by Zvi Akiva Fleisher
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SEDRAH SELECTIONS PARSHAS TZAV 5772 BS"D
Ch. 6, v. 2: "Tzav" - Command - Rashi comments that this word connotes three things, 1) acting with enthusiasm, 2) to respond immediately, 3) that it applies for all future generations.
The gemara B.K. 87a says that the person who is commanded is greater than the person who is not when each performs a mitzvoh. This deserves clarification, as at first glance it would seem to the contrary, that if one does something that is voluntary, he is greater than one who does something that is obligatory.
The Ol'los Efrayim explains that there are three aspects in which the obliged person's doing that which is incumbent upon him is greater than performing a voluntary act.
1) When a person is commanded to do a mitzvoh his evil inclination is stronger. Overcoming this challenge makes him greater. 2) When a mitzvoh is obligatory it must be done with alacrity and should not be pushed off to a later time when it is perceived that it would be more convenient, "Ushmartem es hamitzvos."
3) When something is only voluntary a father cannot in good conscience tell his children that they must do likewise. When he has an obligation to act he can tell his children that they too must do so.
These three points are encapsulated in the terse words of Rashi, "ziruz, mi'yad, l'doros."
In a general manner it can be said that when a father does a mitzvoh with enthusiasm and without pushing it off, then it will likely be emulated by his children and his children's children when they likewise see it by their father, "l'doros."
Ch. 6, v. 2: "Tzav es Aharon v'es bonov leimore" - Command Aharon and his sons so saying - Rashi quotes Rabbi Shimon who says that the verse strongly has to caution the Kohanim in a situation where there is financial loss. The gemara M'nochos 110 says that he who diligently studies the laws of the sacrifices receives a reward as if he has actually offered them. This is the intention of Rabbi Shimon with his comment on our verse. The verse says, "leimore," i.e. command Aharon and his sons regarding "leimore," that they should pass on to the bnei Yisroel that SAYING the words of Torah study of the sacrifices is akin to actually offering them. This would bring to a loss for the Kohanim, as they would otherwise receive meat and hides of various sacrifices when they are actually brought. Nevertheless, this is why "ziruz," an admonition to be punctilious about "leimore" is required. (Chasam Sofer)
Ch. 7, v. 12: "Im al todoh yakri'venu" - If he will offer it as a thanksgiving - The gemara Sotoh 40a asks, "What does the congregation say when the prayer leader says "Modim anachnu loch?" This question is puzzling, as for all other blessings an "omein" suffices, so why did the gemara assume that the congregation says something more here? The Abudraham explains that although we have a concept of "Sho'mei'a k'o'neh," that one who hears something recited, it is as if he has said it, this applies to the other bleesings of the repetition of the "amidoh," as we are asking for one thing or another that is for our benefit, and there is no reason to assume that the listener is not in synch with the prayer leader's words. However, when it comes to giving thanks to Hashem for all his kindness, "sho'mei'a k'o'neh" is ineffectual, as one does not give thanks through a go-between. As well, there is an aspect of accepting Hashem's reigning over us, as is indicated by our submissively bowing at the beginning of our reciting "modim." This also cannot be done through an intermediary.
Rabbi Yitzchok Hutner in Pachad Yitzchok points out that these two concepts of "modem" actually dovetail. One cannot give heartfelt genuine thanks unless he is submissive. If he feels he could readily take care of his own needs, and sometimes in an even better manner than someone has done some favour for him, the thanks offered is hollow.
This gives us a deeper insight into our being called "Yehudim," not only for our giving thanks, but also for our being submissive. (Rabbi Yehudoh Koperman shlit"a in his preface to Otzros Hamedrash)
Ch. 7, v. 15: "Uvsar zevach todas shlomov b'yom korbono yei'o'cheil lo yaniach mi'menu ad boker" - And the meat of his thanksgiving offering should be eaten on the day of its sacrifice he shall not leave any of it over until the morning - Although a "todoh" offering is subsumed under the title "shlomim," as is repeated in our verse, and a regular "shlomim" may also be eaten the next day, a"shlomim" is limited, as clearly state din our verse. An explanation for this was offered in a previous edition. An alternative explanation: If a person would be allowed to also consume it the next day his thanksgiving on the next day would be lacking. There are no doubt new things that occurred the next day for which to give thanks to Hashem. (Imrei Emes)
Ch. 7, v. 37: "Zose hatorah l'oloh ulminchoh ulchatos" - This is the law for the elevated offering and for the meal offering and for the atonement offering - The gemara M'nochos 110 says that we derive from these words that he who studies the laws of each of these sacrifices benefits as if he actually offered them. We might mistakenly think that a cursory effort affords us a windfall of atonement and appeasement, but this is not so. If we were to calculate the numeric value of the first letters of every word of our verse we would arrive at 101. this alludes to the gemara's statement that there is no comparison between a person who has studied a section of the Talmud 100 times and a person who has done so 101 times. This alludes to our studying "kodoshim" matters in depth and with continually reviewing it again and again. (Sova S'mochos)
Ch. 8, v. 3,5: "Hakheil el pesach ohel mo'eid, Zeh hadovor asher tzivoh Hashem laasose" - Assemble at the opening of the Tent of Convocation, This is the thing that Hashem commanded to do - Rashi comments that the doorway of the Tent of Convocation was a small area, and nevertheless, it was able to accommodate all the people. Hashem did not make a miracle happen unnecessarily. Rather, there was a powerful lesson taught here. Moshe was to tell the people that the appointments that he was making were Hashem's choice. This was a pivotal point, as the Mishkon was the central house of sanctity and its priests were their representatives. When they are told, "Zeh hadovor asher tzivoh Hashem," they are being taught that whatever Hashem requests of us should be in the spirit of "zeh hadovor." People are ready to undertake even challenging mitzvos, provided that their animal comforts are first in place. "Zeh hadovor" is this matter of a small space accommodating so many people. All our mitzvos should be done in the spirit of "I can manage physically with a very minimal amount and I can still do that which Hashem commands. (Chasam Sofer)
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