וְאַתָּה תְּצַוֶּה׀ אֶת־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וְיִקְחוּ אֵלֶיךָ שֶׁמֶן זַיִת זָךְ כָּתִית לַמָּאוֹר לְהַעֲלֹת נֵר תָּמִיד׃

And you shall command the children of Israel that they bring you pure oil of pressed olives for the light, to cause the lamp to burn continually.





Brit Chadasha

March 4 2023

“Will command”

Exodus 27:20-30:10

1Sam 15:2-34

Phil. 4:10-20
Hebrews 13:10-17



It is a well-known observation that, from the beginning of Exodus until the beginning of Deuteronomy, there is not a Parasha in which Moses is not mentioned, except for Parashat Tetzaveh . This Parasha focuses on the operation of the Mishkan (Tabernacle) that will unite the people with God and the path of Spiritual live given by His commandments that will bring an awareness and will open the people to be comfortable hearing God's voice.

At the core of Parashat Tetzave is a detailed description of the clothing worn by the officiants who will perform ritual service in the sacred space known as the Tent of Meeting (and later, the Temple). In the same way that holy space must be constructed differently from common space, so too must the priests and High Priest be “separate” from the common people. It is for this reason that Torah commands the fabrication of special clothing. First we read the detailed description of all of the sacral vestments required by the High Priest: the ephod, breastplate, robe, frontlet, tunic, headdress, and sash; and then the Parasha turns its attention to the special apparel of the ordinary priests. While each description of the various appurtenances is enticing and aesthetic in its own right, most striking and tantalizing to the senses is the hem of the robe worn by the High Priest.

The expression, Tetzaveh, “will command” is used where there is special emphasis to be laid on the seriousness and importance of a duty which is mandatory and also for all time, and above all, where it is a question of sacrificing material wealth for spiritual ends, the profit of which does not seem to be immediately apparent . . . The oil of the nation is to be offered for the light of Torah; the menorah represents the tree of the national spirit, not solely that of the priests. It is highly characteristic that it is only the daily provision of the means for obtaining light, and the conditioning of the lamps and wicks to produce a clear light that is the realm of the priests.