Drash Cards for Shabbat HaGadol/Tzav (5775)
by Marc Mangel
- Why is this called “Shabbat Hagadol“?
- Midrash Rabbah, The Tur, Peri Hadash: The great miracle of today is that when the Israelites observed the first commandment they were given – to collect the lambs for the Paschal sacrifice, they were able to do so.
- The Hatam Sofer writes: On this day the Jewish people fully‘returned’ (Teshuvah) to their commitment and faith in God.
• The Haftorah read in many communities on this Shabbat speaks of the coming of Moshiach, referring to the day of his arrival as the “yom Hashem hagadol v’hanora” — the “great” and awesome day of the Lord
- This the day when the rabbis traditionally deliver extensive lectures about the laws of Passover, and pontificate about the lessons to be learned from the holiday. A sermon gadol!
- Mangel: Passover is the check-in for the decisions we made at during the days of awe. How are we doing towards are goal? Are we escaping from the things that enslave us?
- Which brings us to the opening verses of Tzav: “This is the Torah of the burnt-offering…a fire must always burn on the altar; it may not go out” (Ch 6:v 1, 6)
- These opening verses are recited in the Sephardic and Hasidic prayers each morning as the introduction to worship.
- We don’t make deals with God. We make deals with ourselves – to change for the better following the guidelines from the Torah.
- As we turn the corner on the self-improvement we identified six months ago, let’s have a fire inside to bring new light and power to our goals.