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(5745) Rashi (Ex. 39:43): "So Moses blessed them" (And the differences from Rashi Parshat Shmini 9:23)  


1. On the verse (Ex. 39:43):

”Moshe saw the entire work, and lo! they had done it-as the L-rd had commanded, so had they done. So Moshe blessed them.

 Rashi cites the heading:

So Moshe blessed them” and explains: “He said to them, “May it be His will that the Shechinah should rest in the work of your hands. And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us etc.” (Ps. 90:17), and this is one of the eleven psalms in “A prayer of Moshe” (Ps. 90:1)”

ויברך אותם משה: אמר להם יהי רצון שתשרה שכינה במעשה ידיכם, (תהלים צ יז) ויהי נועם ה' אלהינו עלינו ומעשה ידינו וגו', והוא אחד מאחד עשר מזמורים שבתפלה למשה

One must understand:

1. What is the difficulty in understanding this verse that because of it Rashi needs to explain the text of the blessing? For seemingly, when Bnei Yisroel fulfilled the G-d’s command, and especially since they “done it-as the L-rd had commanded”, because of which they were blessed – the subject and aspect of this blessing is self-understood (in the nusach of “We are happy, how goodly is our lot” (״אשרינו מה טוב) or “more power to you (״יישר כח״))?

It is specifically difficult since Rashi takes the verse (“and he blessed”) out of its simple meaning. For he explains that it was not an expression of blessing but rather an expression of prayer – “May it be His will”?

2. The preface “He said to them” is seemingly superfluous in his commentary, for the verse itself says “and he blessed them”?

3. Where is Rashi‘s source for his addition of the second blessing:

“And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us”? For even though we find that Moshe said it, what is the necessity to say that this was the blessing here in Parshat Pekudei?

And even if there is a necessity – he should have explained it there, in the verse in Tehillim.

(just as Rashi does not cite here in Parshat Pekudei on the verse: “It came to pass in the first month . . .. on the first day of the month, that the Mishkan was set up” the explanation that he writes in the beginning of Parsha Shemini concerning the eighth day – for it is not necessary to explain that here)

4. The intent of the addition of the word etc.” (״וגו׳)

(In the “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us”) -

is to allude to a ‘Talmid Memulach’ (an exceptionally astute student) the answer to his question – yet what is the question?

5. What is the implication of his conclusion: “and this is one of the eleven psalms in ‘A prayer of Moshe’” since this verse is (in the conclusion) of the Mizmor of “A prayer of Moshe” itself? And what is the relevance that there are eleven Mizmorim (psalms) in “A prayer of Moshe”?

An even though the same concept exists in the Midrash (Tehillim), nevertheless

1. it is known that Rashi does not cite Midrashim except when they are relevant to the simple understanding of the verse.

2. Rashi does not write here “as it states in the Midrash” (״כדאיתא במדרש) or something similar. Therefore it is understood from this that it is according to the actual Pshat, and not a Midrash that is related (המתאים) to the simple understanding of the verse.

2. The gist of this Rashi - which is the blessing for the resting of the Shechinah – is also in Parshat Shemini on the verse:

“And (Moshe and Aharon) went outside and blessed the people etc.”

There Rashi explains:

“They said: 'May the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us.' May it be His Will that the Shechinah should rest on the work of your hands."

One must understand the differences:

1. There, in Parshat Shemini, the conclusion that is stated in his commentary here - i.e. the words:

 “etc., and this is one of the eleven psalms in ‘A prayer of Moshe’”

                is missing.

 (Even though one could say, with great difficulty, that Rashi is relying on his explation in Parshat Pekudei)

2. Rashi reverses the order of the blessings. There, in Parshat Shemini, he begins with “And may the pleasantness etc.” and afterwards “May it be His will etc.”, whereas in the Rashi in our Parsha, the order is reversed.

3. There, in Parshat Shemini, he writes: “They said” (referring to Moshe and Aharon) whereas here Rashi writes “He said to them”.

3. The explanation is:

The difficulty in the verse is that – in these verses it speaks regarding the completion of the construction of the Mishkan and its vessels, which was made by the wise-hearted people.

And since it concludes afterward that “Moshe blessed them”, it implies that the blessing was to the wise-hearted people who made the Mishkan.

This is not understood:

Why did not Moshe bless all Yisroel since each man and woman donated from their heart and brought the handiwork to the Mishkan as it states: “The men came with the women etc.” so much so that it was necessary to announce: "Let no man or woman do any more work" - and only then “the people stopped bringing”.

