Pearls of Rashi – Tzav

This week we read the Torah portion of Tzav. At the beginning of the Parshah, Hashem tells Moshe to[1] “Command Aharon and his sons, saying, ‘this is the law of the burnt offering …’” There are various words which Hashem uses to tell Moshe to issue commandments to Jews (or to groups of Jews). Here Hashem tells Moshe to “command” (rather than “say” or “speak”) to the Kohanim about the laws of the burnt offering. Rashi explains the use of the word “command.” He cites the words “command Aharon,” and says that “The expression ‘command’ always denotes urging to promptly and meticulously fulfill a particular commandment both in the present and for all future generations.”

Rashi’s words present us with several important lessons which apply to all times. Every command must be fulfilled with the greatest alacrity. If one even briefly considers the great privilege afforded to us, the ability to connect with Hashem by fulfilling His commandments, he should be filled with the greatest joy! Each of us must invest all of our G-d given abilities in carrying out each Mitzvah in the best manner possible. We must certainly never delay fulfilling His Mitzvos; rather we must perform each Mitzvah as quickly as possible.

Along these lines, the Torah commands us that[2] “you shall watch over the Matzos …” The word Matzos, meaning unleavened bread, and Mitzvos, meaning commandments, can both be spelled the same way in Hebrew. Based on this, Rashi, explaining the above verse, quotes from the Sages “do not read ‘the Matzos,’ rather read ‘the Mitzvos.’ Just as we may not permit the Matzos to become leavened, so too may we not permit the Mitzvos ‘to become leavened.’ If a Mitzvah comes to your hand, perform it immediately.”

The fulfillment of each Mitzvah affects all future generations. For one thing the act of performing a Mitzvah now bears fruit for all generations. Additionally, just as Hashem is eternal, so are His commandments. May we merit seeing the fruit of our Mitzvos with the coming of Moshiach now! In the same manner, we know that joy breaks through all barriers. May the unbridled joy of Purim burst through the barrier of Golus now, once and for all.

Wishing one and all a very happy Purim!

Rabbi Shmuel Mendelsohn

Adapted from Likkutei Sichos Volume 7, Pages 30-38

Mr. Sholom Moshe Hacohen
ben Reb Shlomo Meir Hacohen ע”ה Cohen
Passed away Shabbos Parshas Beshalach, 13 Shevat, 5779
May His Soul be bound in the Eternal Bond of Life
* * *
לעילוי נשמת
ר’ שלום משה הכהן בן ר’ שלמה מאיר הכהן ע”ה כהן
נפטר ש”ק פ’ בשלח, י”ג שבט, ה’תשע”ט
ת. נ. צ. ב. ה.
יו”ל ע”י בני משפחתו שיחיו

[1]. Our Parshah, Vayikroh 6:2.

[2]. Parshas Bo, Shemos 12:17.

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