Vayakhel : Force of Mashiach ben Yosef: “ GATHER YOURSELVES TOGETHER from [the exile of] the Lost tribes, and ASSEMBLE YOURSELVES to the tribes of Judah and Benjamin for making HaShem’s presence known though our actions of loving kindness.
The Twenty-Second reading from the Torah and the second-to-last reading from the book of Exodus is called Vayakhel , which means “and he assembled.” The word “vayakhel.” It comes from the root verb kahal, or to “summon to assemble.” The name comes from the first verse of the reading, which could be literally translated to read, And Moses assembled all the Congregation of the sons of Israel …” ( Exodus 35:1). This portion from the Torah describes how the assembly of Israel worked together to build the Tabernacle.
Summarize for this portion of TORAH :
- Exodus 35:1 – Sabbath Regulations
- Exodus 35:4 – Preparations for Making the Tabernacle
- Exodus 35:20 – Offerings for the Tabernacle
- Exodus 35:30 – Bezalel and Oholiab
- Exodus 36:8 – Construction of the Tabernacle
- Exodus 37:1 – Making the Ark of the Covenant
- Exodus 37:10 – Making the Table for the Bread of the Presence
- Exodus 37:17 – Making the LampStand
- Exodus 37:25 – Making the Altar of Incense
- Exodus 37:29 – Making the Anointing Oil and the Incense
- Exodus 38:1 – Making the Altar of Burnt Offering
- Exodus 38:9 – Making the Court of the Tabernacle
- Exodus 38:21 – Materials of the Tabernacle
- Exodus 39:1 – Making the Vestments for the Priesthood
- Exodus 39:32 – The Work Completed
- Exodus 40:1 – The Tabernacle Erected and Its Equipment Installed
- Exodus 40:34 – The Cloud and the Glory
Then Moses gathered all the congregation of the children of Israel together, and said to them, “These are the words which Most High has commanded you to do: Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh day shall be a holy day for you, a Sabbath of rest to Most High. Whoever does any work on it shall be put to death.” –Exodus 35:1-2
In gathering of Exiles – Gathering Yourselves Together under the divine mandate of Mashiach ben Yosef
“Most High your G-d will gather you even from there he will go there and get you.” –Deuteronomy 30: 1-10
Then Ya‘akov called for his sons and said, “Gather Yourselves Together”, and I will tell you what will happen to you in the LAST DAYS – Genesis 49:1
Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O shameful nation – Zephaniah 2:1-4
“Kol HaTor” says [2.40] “His [i.e. Joseph’s] bow abode in strength” ( Genesis 49: 24 ). This should be an important principle for us. We have to stand obstinately strong in the holy work of gathering in the exiles which is the task of the first redeemer ( i.e. of the MESSIAH SON OF JOSEPH) .”
Blast the Great Shofar for our freedom, and lift a banner to gather our exiles, and gather us together from the four corners of the earth (Isaiah 11:12). Blessed are You, O LORD, who gathers the scattered ones of His people Israel.
And not for the nation alone, but so that he might gather into one the scattered children of Most High – John 11 : 52 – 53
And He shall raise up a nes [a banner, i.e., send a signal] for the Goyim, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Yehudah from the four corners of earth – Isaiah 11 : 12
Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul.. –Acts 4: 32
One of the main goals of the Beit Ya’aqov community is that we must unite as “One man with One Heart” to connect together as a spiritual national unity of Ephraim and reconciliation with the of house of Yehudah in the merit of Melech Yeshua HaMashiach.
