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Parshat Pekudei

PARSHA ON PARADE IS DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY
OF MY DEAR FATHER AND REBBI:
HARAV HAGAON RAV YESHAYA SHIMANOWITZ Z'TZL ,
ROSH YESHIVA
IN
YESHIVAS RABAINU YAAKOV YOSEF
(RABBI JACOB JOSEPH YESHIVA - RJJ)
IN NYC FOR OVER 23 YEARS.
NIFTAR ON 20 ADAR 5758 - MARCH 18, 1998.
MAY HE BE A MAYLITZ YOSHER FOR ALL OF KLAL YISROEL.

AND

MY DEAR MOTHER
REBITZEN BRACHA ETEL SHIMANOWITZ A'H
WHO DEVOTED HER ENTIRE LIFE TO MY FATHER AND HIS TORAH,
NIFTERA ON 21 TEVET 5770 - WED EVE. JANUARY 6, 2010.
MAY SHE BE A MAYLITZA YOSHER FOR ALL OF KLAL YISROEL
.

Menachim Z. Shimanowitz

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PARSHA
FACTS

NO MITZVOT IN THIS PARSHA
There are mitzvot mentioned in Parshat Pekudei related to the Mishkan and the Kohain's garments. However, we count mitzvot at their first occurrence.

NUMBER OF PESUKIM (SENTENCES): 92

NUMBER OF WORDS: 1182

NUMBER OF LETTERS: 4432

This year, (5778 / 2018) Parshat Vayakel-Pekudei is a special Shabbat.
It is Shabbat Parshat Parah, פרשת פרה:

The Shabbat immediately following Purim (or the week after in some years such as this year) is called Shabbat Parshat Parah פרשת פרה. We take out two Sifrei Torah; in the first, we have seven Aliyahs in the weekly Sidrah, Parshat Vayakel-Pekudei; Half-Kaddish.
In the second Sefer Torah, the Maftir reads from Bamidbar, Parshat Chukat, (19:1-22), which describes the preparation of the Parah Adumah (Red Heifer), whose ashes were used in the spiritual purification process during the time of the Bait Hamikdash. This purification was carried out at this time of the year to ensure that everyone would be able to partake in the Korban Pesach (Pascal Lamb) to be offered on the 14th day of Nisan. (Some maintain that the obligation to read Parshat Parah is mandated by the Torah.)

HAFTORA: (Additional portion, from Prophets, which is read after the Parsha)
Yechezkel Ezekiel 36:16-38 (Ashkenazim);
Yechezkel Ezekiel 36:16-36 (Sepharadim)

Shabbat Mevarchim Chodesh Nisan
Rosh Chodesh - Shabbat Parshat Vayikra - March 17, 2018


פרשת פקודי
THE
PARSHA
In our last episode, Bnei Yisroel was given a fresh start as Moshe got the Mishkan project rolling. It was only a matter of hours before the supply tent was filled with enough gold, silver, copper and materials to build the Mishkan. With Betzalel at the creative helm, all the pieces - from loop to nuts - was completed in a 3 month Mishkan marathon.

MOSHE
DOES
AN
AUDIT

Moshe's Audit As our Parsha opens, three months have gone by and all the parts of the Mishkan are done. Only the clothing of the Kohanim and Kohain Gadol remain to be completed. Moshe puts on his accounting hat and does an audit of all the materials collected for the Mishkan to determine which supplies went for what purpose. Afterwards he has Itamar ben(son of) Aharon verify his calculations. Moshe does this so no one will suspect him of pocketing any of the nose rings.

And the results are in:

A whopping 29 kikar and 730 shekels of gold.
A grand total of 87,630 shekels.

An incredible 100 kikar and 1775 shekels of silver!
A grand total of 301,775 shekels.

(A kikar is equal to 3000 shekel).

The 100 "kiks" were used to make the 100 Adanim (sockets) - one "kik" per socket. The other 1775 shekels were split between hooks and ornaments. These silver hooks are attached to the pillars in the courtyard to hold up the screens that fence in the Mishkan. The ornaments decorate the same pillars.

Wow! 70 kikar and 2400 shekels of copper!

The copper was melted down and used to build the copper Mizbayach (altar), and its utensils, the copper sockets of the entrance and of the courtyard.

The donated wool is being used to make travel covers to wrap the kaylim (utensils) of the Mishkan when it's time to travel.


KEHUNA
CLOTHING

As we said, the only thing left to do is make the clothing for the kohanim. Betzalel and Oholiav, the Calvin Kleins of Priestly designs, personally involve themselves in the creation of these holy outfits. The Kohain Gadol's apron is blended with six different color threads, including one of fine gold. The two master craftsmen make the Choshen themselves, weaving the breastplate, cutting the stones, engraving them with the names of the twelve shevatim, and securing them in the woven plate.

