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Mar 03

Two!

The Torah tells us that after all the articles, vessels and components of the Mishkan/Temple were completed, the artisans brought them all to Moshe for inspection.

The obvious question is, why did Moshe burden them to bring the many heavy articles to him? Wouldn’t it have been easier for Moshe to go himself and check them out?

The Medrash on this verse says something seemingly unrelated. “Our Sages established a certain class structure so as to maintain an atmosphere of Shalom. Such as, when the Torah is read in Shul, the order was set that a Kohain is called to the first Aliya, a Levi for second and then a Yisroel.”

Rabbi Yehoshua Leib Diskin o.b.m. beautifully explains the connection of the Medrash to Moshe’s conduct as follows:

Just as we see that our Sages instituted an order to things so that Sholom – peace – prevails, so too, when inspecting the vessels and components of the Temple, Moshe had the same concerns. If he were to go himself to survey the articles, he would have to decide which article to inspect first, and which one he would go to next, and so on. He feared that someone may be slighted if Moshe chose to inspect someone else’s job before his or hers.

Moshe understood that each person put their utmost effort into whatever they did. In order not to possibly slight anyone, Moshe asked them to bring the articles to him. This way he examined them in whichever order they came to him. Such was the concern and sensitivity our leader Moshe had towards the feelings of his brethren.

Today is Rosh Chodesh Adar II, for this year we add an extra month to our calendar. The reason for this is because we base our calendar on the Lunar cycle whose twelve months are only 354 days, approximately eleven days shy of the 365 days of the Solar calendar year.

The Torah states that our Holidays, such as Pesach and Succos are to be celebrated, in the spring and fall seasons of year. If we would continue without amending our calendar we would fall back each year 11 days and eventually, Pesach would fall during the winter and continue to recede backward. The Holiday would then not align with the season in which the Torah commands us to celebrate it. Therefore we add a month approximately once every three years to adjust our calendar.

When G-d taught our leader Moshe the laws of Rosh Chodesh, and how it is to be based on the testimony of witnesses reporting to the court the sighting of the new moon, He included the law that the Jewish court should add an extra month to the year when it was necessary to do so.

Today, our calendar is based on a set schedule formulated by Hillel. According to it, a thirteenth month, Adar II, is added to seven years of a nineteen year cycle.

Our Sages teach us that the holiday of Purim is to be celebrated in the second Adar. This is in order that the celebration of our redemption and salvation from Haman’s plan of genocide for the Jews be celebrated in close proximity to the month of Nisan – when G-d redeemed us from the clutches of the Pharoh and our slavery in Egypt.

Our Sages teach us, “When the month of Adar arrives, we are to increase our levels of joy.”

With so much uncertainty going on in the world – a war where our brethren and humanity are in terrible danger – inflation and post pandemic adjustment, increasing our joy may be a bit challenging.

We always learn and glean from the ways of our past. As we are currently in the Purim season, the Jews had found themselves facing a decree of certain genocide. Mordechai the Sage had given Queen Esther the task of approaching King Achashvairosh when she was not invited, which carried the risk of a death sentence – even for the Queen!

Esther instructed Mordechai to gather the Jews to fast for her success. Esther and the Jews fasted for 3 days – during which they repented and committed themselves to G-d. Guess what? Already on the third day of this practice, the king had Haman hanged on the gallows!

The power which G-d has invested within us is astonishing. When we pray, thus placing our trust in the Almighty, and when during the course of our day we are more mindful of His presence and His interest in our loyalty to Him, we will see redemption!