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Biography of Yehuda Katz | Archives | This Week's Parsha


"Speak unto the children of Israel, that they take for me (G_D) an offering........"(25:2)

G-d is commanding the Jewish people to donate materials for the building of the Mishkan (Tabernacle). The language used in this verse is "Take for me". In Hebrew "taking" is a word denoting acquisition of ownership. Why is the language of "taking" being used instead of "giving"? I would like to propose the following original answer , Bezrat Hashem. G-d is in essence making every single Jew into his own personal emissary regarding the donations for the Mishkan. There is a principal in Talmudic law that maintains that an emissary has the same status as the sender. (In Hebrew this is called, "SHILUCHO SHEL ADAM KOMOSO".) Therefore, G-d is actually making every Jew that donates to the Mishkan G-d-like. But, how? When a Jew donated a material object to the Mishkan, he in essence actually took something of nominal "value " and transformed it into an object of "Spiritual" value. We all know that when G-d created the universe, He made something from nothing, known in Hebrew as "Yash miEyin. This is precisely what these donations were. The Torah is teaching us a very important lesson. Every person has the ability to transform "mundane" objects into "spiritual" objects by dedicating them to G-d. We have the ability to donate our time, energy,and money in the pursuit of spirituality. This makes us "G-dlike", namely with the ability to create "something from nothing". Have a good Shabbos


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