10 Jul Who Comes First
The Gemara in Eiruvin, daf mem gimmel, amud bais says that Eliyahu Hanavi will come before Mashiach to let us know that the geulah is really close.
The following question is asked by the Kli Chemda concerning the order of the “Harachamans” that are said after a Bris. We say a Harachaman that says, “…should send us His Moshiach,” and the next Harachaman says, “… He should send us the Kohen tzedek (Eliyohu Hanavi).” This would seem to say that Moshiach will come before Eliyahu. Is this so? How do we explain the order of the Harachamans?
There are a few ways to explain this. The first is from the Kreisi Upleisi who says that there are two types of geulah. There is a geulah of “Be’itah” (in the proper time) and there is also a geulah of “Achishena” (in a hurry.) When Moshiach comes in the proper time, then the seder is that Eliyahu Hanavi comes to tell us about it first. However, if Moshiach arrives “achishena,” in a hurry, then there is no time for Eliyahu to come and be mevaser the geulah. We daven in the Harachaman that Moshiach should come in a hurry and afterward Eliyahu Hanavi will come.
Another explanation from the Kli Chemda is that since Eliyahu Hanavi is at every Bris since he is called the “Malach Habris,” there is no need to ask him to come because he is already there. We just use the opportunity to ask for Moshiach. In the event we are not zocheh to Moshiach then, we daven that Eliyahu Hanavi should come and be mevaser the geulah after the Bris.
The Siddur Otzar HaTefillos has a third answer that explains there will be two Mashichim coming; Mashiach ben Yosef and Mashiach ben David. Eliyahu Hanavi will come in between these two Mashichim.
May we be zocheh to see both Eliyahu Hanavi and Moshiach in our day!