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The Torah Learning Library of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah

Archive: May 2023

Chuppah and Har Sinai

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on May 18, 2023

Republished from August 2009 When we move from sefer Vayikra to sefer Bamidbar, we are finally moving away from Har Sinai, where Bnei Yisrael have been for almost a year. From the middle of Shemot through the end of Vayikra, they have been encamped at the foot of Har Sinai, having received the Torah, mitzvot and laws, and then all the laws of the Kohanim, through Kedoshim and Behar Bechukotai.…

Has our Relationship Lost its Sizzle?

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on May 10, 2023

Republished from May 2014 In the blessings to be bestowed on the people if they follow God’s commandments and observe God’s laws—the rains will come in their appointed season, the land will bring forth its fruit, there will be peace in the land, and the people will be fruitful and multiply—it finishes with a bizarre verse “I will place my Tabernacle (mishkani) in your midst, and My soul will not abhor you” (Vayikra 26:11).…

Let Go and Let God!

by Rabbi Dr. Eli Yoggev
Posted on March 23, 2023

Parsha Vayikra opens up with Hashem calling out to Moshe: “Vayikra el Moshe” (Vayikra 1:1). In the word vayikra there is a small letter aleph. This is a unique occurrence because we only find small letters in eight other places in the Torah.…

Every Bit Counts!

by Rabbi Dr. Eli Yoggev
Posted on March 9, 2023

Parsha Ki Tisa opens up mandating a contribution of machatzit hashekel, a half-shekel, toward the construction of the Mishkan (Ex. 30:13). Our commentators ask why the Torah demands a half-shekel and no more. Doesn’t Hashem want our full commitment, our whole contribution? …

Sukkah As Tabernacle

by Tadhg Cleary
Posted on October 6, 2022

The Rema—the great Halakhic Codifier of Ashkenazi Jewry—rules that we should build the sukkah on the day after Yom Kippur (starting even right after we break the fast) (Orach Chaim, 624:5-625:1). Some infer that, ideally, we are not supposed to even begin construction of the sukkah at all during the Aseret Yemei Teshuva—the days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.…

The Reciprocity Principle

by Adam Cohen
Posted on August 4, 2022

Imagine you see a busker playing the violin in a train station. You give them money as you walk past and carry on with your day. But it is a shame in a way. Just 30 more seconds of your time and you could have taken this mitzvah to the next level.…

Mishkan in the Middle

by Eliezer Weinbach
Posted on June 2, 2022

When you arrive at your parent’s house for the holidays, or invite that uncle over for Shabbat, you may find yourself discussing topics of great social and political import. And you may find yourself to be bamidbar – in the desert – a place devoid of the refreshing waters of agreement.…

Moshe’s Transformation: Empowering a Nation

by Rabbi Ezra Seligsohn
Posted on March 3, 2022

What does it feel like to give responsibilities to others? To cede control over a project? In this week’s Parasha, Pekudei, the Mishkan is completed. What becomes clear from a close read of the Pesukim is how nervous Moshe was about the project and, ultimately, how surprised, satisfied, and impressed he was with the work of Betzalel and the craftsmen and builders of the Mishkan.…

It Arises Miraculously (From Our Efforts)

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on March 12, 2021

When we work together as a group — collaboratively, and with a single goal and a shared mission in front of our eyes, something miraculous occurs. When God commanded the building of the Mishkan in Terumah, the words we heard over and over again were “ve-asita – you shall make,” and “ve-asu – you shall do”.…

Why is the Temple Not a Golden Calf?

by Rabbi Dov Linzer
Posted on February 18, 2021

What’s the difference between the making of the egel ha’zahav (golden calf) and the building of the mishkan (the Tabernacle)?  When it comes to the building of the Temple, our Rabbis teach that God is not primarily to be found on the mountaintop, where Avraham encountered God.…