He will send out his angels with a great shofar; and they will gather together his chosen people from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. – Matthew 24:31
If your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there the Lord your G-d will gather you, and from there he will take you. – Deuteronomy 30:4
The Midrash Rabba speaks of the future reunion of the two houses of Israel saying:
AND HE SAID: GATHER YOURSELVES TOGETHER (HE’ASEFU)… ASSEMBLE YOURSELVES, AND HEAR (xLIx, 1 f.). GATHER YOURSELVES TOGETHER from the land of Egypt, and ASSEMBLE YOURSELVES into Raameses; GATHER YOURSELVES TOGETHER from [the exile of] the ten tribes, and ASSEMBLE YOURSELVES to the tribes of Judah and Benjamin. He thus commanded them to show honour to the tribes of Judah and Benjamin.1 R. Aha interpreted [the word HE’ASEFU], ‘Purify yourselves,’ as in the verse, And they gathered themselves together… and they purified themselves (Neh. xII, 28 ff.).2 The Rabbis say: He warned them against dissension, bidding them, Be ye all one assembly. Thus it says, And thou, son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it: For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions (Ezekiel xVII, 16). ‘ His companion ‘ is written: when the children of Israel unite in one band, then they may prepare themselves for redemption. For what follows this? And I will make them one nation in the land, etc. (ib. 22). (Gen. Rabbah xCVIII:2)
The Midrash Rabbah here is making a drash on the two phrases GATHER YOURSELVES TOGETHER and ASSEMBLE YOURSELVES, applying this as a type of their future reunion and redemption ( in Ezekiel 37 )
The Midrash Rabbah also teaches that the Gentile nations will be blessed by the last days restoration of the Ten Tribes by virtue of their having been scattered among them: They shall come trembling as a bird out of Egypt–this refers to the generation of the wilderness–and as a dove out of the land of Assyria (Hos. xI, 11)–this refers to the ten tribes; and of both of them it says’ And I will make them to dwell in their houses, saith the Lord (ib.). Rabbi says: When a certain kind of dove is given food, the other doves smell it and flock to her cote. So when the elder sits and discourses, many strangers become proselytes at such a time; so, for instance, Jethro heard the news and came, Rahab heard and came. So through Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, many strangers became proselytes at that time. What is the reason? Because, when he seeth his children sanctify My name, then, as it goes on, they also that err in spirit shall come to understanding (Isa. xxIx, 23, 24). (Song of Songs Rabbah IV:2)
Finally the Midrash Rabbah tells us something about what became of the Lost Ten Tribes: AND SHE CALLED HIS NAME JOSEPH, SAYING: THE LORD ADD TO ME ANOTHER SON (xxx, 24). ANOTHER [i.e. different] in respect of exile. R. Judah b. R. Simon said: The tribes of Judah and Benjamin were not exiled to the same place as were the other ten tribes. The ten-tribes were exiled beyond the River Sambatyon, whereas the tribes of Judah and Benjamin are dispersed in all countries. ANOTHER SON-in respect of dissension. R. Phinehas said: Through Rachel’s prayer the tribes of Judah and Benjamin did not revolt [against the Davidic dynasty] together with the remaining ten tribes. ANOTHER denotes the behavior of others. (Gen. Rabbah Lxx III:6)
Scripture tells us that the final redemption of Israel and the ingathering of the exiles to the Land of Israel is directly tied to the ultimate sanctification (unification) of the Name of G-d: Ezekiel 28:25-26 –Thus said the Lord YHWH-Elohim: When I gather in the House of Israel from the peoples among whom they were scattered, then I will be sanctified through them in the eyes of the nations, and they will dwell on their land that I gave to My servant Jacob.
The In-Gathering of exiles is yet another part of the process of redemption, as promised in Deuteronomy, and in many places in the Prophets –Jeremiah 29:14; Ezekiel 11:17; Isaiah 56:8; Psalms 106:47.
Why Gathering Together Ourselves :
To attain Knowledge and Wisdom of Torah and UNITY as a “One Family with One Heart” and to bring “Most High offering”, onto the Holy Mountain to Serve Most Holy one of Israel under the divine mandate of Mashiach ben Yosef :
from whom every family in heaven and on earth receives its character. – Ephesians 3:15
- To Make Individual and Corporate Repentance
- Anticipating the Spiritual and Physical redemption under the divine mandate of Mashiach
- Awakening souls comes from below and awakening comes mercy above
- Accepting the “Yoke of Torah” / “ Yoke of the heaven”
- To attain higher understanding(Binah) of the “Soul Torah” / “Zion Torah”/ Äbove Torah”/ “Torah of Mashiach” – To Become a Servants of Supernal Holy King and be a disciple of Yeshua HaMashiach
- True identity of “A stick of Yosef” – Form a Nation of Efrayim in diaspora outside Eretz Israel.
