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Parshas Matos-Masei - Sheini with Rashi

In today’s Chumash, we learn what happened after the war with Midyan.

Moshe Rabbeinu is upset with the Yidden: As we learned, the Yidden made a war with Midyan, as Hashem told them to. Midyan deserved this war because they got many Yidden to do aveiros, and many Yidden passed away because of it.

Because of the kind of war this was, the Yidden were told not to take anything from the Midyanim to keep. The soldiers listened, but some of the other Yidden did try to take things. So Moshe, Elazar, and the Nesiim came out to them.

Moshe Rabbeinu saw that the Yidden had not finished the war! They had only fought with the men of Midyan, but not with the women — even though the women were the main people who got the Yidden to do aveiros! Moshe told them to finish the war, including with the women and the boys who were growing up to do not-nice things.

Becoming tahor and halachos of kashrus: Moshe Rabbeinu told the Yidden who were tamei to use the Parah Adumah to make themselves tahor again.

But he was still very upset about what happened. The Chachomim teach us that when someone is upset, it can make them forget what they learn. Moshe Rabbeinu forgot the halacha, and said that since the Parah Adumah can make things tahor from touching a dead body, that it can also make things kosher without kashering them.

So Elazar the Kohen Gadol reviewed the halachos with the Yidden — that the Parah Adumah can make a person tahor, along with anything else that touched (or was in the same house as) a dead body.

But that’s not enough if it’s something a Goy used for food! Elazar taught them about kashering pots by putting them in fire, and about toiveling dishes a Goy used.

He also reminded them about going to the mikvah before going back into the Mishkan.

Splitting up the spoils: Now Hashem told Moshe that everything that the soldiers brought back should be split up. All of the animals and people should be shared — half for the soldiers, and half for all the Yidden — and the money and pots and other things should go to the soldiers.

The soldiers should pay a tax for Hashem from the animals and people — one out of every 500. Moshe gave this tax (which ended up being 675 sheep, 72 cows, 61 donkeys, and 32 people) to Elazar, like Hashem told Moshe.

The Yidden also had to pay a tax from what they got — 1 out of every 50. Moshe gave this tax to the Leviim.

After this, the officers in charge of the soldiers came to Moshe. They wanted to give Hashem a present, to thank Hashem that none of the Jewish soldiers were killed, and as a kapara for any thoughts about marrying the women of Midyan. They gave a present of all of the gold women’s jewelry they got from Midyan. This turned out to be 16,750 shekels of gold. Moshe and Elazar brought it into the Mishkan.



119 (first half)

Today’s Tehillim is the first half of kapitel Kuf-Yud-Tes. It is such a long kapitel that we say half on one day, and half on the next!

The last posuk of today’s Tehillim, which starts with a Lamed, is “Lechol Tichla Ra’isi Keitz, Rechava Mitzvas’cha Me’od.” “I have seen an end to every goal, but Your mitzvah is very wide.”

The Rebbe Rashab explains this posuk according to Chassidus, in his famous hemshech Tof-Reish-Samech-Vov. (A hemshech is a group of maamorim that are connected to each other, and help us understand one inyan very very well. This sefer has 61 maamorim, and explains the reason Hashem made the world and how the avodah of Yidden fulfills that purpose.) There are many different meforshim on this posuk, and the maamarim in “Samech-Vov” explain them according to Chassidus.

Lechol Tichla” is like the words “Klos Hanefesh,” the strong wanting of the neshama to become close to Hashem. Even though it is important to feel this way so that we will do mitzvos properly, it is still just a feeling — and any feeling that a person can have can be measured.

But “Rechava Mitzvas’cha Me’od” — a mitzvah has NO limits! A mitzvah, even though we do it with limited Gashmius things, isn’t based on our feeling of wanting to be close to Hashem. It’s what Hashem wants, and Hashem has no limits. So our mitzvos are able to be much stronger than anything we can ever feel. Their koach has no end, just like Hashem Who gave them to us!



Igeres Hateshuvah Perek Tes

After the Alter Rebbe told us the mitzvah of Teshuvah and how it works according to Chassidus, we learn how to make our Teshuvah a lasting Teshuvah. The Alter Rebbe tells us that we need to think about two things — Rachmanus on the Neshama, and what happens when someone does an aveira. After a person does that, his aveiros get “blown away” like a wind blows away clouds, and he’s ready for the next level of Teshuva, called Teshuvah Ila’ah.

Teshuvah Ila’ah means that the Yid loves Hashem so much! He wants to be close to Hashem, and he has a lot of chayus to do what Hashem wants.

We said before that every mitzvah is like a string of a rope, connecting us to Hashem. If chas veshalom a string is cut (from an aveira), then it needs to be knotted back together. When you tie a knot in a rope, it makes that part extra-strong! The knot is double and triple layers of string.

When we do Teshuvah Ila’ah, we need to make sure that our connection to Hashem is now EXTRA-strong! For example, if someone makes a mistake in eating kosher, he should now be MORE careful than before!

