Tzav 5773

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Korban Todah, the thanksgiving offering, is discussed in detail in this week's parsha. Rashi explains that one brought a Todah when a miracle happened to him/her. These include traveling through the desert or traveling by boat, overcoming an illness, and being released from prison. It turns out that these instances are what we say Birkas Hagomel on. Since we are unable to bring a Todah, we say Birkas Hagomel instead.

Vayikra 5773 (part 2)

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A person's name defines his/her qualities. The Midrash tells us that Moshe had 10 names, signifying many different qualities. But why did Hashem choose to call him "Moshe"? It's not even a Hebrew name! Rav Chaim Shmulewitz explains that the name "Moshe" signifies "mesiras nefesh," self-sacrifice. Pharaoh's daughter put her life on the line saving a Jewish baby and named him after the risk she took. This became Moshe's main quality and was instilled in his soul. Throughout Bnei Yisroel's journey in the desert, we see Moshe put his life on the line in order to save them.

Vayikra 5773 (part 1)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Why is the Alef in the word "Vayikra" written small? The Ba'al Turim explains that Moshe had wanted to write the word "Vayikar," without the Alef; this would mean that Hashem "happened" upon him in a vision rather than willingly appear to Moshe. He was humble and did not want to look like a very important person. Nonetheless, Hashem told Moshe to write the Alef, but Moshe still requested that it would be written with a small Alef.

Vayak'hel-Pekudei 5773

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The posuk (35:25-26) says that the women of Bnei Yisroel also worked on the Mishkan. The Rosh explains that when the men came to ask their wives to donate their jewelry for the mishkan, the women gave with happiness and zealousness. This is opposed to when the men had to forcefully take their wives' jewelry in order to make the golden calf. Because of their actions, the women merited not doing work on Rosh Chodesh of every month; it became a yom tov for them.
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