Moshe loved Yisroel (he was an Oheiv Yisroel) and he certainly needed to bless them when every man and woman brought the work to the Mishkan, and not just when the wise-hearted people completed the making of the Mishkan – for they (the wise-hearted people) were unique individuals as it states: “See, G-d called by name etc.”

And even if one were to say that – since Rashi does not explain that “Bnei Yisroel”

(Which was stated in the previous verse: “so did the Bnei Yisroel do”)

refers just to the wise-hearted people, it must be that it refers simply (כפשוטו) – to Bnei Yisroel in general (סתם) -

(Even though that just the wise-hearted people “made” the Mishkan – Rashi answers this in his commentary on the verse (39:32):

“All the work of the Mishkan of the Tent of Meeting was completed; the children of Israel had done according to all etc.”

that the words: “the children of Israel had done” refers to “the work” (המלאכה).

In other words, the words: “the children of Israel had done” refers to the work (המלאכה)

(Which was explained before (in verse 36:7) - “And the work of bringing (ומלאכת ההבאה) was sufficient etc.)

and not for the “making” (״עבודת״) of the Mishkan which is stated before this in the verse ) -

Moshe should have blessed them immediately when they completed the bringing, and especially since these were donations. And is it possible that he waited, G-d forbid, close to a half a year to give his blessing?!

Therefore one must say that Moshe certainly blessed them at the proper time, and the verse does not need to explain this since it is simple, as aforementioned. Or on the other hand – it did not require the giving of (the blessing of) Yasher Koach, for what would be the innovation in this? (דמאי קמ״ל)

(even though it is simple that this gave satisfaction (Nachas Ruach) in Moshe Rabbeinu‘s thoughts (במח׳) and feelings)

Therefore, the reason it states here that “Moshe blessed them”, must be that this was not a blessing – the giving of “Yasher Koach”, but rather a special blessing,

(Therefore the verse needed to emphasize it – )

that was specifically connected to the completion of the making of the Mishkan

And since the G-d’s Midah (characteristic) is ‘measure for measure’, certainly G-d’s Midah in this regard was, in conjunction to the Avodah of Bnei Yisroel – who made the Mishkan in order that there be the “and I will dwell among You” – therefore Rashi explains that “He said to them, “May it be His will that the Shechinah should rest in the work of your hands”.

And this is why Rashi prefaces “he said to them” – for the reason that this blessing in mentioned in the verse is because that it was not a general blessing of “Yasher Koach”, etc., but rather that “he said (a thing that was relevant) to them” – a thing that corresponded to their work and to what was their desire: the resting of the Shechinah in their work.

4. However, one must understand:

In the Rashi before this (verse 39:33), it states:

“(they brought the Mishkan to Moshe) since no human being could erect it . . but Moshe (was able to) put it up. (Moshe said before the Holy One, blessed is He, “How is it possible for a human being to erect it (the Mishkan)?”) He (G-d) replied, “You work with your hand.”

According to this, even though Bnei Yisroel “troubled themselves” (טרחו) and Moshe just engaged(ע סק), and (just did so) afterwards. And their blessings are not equal – nevertheless, there must have been a blessing to Moshe after the blessing to Bnei Yisroel and a blessing that also includes (the work (עשיית)) of Bnei Yisroel.

For through Moshe’s effort (עסק) - the work (עשייתם) of Bnei Yisroel in the Mishkan - the “work of your hands” - of Bnei Yisroel - was finished and completed.

Therefore Rashi explains, that it is indeed so (אין הכי נמי), and he cites that we do find the subject of “May it be His will that the Shechinah should rest” even in the verse: “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us etc.” – which is the aspect of the resting of the Shechinah

(However, the Sages use the term “Shechinah”, whereas “the L-rd our G-d” is in the words of the verse).

And with this blessing, which is called a prayer,

(and not the giving of  “Yasher Koach” etc.),

Moshe included himself with them, for he said “be upon us”.

And this is why Rashi concludes: “and this . .is from the psalms in ‘A prayer of Moshe’”. In other words, since we find an explicit blessing in ‘A prayer of Moshe’” for the resting of the Shechinah which is connected to the Mishkan and that Moshe himself is also included, therefore one is forced to say that the blessing was also of this nature -that we learn the plain from the explicit (סתום מן המפורש) that Moshe said in this blessing “And may the pleasantness etc.” in the completion off the making of the Mishkan.

And Rashi adds the word “Etc.” (v’gomer),

(After the words: “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us”) –

for the case that an exceptional student might ask:

Since it says: “in the work of your hands” referring to Bnei Yisroel – what is the proof that the words: “pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us” refers also to Moshe?

