Parshat Ki Tissa

Even though G-d knows that the children of Israel have fallen into the sin of the golden calf, He continues to teach Torah to Moshe on the Mount. Why? What special gift is revealed by all these final commandments delivered just prior to the sin.

The Shorashim Torah Study Overview for Ki Tisa (Exodus 30:11-34:35)

This Torah Study Overview is not meant to be a shortcut or instant torah. The Shorashim overview is meant to instigate thought, promote questions and most importantly prod people to “Tzey Ulmad -Go Forth and Study”

The Portion

The people of Israel are told by G-d to contribute a half-shekel of silver for the purpose of the Tabernacle, No more and no less. It is important to explore why “no more and no less” and why exactly half a shekel.

They then are commanded to create the Copper Washstand of the sanctuary. Explore what artifacts were used to create this washstand and why .Also why did the priests also have to wash their hands and feet?

They then are commanded to create the anointing oil and the Holy Incense. What are the messages of oil and more importantly the message of sweet smell?

Moshe is commanded to appoint the “Wise hearted” artisans Betzalel and Ahaliav to build the Sanctuary. What hint do we get from Betzalel’s name?

The people are once again reminded of the Shabbat and its overwhelming influence

The people miscalculate when Moshe is meant to return. Seemingly bereft of their spiritual mentor the mixed multitude convinces the people that they need to create an idol and they create a golden calf, in spite of Aaron’s delaying tactics. Who was the calf supposed to replace and why did they say “these are your gods o Israel” in the plural?

G-d declares that he will destroy the people and Moshe and stands in prayer on behalf of his people. When Moshe sees the frivolity he throws down and breaks the tablets created by the “finger of G-d”and destroys the Golden Calf and carries out judgment against the guilty. He then returns to G-d to say: “If You do not forgive them, blot me out from the book that You have written.” G-d forgives, but declares that the implications of sin will linger for many generations.

Moshe then creates upon G-d’s directions a new set of tablets wherein G-d  re-inscribes the ten statements that are symbolic of all the rest. Moshe asks very deeper awareness of G-d’s Glory which he then recieves, not face to face, but after G-d has passed over him and impacted his soul. He is taught the Thirteen Divine Attributes of Mercy for all the generations to come. What can we be learnt from the fact that Moshe broke the first that were created by G-d and created the second to be inscribed by the Divine

Shabbat Shalom and “Tzey Ulmad -Go Forth and Study”

Listen to this week’s Podcast:

Parshat Ki Tissa

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