Vayakhel 5779-2019

"Jewish Women and Jewish Destiny"
(Revised and updated from Vayakhel 5760-2000)

We are told in parashat Vayakhel that the Jewish women responded immediately to the appeals that were made by Moses for gold for building the Tabernacle, swiftly removing their precious jewelry and rushing them to the Tabernacle. This was only one of the many heroic actions that the women of Israel performed. The key role that the women of Israel played in the redemption of the people of Israel is confirmed by the remarkable rabbinic statement asserting that “only in the merit of the righteous women, were our ancestors redeemed from Egypt.” It is quite likely that this is true, not only of the generation of Egypt, but for all subsequent generations as well.

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Vayakhel 5776-2016

“The Wise-Hearted Person”

The Torah’s understanding of wisdom is a far cry from the contemporary understanding of wisdom and the measurement of Intelligence Quotients. The Al-mighty did not want His “house” to be built by the most skilled workmen or the most intelligent workmen. The house of G-d needed to be built by “Chachmei lev,” by wise-hearted people who were warm-hearted and prepared to invest their very hearts and souls into the dwelling place which would be the focus of the Divine Presence.

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Vayakhel 5774-2014

“Lip Service is Hardly Enough”

The Torah commentators point to the subtle but profound differences between the charitable giving of the People of Israel to the Golden Calf and their donations of varied materials that were used to build the Tabernacle.

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Vayakhel 5771-2011

"Straying from Lofty Spiritual Moorings"

Not everybody is impressed by the people of Israel’s generosity when donating to the Tabernacle. One sage maintains that the people gave far more willingly to the Golden Calf than to the Tabernacle. Might this be an unredeemable stain on the people’s record?

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Vayakhel 5768-2008

"Rochel the Riveter"

Those who study parashat Vayakhel feel, at times, like throwing up their hands and saying, "Enough of the excruciating detail about the building of the Tabernacle." Nevertheless, there are always new and revolutionary insights that may be found when studying the nuances of the texts carefully. Parashat Vayakhel teaches about the special role that the women played in building the Tabernacle and conveys the important message about the primacy of the Jewish home that must never be compromised.

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Vayakhel 5765-2005

"Bezalel's Artistic Legacy"

Throughout the ages, Judaism has struggled with its mixed attitude toward art and sculpture. One of the few unconditionally positive statements about art is the Torah's description in parashat Vayakhel of Bezalel's many talents. Aside from his prodigious skills, Bezalel was also a master teacher of art, and it is not unlikely that, because of his artistry and singular devotion, we today enjoy the aesthetic gifts that have been passed down through him from generation to generation.

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Vayakhel 5763-2003

"Defining True Generosity"

Although people tend to say that generosity is simply giving of one's wherewithal to help another, Judaism defines true generosity as giving with a full and willing heart. It is the willing heart that determines true and genuine generosity.

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Vayakhel 5760-2000

"Jewish Women and Jewish Destiny"

We are told in parashat Vayakhel that the Jewish women responded immediately to the appeals that were made by Moses for gold for building the Tabernacle, removing their precious jewelry and rushing them to the Tabernacle. This was only one of the many heroic actions that the women of Israel performed. The key role that the women of Israel played in the redemption of the people of Israel is confirmed by the remarkable rabbinic statement asserting that only in the merit of the righteous women, were our ancestors redeemed from Egypt. It is quite likely that this is true not only of the generation of Egypt, but in all subsequent generations as well.

Read More


0 Comments15 Minutes