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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 25, v. 2: "V'yikchu li trumoh" - And they shall take for Me an offering - Rashi comments: "Li lishmi," to Me for My Name. The Ari z"l writes that the act of giving a needy person charity encompasses Hashem's holy Name Y-H-V-H. The outstretched arm of the donour is in the configuration of a Vov, his five fingers equal Hei, the five fingers of the recipient another Hei, and the coin a Yud.

We can thus say that he who donates for the building of the Mishkon gives "lishmi." (Chid"o in Nachal K'dumim)

Ch. 25, v. 2: "Mei'eis kol is hasher yidvenu libo tikchu" - From each man whose heart is magnanimous shall you take - A very holy Admor put much concentration into his recital of grace after meals. This was very pronounced when he reached the words "Lo lidei mantas bosor vodom," where he raised his voice and said these words very slowly and with great emotion. One of his followers who was a generous donour to the Admor, when having a private audience with him, gathered his courage and asked the Admor why he said these words with much gusto, especially given that he had the personal experience of giving donations to the Admor, which were received graciously by the Admor. If the Admor was so set against receiving donations, even if in great need, why the beaming happy face? The Admor took his Chosid's hand into his and caressed them, while saying, "There are two types of donours, those who know that it is a great merit to donate to a proper recipient, and those who do so begrudgingly, motivated by shame, conscience, etc. The words in grace after meals are that one prays to not receive a present of 'flesh and blood," meaning a donation given as if one if giving away his flesh and blood, so difficult is it for him to open his wallet. You however, surely donate with the attitude that it is a great merit." "Kol ish asher yidvenu libo."

Ch. 25, v. 11: "V'tzipiso oso zohov tohore mibayis umichutz t'tza'peno" - And you shall clad it with pure gold from within and without shall you clad it - Given that every visible surface of the Holy Ark is overlaid with gold, why does the previous verse call it, "Arone atzei shitim," an ark of acacia wood?

The ark, which contains the Holy Tablets, represents the Torah scholar. The essence of the ark is wood to teach us:

1) that the Torah scholar represents growth - Gold remains stagnant, while wood grows.

2) that the Torah scholar, albeit he externally should seem affluent, internally is simple, as is wood

3) that the Torah scholar should be light, as is wood compared to gold, to symbolize that he is pleasant to deal with

4) that the Torah scholar should actively impact on others just as a tree produces fruit

Ch. 25, v. 30: "V'nosato al hashulchon lechem ponim" - And you shall place on the table showbread - The Rambam in Moreh N'vuchim section #3 from chapter 26 through chapter 49 offers insights into the mitzvos. In chapter 45 he writes that he has no understanding of the mitzvoh of placing showbreads on the table. Although he likewise has the same difficulty with libation wine (chapter 46) he does cite someone else's explanation.

The Ari z"l likewise in "Askinu s'udoso" for the day seudoh writes, "Y'ga'lei lon taamei divisreisar nahamei," a plea to Hashem to disclose the reasoning for the "12 breads."

The Ibn Ezra in his piyut "Ki esh'm'roh Shabbos" also writes, "Chok el s'gonov bo laaroch lechem ponim l'fonov," that it is a statute.

Ch. 26, v. 7: "V'ossiso y'rios izim l'ohel al haMishkon" - And you shall make panels of goat skin to cover the Mishkon - These covers not only served as a roof layer, but also hung over the sides totally covering the gold cladding on the wall beams. All the elegant beauty of gold was covered from public view by simple hides. The lesson we are to take from this is obvious.

Ch. 26, v. 30: "Vaha'keimosa es haMishkon k'mishpoto" - And you shall erect the Mishkon as befits it - The gemara Yerushalmi Shabbos 12:3 asks, based on the word "k'mishpoto," does a wooden beam have a claim? The gemara answers that this means that the beam that merited to be placed in the north should always be placed in the north when the Mishkon is reassembled, and the beam that was in the south should again be set in the south.

The gemara says "merited" by the northern beams but not by the southern beams. Perhaps this is because the northern area of the Mishkon courtyard has more sanctity, as Kodshei kodoshim are processed there.

It would seem that the gemara translates "mishpot" as a "position." This seems to be corroborated by the use of "mishpot" by Yoseif when he tells the wine butler that he will be reinstated "kamishpot horishon" (Breishis 40:13), back to his original position. However, Rashi on Shmos 28:15 and the Rambam in Moreh N'vuchim section #1 writes that "mishpot" has but three meanings, the arguments of the contesting sides, the judges' adjudication, and the carrying out of their verdict.

The Mahari"l writes that his Rebbi made marks on his Sukoh panels so that when he would reassemble them each panel would be in the same position as it was the previous Sukos. He based this custom on the above gemara. (Bei'ur Halacha)

As mentioned above, it seems that the insistence to place each beam of the Mishkon in the same position is because there is a variation of sanctities. If so, it seems that this should not apply to a Sukoh. Perhaps it is because the "Ushpizin" who visit the Sukoh always sit in the same places, and the Sukoh panel that merited to be close to should always remain there.

Ch. 27, v. 2: "V'ossiso es hamizbei'ach atzei shitim v'tzipiso oso n'choshes" - And you shall make an altar of acacia wood and you shall clad it with copper - Copper is a basic metal that is not costly. It covered the acacia wood. This is unusual, as normally the overlay is superior to the item it covers.

Rashi offers an insight into the copper's being the cladding of the altar. The altar brings forgiveness. Copper represents brazen-faced people, as per the verse, "Umitzchacho n'chushoh" (Yeshayohu 48:4). The copper-clad altar proffers forgiveness for the brazen-faced.

The Holy Ark was clad with gold on its exterior and interior. The lesson is that a Torah scholar is expected to have his outward behaviour and his true insides on the same high level. No doubt the brazen-faced are on a low level, similar to copper, and this is their public, exterior, behaviour. Nevertheless, their insides have some positive aspects, at least a minimum modicum of yiras Shomayim. Because the insides and outsides do not match the altar is not clad internally with copper. Their insides are better than their outsides, and this is why the coating of the altar is of a lower quality than its actual body, the interior. (Mahari"l Diskin)



See also Oroh V'Simchoh - Meshech Chochmoh on the Weekly Parsha, Chasidic Insights and Chamisha Mi Yodei'a

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