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Naso-Grant Us Our Portion
in the Torah
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Naso-Grant Us Our Portion in the Torah
By: Rabbi Yonassan Biggs
we read the Birkat Cohanim: “May Hashem bless you and guard you.
May Hashem illuminate you with His presence and show you grace.
May Hashem lift up his countenance to you and grant you Peace.”
May Hashem’s blessings, protection and peace fill the land of
Israel and the entire world.
continues “and they shall place My name upon the children of
Israel and I will bless them.” Rashi offers two meanings of the
words “and I will bless them”: I will fulfill the blessing of
the Cohanim and I will bless the Cohanim. Each has a deep
lesson. Hashem says I
will fulfill the blessing of the Cohanim, and so don’t be afraid
if you feel inadequate to give a blessing, because when you give
a blessing under My direction it is My blessing. Don’t be
judgemenatal either. I will bless all of the recipients. The
Jewish people are called a nation of Cohanim. Each of us has the
power to illuminate the world with the light of Torah not
because of our skills and merits but because we are spreading
His light. When we do spread Hashem’s light and Torah and
blessings He will surely respond by bringing blessings into our
lives. Furthermore, we will succeed with those who we think we
we read the portion of Naso. This is also Shabbat after Shavuot,
and the teachings in this week’s portion have lessons that
relate to the entire Torah that was given on Shavuot.
One of the
topics discussed in this week’s portion is the consecration of
the Mishkan, the Temple that was built in the desert. When the
Mishkan was completed, the Princes of each of the Tribes brought
special offerings, one each day. They each brought a silver bowl
and plate filled with flour and oil, a golden spoon filled with
incense, a bull, a ram, a sheep, and a goat. As a Peace
Offering, they brought two oxen, five rams, five male goats and
five yearling sheep. Although each of the Princes brought his
offering on a different day, they all brought exactly the same
weight vessels and the same number of animals.
teaches that the weight of the vessels and the number of animals
had a special significance, and they corresponded to various
aspects of Jewish history. As per example, the golden spoon
weighed ten Shekels, which corresponded to the Ten Commandments,
and the silver bowl weighed seventy Shekels, which corresponded
to the seventy gentile nations of the world.
interestingly, each leader’s offering corresponded to different
things: the Prince of the tribe of Benyamin brought three types
of burnt offerings corresponding to the three Temples which were
built in his territory in the Land of Israel, whereas the Prince
of the tribe of Dan brought the same offerings corresponding to
the three commandments the Angel gave to the mother of Shimshon
(Samson) who descended from Dan, and the Prince of Naftali
brought the same sacrifices corresponding to Avraham’s three
sacrifices when Hashem promised him the land of Israel.
Similarly, the golden spoons that were offered had a weight of
exactly ten Shekalim. When the prince of Yehudah (the tribe of
kings) brought his spoon, it corresponded to the ten generations
between Yehudah and the first king from his tribe, King David.
When the prince of Yissachar (the tribe of scholars) brought his
spoon, it corresponded to the Ten Commandments. When the prince
of Binyamin brought the spoon it corresponded to the ten sons of
Binyamin. When the prince of Zevulun brought his spoon, it
corresponded to the ten words with which Yaakov blessed his
tribe. In this vein, the Midrash explains each of the vessels
and each of the offerings that each Prince brought.
us a beautiful insight into all of the Mitzvot that were given
at Mount Sinai. Although we all perform the same acts and say
the same prayers, we don’t lose our individuality. Each of us is
unique in the intent that we infuse into our prayers and our
deeds. Thereby, we are united in deed and yet unique in spirit.
This is also the meaning of the conclusion of the Amidah
(standing prayer) “Grant us
our portion in your
Torah.” We are beseeching Hashem to allow us to appreciate how
each Mitzvah is our
own portion, the expression of our souls.
goes further and teaches that Hashem accredits each of the
tribes as though they had offered on the first day and on the
last day. The quality of the first day is well understood. In
every Mitzvah one should seek to be an initiator. The quality of
the last day is that it included the culmination of all of the
tribe’s individual qualities. This teaches us that we complete
each other, and by serving Hashem with our unique qualities in
unison and unity with others we become part of a greater entity
and Hashem credits us with the cumulative result.
Yechezkiel teaches that at the consecration of the Third Temple,
special offerings will be brought just as in the days of Moshe.
May we offer them very speedily with the coming of Moshiach.
merit of Yitzchak Mordechai Ben Chaya and his family
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