subscribe.gif (2332 bytes)

by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

Back to This Week's Parsha | Previous Issues

For sponsorships and advertising opportunities, send e-mail to:SHOLOM613@AOL.COM


Ch. 30, v. 12: "Machatzis hashekel" - Half a shekel - Specifically a half because they sinned at half day. (Chizkuni)

Ch. 30, v. 13: "Kol ho'oveir" - Everyone who passes - Money was collected for three purposes, for the Mishkon components and priestly garments, for the base sockets, "adonim," and for the communal sacrifices. The gemara Yerushalmi Shkolim 1:3 brings a disagreement regarding the Levites donating, one saying they did, and one saying they did not. Rabbi Aharon Baal Tosfos says that this disagreement is limited to the donations for the communal sacrifices, but for the base sockets the Levites surely did not donate. He corroborates this with the fact that in parshas P'kudei we find that the count of the bnei Yisroel was 603,550 who donated for the "adonim." This count is the total of the bnei Yisroel without the Levites.

Ch. 30, v. 13: "Kol ho'oveir" - Everyone who passes - Rabbeinu Yechiel notes the subtle difference between "kol ho'oveir" in our verse and "L'chole ho'oveir" in Shmos 38:26, where it relates that the taking of the half-shkolim took place. (It would also seem to be more accurate if that verse would have said "Mikole ho'oveir," since it is mentioning that shekel was received from each donour. This will likewise be answered with his answer to his question.) Rabbeinu Yechiel says quite a "chidush." The words "kol ho'oveir" in our verse refers to the donour, while "l'chole ho'oveir" refers to the collector. Those who donated gave varying amounts as they saw fit, and not specifically in the form of coins. Moshe took the amassed silver and minted it all into shekel coins. He gave these coins to officers who gave the coins back to the 603,550 men as a present. Now each person had proper ownership of a shekel coin. Collectors came for a second round of collecting the exact same silver, just this time it was given as a shekel coin from each person. We can now say "L'chole ho'oveir," TO each person was given a "machatzis hashekel." This also explains why in Shmos 25:2 we find the expression TAKING twice, "V'yikchu li trumoh ..tikchu es trumosi." The last three words of this verse seem totally redundant. (As well, there is the change from third person to second.) The first word "v'yikchu," is a command that the people take their silver, any amount that they see fit, and give it. The second taking, "tikchu," is in the form of shekel coins, and is referring to the collectors, (hence second person.) Parentheses around points that Rabbeinu Yechiel did not mention, but seem to also be clarified through his explanation.

Ch. 30, v. 16: "L'zikorone" - As a remembrance - This word is spelled with a letter Vov between the Reish and the Nun. "Zikorone" is likewise the theme of the stones on the shoulder straps of the "eifode" (Shmos 28:12), but there it is spelled without the letter Vov. A few explanations:

1) The remembrance of the stones only functions when the Kohein Godol is wearing the "eifode," while as long as the Mishkon stands the silver of the "adonim" is a remembrance. (Moshav Z'keinim)

2) Sometimes when the "choshen" and "eifode" where consulted no answer came forth. (Tosfos Hasho'leim) I do not understand why the "eifode" is incorporated into this, since only the "urim" and "tumim" in the "choshen" where asked. Perhaps there was a combined power of both these items, as they both contained gemstones.

3) The remembrance of the Mishkon is permanent, even after the Beis Hamikdosh was functioning, and even after it was destroyed, as we derive from "atzei shitim omdim" (Shmos 26:15), that they are erect forever (gemara Sukoh 45b). (Nirreh li)

We also find "zikorone" with a letter Vov in Shmos 13:9, referring to tefillin, "ulzikorone bein ei'necho." This again connotes permanence, as per the words of the Rashbam, that the tefillin be a remembrance upon one's arm and head as if the words they contain are permanently imbedded upon us, even when we are not wearing them. (Nirreh li)

Ch. 30, v. 36: "V'shochakto mi'menoh ho'deik" - And you shall grind it finely - The gemara Krisus 6b says that when the incense was being ground the grinders said "ho'deik heiteiv heiteiv ho'deik." This is because speech is good for incense.

Some explain that when one does tedious repetitive work, such as the grinding of these spices, he tires easily and does not do it thoroughly. To avoid this one says a sort of sing-song ditty. According to this explanation the gemara is saying "mipnei shehakole yo'feh labAsomim," for the incense grinders. (Eitz Chaim)

This is not the same as the contrast brought in the gemara, that speech is bad for wine. This statement surely refers to the wine itself, and not to those who prepare it for libation.

