by Zvi Akiva Fleisher
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SEDRAH SELECTIONS PARSHAS TZAV 5773 BS"D
Ch. 6, v. 2: "Tzav" - Command - Rashi (gemara Kidushin 29a) comments that "tzav" is an expression of alacrity. The gemara Kidushin 41 says that one who is commanded to do a mitzvoh and does it is greater than one who is not commanded to do it and does it. Obviously, an explanation is needed for this, as logic dictates the reverse. Tosfos (ad loc.) explains that one who is commanded experiences concern and stress to do that which is incumbent upon him, while one who does so only voluntarily does not have this pressure. This is why the one who is commanded is greater. This is why "tzav" connotes alacrity. One who is commanded will surely put more effort into fulfilling the command. (Chanukas haTorah)
Ch. 6, v. 2: "Tzav es Aharon v'es bonov leimore" - Command Aharon and his sons so saying - The medrash says that "leimore" teaches us that when one has an "oloh" offering sacrificed he should busy himself with reading, and then have a double merit, the actual sacrificing of the "oloh" and the reading of its laws.
The gemara Yoma 5b says that the reading of the korbon section obligatory and is needed for the efficacy of the sacrifice, based on the words, "Zeh hadovor" (Vayikra 8:5), dovor = dibur. Just as Hashem instituted that an offering can bring atonement, so too the reading of its verses brings atonement.
The Holy Chofetz Chaim writes that all the more so when we unfortunately no longer have the Beis Hamikdosh is the reading of the korbonos verses and the study of its laws incumbent upon the person who would have brought it had the Beis Hamikdosh been standing. The Holy Zohar on parshas Vayeiro writes: Rabbi Kruspadai said that there is a covenant Hashem has made that when people read and study the laws of korbonos in houses of worship or study that any evil powers that would verbalize negative statements, claims against a person, when he recites and studies these laws, the prosecuting angels' claims are shut and to the contrary, they speak only good of him.
This is further bolstered by the gemara Megiloh 16a, which relates that when Homon came to dress Mordechai and lead him on a horse, he found Mordechai and other Rabbis studying the details of the laws of "k'mitzoh," the fistful of meal taken from the meal offering and burned on the altar. He said that the power of his 10,000 talents of silver offered to the king have been overpowered by the fistful of flour. It is most unusual that the Rabbis busied themselves with the technicalities of the meal offering, something that was not even practical at the time, given that there was no Beis Hamikdosh existent at the time. We clearly see from here that even the study of offering laws negates all negative forces.
The Holy Chofetz Chaim, in a letter to Rabbi Yoseif Chaim Sonnenfeld, writes that the in depth study of "kodoshim" shows that a person truly anticipates the coming of the Moshiach, as these laws will again be put into practical use. When we show Hashem that we are preparing, He will respond in kind, bb"a.
Ch. 6, v. 6: "Aish tomid tukad al hamizbei'ach lo sichbeh" - A continuous fire shall burn on the altar it shall not extinguish - The gemara Yerushalmi Yoma 4:6 says that this law applies in the desert during their travels as well. They had to make sure that the fire on the altar always burned. When a person is in his regular environment it is much easier for him to serve Hashem with great vigour, with passionate fire. He has his reputation to live up to and as well would be embarrassed to behave on a lower level in front of his acquaintances, whom he faces daily. When he travels and is in a foreign environment he can readily lower his standard of spiritual behaviour. This is the requirement of "aish tomid," even when traveling, as per the gemara Yerushalmi. This is the point made by the verse in T'hilim 128, "Ashrei kol y'rei Hashem haho'leich b'chol d'rochov." (Hadrash V'ho'iyun)
Ch. 6, v. 13: "Zeh korban Aharon" - This is Aharon's offering - Vayikra Raboh cites the verse in Shoftim 14:14, "Va'yomer lohem mei'ocheil yotzo maachol." Shimshon asked a riddle of the Plishtim. What is it that from a food consumer issued forth a food? Shimshon wondered to himself when he saw a honey-comb in the carcass of a lion, a most unusual sight, and equated this with Aharon, who is in a position to consume many offerings, and he himself offers a korban, as per our verse. The insight offered by the medrash is that when someone merits having success, such as great riches, the wealth is not there just for himself. He is required to help others with his good fortune. Aharon's being given the opportunity to consume parts of numerous offerings is so that he bring atonement for the masses. This is the lesson Shimshon took from coming upon the most unusual sight. His great strength was not given to him to just use for himself. It was given so that he relieve the bnei Yisroel from their oppressors. "Mei'ocheil yotzo maachol." "Maachol" is in the causitve form, to bring others to eat. (Y'fei To'ar)
Ch. 6, v. 18: "B'mokome asher tishocheit ho'oloh tishocheit hachatos" - In the location that the oloh will be slaughtered shall the chatos be slaughtered - Rabbeinu Bachyei, the Chizkuni, and others explain that the Torah ruled that the chatos offering be slaughtered in the same location as the oloh so as not to embarrass one who has sinned unintentionally with a sin that requires a chatos. By having it slaughtered in the same location as the oloh, in the northern area of the Mikdosh courtyard, onlookers will think that he only sinned in thought, which is a reason for bringing an oloh, and not for actually sinning. This is actually stated by the gemara Sotoh 32b.
How is this derived? Maybe Hashem wanted them both to be slaughtered in the same location because they are each "kodesh kodoshim" level offerings? If so, the Torah should have straightforward have said to slaughter the chatos in the north as it says by the oloh. By putting it in tandem with the oloh this lesson is derived. (gemara Yerushalmi Y'vomos 8:3)
Ch. 8, v. 4: "Va'yaas Moshe kaasher tzivoh Hashem oso vatiko'heil ho'eidoh" - And Moshe did as Hashem commanded him and the congregation assembled - when Moshe did as Hashem commanded him the congregation assembled by itself with no announcements. When a great leader does Hashem's will people automatically come to learn from his words and behaviour. (Ohel Torah)
Ch. 8, v. 24: "Va'yakreiv es bnei Aharon va'yitein Moshe min hadom al tnuch oznom ha'y'monis v'al bohen yodom ha'y'monis v'al bohen raglom ha'y'monis" - And Moshe brought close the sons of Aharon and gave of the blood on their right earlobe and on their right thumb and on their right big toe - This was done to ward off all sorts of negative destructive powers so they should not harm the sons of Aharon in any manner. So great was the sanctity of what they were about to embark on that great protection was needed. (Paanei'ach Rozo)
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