Pearls of Rashi: Parshas Beha’aloscho II

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This week’s Torah portion, Beha’aloscho, tells us of the construction of the Menorah[1]; “This was the form of the Menorah; hammered work of gold, from its base to its flower it was hammered work; according to the form that the Lord showed Moshe, so did he construct the Menorah.” Rashi comments on the words “so did he construct the Menorah,” explaining first that the term “he” refers to “the one who made it,” specifically Betzalel. In his second interpretation, Rashi quotes an Aggadic Midrash which states that “it was made by itself through the Holy One, Blessed be He.” According to that interpretation, the word “He” refers to Hashem.

Rashi is first and foremost explaining Peshat, the text’s simple meaning. However, according to Peshat, it is difficult to explain that Hashem made the Menorah. Additionally, we need to understand what the Torah is teaching us here.

We can explain this as follows. There are two types of G-dly revelations. One comes about as a result of one’s work. In the language of Chassidic Philosophy, this is called an awakening from below. One waking oneself from below causes an awakening from Above. There is also an awakening from Above, which comes without preparation, as a Divine gift. It comes from a level that is far beyond anything one could reach on his own. Such was the case with the Menorah. A level of G-dliness that is so transcendent made it. A person could not reach such a high level on his own.

Not just this, but it comes from the very essence of Hashem, which one cannot express in any name.

This “awakening from Above” also applies to the coming of Moshiach and the building of the Holy Temple. Both the Zohar[2], and Rashi in his commentary to the Talmud[3], tell us that Hashem will build the Third Bais Hamikdosh, and it will descend from heaven. May it be G-d’s will that we fulfill this in the complete and true redemption through our righteous Moshiach. In the words of the Rambam[4], “may he speedily be revealed, Omain, such should be Hashem’s will!”

I wish one and all a Good Shabbos and a healthy summer!

Rabbi Shmuel Mendelsohn

Adapted from Likkutei Sichos Volume 38, Pages 33 ff.

מוקדש לזכות כ”ק אדמו”ר נשיא דורנו מליובאוויטש

The Soldiers of Tzivos Hashem Chaim and Aiden Oded שיחיו Morris
Rabbi & Mrs. Menachem M. and Chaya Mushka שיחיו Morris

חיילי “צבאות השם” חיים ועדן עודד שיחיו מאריס
נדפס ע”י הוריהם
הרה”ת ר’ מנחם מענדל וזוגתו מרת חי’ מושקא שיחיו מאריס


[1]. Bamidbar 8:4.

[2]. The Zohar uses the expression “the building of … the Holy One, blessed be He in Zohar Section 3, 221, a, and Section 1, 28, a.

[3]. Both Rashi and Tosfos say that the Third Temple will “be revealed and come from heaven. Talmud Sukkah 41, at the end of side a.

[4]. The Laws of Poroh Adumah, at the end of Chapter Three.

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