Parshat Pekudei


First Portion

PEKUDEI-meaning account, refers to the account taken of how the donated gold, silver and copper were used in building the MISHKAN “The Medrash is bothered by Moshe’s repetitive expression. Why does he repeat the words Mishkan — Mishkan? He should have said, “These are the reckoning of the
Mishkan of testimony.”? The Medrash answers, homiletically, that the word Mishkan has a close relative in the word Mashkon — collateral. Moshe was alluding, “to the two Temples that were taken back by G-d as collateral for the sins of Israel.”

Second Portion

The avney shoam – stones of the breastplate, which would light up, hinting to the Kohen gadol various answers to vital questions that were asked. Each stone contains six letters to symbolize that the world was created in six days, is found upon the 12 tribes. The total of 72 letters corresponds to the 72 letter Divine names, which maintains the existence of the universe. G-d does kindness to maintain the world. In fact, the numerical value of chessed – kindness is 72. We all know that the Friday night Kiddush has a tremendous spiritual impact. If one adds all the words of the kiddush, he will come up with 72. If one says Friday night Kiddush sincerely with all his heart, he will bring down chessed to himself from G-d.

Third Portion

The mitznefet or migba’at – turban is what the Kohen Gadol wore on his head. The mitznefet atones for arrogance. G-d said let it atone for the sin of holding the head to high. G-d hates arrogance. Jews, for this reason, for generations, have always, traditionally, worn a covering on their head.

Fourth Portion

Ken Asu-so they had done-This expression is used various times in this chapter. There action is a atonement for the actions which led to the sin of the golden calf. The incident with the golden calf was a confused act of Bnei Yisrael who tried to create an intermediary between them and G-d, instead of the direct relationship which they would’ve/might’ve had otherwise. As a result, they would never be able to directly serve G-d; it would have to be through something else- through the mishkan. This is one of the most tragic things that has happened to the Jewish people. To an extent, we lost the ability to connect with G-d directly, and instead we are forced to do so through a mishkan.

Fifth Portion

Although the Mishkan was complete in the month of Kislev, the inauguration did not take place till the month of Nissan, months later. This was in honor of Yitzchak whose birthday was the first of Nissan. Yitzchak was willing to be sacrificed for G-d and in a way was considered the first sacrifice. We learn a very important concept; if one has the intention to do a mitzvah he will get credit for the mitzvah, even though, for what ever reason, it didn’t materialize.

Sixth Portion

The concept of the previous section is found here also.The Sages say that when the Jewish People came to Moshe with the Mishkan, they said, “Here are the boards, and here are the poles, but we can’t assemble it”. The Mishkan was too heavy to put up. Chaza”l explain that Moshe was miraculously given super human strength and only Moshe himself was able to put up the Mishkan. Yet the verse had said, that the “Mishkan” that was brought to Moshe. What does the verse mean, according to Sages, if indeed they did not bring a finished Mishkan to Moshe?

Sages are telling us is that since they did everything they were able to do, with the intention of assembling the Mishkan, the Pasuk credits them as if they had brought the completed Mishkan to Moshe.

Seventh Portion

With the mishkan complete, the Israelites are now ready to atone for their sins and to get closer to G-d

Credit to: Rabbi Avi Matmon