeline of the return of Messiah; so this is a very Messianic petition, and a prophetic fulfillment.
Scriptures for Birkat HaDin [Blessing for Justice]
Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters?
I will restore your judges as at the first, and your counselors as at the beginning. Afterward you shall be called the city of righteousness, the faithful city.“ Zion shall be redeemed with justice, and her penitents with righteousness.
Birkat HaDin [Blessing for Justice]
Ha Shivah Shof’teinu k’varishonah
Restore to us leaders like You gave us in years past
and counselors as You provided in our best days
v’haser mimeinu yagon v’anachah
remove from us our sighing and our sorrow
u’m’loch aleinu atah HaShem, l’vad’chah
come and reign over us; be our only ruler
b’chesed uv’rachamim v’tzadikeinu b’mishpat
rule us in covenant love and in compassion and rule us with righteous judgment
Baruch Atah HaShem, Melech ohev tzedakah u’mishpat.
Blessed art Thou, HaShem, King Who loves righteousness and judgment
Shemoneh Esrei: 12th Blessing – Against Heretics
- This blessing likely existed before the First Century and was focused at heretics from biblical Judaism. The blessing for Rebuilding Jerusalem and the Throne of David were likely one blessing so there were 18 blessings.
- After 70 CE, this blessing was refocused on the early believers of Yeshua, and then the Blessings for Rebuilding Jerusalem and Reestablishing David’s Throne were split into two, hence 19 blessings are found in the “18.”
- Because of the refocusing of Blessing 12 (Against Heretics), it is appropriate to skip this in honor of those believers who were kept out of the synagogue after 70 CE. It is not wrong to pray this blessing however.
They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.
But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,
Concerning the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers.
Shemoneh Esrei: 13th Blessing – Righteous Ones
- Scriptures that point to the fact that “all have sinned” and “none are righteous” do not negate that G-d’s people have been declared righteous, and G-d desires His people to live righteously.
- This blessing thanks G-d for the entire company of His people – and then we identify with them and include ourselves among the righteous (“saints” in Scripture is always referring to “Righteous Ones.”)
Scriptures for HaTzadikim [Righteous Ones]
Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous.
Our fathers trusted in You; they trusted, and You delivered them. They cried to You, and were delivered; they trusted in You, and were not ashamed.
HaTzadikim [Righteous Ones]
Al ha tzadikim v'al hachasidim
Toward the loving and the righteous,
v'al ziknei am'cha beit Yisrael v'al p'letat sof'rehem
for the elders of Your people the family of Yisrael, on the remnant of their scholars,
v'al gerei ha tzedek v'aleinu
for the righteous sojourner and for our own selves as well,
yehemu rachamecha HaShem Elokeinu
may Your compassions be aroused, HaShem our G-d,
v'ten sachar tov l'chol habot'chim b'shimcha be’emet,
and give good reward to all who truly believe in your Name.
V'sim chelkeinu imahem l’olam v’lo nevosh ki v'cha batachnu.
Put our lot with them forever, and we will not feel ashamed, for we trust in You.
Baruch Atah HaShem, Mishan umivtach latzadkim.
Blessed art Thou, HaShem, Strength of the righteous, Root of our confidence.