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Simcha Groffman

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Kinder Torah
For parents to share with children at the Shabbos Table

Parashas Pinchas

In Fond Memory of our Beloved Husband and Father Mordechai Dovid ben Avigdor Shafer z"l


"What's for breakfast, Imma?"

"Toast and eggs, Avi."

"Mmmmm. Sounds delicious, Imma. Your breakfast always gives me the energy that I need to learn well."

"Thank you Avi dear. How did you pray this morning?"

"Great, Imma. I started a little earlier than usual. I was able to say all of the korbonos."

"Fantastic! That is quite an accomplishment, Avi. It is so important to say korbonos every day. In the times of the Beis HaMikdash, the korbonos were the focus of our avodah. They brought blessing down to the entire world, and served as a kapora (atonement) for our sins. Nowadays, we no longer have a Beis HaMikdash. However, we can offer up our own version of the korbonos by learning about them and reciting the sections of tefillah which describe them."

"Imma, this week's parasha details many of the korbonos. I saw a wonderful Devar Torah in the Sefer HaChinuch which ties together the Korbon Tomid and your delicious breakfast."

"Please share it with me, Avi dear."

"There were two tomidim brought every day. One early in the morning, and one in the afternoon, shortly before sunset. The Sefer HaChinuch points out that these two times of day correspond to the times that a person eats his two main meals. He must trouble himself to prepare the food to eat. We are all servants of Hashem. Is it fitting that the servant should work harder for himself than for his master? Of course not! Therefore, at the same time that we are preparing our own meals, the Kohanim are preparing and offering the tomidim to The Almighty."

"That is beautiful, Avi. However, what is the function of the Korbon Tomid?"

"The Sefer HaChinuch gives two answers to the question. Firstly, it increases our awareness of Hashem. We ultimately want to think about Him all of the time. The tomidim help us to remember Him during mealtimes, when we are benefiting from His goodness. Secondly, offering the korbonos is a big chessed (act of kindness) to Hashem."

"How can that be? He does not need our korbonos. He is perfect without them. He does not need anything from us, or anyone else."

"True, however, Hashem wants to give to us. He wants to give us blessing in this world, and reward in the world to come. We allow Him to do this by fulfilling His will. Offering korbonos and their equivalent prayers nowadays, are an important way to serve Him and do His will. They give Him nachas ruach, as the verse states, 'A pleasant aroma to Hashem' (Bamidbar 28:8)."

"Avi, you have turned breakfast into a truly spiritual experience."

"Imma, the delicious smell and taste of your toast and eggs serve as a wonderful reminder of the 'pleasant aroma' of the Korbon Tomid."

"May we merit offering it up speedily and in our days."


Kinderlach . . .

We are now in the period of mourning for the Beis HaMikdash. We have lost the Mizbeach. The Kohanim no longer have their avodah. The Leviim no longer have their songs. We no longer offer our daily offerings, our sin offerings, or our thanksgiving offerings. We no longer go up with our korbonos on the Shalosh Regalim. Oh, what can we do to replace what we have lost? Teshuva and maasim tovim (good deeds) will help bring back the Beis HaMikdash. Kinderlach, we can each do a small act which will have a big effect. We can recite the Korbon Tomid twice each day - before breakfast and before sunset. This will remind us that we are here in this world to serve Hashem, and give Him nachas ruach. This will allow Hashem to shower His goodness upon us. This will show Him how badly we want the Beis HaMikdash. And with His help it will be rebuilt speedily and in our days.

Independent Spirit

"Hashem said to Moshe, 'Take to yourself Yehoshua Ben Nun, a man in whom there is spirit, and lean your hand upon him'" (Bamidbar 27:18). The Ha'amek Davar explains that this was a tremendous pleasure for Moshe Rabbeinu. Yehoshua was his main talmid (student), who was beloved to him like a son. Now he was passing the crown of leadership over to him.

Yehoshua is described as "a man in whom there is spirit". The Ha'amek Davar relates that the spirit was the knowledge to stand alone. He was not drawn after his own person bias or the wishes of others. Rather, he stood fast on the truth. We see that the ten spies opposed him, and they rallied the people to their camp. Yet he would not be drawn after them. This was one of the qualities that earned him the position as Moshe's successor, the leader of Klal Yisrael.

Kinderlach . . .

"Hey guys, did you see this fancy new electronic gizmo that I got? Look at the fancy lights, pictures and sounds. And it fits right into the palm of my hand." "Wow, that's really neat. Can I see it? Can I play with it?" Everyone crowded around the boy with the new gadget. Everyone except . . . Yehoshua. "Hey Shuie, don't you want to see this gizmo?" "Not really. I'm not interested in those hi-tech gadgets. They are a big waste of time and distract me from learning Torah." "But Shuie, everybody has one." "Wrong, Benny. I don't have one." "Come on Shuie. Join the crowd." "Not this time, Benny. I'm going to be like my namesake, Yehoshua Ben Nun. He would not be drawn into the wrong thing and neither will I."

Parasha Questions:

What was the total number of parim were brought up on Succos? (29:13-32)

What other name does Shavuos have? (28:26)

What is the korbon unique to Shavuos? (28:26 and Rashi)

What type of spirit did Yehoshua have? (Rashi 27:18)

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