Vol 31.32 - Vayakhel 3 Spanish French Audio Video
Ex. 35:30): "Chur" and Rashi (ibid 34) "And Oholiov".
The innovation in the aspect of "He does not recognize the rich over the poor."
(5746 Vol.31 XXXI Pg 211)
1. On the verse (Ex. 35:31):
“Moshe said to the children of Israel: "See, the L-rd has called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Chur, of the tribe of Judah.”
“Chur: He was Miriam’s son”
One must understand:
Chur is already previously mentioned in the Torah (at the conclusion of Parsha Beshalach) in the war of Amalek,
(As it states: “Moshe, Aharon and Chur went up to the top of the hill. Aharon and Chur supported (Moshe’s) hands”).
In addition, it is also at the conclusion of Parsha Mishpatim – where it tells there that when Moshe ascended the mountain, he said to the elders “Aharon and Chur will be with you etc.”
In both of those places, Rashi explains that Chur is Miriam’s son. Therefore, why does Rashi need to repeat this is our Parsha?
The commentators explain that Rashi’s intent is because:
“It is problematic since it is not the Torah’s way to trace lineage except to one’s father like it traces Oholiov’s lineage. Why then does it trace Bezalel’s lineage to Chur, his grandfather. Therefore, it is certain that Chur (since he was the son of Miriam) was the main lineage of Bezalel and therefore his lineage is traced after him”
However, this seemingly is not a sufficient answer, for:
“G-d spoke to Moshe, saying, I have called by name (designated) Betzalel, son of Uri son of Chur, of the tribe of Yehudah.”
Yet there Rashi does not comment at all. Therefore, if it is difficult to Rashi why Bezalel’s lineage is traced after his grandfather – he should have commented on it previously in Parsha Tisa?
The great virtue of Chur is proven from the two aforementioned places:
In the previous Rashi it is cited that at the time of the making of the Calf, Chur reprimanded Bnei Yisroel and they killed him.
In other words:
If so, how does Rashi know to innovate that the intent of the verse is to trace Bezalel’s lineage to (Chur since he is the son) of Miriam – and not to Chur himself?
2. One could say that Rashi’s explanation. “Chur: He was Miriam’s son” is not a statement, in and of itself, but rather that it is the beginning of the following Rashi on the verse (ibid 34):
“And He put into his heart (the ability) to teach, both him and Oholiov, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan.”
“and Oholiov of the tribe of Dan, of the lowest of the tribes, of the sons of the handmaidens. Yet the Omnipresent compared him (Oholiov) to Bezalel for the work of the Mishkan, and he (Bezalel) was of the greatest of the tribes (Judah), to fulfill what is said: “and a prince was not recognized before a poor man” (Job 34:19)“.
In other words, the intent of the verse in mentioning the lineage of Bezalel and Oholiov is to emphasize the divide between them, namely that Bezalel was from the “greatest of the tribes” and Oholiov “from the lowest of the tribes”. Yet nevertheless, “G-d compared him to Bezalel”. Because of this, the verse stresses that he was “the son of Chur”, and Rashi explains, “He was Miriam’s son”,
“To tell us his great lineage, that he possesses the greatest lineage, both from his father as well as from his mother. This fulfills even more so the dictum ‘and a prince was not recognized etc. “.
(And one could say that this also fits to what is written regarding Oholiov, namely that he is from “the lowest of the tribes, of the sons of the handmaidens”. In other words, that his low lineage is related to the mother. Therefore, it is probable to say that the great lineage of Bezalel is (not just due to the father but also) to the mother).
According to this it is answered why Rashi, on the verse, “Bezalel, the son of . . Chur, in Parshat Tisa that “Chur: He was Miriam’s son” was – because in Parshat Tisa, it is possible to say simply that the verse wants to trace Bezalel's lineage to Chur because of the greatness of Chur, that is expressly stated in the verse (and in Rashi ) as aforementioned Par 1.
Only in our Parsha, were the main intent is to emphasize fulfilling the verse: “and a prince was not recognized before a poor man”, does Rashi add that the lineage to Chur comes to describe the great lineage of Bezalel (also) due to the mother, as aforementioned.
