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The Chafetz Project -
Melekhet Machashevet Citations
Terumah

    The following are online citations from Moshe Chafetz's 1710 work Melekhet Machashevet, found via an unfiltered Google search and other occasional searches.

    Not all links are still active, but relevant text is excerpted here in full.

    Parshat Terumah
    (From Exodus)

    Hamaayan/The Torah Spring -- Parshat Terumah (5759)

    Excerpt: "You shall place in the aron/ark the luchot that I shall give you." (25:16)

    "You shall place the kaporet/cover on the aron from above, and in the aron you shall place the luchot which I shall give you." (25:21)

    Why is the instruction to place the luchot in the aron repeated? R' Moshe Chafetz z"l (Italy; 18th century) explains as follows, in light of the Sages' teaching that the gold of thekaporet atoned for the sin of the golden calf. Moshe broke the luchot when he saw Bnei Yisrael dancing around the golden calf. It could be argued, then, that the Jews were not worthy of having the luchot. However, said Hashem, after the gold of the kaporet has atoned for the sin of the golden calf, then "in the aron you shall place the luchot which I shall give you." [The first verse, in contrast, simply explains the purpose of the aron. Alternatively, writing these words twice is the Torah's ways of telling us to look for a deeper message in the verse.] (Melechet Machshevet)"

    Hamaayan/The Torah Spring -- Parshat Terumah (5757)

    Excerpt: "[F]rom every person whose heart motivates him you shall take My portion. This is the portion which you shall take from them: gold, silver and copper (25:2-3)

    Rav Moshe Chafetz z"l (Italy; ca 1700) notes the apparent contradiction between verse 2 and verse 3. On the one hand, Hashem says that gifts for the mishkan should be taken from those who offer out of the goodness of their hearts. On the other hand, Hashem says, "This is the portion which you shall take from them," implying that it should be taken forcefully.

    The reason for this is very simple, says Rav Chafetz. Many people are pious and well-meaning, and their hearts motivate them to do G-d's mitzvot. Nevertheless, when it comes time to part with their gold, silver and copper, the yetzer hara is just too strong, and you (Moshe) will have to take it forcefully.

    (Melechet Machshevet)"

     

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