- Restoring and rebuilding the Davidic Tabernacle for gathering of lost tribes of Israel – Reunification of Ephraim and Judah
- Formation of the Kingdom of the Most High
- Engaging and preparation for welcome the son of David on the holy land of Israel
- Our generation will bring Heaven(Shekinah) back down to Earth
- Our generation’s mandate—and destiny—is to make the dream real
Moses gathers the people together and tells them to bring all kinds of personal treasures to build a tabernacle to G-d. Before anything, though, he orders them not to violate the Sabbath – Shabbat is so important that it must not be infringed even for construction of a house of G-d. Here again in this studies, we see the Sabbath in a central role, leading into the construction of the Tabernacle. In Exodus 35:5 we hear G-d telling Moses to instruct those “whose heart motivates them” – thus showing us that what G-d wants is not so much our possessions, but our desire to be one with Him.
Before Moses tells the Israelites to bring their personal treasures to build the mishkan (tabernacle), he tells them they must not work on Shabbat. A number of writers highlighted the significance of this – that observing the Sabbath is more important even than building G-d’s own abode. And:
The chatam sofer observation that we may not profane the Sabbath for G-d, but we may do so to save a human life.
Abraham Heschel’s comment that “The Sabbath itself is a sanctuary which we build, a sanctuary in time.”
Everything connected to the Tabernacle/Temple alludes to the mystery of G-d’s unity (the revelation on Mount Sinai) as well as to the rectification of our souls and the world. The Aramaic word for this process is “Tikkun” which also means “warfare.” Here we find the good piece of information when reading in the New Testament of Ephesians scriptures. The “Weapons of war” that Rabbi Shaul writes of are not those of a soldier but those of a Priest. ( i.e Circumcision of the heart as promised in His Divine Mandate)
Finally, grow powerful in union with the Lord, in union with his mighty strength! Use all the armor and weaponry that G-d provides, so that you will be able to stand against the deceptive tactics of the Adversary. For we are not struggling against human beings, but against the rulers, authorities and cosmic powers governing this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realm. So take up every piece of war equipment G-d provides; so that when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist; and when the battle is won, you will still be standing. Therefore, stand! Have the belt of truth buckled around your waist, put on righteousness for a breastplate, and wear on your feet the readiness that comes from the Good News of shalom. Always carry the shield of trust, with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the Evil One. – Ephesians 6 : 10 -16
Therefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days HaShem made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed. -Exodus 31:16-17
“For as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make shall remain before Me,” says HaShem, “So shall your descendants and your name remain. And it shall come to pass that from one New Moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, all flesh shall come to worship before Me,” says HaShem. -Isaiah 66:22-23
If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of HaShem honorable, and shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words, Then you shall delight yourself in HaShem… -Isaiah 58:13-14
Also the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to HaShem, to serve Him, and to love the name of HaShem, to be His servants – everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and holds fast My covenant – even them I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on My altar; for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations. -Isaiah 56:6-7
For from the earliest times, Moshe has had in every city those who proclaim him, with his words being read in the synagogues every Shabbat. -Acts 15:21
but the others went on from Perga to Pisidian Antioch, and on Shabbat they went into the synagogue and sat down. After the reading from the Torah and from the Prophets, the synagogue leaders sent them a message, “Brothers, if any of you has a word of exhortation for the people, speak!” So Sha’ul stood, motioned with his hand, and said: “Men of Isra’el and G-d-fearers, listen! The G-d of this people Isra’el chose our fathers. He made the people great during the time when they were living as aliens in Egypt and with a stretched-out arm he led them out of that land . For some forty years he took care of them in the desert, and after he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Kena‘an he gave their land to his people as an inheritance All this took about 450 years. After that, he gave them judges, down to the prophet Sh’mu’el. Then they asked for a king, and G-d gave them Sha’ul Ben-Kish, a man from the tribe of Binyamin. After forty years, G-d removed him and raised up David as king for them, making his approval known with these words, ‘I found David Ben-Yishai to be a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want. In keeping with his promise, G-d has brought to Isra’el from this man’s descendants a deliverer, Yeshua. -Acts 13:14-43
Let’s find the Shabbat [Sabbath] instructions :
- Exodus 16: Before Sinai, in connection with gathering manna
- Exodus 20: With the giving of the Aseret HaD’varim ( the “Ten Commandments” )
- Exodus 23: Most High commands.