However, the question still remains:
Even regarding Oholiov, it already said previously in Parshat Tisa (in G-d’s words to Moshe) –
“And behold, I have appointed to serve with him, Oholiov, son of Achisamach of the tribe of Dan”.
Yet there Rashi does not comment at all.
And if one wants to say that the intent of the verse in mentioning the lineage of Bezalel and Oholiov is to emphasize the aspect “and a prince was not recognized before a poor man”, Rashi should have explained this previously in Parshat Tisa.
(Indeed, this is in the Midrash (which is the source, seemingly, of this Rashi) that the essence of this aspect (that “great and small are equal before G-d”) is cited previously on the verses of Parshat Tisa).
One must therefore say that it is the manner of the verses to trace one’s lineage after his father and tribe. Therefore, there is no necessity to say (according to Pshat) that the intent of the verse in Parshat Tisa is to teach “and a prince was not recognized before a poor man”.
If so, what is the difficulty in the simple understanding of the verses of our Parsha that forces Rashi to explain that the intent here is “to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”?
3. The Levush’s words are apropos here. He writes that Rashi’s difficulty is the change in the wording of the verses.
However, it still is not understood:
What is the necessity that that the reason that the Omnipresent equated Oholiov to Bezalel is “to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”? Moreover, that this is the reason that Scripture emphasizes their lineage?. it is possible to say simply, that the reason that both of them were chosen to instruct and supervise the construction of the Mishkan is because of their great wisdom. In other words the reason that Oholiov is equal to Bezalel is because he was equal to Bezalel in the “wisdom of the heart” (and on the contrary, what difference does the aspect of lineage make, when it is speaking regarding the required aspect of “wisdom of the heart)?
According to this, how does Rashi innovate that the reason for their equating is to fulfill what is said: “and a prince was not recognized before a poor man” (and indeed, the reason that the verse traces their lineage etc., is not a question at all. For this is the style of Scripture (and like in our case itself, that the verse traces one’s lineage even previously in Parshat Tisa, as aforementioned)?
Seemingly, one could answer that from the elaborate wording of the verse here, it proves that Bezalel was the main person.
(in other words, that in addition to that which in Parshat Tisa the verse elaborates just concerning Bezalel, and it is proven that he alone was the head of all the craftsmen. Even from the verses in our Parsha, it appears that Bezalel was the primary person).
For in the beginning there is an elaboration regarding the virtue of Bezalel, as it states:
“See, G-d has designated by name, Betzalel. . And He endowed him with Divine spirit, with wisdom. . with (the skill to perform) all types of crafting . .and to devise (plans) with ingenuity, to execute (those plans) in gold, in silver and in copper. . .And in masonry for settings, and in carpentry, to execute all kinds of clever tasks.
And only afterward does Scripture continue:
“And the ability to instruct he instilled in his heart, he (Betzalel) and Oholiov. .He filled them with wisdom of the heart, to execute all the tasks of the engraver, the craftsman etc.
It appears from this, that the wisdom of Bezalel was greater than that of Oholiov. If so, it is difficult why they were equated in the aspect of instructing the work? Therefore, Rashi explains that it is in order “to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”.
However, according to this it is not understood, from the other perspective:
If Bezalel’s wisdom was indeed greater than Oholiov’s – how were they equated just in order to fulfill “a prince was not recognized before a poor man”? Just as one must not show favor to a wealthy person due to his wealth, so too, there is no place to favor a poor person, who has not merited it – just in order to equate him to a wealthy person!
On must also understand:
(and especially that the difference between them is not in the aspect of “prince” and “poor man” plainly but in the area of lineage),
when the essence of the aspect of “and a prince was not recognized before a poor man” is expressly written in the preceding verse, and in connection to the construction of the Mishkan – the command of the Machatzit HaShekel (Half-Shekel), where it is expressly states “The rich shall not give more, and the poor shall not give less”?
(And especially since there were two offerings of the Machatzit HaShekel (one for the offering of the sockets/Adanim and one to purchase the communal offerings (Korbanot) which in Rashi’s words, “Both were considered alike regarding them - the poor and the rich”
4. One could say that the explanation of this is:
Rashi’s intent is to answer (not just the reason why “G-d compared him to Bezalel”, but also) the reason for the difference in the change of the wording of the verse between G-d’s command to Moshe and Moshe’s words to Bnei Yisroel:
In G-d’s command, the equating of Oholiov to Bezalel is not emphasized, and specifically in Moshe’s words to Bnei Yisroel is it expressly states “And the ability to instruct he instilled in his heart, he (Betzalel) and Oholiov”.
