479. Another explanation of the verse, "Pinchas..." (Bemidbar 25:11): Arise, Holy Luminary, and say things in the presence of the Shechinah. The Holy Luminary, THAT IS RABBI SHIMON, arose and said, In the first section it was said: Come and see, Pinchas arose before the strong Judgment of Isaac and stood in the breach, NAMELY THE OUTBREAKS OF THE PLAGUE, as it is written: "Then Pinchas stood up, and executed judgment: and so the plague was stayed" (Tehilim 106:30). AND THIS HE DID in order to protect Yisrael. This is the reason why Pinchas and Isaac have the same numerical value. And now new things have to be said here.
480. He began by saying, Elijah, the beloved of the Supernal King, NAMELY PINCHAS, FOR ELIJAH IS PINCHAS, saw the letter Mem from the word mavet (Eng. 'death') flying in the air, snatched it down and joined it to Resh Chet, which is the numerical value of both Isaac and Pinchas, and WITH THE MEM completed the combination Resh Mem Chet. Subsequently, he saw the letter Vav from the word mavet flying in the sky, and he snatched it down also and placed it with the Resh Mem Chet, thus completing the word: Resh Vav Mem Chet (Heb. romach), a spear in the fuller spelling, as it is written: "and he took a spear in his hand" (Bemidbar 25:7).
481. And with what was he able to snatch down these two letters, MEM AND VAV? He used the two spirits that were preserved for him on high, for they make up Pinchas, namely Pnei Chas (Eng. 'the countenance of pity'), for with these two countenances he had pity on Yisrael that they should not be lost because of those two, ZIMRI AND COZBI, "and he thrust both of them through" (Ibid. 8) with the two letters, Mem and Vav, as is written: "in that he was zealous for My sake among them" (Ibid. 11).
482. Why did Pinchas associate himself with Isaac? It was because Isaac gave himself over to death, which is why he joined himself to Isaac, that he could help him. For from the side of the two fawns of the doe, Abraham and Jacob participated in him, for Abraham, whose level is that of Chesed, participated in Chet Samech of Pinchas, while Jacob is Pnei of Pinchas, because it is said about him (about Jacob): "And as he passed over Peniel" (Beresheet 32:32), WHICH CAN BE READ AS: Pnei El, the face of El. For, whenever the world is in trouble, but there is a righteous man in the world, who is zealous for the covenant, then the patriarchs join him. And for their sake, Moses said, when Yisrael were in trouble, "Remember Abraham, Isaac and Yisrael, Your servants" (Shemot 32:13). And with the three letters Yud- Hei-Vav of Elijah, WHICH ARE THE SECRET OF ABRAHAM, ISAAC AND JACOB, he earned the Hei, WHICH IS MALCHUT, of hanavi (Eng. 'the prophet') - and this is Elijah the prophet, and thus Yud Hei Vav Hei was completed in him.