Jun 29, 2022
Share this article

Russia has officially waged war against Ukraine. Russian security officials announced that they have successfully attacked Ukraine’s air defense systems. neutralizing the infrastructure of Ukrainian Air Force bases as smoke can be seen billowing from a Ukrainian military airport in Chuguev. Ukraine also reported that enemy Russian forces have completed seized control of two villages in the country’s east as underground subways have been converted into bomb shelters.

And while the fear of war has sent many people scrambling for safety, one rabbi is making preparations for the Messiah’s imminent arrival reports Matzav.

Rabbi Elya Ber Wachtfogel, principal of Yeshiva (seminary) Gedolah Zichron Moshe of South Fallsburg, New York donned formal clothing only worn on Shabat (Sabbath) clothing last week when he heard the news of the movement of Russian warships through the Dardanelles River. The response of the rabbi is based on the Zohar whose Kabbalistic teachings reveal that when the Russians will cross the Dardanelles River, it will trigger the start of a series of events before the Messiah comes.

The significance of wearing Shabbat clothes to welcome the Messiah was initially proclaimed by the iconic rabbi – te Vilna Gaon who said that the Jewish people need to wear Shabat clothes when the Messiah is about to arrive.

Rav Elya Ber recently told a talmid, “I’ve been waiting for this moment for 70 years.”


The  Sanhedrin then cited a teaching from Rabbi Elijah ben Solomon Zalman, an 18th-century rabbinic sage known as the Vilna Gaon, who singled out Russian aggression as a precursor to the Messiah. After being held as “a closely guarded secret” for over 200 years, Rabbi Moshe Shternbuch, a great-grandson of the Vilna Gaon, shared the full prophecy publically for the first time during the holiday of Purim in 2014. The text of the Vilna Gaon’s prophecy was reported by Rabbi Lazer Brody, an American-born Hasidic rabbi from Ashdod.

“When you hear that the Russians have captured the city of Crimea, you should know that the times of the Messiah have started, that his steps are being heard,” the Vilna Gaon told his followers just before his death in 1797.

“And when you hear that the Russians have reached the city of Constantinople (today’s Istanbul), you should put on your Shabbat clothes and don’t take them off, because it means that the Messiah is about to come any minute.”

The Vilna Gaon’s student,  Rav Chaim of Volozhin, added, “When the ships of the kingdom of Russia cross the Dardanelles you should dress in Shabbat clothes because this means the arrival of the Moshiach is close.”

The Prophet Ezekiel hinted at Russia as being a leader in the Gog and Magog War, even though Russia did not exist in Biblical times.

O mortal, turn your face toward Gog of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. Prophesy against him. Ezekiel 38:2

In this verse, the Hebrew word for ‘chief’ is רֹאשׁ (Rosh), which clearly hints at ‘Russia.’

“Purim is a time when secrets are revealed,” the Sanhedrin added, emphaizing that the holiday of Purim will take place this year on March 16.

Rabbi Elya Ber recently told one of his students, “I’ve been waiting for this moment for 70 years.”