Ch. 31, v. 10: "Bigdei hasrod" - Garments of srod - Rashi offers that this word wither means "for service" or "mesh cloth" sourced from Aramaic. Chizkuni says that it means leftovers. The material was leftover from the cuts of material used for the priestly garments and the roof sheeting.

Ch. 31, v. 13: "Es Shabsosai tishmoru ki ose hee beini u'veineichem" - Guard My Shabbosos because it is a sign between Me and you - This is the reason that the bnei Yisroel exclusively are to

Keep the Shabbos. Although in the Ten Commandments we find, "V'zocharto ki evved hoyiso b'eretz Mitzrayim" (Dvorim5:15), this is not the explanation for the bnei Yisroel's keeping the Shabbos. Rather, it refers back to the previous verse, to making it a day of rest for your servants as well. Remember that you were enslaved in Egypt and were given off from work on Shabbos. Do the same kindness for your slaves. (Haksav V'hakaboloh)

The last words of the verse, "Al kein onochi m'tzavcho laasose es yom haShabbos" seem to indicate that this is the basis for keeping Shabbos, not for giving servants a day of rest.

Ch. 32, v. 19: "Va'y'sha'beir osom" - And he smashed them - Rishonim are hard-pressed to find a reason for Moshe's smashing the tablets rather than just leaving them in the heavens, since Hashem told him that the bnei Yisroel sinned. Even if we say that the tablets were already given to Moshe, and Hashem would not ask them back, but why not hide them somewhere rather than destroy them. Rabbeinu Yechiel offers that they became very heavy in Moshe's hands when the letters etched into them flew away, and this kept him from running quickly to stop the sinning. Every moment counted and he simply threw them down. Moshav Z'keinim offers that this was Moshe's calculation, that since the Holy Name of Hashem is erased by the Sotoh procedure to bring harmony into one home, surely to bring peace between Hashem and the bnei Yisroel it is appropriate to smash the tablets, even though Hashem's Holy Name would be destroyed (If the letters left there is no destruction of Hashem's Holy Name). Rabbeinu Chaim Paltiel offers that Moshe did this, and specifically "vaashabreim l'einei'chem" for the dramatic affect, and hopefully for a teshuvoh response. However, Moshav Z'keinim is not very impressed with any of these answers since the gemara Y'vomos 62a says that after sinning, the bnei Yisroel were considered as apostates, and as such, they were not deserving of receiving the tablets.

Ch. 32, v. 32: "M'cheini noh misif'r'cho" - Please/now erase me from Your book - Chizkuni says that this means from the book of life on Rosh Hashonoh.

Ch. 33, v. 3: "Ki lo e'e'leh b'kir'b'cho" - Because I will not ascend within you - Rashi explains that Hashem stated that He would distance Himself from the bnei Yisroel by placing a go-between, an angel, to guide them. Targum Onkelos seems to say the opposite. "I will not ascend from within you (even though you have sinned)."

N.B. On parshas Trumoh I wrote:

< I have not found the word form "k'tzose" used by the show-bread table, nor by any of the other vessels of the Mishkon that have staves. The only place I have found it is by the priestly vestments, where it is liberally used (parshas T'tza'veh). It seems quite straightforward that when we have a 3 dimensional object, such as the vessels, the edge is not the END, as there is a depth facet as well, hence the inappropriateness of using the word form "k'tzose" or "k'tzei." The priestly garments, although having some minimal depth, are basically flat, for example, the "eifode" is a cloth garment. There "k'tzose" is an appropriate term. Any help in understanding the Minchoh V'luloh would be greatly appreciated.>>

R' MD wrote: in kapitel 27, possuk 4, about the mizbeach... (we find "al arba k'tzosov) But true that the Toyroh diversified the expression "corner" for each keyli, as we do find "paamoyss", "pinoyss", peoyss", "ketzoyss" a.s.o. So each brings surely a different meaning...

Indeed I overlooked this, although it does not alleviate the difficulty with the Minchoh V'luloh, who says that "k'tzosov" is used by the show-bread table. The use of "k'tzosov" by the outer altar totally negates the answer I offered for the difference between this term being used by a basically two dimensional object, as the altar is three dimensional. Not only do we have "paam, pinoh, pei'oh, k'tzos," but also "gavlus, tzad, tzela," all meaning the end or edge. We thus have seven terms, unless I again overlooked something. This surely deserves clarification, and any help would be appreciated.



See also Oroh V'Simchoh - Meshech Chochmoh on the Weekly Parsha and Chasidic Insights

Back to This Week's Parsha | Previous Issues

This article is provided as part of Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Permission is granted to redistribute electronically or on paper,
provided that this notice is included intact.

For information on subscriptions, archives, and
other Shema Yisrael Classes,
send mail to
Jerusalem, Israel