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Friday, Adar 5, 5777 / March 3, 2017


This week's Parsha, Terumah, is about the building of the Mishkan and its contents; the Aron (ark), the Kaporet (ark cover), the Shulchan (table), the Menorah (candelabra) and the Mizbe'ach (altar).  The Torah details the materials, measurements and construction of each component of the sanctuary.


The Aron (ark) contained both sets of Tablets; the first Tablets, which Moshe broke when he saw the Jewish people worshipping the Golden Calf, as well as the second set of Tablets.


The Aron also had a Torah scroll, which was placed there when Moshe finished writing the Torah at the end of his forty year leadership of the Jewish people.  Some say the Torah was placed inside the ark, while others are of the opinion that it was outside the ark.


The Aron was made of three boxes, which were placed one into the other.  The inner and outer boxes were made of gold. The middle box was made out of wood, for the Torah is called " a Tree of Life." 


When looking at the Aron, one would see gold on the interior and exterior. This teaches us that a person must be the same on the inside (in one's heart and mind), as on the outside.


Due to the gold content of the ark and the gold cover over it and the Tablets inside, the Ark was extremely heavy!  Yet, when traveling, only four people carried the Aron!


How did they do it?  Our sages say, "The Aron carried its carriers!" G-d wanted the people to make the effort, but once they did that, it was the ark which carried them miraculously!


The lesson:  This teaches us that Torah is never a burden.  If one makes a sincere effort for Torah, the Torah will help them achieve their goal. The Torah carries and uplifts the one who adheres to it.


The name of the Parasha, Terumah, which means to lift up, also alludes to this point.  The Hebrew letters Terumah can be rearranged to spell the word; “Torah Mem.”  The letter Mem is 40.  Thus, Torah-Mem alludes to the Torah, which was given at the end of forty days at Mount Sinai and has the power to uplift the one who studies and adheres to it.


Sunday is the seventh day of the month Adar. It is the birthday and the day of passing of the greatest leader of the Jewish people of all times, Moshe Rabeinu (Moshe our Teacher).


Moshe led the Jewish people out of Egypt, split the sea, brought them to Mount Sinai to receive the Torah, and led the Jewish people through their forty year journey in the wilderness of Sinai. Moshe was exactly 120 years on the day he passed away. May his merit be a blessing to us all.




Montreal candle lighting time: 5:26 / Shabbat ends: 6:30