After the episode in ערבות מואב, where the evil king בלק sent out Moabite women to go seduce בני ישראל and caused them to sin and worship עבודה זרע. After זמרי בן סלו
openly disgraces 'ה and disregards משה רבינו, and after פנחס valiantly stood up and slayed both זמרי and כזבי בת צור, Hashem rewards him. 'ה promises him peace and an eternal position in the כהונה as the פסוק states in, במדבר: פרק כה' פסוק יג:
והיתה לו ולזרעו אחריו ברית כהונת עולם
"And it will be for him and his descendants a covenant of eternal Kehuna"
רש"י asks an obvious question: פנחס was the son of אלעזר הכהן and the grandson of אהרון הכהן! How is it possible that פנחס wasn't a כהן already?
רש"י answers the question by saying that when אהרון became the כהן גדול, Hashem promised that he and his future descendants would forever remain כהנים. (Parshas תצוה: פרק כח' פסוק מא: "והלבשת אתם את אהרון אחיך ואת בניו אתו...וקדשת אתם וכהנו לי"
אהרון however was too old at this point to produce more offspring so that part of the promise passed to his sons. פנחס though, was already born at the time of this promise, so he neither fell into the category of אהרוןs sons or future descendants. This is why פנחס was not a כהן.
But this doesn't make any sense! Why would 'ה purposely exclude פנחס from the כהונה?!
The answer i believe lies in realizing when פנחס was granted כהונה. Hashem gifted פנחס with the כהונה only after he killed זמרי. A כהן isn't allowed to become טמא למת! Therefore 'ה made it that since פנחס was destined to make a Kiddush Hashem by killing זמרי, he would do it in a state in which he was allowed to do it in. Only afterwards did 'ה make him a כהן. If we look at רש"י , more carefully we can get a hint to this idea. רש"י ends off saying "לא נסכהן פנחס עד שהרגו לזמרי" "Pinchas did not become a Kohen until he killed Zimri"!
There is a tremendous lesson we need to take from this. No matter how bad or unfair something in our life seems, 'ה is the master planner. He is in charge of everything and he knows everything. We need to increase our אמונה and recognize that everything 'ה does is for an incredible reason and that we, finite beings, can not even begin to comprehend His infinite knowledge and reasoning.
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