When we think about a past event that happened to us, whether it was great or horrible, we often do not think it as bad or as great as we thought while it was happening.
In this parsha, Pinchas, the grandson of Aharon, saw Zimri, one of the heads of shevet Shimon, sinning and making others sin. A plague started because of him, and many Jews died. Pinchas asked Moshe what he should do, and risked his life to kill Zimri and the woman from Moav who was also causing people to sin. After that, the plague immediately stopped.
Others mocked Pinchas for “thinking he had the right” to kill the head of a shevet. Really, though, it was different when it really happened and how we view it. Different generations had different standards of their time. Our time is so much wealthier than before, but is it really? We have so many distractions today: Electronics, internet, television… we must be in the hardest times. Now we must really struggle to overcome these tests. As soon as we all refocus, and get back on track, IY”H, Moshiach will come and it will have been really worth it!