- Exodus 31: Instructions about building the Tabernacle, before the Golden Calf incident.
- Exodus 34: After the Golden Calf incident, Most High reveals His character and attributes to Moses on Mount Sinai.
- Exodus 35: Before continuing the instructions for building the Tabernacle.
Deuteronomy 30: 1-10
Genesis 49 : 1-2
II Kings 11:17-12:17
1 Thessalonians 4:11–12
Ephesians 6 : 10 -16
Vayakhel looks like the hasidic teaching that the Mishkan was only completed because of a sense of unity and common purpose. In the building of the tabernacle, all Israel joined in their hearts; no one felt superior to his fellow. At first, each skilled individual did her own part of the construction, and it seemed to each one that her own work was extraordinary. Afterward, they saw how their contributions to the service of the tabernacle were integrated–all the boards, sockets, curtains, and loops fit together as if one person had done it all. Then they realized how each depended on the other. Then they understood that what they had accomplished was not only by virtue of their own skill alone, but that the Holy One had guided the hands of everyone who had worked on the tabernacle. They had joined in completing its master building plans, so that “It came to pass that the tabernacle was one” ( Exodus 36:13 ). In their joint effort, the Israelites created not only the mishkan, but a strong sense of community.
This studies gives the impression like the people in Temple Israel. The meaning of synagogue, or in Hebrew “Beit Knesset,” means house of assembly. The synagogue is where people go to gather, pray, study, and do good deeds. The mishkan, the tabernacle, or today’s synagogue is a place where G-d dwells. But a midrash teaches that it is only though the meritorious behavior of humanity that G-d’s Presence become noticeable (P’sikta d’Rav Kahana, Piska 1:1).
not neglecting our own congregational meetings, as some have made a practice of doing, but, rather, encouraging each other. And let us do this all the more as you see the Day approaching. – Hebrews 10 :25
Our joint effort of the people of G-d working together to fulfill His commandments created a spiritual holy house worthy of Most High Dwelling Presence. The building of the Tabernacle required each person to contribute to the work from his own skill set.The combined efforts of the people of G-d as they labored in all their respective fields resulted in the building of G-d’s house.
And all the skillful men who were performing all the work of the sanctuary came, each from the work which he was performing. – Exodus 36:4
Consider the following rabbinic quotation from the Mishnah about the value of combining Torah study with an occupation: The study of Torah is excellent when it is combined with a worldly occupation because the effort required by both keeps sin out of a person’s mind. But where there is no worldly occupation the study of Torah amounts to nothing and leads to sin. Let everyone who works in the community work for the sake of the Name of Heaven. (m.Avot 2:2)
Therefore, brothers whom G-d has set apart, who share in the call from heaven, think carefully about Yeshua, whom we acknowledge publicly as G-d’s emissary and as cohen gadol. – Hebrews 3:1-5
A person should regard his job a religious duty performed for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Rabbi Shaul illustrated this principle in his own life by supporting himself with his work in tent making….. and because he had the same trade as they, making tents, he stayed on with them; and they worked together. Sha’ul also began carrying on discussions every Shabbat in the synagogue….-Acts 18:3-5
So stay alert! Remember that for three years, night and day, with tears in my eyes, I never stopped warning you! “And now I entrust you to the care of the Lord and to the message of his love and kindness, for it can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who have been set apart for G-d. “I have not wanted for myself anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. You yourselves know that these hands of mine have provided not only for my own needs, but for the needs of my co-workers as well. In everything I have given you an example of how, by working hard like this, you must help the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Yeshua himself, ‘There is more happiness in giving than in receiving. When he had finished speaking, Sha’ul kneeled down with them all and prayed. They were all in tears as they threw their arms around his neck and kissed him farewell. —Acts 20:31-38
Also, make it your ambition to live quietly, to mind your own business and to earn your living by your own efforts — just as we told you. Then your daily life will gain the respect of outsiders, and you will not be dependent on anyone. – Thessalonians 4:11-12
The thief must stop stealing; instead, he should make an honest living by his own efforts. This way he will be able to share with those in need. -Ephesians 4:28
But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. – Matthew 6 : 1 -3
The Good Heart
When Moses announced the plan to build the Tabernacle, he did not hire any fund-raising consultants. He did not need a high-pressure pledge drive. Moses asked only those with willing hearts to give to the work of the Tabernacle. The building of G-d’s holy house was not to be sullied with contributions that had been pried loose from people who were reluctant to donate to the work. “Everyone whose heart stirred him and everyone whose spirit moved him” (Exodus 35:21) contributed freely.
