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Parshas Tetzaveh - Rishon with Rashi

In last week’s parsha we started learning about how Hashem gave Moshe Rabbeinu instructions how to build the Mishkan. Today we will first learn how to make the oil for the Menorah in the Mishkan, and how to light it. Then we will start to learn about the special clothing of the Kohanim.

Hashem tells Moshe about how to make the kind of olive oil we need to use for the menorah: We only use the oil that comes out when the olive skin is first broken by getting squeezed, before the olives get squashed by something heavy or are ground up.

Here’s how the Menorah should be lit: The kohen needs to hold the flame close to the wick for enough time to make sure the wick is burning on its own. The kohanim will put in enough oil in the menorah so it will burn all night.

Now we will learn about the clothes the Kohanim wear — 8 special pieces of clothing for the Kohen Gadol, and 4 for the other Kohanim. Today we learn about the Efod:

The Efod is made out of colorful threads like the curtains of the Mishkan were made out of. It is like an apron that you wear backwards — so it doesn’t cover the Kohen Gadol all the way in the front. The Efod is made with a belt as part of it, and shoulder straps (like suspenders) attached to it.

The Yidden also need to take two precious stones, and engrave the names of the Shevatim on them — half of the Shevatim on each stone. This way, whenever the Kohen Gadol goes into the Mishkan, Hashem will remember how special the Yidden are, and will give them brachos!



29 - 34

In today’s Tehillim we have a posuk that says “Hashem Oz Le’amo Yitein, Hashem Yevarech Es Amo Bashalom.” “Hashem gives strength (Oz) to His nation, Hashem bentches His nation with shalom.”

The Medrash says that Oz (strength) is talking about the Torah. The posuk is saying that by Hashem giving the Yidden Torah, Hashem will also bentch the Yidden with shalom.

How does the Torah bring shalom?

In ourselves, we have two parts — our ruchnius and our gashmius. Torah teaches us the ruchnius, and also teaches us how to use the gashmius Lesheim Shomayim. That makes shalom between our ruchnius and our gashmius!

Once we make shalom inside of ourselves, we can connect the ruchnius of Hashem, Elokus, to the gashmius of the world!



Likutei Amarim Perek Chof-Zayin

A Yid shouldn’t get upset that he always has to make sure he doesn’t think about the bad thoughts that come into his mind. Every time he pushes away a bad thought and thinks about something else instead, especially something about kedusha, it brings a great nachas to Hashem!

Hashem has two different kinds of nachas: Nachas from tzadikim, and nachas from Yidden who are trying to be a beinoni.

A tzadik takes the Yetzer Hara and makes it into kedusha, making it into something sweet! That brings Hashem one kind of nachas.

But a beinoni still has the thoughts from the Yetzer Hara inside — he still has something bitter. But because he is staying in control of himself, he is using the bitterness of the Yetzer Hara for something good, by pushing it away and doing what Hashem wants! This brings a different kind of nachas to Hashem.

We can understand this from thinking about different kinds of nosh. There’s sweet kinds of nosh, like candy or lollipops, and there’s also yummy spicy potato chips or Bissli. They have two very different tastes, but they are both delicious! The tzadik’s avodah is like sweet nachas for Hashem, and our avodah brings Hashem the other kind of nachas, like from spicy things!

We can be very happy that our iskafya (pushing away the bad thoughts) gives Hashem a special kind of nachas — one that Hashem can’t even get from a tzadik!



Hey Adar Alef

In a few places in Hayom Yom, we learn that we are shluchim of Hashem. Being shliach is a very important job, a shliach is the messenger for the One who sent him. A shliach gets tremendous kochos, but he needs to know what his job is, and what the goal is!

In today’s Hayom Yom, we learn about one of the goals and one of the jobs of each of us, the shluchim of Hashem.

Wherever we go, it is our special job to make the world tahor with words of Torah and Tefillah! We are all Hashem’s shluchim for this job.

If you know that it’s your job to make the world tahor, what do you think you will do when you are riding in a car, or if you are on a trip, or if you are sitting bored on the couch? Will you be working on your job?

(We will learn more about our special shlichus for Hashem in two days, on Zayin Adar Alef.)



Mitzvas Lo Saasei #124, Asei #88, #83, Lo Saasei #155

Today we learn 4 mitzvos about korbanos:

1) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #124) Part of the Korban Mincha is usually eaten by the kohen. He is not allowed to prepare it in a way that will make it into Chometz.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Tzav: לֹא תֵאָפֶה חָמֵץ חֶלְקָם נָתַתִּי אֹתָהּ מֵאִשָּׁי

The details are explained in Perek Hey of Mesechta Menachos.

2) (Mitzvas Asei #88) The Kohanim need to eat the rest of the Mincha (flour and oil) — the part that isn’t burned on the Mizbeiach.

This mitzvah also comes from a posuk in Parshas Tzav: וְהַנּוֹתֶרֶת מִמֶּנָּה יֹאכְלוּ אַהֲרֹן וּבָנָיו מַצּוֹת תֵּאָכֵל

The details are explained in Mesechta Menachos.

