The passuk uses the words “והיה ביום ההוא” in numerous places to refer to the time of Moshiach. On the surface these words are quite innocuous. The gematria of these words is 101, which would seem to be insignificant.
It gets interesting when you break down the letters as follows:
וי”ו ה”י יו”ד ה”י (והיה) בי”ת יו”ד וי”ו מ”ם (ביום) ה”י ה”י וי”ו אל”פ (ההוא)
in this form, והיה is 72, ביום is 534, and ההוא is 163. This adds up to a grand total of… you guessed it folks…769, corresponding to the year תשס”ט that is fast approaching.
(a note on מילוי – filling up the letters. The letters ו and ה can be filled three different ways – with an א – which would be וא”ו and ה”א; with a י – which would be וי”ו and ה”י; and the third way is ו”ו and ה”ה. These different methods are used in filling up the Tetragrammaton, ie. name of Hashem and give us the values of ע”ב ס”ג מ”ה ב”ן. Here we used the מילוי which corresponds to the name ע”ב, which is the highest name.)
While I am already posting, I would like to add something which I have thought about a lot recently.
I heard from my Rav that our sages tell us that when Noach exited the ark and looked around at a world devoid of humanity, he turned to heaven and said, “Could you not forgive the world? Was it necessary to bring such great destruction?” To this Hashem responded, “This would have been a wonderful thing to say before the flood. There was a hundred and twenty years of opportunity. Now the opportunity has been lost!”
We keep hearing that when Moshiach comes a large number of people will be lost from our people. I don’t know what the source for that statement is. I have seen other sources that explicitly state that all of the Jewish people will survive to see Moshiach, namely Rebbe Nachman, among others. We need to understand that there is great danger, but we need to learn from Noach’s mistake, and take on Avraham avinu’s ways. When he heard about the destruction that was slated to occur to Sodom, he immediately pleaded for their lives, despite their great wickedness!
We also find that when Moshe rabbenu was told by Hashem that because of the Golden Calf, the Jewish people were to be destroyed, Heaven forbid, Moshe had no good excuse for the people. That did not stop him from beseeching Hashem for mercy. He was successful because of his self sacrifice. He constantly prayed for Hashem to forgive them despite the horrendous sin they had perpetrated.
We must learn from Moshe as well – not be concerned only for our own welfare. We must believe that all of Klal Yisrael will survive. Unfortunately, many of them can not pray for themselves. But we can pray for them. We are all responsible for one another and we can move the world with our heartfelt prayers, literally saving our people.