This story teaches us that there are two types of people, those with willing hearts and those with unwilling hearts. Once a rabbi named Yochanon ben Zakkai (John the son of Zaccheus) asked his disciples, “What is the best kind of character that a person should try to be like?” The first of his disciples answered, “A man with a good eye.” By this he meant a generous person. The second disciple answered, “A man who is a good friend.” The third disciple said, “A man who is a good neighbor.” The fourth disciple said, “A man who looks ahead to consider the consequences of his actions.” The fifth disciple said, “A man who has a good heart.” Rabbi Yochanon replied, “I like the last answer the best because it includes all the other answers.”
Zohar writings: Rabbi Shimon speaks first of the raising of Malchut to be united with Zeir Anpin, the uniting of the supernal Chariot and the lower Chariot. We hear of the upper ministers and the patriarchs who have the honor to bear the holy chair, Malchut. “Whoever is of a willing heart” refers to the four hosts of high angels in which are included the twelve hosts. The four hosts are called the holy animals and the twelve hosts are the offerings. All these Chariots are called “whoever is of a willing heart.” Rabbi Yehuda speaks of how a man is blessed with happiness when a poor man comes to him; he is as honored as if he created his soul. Rabbi Aba then talks about the verse: “Since the day that I brought forth my people Yisrael out of Egypt, I chose no city out of all the tribes of Yisrael to build a house that my name might be there, but I chose David,” saying that G-d does not choose a city until he has a good leader for the people. We hear a discussion on “Happy is he who has the El of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in Hashem his Elohim.” The righteous put their trust in God, and are content to break themselves for His sake, therefore they merit miracles and many signs. “Whoever is of a willing heart” refers to he whose heart is willing to draw the Shechinah into himself.
“Anyone who works for the community, let your work with them be for the sake of Heaven... And as for you all, I will make your reward great as though you had accomplished all the work.” (2:2) & “Let all your deeds be for the sake of Heaven.” (2:12) – m.Pirkei Avot
ROLE OF MAN:
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land – 2 Chron 7:14-18
Process of Prayer/Tikkun : first humbling themselves and followed by prayer ( in the merit of Tzaddik (righteous one), connecting the earthy and heavenly realms) and Seeking His face and turning from their wicked ways (repentance, coming from Binah – Understanding). The role of man is – PRAYER, REPENTANCE AND KIND WORK.
Conscious life, for a Jew can be divided up into three basic activities: Torah-learning, good deeds, and prayer – Rabbi Winston
Holy Sanctuary :
The Midrash says that the Sanctuary was made in the likeness of the human body; in Kabbalah this mystical Sanctuary is called ‘the Body of Adam Kadmon. the Primordial man created in the mind of G-d, before space and time, before words and speech, before darkness and light. Each one of us is part of this mystical body. There are many members but only one body.
- Yosef : Place of the Covenant.
- Aaron and Moses : the legs.
- Isaac and Abraham : the arms.
- Israel is : heart
- Messiah: head.
Now you together constitute the body of the Messiah, and individually you are parts of it. -1 Corinthians 12:27
But I want you to understand that the head of every man is the Messiah, and the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of the Messiah is G-d.- 1 Corinthians 11:3
For a proper functioning of the body very person is essential, just as every detail of the Tabernacle was essential. Therefore our Portion says: “Moses assembled the entire congregation”(Exodus 35:1) ; just like all the pieces of the Tabernacle needed to be assembled and in the same way the people of Israel needed to be assembled . The people had to build the House of G-d as a collective whole, not as individuals.
Our sages said: “All Israel are responsible for one another” (cf. Shavuot 39a).