Therefore Rashi indicates that the student should look at the continuation of the verse “and the work of our hands”. In other words – these words show that even Moshe‘s handiwork was im the making of the Mishkan (together with the handiwork of Bnei Yisroel).

5. however the Talmid could ask:

How does one know that the words in the verse “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us” was said by Moshe?

(For on the contrary, it appears to indicate the opposite from what was written before this (verse 10): “The days of our years because of them are seventy years, (and if with increase), eighty years” - For the Talmid already learned that Moshe was eighty years old when they went out of Egypt, and the same applies to Miriam and Aharon etc., - and perhaps this is also one of the reasons of the Midrash - that Yisroel said “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us” ).

Therefore Rashi adds “and this is one of the eleven psalms in ‘A prayer of Moshe’”

(Even though this comes at the conclusion of the psalm of ‘A prayer of Moshe’ itself, as aforementioned)

For if Moshe said just this psalm, it is possible to say that just its beginning was said by Moshe, however (the words “seventy .. eighty years etc.” and) the conclusion of the psalm “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us” was what Bnei Yisroel replied to the Moshe‘s words

 (Like the explanation of the Midrash)

However, since, even the psalms afterward were said by Moshe, it is reasonable (מסתבר) to say that this verse, in the middle is from Moshe‘s words – and not the words of Bnei Yisroel.

 (and when it states “seventy etc. eighty years” it is a part of the punishment, as it states (verse 5, 8)” (You carry them away as a flood); they are etc. You have placed our iniquities etc.)

6. Accordingly one can explain the reason for the differences in Rashi in Parshat Shemini:

That which it states there: “and they blessed the people“ refers and comes in conjunction to the Avodah of Aharon and Moshe

(Which is told at length before this).

And the beginning of the blessing refers to this – and this was the reason for the entire blessing, as Rashi states: “They said: "'May the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d-d be upon us' - which primarily (עיקרו) refers to (the Avodah) of Aharon and Moshe

 (and not to the Avodah of Moshe and Bnei Yisroel, like in our Parsha)


1. Rashi writes “they said” without the emphasis “to them”.

2. He does not write “etc.” (v’gomer) – since the continuation of the verse is a new subject and does not refer to the Avodah of Moshe and Aharon.

3. He does not conclude ““and this is one  of. . ‘A prayer of Moshe’”- for here there is no reason to say that Bnei Yisroel said this, since it is speaking of the Avodah of Moshe and Aharon, whereas in Parshat Pekudei where it is speaking of the making of the Mishkan.

Accordingly, even the difference of the order – namely, that he begins with “And may the” and afterwards writes “May it be His will” – (is understood)

For the Avodah of Aharon and Moshe ('the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d-d be upon us.') achieved that afterwards “the Shechinah should rest in the work of your hands.” (of Bnei Yisroel). In other words that the resting of the Shechinah “in the work of your hands” comes after and due to the Avodah of Aharon and Moshe (pleasantness .. upon us).

And as a continuation Rashi writes (in Parshat Shemini):

“Because all seven days of the installation . . the Shechinah did not rest  etc. for by means of his (Aharon ‘s) sacrifices and his service the Shechinah will rest among you”.

7. The lesson from this Rashi is:

Even after Bnei Yisroel completely fulfilled all of G-d’s commandments, - namely the willful donating of each and every one of Yisroel for the making of the Mishkan, so much so that after the finishing and completion of all the Avodah, of the wise-hearted people in the making of the Mishkan - “according to all that G-d commanded”, they still were unable to set up the Mishkan and they needed to bring it to Moshe that he should set it up.

And even this was still not sufficient, until “Moshe blessed them” – for specifically through this did the Shechinah rest in the work of their hands.

On the other hand, when Bnei Yisroel brought their work to Moshe, not only did Moshe bless them, as aforementioned, but even more so, Moshe included himself with them in his blessing: “And may the pleasantness of the L-rd our G-d be upon us” upon us and the work of our hands”. In other words Moshe partnered himself with Klal Yisroel in their work and efforts.

The same applies to the Avodah of each person:

Even after the finishing and the completion of the Avodah that was made known to him, one must know that he still does not possess the ability to reach its purpose – the setting up of the Mishkan for G-d.

But rather one must “bring” the “work” of his Avodah to Moshe Rabbeinu

(the “spark of Moshe that is in each generation” – even to the Rebbe Rayatz – the leader of our generation) –

for only he has the power and ability to set up, from Bnei Yisroel‘s work, a Mishkan for G-d, since he “stands between G-d and between you” – the intermediary that attaches Neshamot Yisroel (Jewish souls) to their Father in Heaven.

And even after Moshe Rabbeinu’s partnership, the Shechinah will still not rest in the deeds of Bnei Yisroel until Moshe Rabbeinu blesses them etc.

