In a sermon delivered Tuesday night ahead of the holiday of Simchat Torah, the rabbi explained that the joy over Gilad's return to his family illustrates what the Jewish people should expect at the End of Days, when the dead will rise out of their graves and return to life.
Yosef concluded his sermon by stating that "this is a great day of joy for all the people of Israel for Gilad Shalit's return."
"Every day we say (in a prayer), 'Blessed is God, the resurrector of the dead' – what a great joy we'll experience. We are being described what will happen."
According to the rabbi, the entire world was excited about the soldier's release from captivity after five years, and in the future the dead will return to their families even decades after being taken away from them.
In a bid to demonstrate the great joy in the days of the Messiah, Rabbi Yosef explained that it would be like a multitude of weddings, as each person returning to life will have to remarry his widow in order to live with her again.
"Everywhere you go – a chuppah. This one's wife has been resurrected, and that one's wife has been resurrected – what a joy it will be!"
Rabbi Yosef followed Shalit's return home on Tuesday, after being involved in the early stages of the prisoner exchange deal – offering support and encouragement. The rabbi stayed at home as usual and continued his Torah studies, but asked his family members to update him on every development.
Upon hearing that the soldier's physical and mental condition was satisfactory, he excitedly recited the "Blessed is God that redeems and saves" prayer and said Jews must continue praying for his full recovery.
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