Pekudei (5763)

Drash Cards for Pekudei (5763)

by Marc Mangel

• We have a discussion of the materials used by Bezalel in making the Miskan and instructions for consecration in Ch 40, v 9: to consecrate with oil.

• My first point:  the Miskan is very holy and the holiness and the holiness involves contact (Ch 29, v 37, Ch 30, v 29)

• Second point:  the root of the word for santification (Kee-dash-ta) is Ko-desh.  Jastrow’s dictionary (1903) defined Ko-desh as to “be cut off, separated, become pure, sacred, holy”

• I also learned that Ke-desh is one of the cities of refuge, with a natural interpretation for the name,.

• Holiness mean to separate.  When we had the Miskan we could separate in space.  We don’t have that any more.

• So we can separate in time. Friday night candles and Havdallah are moments of separation between the profane and holy, but what about in between?

• Reform Judaism was founded in the 1840s with three conferences.

• 1846: Is the essence of Shabbat consecration of the divine or cessation of work?  We still wrestle with this, as long as we are not strictly orthodox.

• Is the holiness of Shabbat contagious — if we do a usual act (e.g. get haircut, go to the farmers’ market,  or go shopping) does it somehow become a holy act because we did it on Shabbat?

• If one is Orthodox, the answer is clearly not.  For us, it is a good question.

• My opinion is no. We need a conscious separation of the acts on Shabbat from those on the weekday.