Hey, it's a miracle! Every piece of the outfits matches Hashem's specs to a tee. Now, that's Ruach Hakodesh!


MOSHE
MAKES A
MISHKAN

Everyone HelpedWhen everything is complete, all the pieces to the Mishkan puzzle are carried to Moshe's inspection booth. Imagine the sight! Thousands of Jews singing and dancing through the desert streets, accompanying the most talented and creative craftsmen (and women) of Bnei Yisroel. Some carrying their woven cloths, others transporting heavy kaylim (utensils) like the altars, some clutching a single hook, a group shlepping a huge tapestry of many splendid colors. They have completed a 3-month monumental task that will elevate the level of Bnei Yisroel to the keepers of the presence of Hashem. Now the Shechina will rest amongst the Bnei Yisroel.

Moshe checks out the inventory. He is so awed by the resemblance of the objects to the fiery visions he saw on Har Sinai that he blesses the Jews with a prayer that the Shechina will indeed rest in the Mishkan they had built.

It is now the 25th of Kislev. Hashem commands Moshe to wait another three months before dedicating the Mishkan. On Rosh Chodesh Nisan, the start of the joyous month of redemption from Mitzrayim, Moshe begins an eight day dedication celebration.

Now, it seems that with all the commotion, one person has been left out of the building of the Mishkan - Moshe. Moshe feels pretty down about the situation - always the accountant, never the account. So Hashem performs a miracle just for him. When it comes time to set up the Mishkan, first the Z'kaynim (elders) try to erect the beams, but the beams just won't stand. So they figure maybe Betzalel and Oholiav will have the honor of putting the pieces together. But the beams collapse on them too. Finally, they turn to Moshe in despair. Moshe asks Hashem why they can't seem to get their act together. Surprise! It's Hashem's gift to Moshe. He alone will have the privilege of putting the Mishkan together.

So he does... first Moshe lines up the beams of the Mishkan. Then he covers it up with the layers and tapestries. Next, he brings the Aron into the Kodesh Hakodoshim. With the Aron in place Moshe takes the two Luchot (tablets of commandments) that have been stored in his tent and places them into the Aron. With that done, he covers the Aron with the Kaporet, a woven cloth.

Moving on to the Kodesh, Moshe sets up the Shulchan, and places on it the Lechem Haponim. The Menorah goes right next to the Shulchan. The golden Mizbayach is placed opposite the other two kaylim.

Outside, the Mizbayach HaOlah runs almost all the way across the width of the courtyard. The Kiyor is placed close to the Mishkan's entrance.


SHECHINA...
COME ON
DOWN!

Now that the Mishkan is all set up, it's time for the Shechina to pack its bags and move down from Shamayim to the Kodesh Hakodoshim. Great illuminating clouds roll down from the sky, surrounding the Mishkan on all sides and from above. Inside the walls of the Mishkan, a thick cloud settles in. It is upon this cloud that the Shechina rests.

All this cloud business is a pretty impressive special effects show. Hashem doesn't really need clouds to transport the Shechina around, though. It's just that He wants Bnei Yisroel to see that His presence is really dwelling in the midst of the camp of Bnei Yisroel.

The Mishkan is a sign that Hashem has forgiven the Bnei Yisroel for the sin of the Eigel. It is said that building the Mishkan is as great as when Hashem created the world.


With the Mishkan in place, the book of Shmot comes to a close.

In Shmot, we have seen the promises made to the Avot come true. Indeed, their descendants had become strangers in a strange land - the land of Mitzrayim. All of Yosef's political pull could not prevent the inevitable enslavement that kept Bnei Yisroel in check for 210 years. But even Pharoh's devious plans to drown all the firstborn males couldn't stop the multitude from multiplying. In the end, it was the Nile, the very tool that Pharoh used to control the Bnei Yisroel, which extended out like a red carpet for little Moshe, the savior of Israel. How ironic that this future leader should grow up under Pharoh's own roof!

It took ten plagues and a split sea to finally free the Bnei Yisroel from Pharoh's clutches. But Hashem fulfilled His promise to remember the children of Israel and redeem them from slavery. Next, they march through the desert to Mount Sinai, a 40 day trip, where Hashem, Himself, starred in the original Biblical blockbuster, "The Ten Commandments."


Tune in next week as we begin the third book of the Torah, Vayikra.

What were those rituals and korbanot that Hashem taught Moshe during the eight days of celebration? (The Leviyim and Kohanim want to know!!) Don't you want to know? These questions and more will be answered in the next exciting episodes of:

Parsha on Parade

Midrash Maven
See the Midrash Mavin on Pekudei


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