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  JEWISH AND KOSHER UNITED STATES       
 
 
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B”H

It is customary to replace the Eruv Chatzerot this Friday

The first Seder is Next Friday Night

 

  Shalom and Bracha!

   This Shabbat we read the portion of Tzav which means command. Rashi comments that the word Tzav in this portion is an encouragement immediately and for all generations. Although this week is the second week that deals with the offerings in the Temple, the word Tzav is mentioned here. Rashi explains that this section is speaking about the Olah, the offering that was fully offered to Hashem and the Kohen ate nothing. Where there is a financial loss, there is a need for special encouragement. The word Tzav also means binding. When we are ready to endure a loss for Hashem, it creates and reveals as stronger and deeper bond than previously. Rashi comments that this is an encouragement for all generations. With the current financial strains, many of us are faced with difficult choices. Maintaining our standards of Shabbat, Kashrut, education and charity can become a challenge. The word Tzav in this week’s portion teaches us that Hashem has already blessed us with the strength to forge forward and that by doing so and enduring the hardships we receive a much deeper connection to Hashem and as a result a tremendous blessing.

 

  Much of the portion describes the consecration of Aharon and his children as Kohanim, priests of Hashem. The very conclusion of the portion is that Aharon and his sons did as Hashem commanded Moshe. Rashi comments that this teaches their praiseworthiness because they didn’t veer to the right or the left. Seemingly, what is so great? Would we imagine they had done otherwise? Hashem Himself had just commanded them! Rashi is actually alerting us to a great lesson. When a person is raised to a position of importance, he tends to become haughty and egotistical. His reliance upon his own opinion becomes greater. In our relation with Hashem, the opposite must be true. As we become closer to Hashem, we must become more aware that His greatness and His wisdom are unfathomable. Our total subjugation to His will must become even greater. The greatness of Aharon and his sons was that although they were raised to the highest office of the Jewish people, their humility towards Hashem grew. This is also the lesson of Matzah, which represents humility.

 

  The Shabbat before Pesach is called Shabbat Hagadol, the great Shabbat. This is because of the great miracle that occurred on this Shabbat. The Jewish people were commanded to take the Pesach lamb on the tenth of Nissan, four days before slaughtering it. That day was Shabbat. The lamb was the idol of the Egyptians. Readiness to slaughter the lamb was a tremendous act of self-sacrifice. When Moshe initially spoke to Pharaoh, he told him that the Jews must perform their offering outside of Egypt because the Egyptians would surely stone the Jews for slaughtering sheep. Holding a lamb for four days, in preparation for slaughter, was an even greater act of courage. Nevertheless, imbued with faith in Hashem and the coming redemption, The Jews followed Moshe’s command.

 

  Upon seeing the Jew’s taking sheep into their homes, the Egyptians asked them what they are doing. They responded that in four days they would slaughter the lambs, and then Hashem would kill all of the firstborn Egyptians. Upon hearing this, the firstborn Egyptians rebelled, demanding the release of the Jews. Many Egyptians were killed quelling the rebellion.

 

  The reason that this is called a “great” miracle is that although many times our enemies have been given over into our hands, or defeated by Hashem, here the Egyptians were smitten by there own, by their firstborn. The firstborn represent the epitome, the cream of the crop. By the Jews selflessly fulfilling the will of Hashem, the epitome of evil became a tool to smite evil and pave the path to redemption. Further, the merit of their self sacrifice made them worthy of the redemption. May Hashem grant us the miracle of redemption immediately!

 

  Tuesday, March 31st, marks the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s hundred and tenth birthday. Those who say the Rebbe’s chapter of Tehillim daily begin to say chapter 114. As we mark this day it is an appropriate time to reflect upon the Rebbe’s effect on worldwide Jewry and to think how we can follow in his path, both by ourselves fulfilling additional Mitzvot and by encouraging fellow Jews wherever they may be to embrace their heritage. Just as we begin the Seder by inviting the hungry to partake, every Mitzvah we do should be accompanied by a desire to share with the spiritually hungry. Once, after the Rebbe’s secretary had left for the night, someone slipped a note under the Rebbe’s door. Upon receiving an answer, he realized that the Rebbe had had to kneel to pick up the letter. Feeling that this was disrespectful, he wrote an apology. The Rebbe responded that his whole being was only to bow down to help a fellow Jew. This is a lesson to all of us.

 

On a person’s birthday, his Mazal is strong. On the Rebbe’s birthday, the Mazal of the entire Jewish people is strengthened. If anyone would like a prayer said by the Rebbe’s resting place, please contact me at rabbibiggs@gmail.com and include your Hebrew name and your mother’s Hebrew name. May Hashem immediately grant the goal that the Rebbe strived for endlessly, the coming of Moshiach.

 

Thousands of families are depending on Chabad to provide them for the basic needs for the holiday. Please donated generously to the Passover emergency fund and as you enjoy your Seder you will know needy families are enjoy their Seder thanks to you.

Shabbat Shalom,

 

 Rabbi Biggs

 

If you have received this in error or would like to unsubscribe, contact me at RabbiBiggs@gmail.com

 

There is a great Pesach Website with loads of information, instructions on selling Chametz and Seder locations throughout the world at

chabadgn.com/holidays/Passover

 

There is a beautiful video of the Rebbe encouraging helping the needy for Pesach here

 

In memory of the Sassoon children, Eliana Bat Gavriel and Gilah, David Ben Gavriel and Gilah, Rivka Bat Gavriel and Gilah, Yehoshua Ben Gavriel and Gilah, Moshe Ben Gavriel and Gilah, Sarah Bat Gavriel and Gilah and Yaakov Ben Gavriel and Gilah. May Hashem grant strength and comfort to their families and may their pure souls intercede before Hashem for the Jewish people to bring the redemption and end tragedy.

 

A project of Chabad of Great Neck

400 East Shore Rd.

Great Neck NY 11024

 


 
   
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