Pekudei: Remember the Count

March 09, 2019 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
"These are the accounts, pekudei, of the tabernacle, the tabernacle of testimony, as they were pukad, rendered, according the commandment of Moshe, through the service of the Levites, by the hand of Itamar the son of Aharon the high priest" (Shemot 35:1). The word pekudei, from the root pkd, seems a rather odd choice. Words such as meispar,...
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Parshat Hachodesh: Timing is Everything

March 24, 2017 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
“In the first month of the second year on the first of the month, the Tabernacle was erected” (Shemot 40:2). Sefer Shemot concludes with the building of the Mishkan. As the Ramban notes (Introduction to Shemot), the Mishkan was the culmination of the Exodus, fulfilling the promise made to Avraham to make his descendants “into a great nation” (Breisheet 12:1). This meant physical freedom and independence...
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Parshat Shekalim (Pekudei): Pre-empting Haman

March 01, 2014 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
“Reish Lakish said: It was well known beforehand to Him at whose word the world came into being that Haman would one day pay shekels for the destruction of Israel. Therefore, He anticipated his shekels with the [half] shekel of Israel. And so we have learned, on the first of Adar, we announce [the obligation of giving] shekalim” (Megillah 13b).  The obligation for all Jewish males over the age of twenty to give a half...
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Pekudei: Time and Space

March 20, 2009 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
This week's d’var Torah is sponsored in commemoration of the second yahrzeit of our beloved wife and mother, Rochelle Muller; from Michael Muller, Jeff & Shira Muller, Janine & David Sherr.“And it was on first month of the second year on the first of the month that the Tabernacle was erected” (40:17). The first of Nissan is a most special time in Jewish history. It was on this date that Moshe and Aharon began preparing...
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