There are three ways a Yid serves Hashem — Torah, Avodah (davening), and Gemilus Chassadim. Today the Alter Rebbe talks about Torah and Gemilus Chassadim, because this is the way Hashem connects to US. Tomorrow, IY”H, we will learn more about Tefillah, which is how WE come closer to Hashem.



Chof-Hey Tammuz

Where does a Yid get the strength to do the right thing even when the guf doesn’t want to, like when we’re not in the mood?

In today’s Hayom Yom we will see that there are two expressions in Chassidus which teach us about the koach which is in the neshama of a Yid, which helps us do the Ratzon of Hashem always!

The two expressions are:

1) A Yid Derkent Getlichkeit Un Filt Dem Lemaalah Min Hateva! A Yid recognizes Hashem and feels what is higher than nature, without needing any proofs for it.

2) A Yid Nit Er Vil Nit Er Ken Zein Opgerisen Fun Getlichkeit! The neshama of a Yid, the way it is made, does not want and cannot allow itself to become separated from Hashem.

The Rebbe shows us how these two expressions are really one thing!

Every Yid is ready to do what Hashem wants, not because he is going to get a prize for it, but because he knows that his neshama is connected to Hashem and he CAN’T imagine doing something against what Hashem wants!

How does a Yid feel that, though, when we can’t see Hashem?

That’s because of the first saying!

A Yid recognizes that Hashem is always there. We know that everything happens because Hashem runs the world, and we FEEL a connection with Hashem even though we are not able to see it.

So both of these sayings — that a Yid cannot be separated from Hashem through an aveira Chas Veshalom, and a Yid recognizes what is higher than nature — are really one! We are not able to separate ourselves from Hashem BECAUSE we recognize that Hashem is there, something that is higher than nature.

With this koach of the neshama, every Yid is able to do what Hashem wants, even when the guf is not in the mood.



Shiur #22 - Mitzvas Asei #5

Today’s mitzvah (Mitzvas Asei #5) is the same as yesterday’s — that we need to serve Hashem through davening.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Mishpatim: וַעֲבַדְתֶּם אֵת ה׳ אֱלֹקֵיכֶם



Hilchos Tefillah

Perek Beis: We said yesterday that there are 18 brachos in Shmoneh Esrei (that’s what Shmoneh Esrei means — 18!). But if you count them, you will find NINETEEN brachos.

This is because in the time of Raban Gamliel, there were a lot of people who tried to get the Yidden to stop listening to the things the Chachomim said they should do. So Rabban Gamliel added another bracha (Velamalshinim), asking Hashem to stop those people.

In Perek Gimmel, we learn about the right times for each tefillah. If we miss davening in these times, we are supposed to daven Shemoneh Esrei twice in the next tefillah.

Perek Daled: There are five things that we need to take care of before davening, or else we are not allowed to daven:
1) Washing our hands
2) Making sure we are tznius’dik
3) The place has to be appropriate for davening (not in a bathroom or garbage dump)
4) Making sure there is nothing distracting us (like making sure we don’t need to go to the bathroom)
5) Making sure we can have kavana (like not to daven when we are angry)



Hilchos Kela'im - Perek Vov

Today we learn more about Kilai HaKerem, not growing other plants together with grapes. We learn how much of the grapes become asur if they are planted close to vegetables. We also learn about mavrich, when the grapevine goes underground and comes up in a different place. Can we grow something else in between?



Hilchos Beis Habechirah

When we learn about the Beis Hamikdash, Hashem counts it like we are BUILDING it! It also speeds up the building of the third Beis Hamikdash when Moshiach comes!

Yesterday, we learned about the 4 rooms in the Ezras Noshim in the Beis Hamikdash. Now let’s learn more about the Ezras Noshim!

The Ezras Nashim had a special balcony, where women could stand and see what was happening. This way, they could be a part of the simcha in the Beis Hamikdosh during Simchas Beis Hashoeiva, without being together with the men, which wouldn’t be Tzniusdik.

Nowadays, most shuls have an Ezras Noshim too, where women and girls can be part of the davening in shul, but in a tznius’dike way!

From the Ezras Noshim, there were 15 steps that led up to the Azarah.

▼ Jump to Coloring Books & Downloads ▼



Kavana in Brachos

We say many brachos during the day, beginning from the many brachos we say in Birchos Hashachar. But do we really know what we are saying?

The Rebbe explained how even a child can bring so much kedusha into the world by saying a bracha with kavana:

BaruchBlessed! The word “baruch” also comes from the word “mavrich,” to draw something down. Besides for praising Hashem when we make a bracha, we are also bringing down Hashem’s kedusha into the world!

AtaYou! We can only say “you” to someone who is right there with us. We say to Hashem, “Ata!” You are right here with me.

HavayaHashem! This name of Hashem has the words “Haya, Hoveh, Veyihiyeh,” “He was, He is, and He will be.” Hashem includes the past, present and future all together at once! This is also the koach Hashem uses to create everything.

