Most Orthodox Jews refuse to believe that the past sixty years signify the Redemption and ask for a miracle to prove the point. They lack faith.

In Egypt, Moses was a fugitive wanted for murder. The return from Midian to Egypt in order to save the Hebrews spelled tremendous danger for him. But when God told Moses to go back to Egypt, Moses didn’t ask for miraculous proof. True, there was the burning bush, but very few Orthodox Jews would have been convinced by a bush fire. Moses, we can deduce, had faith in God. Not so the pharaoh: he demanded a miracle. The Jews of Egypt sided with the pharaoh and also demanded a miracle: like their modern brethren, they lacked faith. And just like the generation of the Holocaust which refused to move to the Promised Land, no less than 80 percent of Egyptian Jews rejected the Exodus and perished.

Lot believed the angels who came to take him out of Sodom. They offered him no miracles, but he acted on his common sense: the sin around him surely suggested imminent destruction. Not so the great rabbis and pious Jews who refused to leave the Sodom of Exile for the Promised Land before 1941.
Sages have said that God doesn’t perform miracles violating the laws of nature and the Scripture mentions miraculous events only for the sake of their rational interpretation. Every miracle can be explained away, and on the other hand, everything that God demands of us can be deduced rationally, without circus-like miracles.

God performs miracles without violating the laws of nature but by adjusting probabilities. The miracle consists in making the improbable happen repeatedly. When assimilation skyrocketed and the desecration of God’s name reached its peak, God gave Jews the solution. He started the Redemption, proved it with a string of improbable events, and expected us to follow on.

As the ultimate empirical proof of divine action, a miracle is the antithesis of faith. And what miracle do you imagine? When Hebrews crossed the Reed Sea, an eastern wind made the marshes shallow and allowed them to cross on foot while heavy Egyptian carriages stuck in the mud; not much of a miracle, huh? Or would you believe an erupting volcano on Sinai giving you the law? Surely not. Hey, you don’t believe David Copperfield’s miracles, why would you believe any other ones are for real?

Faith involves the readiness to make a leap of faith, to believe that God must have done this or that. And when we see a mass of events so improbable as those which have taken place in the last sixty years, it makes sense to have faith.

Of course we can bring sacrifices without the Temple. In fact, we must offer them even when Levites are absent as, for example, Samson’s father Manasseh did. But Jews should stop waiting for the heavenly Temple—none is forthcoming. Go build one yourself.