204. "And they bore up the ark, and it was lifted up above the earth." Rabbi Aba began by saying, "Be You exalted above the heavens, Elohim, let Your glory be above all the earth" (Tehilim 57:6). Woe to the wicked who sin and provoke their Master, every day. For by their sins they push the Shechinah out of the earth and cause Her to leave this world. Because the Shechinah is called 'Elohim,' it is said about Her, "Be you exalted above the heavens, Elohim."
205. Come and behold: It is written: "And they bore up the ark," MEANING that they pushed THE SHECHINAH OUT, FOR THE ARK IS THE SHECHINAH. The words, "and it was lifted up above the earth," MEAN THAT THE SHECHINAH no longer resided in the world, having removed Herself from it. When She left the world, no one was left to protect it any longer and Judgment prevailed. But after the wicked were destroyed and removed from the world, the Shechinah made Her dwelling in the world again.
206. Rabbi Yesa asked him: If it is so, then why after the wicked who had lived in the land of Yisrael during THE DESTRUCTION OF THE TEMPLE were blotted out, did the Shechinah not return to Her place? Rabbi Aba answered him: Because AFTER THE DESTRUCTION, the righteous of the world did not remain in THE HOLY LAND, BUT LEFT FOR EGYPT, AS DESCRIBED IN THE BOOK OF JEREMIAH. Wherever they went in exile, THE SHECHINAH followed and resided among them. If She did not leave them even in a strange land, then certainly, had the people stayed in Yisrael, SHE WOULD HAVE RETURNED TO THEM AFTER THE DESTRUCTION.
207. So it is clear by now that the sins of the wicked caused the Shechinah to depart. One of those sins is the sin of man corrupting his way upon the earth, as we have previously explained. Such a person shall not see the face of the Shechinah, nor shall he enter the palace OF THE KING. This is why it is written that "they were destroyed from the earth," destroyed completely.
208. Come and behold: When the time comes and the Holy One, blessed be He, resurrects the dead, He shall make all the dead in countries other than THE LAND OF YISRAEL rise and stand in their bodies, for one bone is left from the human body as it lies underground, and it is like a lump of dough from which the Holy One, blessed be He, shall rebuild the whole body.
209. But He shall not restore their souls to them until they are in the land of Yisrael, as it is stated: "Behold I will open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves, My people, and I will bring you into the land of Yisrael." They will roll through underground passages AND COME TO THE LAND OF YISRAEL. Next, it is written: "I will put My spirit in you and you shall live" (Yechezkel 37:12-14). Only in the land of Yisrael will they receive their souls, except those who have defiled themselves and the land, NAMELY THE GENERATION OF THE FLOOD. As for them, it has been declared, "They were destroyed from the earth." From the earth MEANS PRECISELY THAT THEY SHALL NOT RISE DURING THE RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD AND SHALL NOT COME TO THE LAND OF YISRAEL TO RECEIVE THEIR SOULS. Although some of the ancient sages differ in their opinion, CLAIMING THAT THEY SHALL BE RESURRECTED, WHAT HAS BEEN SAID STANDS. FOR the term "destroyed" is similar to the expression: "Let them be blotted out of the book of the living" (Tehilim 69:28), MEANING THAT THEY SHALL NEVER BE RESURRECTED.
210. Rabbi Shimon said to him: Undoubtedly, THE GENERATION OF THE FLOOD will have no share in the World to Come, as it is written: "They were destroyed from the earth." Analogously, it is written: "they shall inherit the land (earth) forever" (Yeshayah 60:21). AND WE LEARN THAT THE WORD "EARTH" HAS THE SAME MEANING IN BOTH SENTENCES. Nevertheless, they shall rise and stand for Judgment. As they are described: "And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting contempt" (Daniel 12:2). Even though opinions differ on this matter, everything is as the friends have explained.