Even though we find many times in Scripture that all the details of the command are not delineated both in G-d’s words to Moshe as well as in Moshe’s words to Bnei Yisroel (and an many places, at the outset, it only states only one of them alone, namely either G-d’s command or Moshe’s words to Bnei Yisroel) – for it is simple that Moshe Rabbeinu conveyed G-d’s command completely to Bnei Yisroel, and that everything that he said to Bnei Yisroel in G-d’s name was commanded to him.
Nevertheless, it is different in this case. For it is not speaking of just an additional detail, where it is then possible to answer that Scripture did not concern itself to delineate this two times, but rather it is a change in the essence of the topic:
In Parshat Tisa, Oholiov’s name is delineated just in conjunction to the other craftsmen
(as it states “And behold, I have appointed (to serve) with him, Oholiav.. . In the heart of every wise-hearted person”)
For even though specifying his name alone depicts his greatness versus the other craftsmen, there is no necessity to say that he should be equal to Bezalel, and so much so that he should be considered a “head like him”
(On the contrary from this it appears that he is “closer” to “all the other wise-hearted people”).
Whereas in the command “to teach . . both him and Oholiov “ that is stated in our Parsha, it appears that they are both equal in the instruction of the work. Since this is so, why is this aspect not stated immediately in G-d’s command in Parshat Tisa (indeed, this omission gives room to err that Oholiov is not equal to Bezalel)?
Because of this, Rashi learns that this emphasis in equating Oholiov to Bezalel is an aspect that is mainly for the benefit of Bnei Yisroel’s knowledge. Whereas, in the essence and body of G-d’s command, it is not (so) relevant.
This is why Rashi writes,
“and Oholiov: of the tribe of Dan. . to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”
and he precisely states,
“to fulfill what is stated”
(and he does not write “and this is why it states”, and so forth).
Rashi’s intent is not that the reason that G-d commanded to equate Oholiov to Bezalel is because “a prince was not recognized before a poor man”. For it is simple that the main importance in the appointment of the leaders of the artisans is due to their being “wise-hearted men . . endowed with wisdom to know (how) to execute in all of the holy work”, and no more.
(For if he is not this realm, the reason of “a prince was not recognized before a poor man”, does not help in order to appoint him a leader).
In other words, the reason that G-d commanded to appoint both of them as leaders in the instruction of the work is solely and only because they had an equality, because of which, Oholiov was worthy to be equal to Bezalel in this regard.
However, with regard to Bnei Yisroel, there is an additional aspect here. For there was a need to fulfill
(in other words to give a standing (קיום) and strength (תוקף) - similar to “they fulfilled and they accepted” (וקבלו קיימו), a contract that is affirmed with it signatures).
for Bnei Yisroel the essence of the aspect of: “a prince was not recognized before a poor man” etc. (as will be explained).
Therefore Moshe emphasized to Bnei Yisroel the equating of Bezalel and Oholiov, despite their great divide in the aspect of lineage
5. The explanation of this is:
Regarding the offering for the Mishkan, we find that it was according to level, whatever it was, of each and every one of Bnei Yisroel.
As Rashi states:
“Not everyone participated alike in this case, rather, each person contributed as his heart moved him”
This is as it is told in our Parsha regarding the differences of the offerings from “with whom was found” a waving of gold, blue/Techailes and the Argamon/ purple etc. or an “offering of silver and copper” etc.”
Seemingly, this awakens a question and wonder:
The Mishkan was an extremely integral and general aspect (ענין כללי ועיקרי ביותר) for Bnei Yisroel. This is especially so according to Rashi who states that the Mishkan “bears witness for Yisroel that G-d was indulgent to them for the deed of the Calf”. If so, how is it possible that in such an integral and general aspect such as this, that the difference between wealthy and poor people is continually emphasized. Namely, the wealthy were able to play a major role in the offering of the Mishkan versus that the poor who were not able to take an important role in the offering of the Mishkan?