The Force of Messiah ben Yosef:
The concept of Mashiach ben Yoseph functions on three levels:
- The actual personality of Mashiach ben Yosef
- Any individual who contributes to the messianic process. –The Secret Doctrine of the Gaon of Vilna – Volume I, Rabbi Joel David Bakst, City of Luz Publications, 2008, p. 152.
All three of these levels are found in the book of the New Testament:
1)Meta-historical: The idea of messiah being “from the foundation of the world” – 1 Peter 1:20, Hebrews 4:3, Revelation 13:8
2) The actual personality of Mashiach ben Yosef : Atonement Work of Heavenly Divine Tzaddik in the heavenly realm who entered into the Holy of Holies place with his own blood ( i.e In above mishkyan )
.. and will put into effect when the time is ripe — his plan to place everything in heaven and on earth under the Messiah’s headship. – Ephesians 1:10
So, brothers, we have confidence to use the way into the Holiest Place opened by the blood of Yeshua – Hebrews 10:19-20
3) Any individual who contributes to the messianic process :
These are the ones are called as “The body of Mashiach”
– Colossians 1 : 18; Ephesians 1 : 13; I Corinthians 12 : 27
Now you together constitute the body of the Messiah, and individually you are parts of it. –1 Corinthians 12:27
Also he is head of the Body, the Messianic Community ( i.e Twelve Tribes of Israel, Bride, National life of Israel, The Temple, Above Yerushalayim ) ………… – Colossians 1:18
With the proper intent of heart we will utilize all our abilities can be a used as a tool for contributing into the transformation of this world into a Sanctuary for the Divine Presence. All the women, whose heart inspired them with wisdom, spun the goats’ hair” ( Exodus 35:26 ). “And everyone who was willing… came and brought a tribute to HaShem for the work on the Tent of Meeting -Exodus 35:21.
All the nation contributed to the construction of the Sanctuary with what they had. But a few verses later we read that G-d appointed Betzalel as the leader of the work – Exodus 35:30 .
And Betzalel and Oholiab shall work, and every wise-hearted man -Exodus 36:1.
As we studied in earlier parsha studies about Betzalel was chosen to build the Tabernacle because G-d gave him the three attributes by which Heaven and Earth were created (Proverbs 3:19-20): Wisdom, Understanding and Knowledge (Ex 35:31). These three attributes are given to Mashiach in a Double Measure (cf. Pirkei Eliezer ch 3; cf. Isaiah 11:2).
We can understand that the Temple is built by the spiritual power of Messiah ben Yosef. For it’s written: “Says HaShem to his Messiah, to Cyrus” (Isaiah 45:1), and then: “he [his Messiah] will say of the Temple: let its foundations be laid” (Isaiah 44:28). And being called “My Messiah” and “Shepherd”, it’s written of Cyrus: ‘I awakened him with righteousness’ (Isaiah 45:13), meaning he embodies the aspect of Messiah ben Yosef – who is called the Righteous one (Am 2:6) (cf. Kol haTor 2:109).
Messiah ben Yosef is the attribute by which the Sanctuary is established. Therefore the Gematria of “Tent of Meeting” (Ohel Moed) equals “Yosef”, and so do the Gematria of “and all wise-hearted men” – Exodus 35:10.
Those who build the Tabernacle must be ‘wise’ as it’s written: “wise-hearted” and “in whose heart HaShem had put wisdom” (Exodus 36:2) and also “and all the wise men came” (Exodus 36:4). Yosef plans to save the land from famine and says: ‘Let Pharaoh look a man discrete and wise (Genesis 41:33). And what did Pharaoh answer? ‘There’s no one intelligent and wise like you ( Yosef ) – Genesis 41:39.
There is a man in your kingdom in whom is the spirit of the holy g-ds. In the days of your father, he was found to have light, discernment and wisdom like the wisdom of the gods. King N’vukhadnetzar your father — the king, your father — made him chief of the magicians, exorcists, astrologers and diviners; – Daniel 5:11
Haftarah – I Kings 7 : 40 – 50 – Metals for Holy Space
The Haftarah (I Kings 7 : 40-50) describes the artisan Hiram making all sorts of items for King Solomon’s Temple: And Both the parashah and the haftarah in 1 Kings 7 report the leader’s erection of the holy place, Moses’ building of the Tabernacle in the parashah, and Solomon’s building of the Temple in Jerusalem in the haftarah. In Both parashah and haftarah studies about particular metals for the holy space. . We learn that Hiram’s bronze contributions were so heavy that King Solomon could not weigh them. Following the list of bronze pieces from Hiram, we read about the gold furnishings that Solomon made for the Temple: altar, candelabra, basins, ladles, and doors.