In simple terms:

Each Jewish person, notwithstanding all of his virtues and his Avodah must be attached and connected to “the spark of Moshe” – the “Rebbe” – for specifically through him can he connect to G-d.

This is explicitly stated in the revealed aspect (Nigleh) of Torah, in the Mechilta on the verse “and they believed in G-d and in Moshe His servant” that “anyone who believes in Moshe His servant is as if he believes in G-d”.

And more than that:

The entire aspect of each and every Jew, whether in physicality or spirituality, is dependent upon the Nasi. And even this is not just something that is mentioned in Kabbalah and Chassidut, but rather is stated explicitly in the Talmud (Bava Basra 116a):

“Whoever has a sick person in his house should go to a Sage (חכם) who will invoke (heavenly) mercy for him”.

For regarding a “Sick” person – whether it is a sickness in one’s body or soul –

 meaning that one still lacks the completeness of one’s Avodah to his Master -

it is not sufficient that he himself (or another of his family) request mercy for his healing

(for his infliction in physicality or spirituality)

but rather he needs the prayer of the “Sage” – and this effects that “he will return and be healed”.

 Yet there are two conditions to this:

1.       “Sage” (חכם) refers to the maxim: “Who is wise –one who can see the future”. The Alter Rebbe explains that he sees the Word of G-d that gives birth and creates all the creations, each and every moment. For since he sees the Word of G-d in the thing – and not its coarseness and even not its physicality – he sees the true nature of the thing.



1. He has the ability to recognize the true nature of the “sickness” (חולי).

2. He has the ability to awaken mercy and to heal him. For since he sees the Word of G-d, he then possesses the ability to change the permutations (הצירופים) etc., so much so that it is similar to (the Talmud’s statement) “He who said to oil that it should light can say to vinegar that it should light”

2. A “Sage” (חכם) must be “in the city” (״בעיר״) – he must not seclude himself in his own Dalet Amot (area). For even though he is involved in Talmud Torah and prayer and other lofty aspects, nevertheless he must be found in “the city” and be dedicated to each and every one of Bnei Yisroel who are found in it – therefore he can request mercy for them etc.

And these two conditions are similar to the two aforementioned aspects regarding Moshe Rabbeinu and Bnei Yisroel:

1. That they need to bring all the work, in order that it fulfill its purpose and its completeness – to Moshe, who is the “Sage” – the shepherd of Yisroel.

2. That Moshe includes himself together with Klal Yisroel.

8. However, before Bnei Yisroel came to Moshe, it states: “and Bnei Yisroel did according to all that G-d commanded” – in other words, before Moshe’s partnership and his blessing, all the Avodah of the Mishkan, that was placed upon them, was finished and at the epitome of completion. And only then, did Moshe join with them in making the Mishkan and bless them.

And the same is in the Avodah of each and every person:

One can only merit the participation of the “Moshe” in each generation, and his blessing – when his Avodah is with all his wherewithal and ability. This is similar to the verse “and the L-rd, your G-d, will bless you in all that you do” – specifically. In other words, the “healing” (״רפואת״) of (Moshe) the “Sage” (״חכם״) comes only when the “sick person” (״חולה״) performs all his mundane deeds (פעולות טבעיות) according to Torah (as the Sages state: “And He shall surely heal” – from this verse permission was given to a doctor to heal”)

However, if the work of Bnei Yisroel in making the Mishkan is still lacking (similar to the saying of the Rebbe Rayatz that there are “problem-Chassidim” (״צרות־חסידים״) meaning that when they have good, they do not “come” (באים) (i.e. do not follow when missions of spreading the Wellsprings (בהפצת ה מעינות) are placed on them etc. Yet when they are in times of need (בעת צרה), G-d forbid, they come with claims (בתביעה) etc., that they need a “miracle” (״מופת״) – in a situation like this, they are not a proper receptacle for Moshe‘s partnership and blessing.

However, when Bnei Yisroel properly perform their Avodah according to their ability, and they come to Moshe Rabbeinu in a proper manner – with faith – as the Sages expound ion the verse “and they believed in G-d and in Moshe His servant” – then Moshe joins with the Avodah of each and every person, for he includes himself with the group (Klal) and he aids each person, individually, in their Avodah to G-d. And after his partnership in the Avodah of Klal Yisroel, he effects with his blessing, the resting of the Shechinah in “the work of our hands”, namely of Klal Yisroel and Moshe among them, and he brings each person to their true completeness.

mSichas Shabbat Parshat Vayakhel-Pekudei

Mevarchim haChodesh Nisan 5735

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