The very mention of the name “Jericho” conjures up images of the miracles that G-d performed for the Jewish people immediately after Joshua led them to enter the Land of Israel. Soon after Moses passed away at the ripe old age of 120, G-d commanded Joshua to take the children of Israel across the Jordan river and enter the Land of Israel. The first city after they crossed the Jordan on their path was Jericho.
Jericho is termed the “key to Israel” in the Talmud. This is a rather ironic statement as Jericho is nestled deep in the Jordan Valley. From Jordan to the rest of the Heartland of Israel is a very steep climb into various mountain ranges that span the central part of the Land of Israel. From a military perspective, Jericho is anything but the key to taking over the Land of Israel. One artillery emplacement on a mountain range near Jericho can dominate Jericho rather easily. It is seemingly just a resting spot on the Western side of the Jordan river.
Yet, when G-d conquered the city of Jericho with Joshua leading the way, it indeed was the key to the Jewish people’s takoever of the Land of Israel. The secret to understanding this is the understanding of exactly how Jericho was conquered. G-d had led the Jewish people through the desert like an eagle who carries her young on her wings. The Jewish people were not yet prepared to do battle. When they encountered Jericho, they only fought by obeying G-d’s command to blow the Shofar and walk around the walls of the city seven times.
Then the walls came tumbling down and the Jewish people took over. But essentially, it was G-d who battled. That is the message in understanding why Jericho is the key. Winning battles may require tanks, bullets, and air planes. But it is actually G-d that is the secret weapon – then and now.
The UN would like to erase the Jewish connection to Jericho. Let’s see who wins this battle. The Jewish people have a secret weapon on their side.