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Parshat Pekudei                                                          March 5, 2022  4 Adar II, 5782
                                          Rabbi Jonathan Sacks on Parshat Pekudei
             ARTSCROLL  530            Pekudei has sometimes   So, Moses gave an order and   According to the Midrash,
                                       been called “The
                                                               they sent this word throughout  he thought this would
                 HERTZ  385            Accountant’s Parsha”,   the camp: “No man or woman   create arguments within
                                       because that is how it   is to make anything else as an  families and the project
                 HAFTORAH              begins, with the audited   offering for the Sanctuary.”   would be delayed. Instead,
            ARTSCROLL   1164           accounts of the money   And so the people were      immediately thereafter,
                 HERTZ  392            and materials donated to  restrained from bringing more,  without a pause, we read:
                                       the Sanctuary. It is the   because what they already had  So, all the people took off
                                       Torah’s way of teaching   was more than enough to do   their earrings and brought
                     Times             us the need for financial   all the work (Ex. 36:3-7). They  them to Aaron (Ex. 32:3).
                                       transparency. But       brought too much. Moses had   Again the same generosity.
           Weekly Times                  beneath the sometimes   to tell them to stop. That is not  Now, these two projects
                                       dry surface lie two     the Israelites as we have   could not be less alike. One,
           Shacharit: Sun.    7:30/8:30 am   extraordinary stories, one  become accustomed to seeing   the Tabernacle, was holy.
                                       told in last week’s     them, argumentative,        The other, the Calf, was
           Mon.              6:35/7:45 am
                                       parsha, the other the   quarrelsome, ungrateful. This   close to being an idol.
           Tues. & Wed.      6:45/7:45 am   week before, teaching us  is a people that longs to give.   Building the Tabernacle was
           Thurs. & Fri.             6:30/7:45 am   something deep about   One parsha earlier we read a   a supreme mitzvah; making
           Rosh Chodesh                Jewish nature that is still   very different story. The people   the Calf was a terrible sin.
                                       true today.                                         Yet their response was the
           Mincha               5:35 pm                        were anxious. Moses had been   same in both cases. Hence
                                       The first has to do with   up the mountain for a long
           Shabbat Times                 the Sanctuary itself. God  time. Was he still alive? Had   this comment of the Sages:
                                       told Moses to ask people   some accident happened to   One cannot understand the
           Candle Lighting       5:31 pm                                                   nature of this people. If
                                       to make contributions.   him? If so, how would they   they are appealed to for a
           Friday Mincha        5:35 pm   Some brought gold, some  receive the Divine word telling   Calf, they give. If appealed
                                       silver, some copper.    them what to do and where to
           Hashkama             8:00 am   Some gave wool or linen   go? Hence their demand for a   to for the Tabernacle, they
                                       or animal-skins. Others   Calf – essentially an oracle, an   give (Yerushalmi Shekalim
           Parsha Shiur         8:30 am                                                    1, 45). The common factor
                                       contributed acacia wood,  object through which Divine   was generosity. Jews may
           Main Sanctuary       9:00 am   oil, spices, or incense.   instruction could be heard.   not always make the right
                                       Some gave precious      Aaron, according to the most   choices in what they give
           Youth Minyan         9:00 am   stones for the High   favored explanation, realized   to, but they give.
                                       Priest’s breastplate. What  that he could not stop the
           Beit Midrash         9:15 am
                                       was remarkable was the   people directly by refusing   In the twelfth century,
           Gemara Shiur         4:55 pm   willingness with which   their request, so he adopted a   Moses Maimonides twice
                                       they gave: The people   stalling maneuver. He did   interrupts his customary
           Mincha/SS            5:25 pm   continued to bring   something with the intention of  calm legal prose in his law
                                       freewill offerings morning  slowing them down, trusting   code, the Mishneh Torah, to
           Shabbat Ends         6:40 pm   after morning. So, all the  that if the work could be   make the same point.

                   Latest Times for    skilled workers who were  delayed, Moses would      Speaking about tzedakah,
                Shema/Shemoneh Esrei   doing all the work on the  reappear. This is what he said:  charity, he says: “We have
                                       Sanctuary left what they   Aaron answered them, “Take   never seen or heard about a
           March 5          9:14/10:12 am   were doing and said to   off the gold earrings that your   Jewish community which
                                       Moses, “The people are   wives, your sons, and your   does not have a charity
           March 12         9:08/10:07 am   bringing more than   daughters are wearing, and   fund.” (Laws of Gifts to the
                                       enough for doing the    bring them to me.” (Ex. 32:2)   poor, 9:3) The idea that a
                    Next Shabbat                                                           Jewish community could
                                       work the Lord
                                       commanded to be done.”                              exist without a network of
           Candle Lighting      5:39 pm
                                                             Kiddush is sponsored by
           Mincha               5:40 pm                       Great Neck Synagogue
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