|Art Sarah Porter|
It is written, “When many evils and distresses have befallen them” [Vayelech 31:21]
The Maggid of Dubno states that towards evening, as the peddler of goods stands in the marketplace with his baskets in hand, and most of his products are already sold, he wants to return home quickly. He therefore takes his remaining pears, prunes, and other products, and mixes them together in one basket and sells them at half price, for he wants to get rid of them as quickly as possible.
Hence the Torah states, “When many evils and distresses have befallen them” – when you see a combination of various ills descending upon Israel, it signifies that all the “products” are almost gone, and that we have reached the remainder, the “footsteps of Mashiach,” meaning that he will soon arrive.