Parshas Vayakhel-Summary of the Parsha

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Parshas Vayakhel

Pesukim: 122 [Siman: סנואה]

Haftorah:[1] Melachim 1 7:13-26

Number of Mitzvos:

There is One Mitzvah in Parshas Vayakhel. Zero positive commands and One negative command.

 

Negative commands:

1. Mitzvah 114/Negative 67: Not to adjudicate capital punishments on Shabbos.

Rishon

  1. Keeping Shabbos:
  • Moshe gathered the entire Jewish people and told them that Hashem commanded as follows: For six days a week you shall perform work and on the seventh day it shall be a complete day of rest for Hashem. Whoever does Melacha shall be put to death. You shall not light a fire in all your dwelling places on Shabbos.
  1. Moshe commands Bnei Yisrael regarding the Mishkan:
  • The materials needed: Moshe told the Jewish people saying that Hashem commanded them the following: Every person of generous heart is to give a donation. The following donations are needed:
    • Gold,
    • Silver,
    • Copper,
    • Techeiles Turquoise wool,
    • Argamon Purple wool,
    • Scarlet wool,
    • Linen,
    • Goat hair,
    • Red dyed ram skins,
    • Tachash skins,
    • Shittim-Acacia wood.
    • Oil for lighting
    • Spices for the anointing oil and Ketores incense.
    • Shoham stones
    • Filling stones for the Eiphod and Choshen.
  • The items needed to be made: Every skilled individual is to come and make everything that Hashem commanded, which includes the following items:
    • The Mishkan: The Mishkan, its tent covering, and its accessories which include its hooks, beams, bars, pillars and sockets.
    • Aron: The Aron and its accessories which include its poles and covering.
    • The Shulchan: The Shulchan, its poles, and all of its accessories, including the Lechem Hapanim.
    • The Menorah: The Menorah and its accessories, including its lamps and oil.
    • The Ketores altar: The Ketores altar, its poles, anointing oil, Ketores, and entrance screen.
    • The Olah altar: The Olah altar, its copper netting, its poles, and all of its accessories.
    • Kiyor: The Kiyor, and its accessories.
    • The courtyard: The curtains of the courtyard, its pillars, sockets and the entrance screen. The pegs of the Mishkan and courtyard and their cords.
    • The priestly garments.
  • After hearing the above commands, the Jewish people left Moshe’s presence.

Sheiyni

  1. The donations come in:
  • Those of generous heart came and donated towards the Mishkan. Both men and women donated. They brought gold jewelry such as bracelets, nose rings, rings, Kumaz. Whoever had Techeiles-Turquoise, Argamon-purple, and scarlet wool donated it. Whoever had the ram skins and Techashim skins donated it. People brought silver and copper. Whoever had acacia-shittim wood, brought it. Women spun yarn of the different types of wool mention above, and donated it. The leaders donated the precious stones, the Avnei Shoham and Avnei Miluim for the Eiphod and for the Choshen, and the spices and oil for the lighting and for the anointing oil and the Ketores.

Shelishi (Sheiyni when connected to Pekudei)

  1. Appointment of Betzalel to build the Mishkan.
  • Moshe told the Jewish people: Hashem has appointed Betzalel the son of Uri of the tribe of Yehuda to perform all the work of building the Mishkan and its accessories. He has filled him with wisdom and understanding to perform all the work with the gold, silver and copper, stone and wood. Ohaliav the son of Achisamach from the tribe of Dan was appointed to work with him. They shall do the work together with all the skilled individuals.
  1. The Jewish people exceed in donating materials:
  • Moshe called upon Betzalel and Ohaliav, and all those who are skilled, to come do the work. They came and took from Moshe the materials donated, but the Jewish people kept coming each morning, bringing more and more donations. The workers told Moshe that too much material had been collected. Moshe then went ahead and announced in the camp that the people should cease bringing donation material, and so they ceased. They had enough material to build the Mishkan and have a surplus.

Revi’i

  1. Making the tapestries:
  • The craftsmen made the ten tapestries of twisted linen, Techeiles-Teurquoise wool, Argamon-Purple wool, scarlet wool. They made it the work of an artist. Each tapestry was 28 Amos long and 4 Amos wide. They attached the tapestries to each other in two groups of five. The ends of the two groups of tapestries contained 50 loops, corresponding to each other. They made 50 gold hooks to attach the two groupings together and hence have one Mishkan.

 

  1. Making the panels of goat hair:
  • They made 11 tent panels of goat hair to be placed over the Mishkan [i.e. the wool tapestries]. Each panel was 30 Amos long and 4 Amos wide. They attached the pannels to each other into two groups, one containing five and the second containing six. The ends of the two groups of panels contained 50 loops, corresponding to each other. They made 50 copper hooks to attach the two groupings together and hence have one Mishkan.
  • They made a covering of red dyed ram skin and a covering of Tachash skin to be placed above the goat hair panels.