3) (Mitzvas Asei #83) When we promise to bring a korban or a present to Hashem, we need to give it at the next big Yom Tov (Pesach, Shavuos, or Sukkos).

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Reeh: לְשִׁכְנוֹ תִדְרְשׁוּ וּבָאתָ שָּׁמָּה וַהֲבֵאתֶם שָׁמָּה עֹלֹתֵיכֶם

4) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #155) We are not allowed to push off bringing a korban that we promised. If three Regalim (the three main Yomim Tovim) pass by and a person still didn’t bring a korban he promised, he is punished for not keeping this mitzvah.

This mitzvah comes from a posuk in Parshas Ki Seitzei: כִּי תִדֹּר נֶדֶר לַה׳ אֱלֹקֶיךָ לֹא תְאַחֵר לְשַׁלְּמוֹ

The details are explained in the beginning of Mesechta Rosh Hashana.



Hilchos Maaseh HaKorbanos

In today’s Rambam, we learn more halachos about bringing the Korbanos:

Perek Yud-Gimmel: We learn about the different kinds of Korban Mincha and how we bring them.

Perek Yud-Daled: This perek teaches us some general rules about when someone promises to bring a korban as a neder or a nedava.

Perek Tes-Vov: This perek continues with more detailed halachos about a nedava, when someone promises to bring a specific animal to Hashem.



Hilchos Temidin Umusafin - Perek Tes

In this perek we learn about the korbanos of Rosh Hashana. We also learn about the order korbanos need to be brought in.




If you read the Frierdiker Rebbe’s Memoirs, Sefer Hazichronos, which has stories that happened to or were told to the Alter Rebbe’s father, you will see how poshute Yidden acted in those days. One thing that you will see many times is how they would say Tehillim with tears and a broken heart.

But in our generation, the Rebbe tells us that we need lots of encouragement. So when we say Tehillim, it should be with simcha and bitachon and a positive attitude.

There is a famous story with the Tzemach Tzedek:

One chossid had a son who was very sick. He came to the Tzemach Tzedek and asked what to do? The Tzemach Tzedek told him, “Tracht Gut Vet Zain Gut” — he should have simcha and bitachon that his son would get better, even though the doctors were telling him that the situation was very dangerous.

That’s the kind of avodah we need to do nowadays. And not just for health of the body — even more so for health of the neshama! When we say Tehillim it should be with simcha and bitachon.

See maamar Margela Bepumei DeRava 5746


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Nefilas Apayim

The third part of Tachanun, after Vidui and the Yud-Gimmel Midos HoRachamim, is called Nefilas Apayim. We sit down and lean our forehead on our left arm. (In Shacharis, if you’re wearing tefillin, you lean on your right arm.)

Nefilas Apayim, falling down on our face before Hashem, is a minhag that goes back to Yaakov Avinu, Moshe and Aharon, and the Yidden in the Beis Hamikdash.

Rabbeinu Bachaye explains that there are three reasons to fall on our face:
1) To show kavod for Hashem
2) As part of teshuvah for our aveiros
3) It shows the idea of Mesiras Nefesh, giving everything for Hashem

We say Kapitel Chof-Hey of Tehillim, which starts with the words “Ledovid Eilecha Hashem Nafshi Esa,” “To You, Hashem, I raise up my neshama,” expressing Mesiras Nefesh.



Women and Nefilas Apayim

Tachanun is not part of the chiyuv for women in davening, but many women are able to daven the entire davening. When they do, should they put their heads on their arms for Nefilas Apayim?

It is brought in seforim that the minhag is that women do not put their heads down when saying Kapitel Chof-Hey in Tachanun.

One of the reasons why we do Nefilas Apayim at all is so that we do all types of davening that we learned from Moshe Rabbeinu — davening while standing, while sitting, and with Nefilas Apayim. Since women are not mechuyav anyway in the part of davening with sitting, Pesukei Dezimra, we see that there is no inyan for women to be careful with davening in each of these ways.

See Piskei Teshuvos vol. 2 p. 60

לעילוי נשמת הרה״ח ר׳ דניאל יצחק ע״ה בן ר׳ אפרים שי׳ מאסקאוויץ
שליח כ"ק אדמו"ר נשיא דורנו למדינת אילינוי



What to Ask For

On Hoshaana Rabbah, the Rebbe would give out lekach in the sukkah to all of the Chassidim who would come and stand on line.

Once, in Tof-Shin-Mem-Ches, a small boy came with his father to get lekach. When it was his turn, he said to the Rebbe, “We want Moshiach now!”

The Rebbe loudly answered him, “Amen, Amen!”

The boy then asked the Rebbe a question: “Why didn’t Moshiach come yet?”

The Rebbe answered the boy: “Because you’re the only one who is asking! Your father is here to ask for a bracha for parnasa. And everyone else on line is here to ask for lekach, and are thinking about important brachos like health, nachas, and parnasa. You’re the only one who thinks to ask for a bracha that Moshiach should come! If you would get everyone to ask for Moshiach, just like you are doing, Moshiach would come now!”

Translated from the Kfar Chabad Magazine, published on Shmais.com

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