And they clothed him in a purple cloak, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on him.
Thirty four hundred ago the Creator of the universe revealed Himself to a man who would in turn introduce Him first to Israel, then to the world. For many years Hashem watched the affliction of His people; He was now ready to bring them out of Egypt to embrace their grand destiny. The One who created us knows us. Whether we realize it or not, He is always with us even in this exilic world. He also knows that our human frame causes to judge by appearances so as a long awaited mysterious visitor He carefully prepared His grand entrance on the scene of our History. Everything had to be right, especially the form of His appearance to us for His message is not only in His Words, but also in the form of His revelation.
In the Text, we read that the Creator appeared in what seems to us a paradox: a bush that burned, yet was not consumed. None of it was illusionary: the thorn bush really burned, yet it was not consumed. The Hebrew word for thorn is: ‘s’neh’ carrying the same etymological root as ‘Sinai’. According to Rabbi Yanni's perspective, God’s appearance in the midst of a thorn bush was emblematic of the anguish He suffered over Israel’s affliction. The Revelation of the Almighty El-Shaddai within a lowly dry thorn bush was something akin to putting on sackcloth and ashes. The thorn bush then represents a royal messianic statement: Hashem’s empathy for Israel.
Through Isaiah our great Father unveils His emotional attachment to His people; He says, In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them; in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old (Isaiah 63:9). “This is comparable to the spiritual connection twins experience with each other Rabbi Yanny says, “if one has a pain in his head the other feels it. Israel certainly had a pain in his head.” Eventually, as an illustration of Hashem's empathy for His people, Mashiach wore the thorns of Sinai upon his own forehead (Mark 15:17).
A father naturally suffers when his child is afflicted, so naturally Hashem suffers when His people are afflicted. He takes upon Himself all their suffering until the time when in His fury He awakes and desires vengeance, yes vengeance on those who afflict Him through His people (Isaiah 63:3). As we are afflicted, He is afflicted! On the other hand, parental love contains an element of hatred against our children’s evil behavior. Parents should not be afraid of afflicting their children in order to set them straight.. Thus the uncomfortable love, hate, and affliction paradox of returns.
If we succeed to solve the love, hate, and affliction paradox of the burning bush; once our finite mind feels comfortable with the idea of a God who loves us so but in His hatred of our sins can also let us suffer, we may have succeeded to rationalize ourselves into the greatest of all errors. Hashem reveals Himself to us in a paradox: the mystery of the burning bush; the Mystery of Mashiach.