Hashem Controls the Temperature

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“Hashem not only controls the temperature in the world, but also controls the effect it has on each and every individual.”

Rabbi David Ashear

Hashem controls every little detail of nature. Nothing just happens; everything is controlled directly by Him.

In Shir La’maalot, we read of the promise given to those who look to Hashem for help (Tehillim 121:6): “The sun will not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.” The sun and moon provide great benefits to the world, but are also potentially harmful. The sun is the source of heat, and the moon controls the tides and thus the winds which in turn bring cooling breezes. The sun’s ultraviolet rays can cause melanoma, dehydration, and sunstroke, but Hashem promises that if we place our trust in Him, we will be spared the harmful effects of sunlight.

The Hebrew word for sun, shemesh, relates to the word shamash, which means “servant.” The sun is just a servant of Hashem, carrying out the will of Hashem. And thus in the future, our Sages teach, the sun will be a source of healing for the righteous and a source of calamity for the wicked. The very same sun will have two opposite effects on people, because the sun is only a servant bound to do what Hashem instructs it to do.

Regarding the cold, Rabbi Pesach Eliyahu Falk cites a remarkable comment made by Rashi concerning the pasuk (Tehillim 147:17) that says. “He casts His ice ‘like kefittim.’” Rashi explains the word kefittim as referring to the material used to stuff blankets. Hashem sends down cold and icy weather, in accordance with the amount of material one has with which to keep himself warm. He ensures that the poor man, who cannot afford to purchase warm garments and blankets, will be less affected by the cold than those with adequate protection. The Chiddushei HaRim makes a similar comment on the pasuk (ibid. 147:16) – “He provides snow like wool.” He explains that Hashem send harsh wintry weather in accordance with the amount of wool a person has, and the proportional to his ability to withstand and tolerate the cold.

Hashem not only controls the temperature in the world, but also controls the effect it has on each and every individual. Each person experiences the hot or cold weather differently. At the same time that Hashem is controlling the universe, He is also adjusting the temperature for billions of people!

This is something to think about the next time we are standing in the hot sun and see people around us suffering and sweating from the heat while we feel comfortable. Or when we are out in

the cold and experience little or no discomfort while others are shivering. The extent of Hashem’s control over the world is simply mind boggling. We should thank Him for taking care of us and ensuring that we are able to tolerate the temperature. We also need to know that if we look to Hashem for help, then He will protect us from all harm posed by nature.