As Israel becomes the first country in the world to impose a second national lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19, we urge Israelis to heed the wise words of President Reuven Rivlin.In his address to the nation on Wednesday, Rivlin said, “My fellow Israelis, you cannot beat corona alone, but no one can beat it without you. I believe in this people; I believe in our ability to prevail. I would like to ask you to believe in this people’s ability to prevail. This is the time to follow the instructions, to take care of yourselves and those dear to you, to join hands to help those around you in need of assistance. Because we have no other land, we have no other country, we have no other people and we have no other way.”Although the lockdown rules may be confusing and at times may even appear to be illogical, Rivlin’s message is clear and concise: After the number of coronavirus infections soared to a new daily record of almost 5,500 before the lockdown, it’s incumbent on every person to take upon themselves to follow the rules and bring down the infection rate.The closure of the country begins on Friday at 2 p.m. and is scheduled to remain in effect for three weeks, extending from the High Holy Days until the end of the Sukkot holiday. It is going to be a hardship for all of us.We understand that there are those who oppose a lockdown, saying that they have lost faith in the country’s leadership. Others oppose a lockdown on principle, believing that Israel – like other countries – should learn to live with the coronavirus. Housing Minister Ya’acov Litzman resigned over the lockdown plan, saying the measures would prevent Jews from attending synagogue over Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.But the recent surge in COVID-19 cases requires drastic action, as painful as it may be for the country’s citizens. According to AFP, Israel is second only to Bahrain on the list of countries with the world’s highest coronavirus infection rates. Other countries are also taking extreme measures to stem the infection. England, for example, limited social gatherings to six people as it imposed new national restrictions on Monday.The ball is now in everyone’s court. We have to stand united and act together to beat this dangerous plague. As we mark the beginning the Jewish New Year 5781 in a rather unorthodox manner, it is up to us – each and every one of us – to protect ourselves, our loved ones and those around us for the greater good.As Rivlin said, “We were destined to live together, to share the good years and the tough years, to build and to develop this land. When we are fighting corona, we are together – Jews and Arabs, secular, religious and ultra-Orthodox – in hospitals, schools and in charitable organizations. Together, we learn in times like this what partnership is, what mutual responsibility is, what Israeli hope is.”At the same time, it is incumbent upon the government to take immediate action to provide a safety net to those harmed by the lockdown and compensate businesses suffering as a result. We appeal to the cabinet to announce a new economic plan to rescue those who are most in need, as well as consider a long-term plan for the day after.The reason Israel is facing another long lockdown is that the government opened up too soon and too quickly after the first lockdown, and let the situation deteriorate steadily.Now that corona commissioner Prof. Ronni Gamzu has established himself as a rational voice, we urge him and his board of doctors to ensure that Israel doesn’t make the same mistake again.As Rivlin told the government and its advisers: “The trust of the people is beyond value. We must do everything to restore personal, medical and economic confidence to our fellow citizens. This is a second chance, and we must take it because we will not, I fear, get a third one.”Let’s follow the government’s new regulations as best as we can, with the hope that we will emerge with a dramatic decrease in the number of infections after the holidays. May this be a time of healing for us all. We wish all of our readers a happy and, most of all, healthy Shana Tova.