Parashat Tetzaveh: Exodus, chapters 27:20 to 30:10

March 3, 2023

The title of our Torah portion comes from the three letter verb root, “tz-v-h” which means “to command.” This is the verb in the future tense. The noun derived from this verb is of course, “mitzva,” which means a commandment.

Our ‘sedrah’ continues with more details about the sanctuary’s detailed building plans, and especially the unique garments to be worn by the priestly class. These garments are invested with holiness, which shall remind the priests of their sacred obligations. The opening paragraph of our portion instructs the priests to make sure that a light is kept burning every night in the front of the Mishkan (the portable sanctuary). There is a curtain which separates the inner “holy of holies” from the rest of the sanctuary. This mitzva is the origin of the “ner tamid,” the perpetual lamp which is found in every synagogue in front of the Ark. The words “ner Tamid” are the last two Hebrew words at the end of the first sentence of our Torah portion. Every sanctuary possesses an inner light, a ‘ner tamid,’ and the human soul possesses an inner light as well.

Parashat Nitzavim-Va'yelech: Deuteronomy 29:9 to 31:30

Selichot Shabbat September 8, 2023 This Shabbat, proceeding Rosh Hashanah, includes two Torah portions for our reading. “Nitzavim,” is a…

Parashat Ki Tavo: Deuteronomy 26:1 to 29:8

Shabbat September 1, 2023 Our Torah portion addresses the time when the Israelites will settle in the land of Israel,…

Parashat Kee Tetzey: Deuteronomy 21:10 to 25:19

Shabbat 8/25/23 Our Torah portion continues the rules for the Israelites when engaged in warfare. “Kee tetzey,” when you go…