Hiram made the ash pots, shovels and sprinkling basins. With that, Hiram completed all the work he had done for King Shlomo in the house of Adonai — 41 the two columns, the two moldings of the capitals on top of the columns, the two nettings covering the two moldings of the capitals atop the columns, 42 the 400 pomegranates for the two nettings, two rows of pomegranates for each netting, to cover the two moldings of the capitals atop the columns, 43 the ten trolleys, the ten basins on the trolleys, 44 the one Sea, the twelve oxen under the Sea,45 the ash pots, the shovels and the sprinkling basins. All these articles that Hiram made for King Shlomo in the house of Adonai were of burnished bronze. 46 The king cast them in the plain of the Yarden, in the clay ground between Sukkot and Tzartan. 47 Shlomo did not weigh any of these objects, because there were so many of them; thus the total weight of the bronze could not be determined. 48 Shlomo made all the objects that were inside the house of Adonai: the gold altar; the table of gold on which the showbread was displayed;49 the menorahs — five on the right and five on the left in front of the sanctuary — of pure gold; the flowers, lamps and tongs of gold; 50 the cups, snuffers, basins, incense pans and fire pans of pure gold; and the hinges of gold, both those for the doors of the inner house, the Especially Holy Place, and those for the doors of the house, that is, of the temple. –1 Kings 7:40–50
Both the parashah and the haftarah note the skill (chokhmah), ability (tevunah), and knowledge (da‘at), of the artisan (Bezalel in the parashah, Hiram in the haftarah) in every craft (kol mela’khah).
13 King Shlomo sent for Hiram and brought him from Tzor. 14 He was the son of a widow from the tribe of Naftali, but his father was from Tzor, a bronze-worker filled with wisdom, understanding and skill for all kinds of bronze craftsmanship. He came to King Shlomo and did all his bronzework. 15 He made the two bronze columns, each one thirty-one-and-a-half feet high and twenty-one feet in circumference. 16 He made two capitals of melted bronze to set on the tops of the columns; each capital was eight-and-three-quarters feet high; 17 he also made checker-work nets and chained wreaths, seven for the top of each capital. 18 When he made the columns, he made two rows of pomegranates to put at the top of each column around the netting covering its capital. 19 The capitals on the columns in the hall had shapes like lilies and were seven feet high. 20 As for the capitals on the two columns, there were 200 pomegranates in rows around each capital near the molding by the netting. 21 He erected the columns in the hall of the temple; on erecting the right column he gave it the name “Yakhin,” and on erecting the left column he named it “Bo‘az.”22 On the tops of the columns were shapes like lilies; thus the work of the columns was finished. 23 He made the cast metal “Sea” circular, seventeen-and-a-half feet from rim to rim, eight-and-three quarter feet high and fifty-two-and-a-half feet in circumference. 24 Under its rim, three hundred gourds encircled it in two rows; they were cast when the Sea was cast. 25 It rested on twelve oxen, three looking north, three looking west, three looking south and three looking east, all with their hindquarters toward the center. The Sea was set on top of them. 26 It was a handbreadth thick, its rim was made like the rim of a cup, like the flower of a lily; and its capacity was 11,000 gallons. –I Kings 7:13–26
GATHERING OF THE PEOPLE -Studies from By Rabbi Avraham Greenbaum
The parshah of VAYAKHEL opens with the words: “And Moses gathered together all the Community of Israel.” (Exodus 35:1). According to our sages, Moses’ gathering of all of the Community took place on the day following Yom Kippur, when he had secured atonement for the sin of the golden calf.