 

Chamishi

  1. Making the Kerashim/beams:
  • They made beams for the Mishkan from shittim-acacia wood. Each beam was 10 Amos in length and 1.5 Amos in width. Each beam contained two projecting pieces of wood [i.e. tenons] which were perfectly aligned across each other.
  • Amount: They made 20 beams for the southern side and 20 beams for the northern side. They made 6 beams for the west side, plus two corner beams, for a total of 8 beams.
  • Sockets: They made silver sockets for the beams, two sockets per beam, for each of its tenons. Thus, they made 40 silver sockets for the 20 beams of the southern side and 40 silver sockets for the 20 beams of the northern side. They made 16 silver sockets for the 8 beams of the western side.
  • Poles: They made five poles of acacia-shittim wood for three sides of the Mishkan, five for the northern side, five for the southern side, and five for the western side, for a total of 15 poles. They made the middle pole that is to be inserted into the beams and extend from one end to the next. They coated the poles with gold. They made rings of gold.
  • The beams were coated with gold.

 

  1. Making the Paroches:
  • The material: They made the Paroches of Turquoise-Ticheiles wool, Argamon-Purple wool, scarlet wool, and twisted linen. It was made the work of an artist.
  • The beams which hold the Paroches: They made four pillars of acacia-shittim wood covered with gold to hold the Paroches. They made golden hooks and four silver sockets for the beams.

 

  1. Making the Masach screen in front of the Kodesh:
  • They made a screen of Turquoise-Ticheiles wool, Argamon-Purple wool, scarlet wool, and twisted linen for the entrance to the Ohel. It was made the work of an embroiderer.
  • They made for the Masach five pillars of acacia-shittim wood of which their tops were covered with gold. They made gold hooks and five copper sockets for the pillars.

 

  1. Making the Aron:
  • Betzalel made the Aron of acacia-shittim wood. It was 2.5 Amos in length and 1.5 Amos in width, and 1.5 Amos in height. He covered it with pure gold both in its interior and exterior and made for it a gold crown surrounding it. He welded onto it four gold rings, two on each side. He made two poles of acacia-shittim wood and coated them with gold. He inserted the poles into the rings for it to be carried with.
  • Kapores and Keruvim: He made a cover of pure gold for the Aron. Its dimensions were 2.5 Amos in length and 1.5 Amos in width. He made two Keruvim of gold on the opposite ends of the Kapores. The Keruvim contained wings spread upwards, and faced each other, and faced towards the lid.

 

  1. Making the Shulchan:
  • He made the Shulchan from acacia-shittim wood. It was 2 Amos in length and 1 Amos in width, and 1.5 Amos in height. He coated it with gold and made a gold crown around its rim.
  • Rings and poles: He made a one Tefach frame around its entire circumference, and the frame had a gold crown around it. He welded four gold rings onto it, one by each corner, and made two poles from acacia wood and coated them with gold. The poles were made to be inserted into the rings for the Shulchan to be carried with.
  • Accessories: He made the vessels that rested on the Shulchan which include pure gold dishes, spoons, tubes and supports.

 

Shishi (Shelishi when connected to Pekudei)

  1. Making the Menorah:
  • He made the Menorah from pure gold with a base, branches, goblets, knobs and flowers all made from the original piece of one Kikar of gold.
  • It had six branches, three from each side. Each branch was made with three goblets, and was decorated with a knob and flower. The base of the Menorah was made with four goblets decorated with knobs and flowers. Under each set of branches a button was made. Everything was formed from the same piece of gold. It had seven candles.
  1. Making the gold altar for incense:
  • He made an altar for the incense offering from acacia-shittim wood. It was made into a square, its length being one Amah, and its width also one Amah. It was two Amos high. It contained horns on each of its four corners, and the horns, as well as the entire altar was covered in gold. He made a gold crown surrounding it. It had two gold rings beneath its crown, one on each corner. These rings served to hold the poles with which the altar was carried with. The poles were made from acacia-shittim wood and were covered with gold.
  • He made the anointing oil and thei spices, the work of a spice-blender.

 Shevi’i (Revi’i when connected to Pekudei)

  1. Making the Olah altar:
  • He made the Olah altar from shittim-acacia wood. It was made into a square, its length being five Amos, and its width also being five Amos. It was three Amos high. It was hollow. He made horns on each of its four corners, and and he covered [the entire altar] with copper.
  • Its accessories: He made for it pots to remove its ashes, shovels, sprinkling basins, prongs, and fire-pans. It was all made of copper.
  • Its netting: He made a copper netting which encompasses the altar and welded four copper rings on each of its four corners. He made poles of acacia-shittim wood and covered them with copper. He inserted them into the rings for the altar to be carried.

 

  1. Making the Kiyor:
    • He made a copper Kiyor sink and pedestal using the mirrors of the women who congregated at the entrance of the Ohel Moed.

 

  1. Making the Chatzer/courtyard:
  • He made a courtyard for the Mishkan from twisted linen. The curtains of the northern and southern side of the Chatzer were 100 Amos long. The curtains of the western side were 50 Amos long. The curtains of the eastern side were 15 Amos for each end.
  • The pillars: There were twenty pillars and twenty sockets for the northern and southern side, and ten pillars and ten sockets for the western side. There were three pillars and sockets for each end of the eastern side, for a total of six. All the pillars were made with silver hooks and belts and their top was coated with silver. The sockets were made of copper.
  • The entrance to the Chatzer: The screen of the gate of the Chatzer was made of Turquoise Ticheiles wool, Argamon-Purple wool, scarlet wool, and twisted linen and was 20 Amos long and 5 Amos in height. It contained four pillars and four copper sockets and had silver hooks and belts, and the pillars were coated with silver.
  • Its accessories: The pegs of the Mishkan were all made of copper.

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[1] So is followed by Sepharadi communities and Chabad. However, Ashkenazi communities read from 7:40-50

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