Eliezer, the Father of Israel Baal Shem Tov, was one of the 36 hidden tsadikim. He was very hospitable and hosted everyone who needed a place to stay. He was also financially well off.
G-d wanted to reward Eliezer in heaven. An Evil angel was doubtful of Eliezer, so the decision was made that Elijah the Profit would go and test Eliezer
Elijah comes down to earth as a homeless person with both money and a walking stick on Shabbat. He goes to Eliezer’s house and says “Hey Eliezer”. Eliezer immediately welcomes him and gives him money.
Fear nothing, fear no one, only G-d and heaven.
Eiijah reveals that he has come to test him, and he passed. He tells Eliezer that he will bring in a very holy soul to the world.
Eliezer's wife has Israel, but both Eliezer and his wife die when Israel is very young.
Israel’s father left him with a message - Fear nothing, fear no one, only G-d and heaven.
Israel Baal Shem Tov would pray in the forest, one time he saw a figure. He noticed a man who looked like a beggar.
The beggar pulled out tallit and tefillin and began to learn for hours.
When Israel put his traveling cloak back on, the beggar asked Israel “Why are you in the forest?” Israel replied that he is not afraid an told the beggar the message his father left him with.
The beggar says he knew Israel's dad. Israel realizes he has bumped into one of the 36 hidden tsadikim. The beggar agrees to take Israel in because he knew his dad
The two traveled for a year and the man told Israel to hide with a man that's also a hidden tsadik. Israel becomes a hidden tsadik too and desguises as a teacher's assistant.
But Israel’s destiny was to become a revealed tsadik. One day one of his teachers said it is time to reveal yourself and teach everyone Torah. Israel didn't want to and knew it would be an uphill battle. But he knew this is what G-d wanted.
Israel started performing miracles and gained a following. People started to oppose Baal Shem Tov because he taught two things 1) everything happens for a reason 2) God didn't put the world on autopilot
People learned that Israel Baal Shem Tov was a giant in Mysticism and Torah and he began to amass a large following. Baal Shem Tov had two groups:
He had a holy group which the people in this group had special souls - chevraya kadisha. These were the people that were much closer to god and studied torah alot more. these people learned the secrets of the torah and the things that the people with ordinary souls would not be able to understand and not be taught.
Then he had other people with Ordinary Souls. Baal Shem Tov spent alot of time learning and teaching with this group of followers. he motivated these Jews to pray more and become spiritually closer to hashem