This gathering consisted of all of ADAS YISRAEL, the Community of Israel. The Zohar (beginning of VAYAKHEL) states specifically that this Community was made up of all who remained faithful to the true Covenant of Israel, accepting no deviation from the Torah and no prophet other than Moses. The Zohar emphasizes that they could only build the Sanctuary after being purged of all the Mixed Multitude who went astray after the golden calf, which was half ox (Edom, Christianity) and half donkey (Ishmael, Islam). Both deviated from the finality of the Torah and the supremacy of Moses as G-d’s true prophet, seeking to displace them in different ways by erecting new prophets and intermediaries standing between man and G-d. They and all the nations are excluded from membership of ADAS ISRAEL and from contributing to the Sanctuary.
The materials and manpower for the construction of the Sanctuary for the One G-d were to be contributed only by this Community of true Israelites, those willing to abide by the Law of Moses. This accepts no intermediary between man and G-d and permits no form or idol in worship. The only forms permitted in G-d’s Sanctuary and Temple and nowhere else are those of the two golden Cherubs over the Ark of the Covenant and the other Sanctuary vessels. The only scriptures are the Sefer Torah.
The commandment to build the Sanctuary was addressed to the whole Community of Israel. Each member of this community was to have his or her personal share in this joint national project of building the Sanctuary that Moses was to announce. For the true Israelite, there is no intermediary between man and G-d. Man faces G-d directly. Each one contributes — and each one has responsibility for his own actions. Only one who truly INTENDS to do what he does can be said to be responsible for what he does and, if he does good, fairly take the reward. Only then is there merit in his contribution. How can one INTEND what he does? Taking precedence over all the commandments about contributing to and building the Sanctuary addressed to the Community of Israel is the commandment to observe the Shabbos — to spend one entire day every week WILLFULLY ABSTAINING from many kinds of actions and activities.
Moses’ discourse to the Community of Israel about the building of the Sanctuary opens with the following words:
“Six days labor shall be performed, and on the seventh day you will have a holy Shabbos of rest in honor of G-d: anyone who performs a labor on Shabbos shall be put to death.” (Ex. 35:2).
It is a commandment to labor — “Six days labor shall be performed”. Part of that same commandment is the commandment to observe the Shabbos by willfully abstaining from labor when so commanded. So stringent is this commandment that its willful infringement is punishable by execution. The example of forbidden labor given in the Torah text is that of kindling fire on the Sabbath day, which is infringed by acts as simple as flicking on a light-switch, lighting a cooker or starting a car ignition.
The ability to observe Shabbos and the ability to engage in truly meaningful labor on the other days of the week are bound up together. Only when a person can consciously abstain from action and willfully NOT perform a particular range of actions as instructed by G-d on Shabbos can he be said to have true INTENTION when he does perform the action in honor of G-d on the six days of the week. Only then does his action have true merit.
Only the observance of the commandment to abstain from labor on the Seventh Day in honor of G-d gives true meaning to the building of the Sanctuary in the wilderness and the Temple in Jerusalem in G-d’s honor.
According to a tradition handed down by the Kabbalah, Betzalel accomplished the “labors” required to build and construct the sanctuary vessels through manipulations of the 22 Hebrew Letters of Creation, as taught in Sefer Yetzirah. Successful manipulation of the letters to produce actual physical constructions in the world without performing any physical action requires the greatness of a Betzalel or the Maharal of Prague, who created a Golem. Nevertheless, even a simple Israelite has the power to “manipulate” the letters of creation by using them to compose prayers to G-d to bless his material efforts in the actual world of Asiyah with success. With the help of G-d, our very words themselves have the power to serve as vessels within which G-d’s presence can dwell in this world. Through our words we contribute to building the Sanctuary — the House of Prayer — to G-d.
May we soon be worthy to contribute to the Building of G-d’s House in Jerusalem quickly in our days. Amen.
Shabbat Shalom! – Rabbi Avraham Yehoshua Greenbaum
For the Torah reading, and for the worship service, and for [the reading from] the Prophets, And for this Sabbath day [or for this (holiday )], which you have given us, Lord our G-d, For holiness and for respite, for honor and for splendor,For all of this, Lord our G-d, We gratefully thank you and bless you.
May your name be blessed by every living mouth, Always and forever.
Blessed are you Lord, who sanctifies the Sabbath
May it be Your will, HaShem our G-d and G-d of our forefathers, that the Holy Temple be rebuilt, speedily in our days.
Then the offering of Judah and Efrayim in Jerusalem Temple will be pleasing to HaShem.
Gaddi – President