Elokeinuour Hashem! Even though Hashem is so great and powerful, He is OUR Hashem. He creates us, and is our koach and chayus.

Melech Ha’olamKing of the world! By Yidden recognizing that Hashem is our koach and chayus, we fulfill the purpose of Creation. This way, Hashem also becomes the King of the world!

See sicha of Acharon Shel Pesach, 5731



Kavana in Brachos

When we daven, we are supposed to have kavana. We should know what we are saying to Hashem, at least to know what we are talking about.

In Shulchan Aruch, it says that this is even more important when we say a bracha. When we say brachos, we should really know the meaning of every word.

Each name of Hashem also has a meaning that we are supposed to be thinking about:

When we say the name of Hashem of Ad-nay, spelled as Alef-Daled-Nun-Yud, we should have in mind that Hashem is the master of the entire world.

There is a name of Hashem that is spelled Yud-Kay-Vov-Kay (or in a siddur sometimes as just two Yuds), that we pronounce as Ad-nay. When we say this name, we should think about the meaning of Ad-nay, which is that Hashem is the master of the world. We should also think about the meaning of Yud-Kay-Vov-Kay, that Hashem includes all times, past, present, and future.

When we say the name Elokim, we should have in mind that Hashem is strong, and controls everything that happens in Ruchnius and in Gashmius!

See the Alter Rebbe’s Shulchan Aruch, siman Hey

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



The Yidden Will Join Together Again!

According to the Rebbe’s hora’ah of learning inyonim of Geulah and Moshiach, beginning with Torah Shebichsav, we are learning some of the pesukim in Torah Shebichsav which have in them the nevuos of the Geulah.

After the time of the Shoftim who led the Yidden, they were given the first Yiddishe king, Shaul Hamelech. After him came Dovid Hamelech, and finally Shlomo Hamelech. During the time of Shlomo Hamelech, the first Beis Hamikdash was built!

But something very sad happened after that. Rechavam, Shlomo’s son, was the next king — but not all the Yidden accepted him as king. The Yidden split into two groups:

1) The shevatim of Yehudah and Binyamin followed Rechavam, from Shevet Yehudah, who ruled in Yerushalayim. (Shevet Levi, who worked in the Beis Hamikdash, also followed Rechavam.) This was the group of the Malchei Yehudah.

2) The other ten Shevatim followed Yeravam ben Nevat, from Shevet Efrayim. This was the group of the Malchei Yisrael. The kings of Malchei Yisrael didn’t even let the Yidden who lived there go to the Beis Hamikdash, because they were afraid they would join the Malchei Yehudah.

Unfortunately, the Yidden never joined together again. Over 100 years before the Churban of the first Beis Hamikdash, in the times of the Navi Yeshaya, the ten Shevatim of Malchei Yisrael were taken into Golus by Shalmeneser the king of Ashur. Most of these Shevatim were lost, and we will only find them when Moshiach comes.

Hashem wanted all of the Yidden to know that when Moshiach comes, the ten lost Shevatim will come back, and all of the Yidden will be united again, under one Yiddishe king!

Hashem told the Navi Yechezkel to make a sign to show the Yidden that this would happen:

First, Yechezkel should take two sticks. On one stick he should write “For Yehudah and the Yidden who are with him,” and on the other stick he should write, “For Yosef, Shevet Efrayim, and the Yidden who are with him.”

In front of the Yidden, Yechezkel should hold these two sticks close to each other, and Hashem will make a neis! Both sticks will join together and become one stick.

When the Yidden ask about this neis, the Navi should explain to them that these two sticks are a sign. Hashem promises to take the Yidden who followed a king from Shevet Efrayim (Malchei Yisrael), and have them join together again with the Yidden who followed a king from Shevet Yehudah (Malchei Yehudah). When Moshiach comes, all of the Yidden will again join together as one nation!

Hashem promises:

וְעָשִׂיתִי אֹתָם לְגוֹי אֶחָד בָּאָרֶץ בְּהָרֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וּמֶלֶךְ אֶחָד יִהְיֶה לְכֻלָּם לְמֶלֶךְ וְלֹא יִהְיוּ עוֹד לִשְׁנֵי גוֹיִם וְלֹא יֵחָצוּ עוֹד לִשְׁתֵּי מַמְלָכוֹת עוֹד

Ve’asisi Osam Legoy Echad Ba’aretz — I will make them into one nation in the land

BeHarei Yisrael — In the mountains of Eretz Yisrael.

Umelech Echad Yihiyeh Lechulam Lemelech — There will be one king for all of them

Velo Yihiyu Od Lishnei Goyim — And they won’t be two separate nations anymore

Velo Yeichatzu Od LiShtei Mamlachos Od — And they won’t be split into two kingdoms anymore.

See Yechezkel perek Lamed-Zayin, posuk Chof-Beis

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