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Simcha Groffman

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Parshas Beha'aloscha

For parents to give over to the children at the Shabbos table

This week's parsha is dedicated in loving memory of
Moreinu Vi'Rabbeinu HaRav HaGaon Rav Shmuel Ben HaRav Yaakov Yitzchak Scheinberg ZT"L
Rosh Yeshivas Migdal Torah
Niftar on the Twelfth of Sivan, 5757

Honoring One Another

We all know that Torah does not waste words, yet in this week's parsha we see the same paragraph repeated twelve times! The end of the parsha describes the inauguration of the Mishkan (Tabernacle). Each one of the twelve princes of the tribes of Israel brought an identical offering to the Mishkan for the inauguration. The Torah could have mentioned the details of the first prince's offering, subsequently writing that each of the other princes brought the same offering. The Medrash tells us that each offering had a unique symbolic meaning. For example, the offering of Nesanel Ben Tsuar, prince of the tribe of Yissachar, represented Torah learning, the strong point of his tribe. If each offering embodied a unique idea, then the offerings should have all been different. Why were they, in fact the same? Additionally, each prince could have brought a larger or smaller offering depending on his wealth. The Chofetz Chaim explains that each prince brought the same offering in order to honor the other princes, and not arouse their jealousy. This gave Hashem such nachas ruach that He gave each prince his own paragraph in the Torah. Seventy-two verses altogether are devoted to honoring these princes, because they honored each other. During the counting of the Omer, we mentioned the punishment suffered by the students of Rebbe Akiva for not honoring one another. Now we see the other side of the coin, the tremendous reward given to the princes of Israel for honoring one another.

"Children . . .
How do we honor each other? Do we tell Imma to serve our brother have his lunch first? Do we bring Abba or Imma a nice drink when they come into the house? Do we stand up for them when they enter the room? How about listening to the neighbor's Abba when he tells us to play quietly. Besides being a big mitzvah, we see that all of these things give Hashem nachas ruach. Isn't that a wonderful thing to do? "

Truly Yours

The posuk (Bamidbar 5:10) says, "A man's holy things shall be his, what he gives to the Kohen shall be his." The question is asked if someone gives these things away to the Beis Hamikdash or to the Kohen, how can they still be his? Rav Zalman Sorotzkin answers this question with a parable. A Jewish officer of the king once became very prosperous. The other officers were jealous of him, so they began to spread false rumors that he was stealing from the king. At first, the king ignored these reports, because he trusted the Jewish officer very much. However, the rumors became so persistent that he could no longer ignore them. He called the Jewish officer in for investigation. The first question the king asked was the total value of the officer's assets. The officer answered the king with a figure amounting to exactly 10% of the worth of his assets. The king realized that this could not be true, so he ordered the court to prosecute the officer. The day of the trial arrived and the king asked his officer, "How could you be so brazen to lie so openly to me?" The officer replied, "I did not lie. The king asked me the value of my assets. I told the king the value of the tsedaka that I have given. That is the only money that is truly mine. Anything else can be taken away from me, as the king sees happening before his eyes."

"Children . . .
The only possessions that we really own are the ones we give to Hashem. We give our money to tsedaka, we give our time and energy to learning Torah and doing mitzvos. These are ours and can never be taken away from us."

Enjoy your Shabbos table !

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