(And it is just with regard to the sockets (the foundation of the Mishkan) and the communal offerings that they were all equal (in the giving of the Machatzit HaShekel) as aforementioned).
We thus find that the order of the construction of the Mishkan through the offering of Bnei Yisroel was in a manner that gave room to the error that there is a difference between Bnei Yisroel with regard to their relation to G-d’s Mishkan (according to the level of the offering of their hearts).
However, since all Yisroel joined in the offering of the Mishkan, and each one of them did so according to the offering of the heart, all of them were equal in it
(and the differences between them was just due to the quantity of the offering).
This is similar to what Rashi states, “whether one does more or one does less--- so long as he directs his heart to Heaven”.
However, nevertheless, since, in actuality, there are differences, this caused a weakness (חלישות) in this that all Bnei Yisroel were equally related to the (making of the) Mishkan.
Therefore, in order to rectify this, there was a need “to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”. In other words to give a “standing” (קיום) and strength (תוקף) that Bnei Yisroel should know that they are all equal in the making of the Mishkan
(To nullify the weakness that was caused by this, as a result of the offering of the Mishkan where the difference between wealthy and poor, was emphasized).
This was accomplished by Moshe’s emphasizing in his words to Bnei Yisroel that the work of the Mishkan was handed to Bezalel and Oholiov.
For notwithstanding their great divide in the aspect of lineage – Bezalel was “of the greatest of the tribes” and from Moshe Rabbeinu‘s – family,
(for his grandfather Chur – “was the son of Miriam”)
and Oholiov was “from the lowest of the tribes” – nevertheless G-d equated them for the making of the Mishkan – “to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”.
For through this, the “foundation”, namely that in the making of the Mishkan, all Yisroel are equal, was “fulfilled” (imbued) within Bnei Yisroel.
According to this, it is also understood why the equating of Bnei Yisroel in the aspect of the giving of the Machatzit HaShekel, was not sufficient “to fulfill what is said: ‘and a prince was not recognized before a poor man’”.
For here, there was a need to nullify the weakness (החלישות) in this aspect that arose through (the differences in) the offerings of the Mishkan. To this end, it was necessary to emphasize their equality in the making of the Mishkan (that was made with the offerings of Bnei Yisroel).
6. The explanation of this is Pnimiyut is:
The reason that there were two manners of donations for the offering of the Mishkan – the offering that “equated the poor and the rich” as well as the offering of the Mishkan where “not everyone was equal but rather each person according to the offering of his heart” - is because this corresponds to the two types of service (עבודות) of Yisroel.
There are aspects that all Yisroel are equal in, and there are aspects where each person is different from his fellow.
In general this is:
The performance of Mitzvot (מעשה המצות) where “we have all one Torah and one law, insofar as the fulfillment of all the Torah and Mitzvot in actual performance is concerned”.
And the intent of the Mitzvot (כוונת המצות), love of G-d and fear of G-d etc. where “in each individual according to his capacity“, which “vary according to the knowledge of G‑d in the mind and heart”.
However, the epitome of the intent (תכלית הכוונה) is, to draw down the aspect of unity (האחדות) even in the “offering of the heart” of Bnei Yisroel. Namely, that it should be felt that despite the differences that exist between a person and his fellow, nevertheless they are all equal before G-d. This is alluded to, in that the making of the Mishkan (together with the things that came as an offering of Bnei Yisroel, as it states, “each person as his heart moved him”) – was in a manner that “a prince was not recognized before a poor man”.
This is the reason that this aspect is specifically emphasized in Moshe’s speaking to Bnei Yisroel, and not it G-d’s command to Moshe. For this entire aspect is to draw down the aspect of unity, in this level that one sees the differences of Bnei Yisroel. There is no place to emphasize this, in G-d’s command to Moshe. Moreover, in G-d’s command to Moshe – he is still above the differences in Bnei Yisroel.
When Moshe conveys G-d’s command to Bnei Yisroel, this “reaches” (מגיע) to the level where there exist differences among a person and his fellow. Yet Moshe imbues them with the aspect of unity, that “a prince was not recognized before a poor man”.
MSichas Shabbat Parshat Vayakhel- Pekudei and Shabbat Parshat Tzav 5739
Shabbat Parshat Vayakhel 5746