Wednesday, 22nd Adar 5783/March 15, 2023
Revi’i when connected to Pekudei
- 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 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- The accounting of the donation materials and their use:
- The following is the accounting of the Mishkan donations. It was counted by Isamar the son of Aaron, and the Levites, as Moshe commanded. Betzalel Ben Uri Ben Chur from Shevet Yehuda and Oholiav Ben Achisamach did all that they were commanded for building the Mishkan.
- Gold: 29 Kikar and 730 Shekel of gold was donated.
- Silver: 100 Kikar and 1775 Shekel of silver was donated. A Beka weight of silver was donated for every person 20 years and older during the half shekel donation. The total number of donors of the half shekel was 603,550. The 100 Kikar of silver was used to make the silver sockets for the pillars of the Kodesh and Paroches, one Kikar per socket. The remaining 1775 silver shekel were used to make the hooks and belts of the pillars.
- Copper: 70 Kikar and 2400 Shekel of copper was donated. The copper was used to make the copper sockets for the pillars of the Ohel Moed, courtyard and entrance gate. It was also used to make the copper altar and its netting and all of its accessories. It was also used to make all the pegs of the courtyard.
- Wool: The Techeiles-Turquoise wool, Argamon-Purple wool, and scarlet wool, were used to make the priestly garments.
Tanya End of Chapter 36
1. The above revelation of G-d in this world was already experienced in the times of the giving of the Torah:
- Seeing G-d: A similar revelation of G-d in this world was already experienced in the times of the giving of the Torah, as Scripture explicitly states that we were shown G-d with an actual physical sight.
- Seeing the sounds: Hence it states regarding the giving of the Torah that we saw the sounds, meaning that we saw that which is usually only heard.
- Hearing the commands from all directions: The sages teach us that by the giving of the 10 Commandments, the Jewish people heard the voice of G-d and His command of that “I am G-d” from every direction they looked at. This emphasizes that G-d was revealed everywhere at the time of the giving of the Torah.
- The Torah does not conceal G-dliness: The reason that by the giving of the 10 Commandments G-d was revealed everywhere is because the 10 Commandments include the entire Torah within them, and the Torah is the inner wisdom and will of G-d which does not conceal Him at all.
- The reason we lost our existence: Accordingly, it is understood why we also lost our existence by the giving of the Torah, as our sages teach us that our souls left our bodies during the event. [This is due to the fact that G-d was truly revealed at this time, and the Jewish people who are creations were not capable of handling this revelation.]
- The Torah is the dew of resurrection: The Torah gives the Jewish people the power necessary to nonetheless withstand the revelation of G-d and not experience an expiry of existence, and hence the sages teach us that it was the Dew of Torah that resurrected us during the event after our souls left our bodies. This dew is what will also resurrect this in the future, and comes as a result of our Torah learning as the sages state that whoever studies Torah the dew of Torah resurrects him.
2. What happened after the giving of the Torah that we lost this revelation:
- The sin of the golden calf: After the Torah was given, we could have retained this power and capability to withstand the revelation of G-d Himself, although the sin [of the golden calf] caused the Jewish people and the world to once again become gross and concealing of G-d.
- This concealment is around until the final redemption: This concealment that was caused due to the sin will remain within the world until the future era when the physical property of the body and world will once again be refined enough to withstand the revelation of the light of G-d, as empowered by the Torah.
3. The Gentiles will also experience revelation in the future:
- [Gentiles will be able to exist in the future despite the fact that they do not learn Torah and technically cannot withstand the revelation of G-d without becoming nullified in existence] as from the great abundance of divine light that will be revealed to the Jewish people, a glimmer of this light will also shine the darkness of the Gentile nations, and hence, the revelation of G-d will affect all of the inhabitants of the world.
- This concept is reiterated in many verses of Scripture and the prayer liturgy, that the Gentile nations will also receive revelation of G-dliness, and that this revelation will be from the light of the Jewish people.
- The Gentile nations will need to hide from this revelation: [Nonetheless, the experience of this revelation will not be the same between Jew and Gentile, as] the Gentiles will need to hide within caves and rocks due to the trepidation they will have in face of the majestic glory of G-d that will be revealed. [This is in contrast to the Jewish people, who will be unified with G-d, and due to the Torah, the able to withstand his revelation completely.]
Rambam, Hilchos Eidus, Chapter 17
The criteria for admissible testimony
Halacha 1: The prohibition against hearsay
- It is forbidden for one to testify regarding a certain matter until he actually witnesses it either by seeing it with his own eyes or hears it it with his own ears.
- Was told the information by great scholars: Even if many great and wise and God-fearing individuals tell him a certain matter, such as that an individual transgressed a sin or that an individual borrowed money from another individual, he may not accept it as truth and testify regarding it.
- Is a false witness: A person who transgresses and testifies regarding hearsay, regarding a manner that he did not actually witness, is considered a false witness and transgresses the negative command against giving false testimony.
- Testifying regarding an admission of the borrower: By monetary cases, it is not necessary to actually eyewitness the event, and hearing an admission from the borrower also suffices.
- This however only applies if the borrower asked the individual to be a witness to his admission.
Halacha 2: Investigating that the witnesses are giving an eyewitness account
- Investigating the testimony to negate hearsay: Being that hearsay testimony is inadmissible and forbidden even by monetary cases, therefore the judges must investigate the witnesses even by monetary cases to make sure that their testimony is based on their personal witnessing of the event and not based on hearsay.
- Intimidating the witnesses against false testimony: The judges need to intimidate the witnesses against testifying based on hearsay, and explain to them the severity of being a false witness, and the punishments received in this and the next world.
- Interrogating the first witness: After the intimidation, everyone with exception to the choicest of the witnesses is asked to leave the room, and the judges inquire from him as to how he came to determine the truth behind his testimony.
- An example of the procedure by a loan case: For example, if the witness testifies that an individual owes money to another individual, the judges ask him as to to how he knows this. If he says that someone told him this, or that even the borrower himself told him this, his testimony is thrown out of court.
- Only if he says that he and his friend were asked by the borrower to testify to the admission of the loan which took place in front of the lender, is his testimony acceptable.
- After the interrogation of the first witness, the second witness is entered and interrogated in the same way.
- Only if both testimonies match up, do we then use it to give a verdict.
Halacha 3: Testimony of admission heard over eavesdropping
- An admission to the loan by the borrower to the lender which was heard by two witnesses in the form of eavesdropping, is not acceptable in court. The reason for this is because the testimony of an admission to a loan is only acceptable if the borrower who admitted to the loan was aware that there were witnesses present.
- Thus, if the lender hid two witnesses to eavesdrop and hear the admission, it is invalid.
Halacha 4: The criteria for the acceptance of testimony of a confession
- Testimony of a confession to the loan by the borrower is valid if the borrower stated to the witnesses in front of the lender that he borrowed from him, such and such amount of money.
- Likewise, if the witnesses were told “you are my witnesses,” or “testify for me,” their testimony of the confession is admissible.
- The above applies whether it was the borrower or lender who made the above statement to the witnesses so long as the borrower did not make a gesture of protest to the statement.
- It goes without saying that if the witnesses were asked to document the admission, or to make an acquisition with the borrower who admitted to the loan, that their testimony is acceptable.
Halacha 5: Testifying on information one heard from one’s Rebbe
- It is forbidden for a student to testify regarding a matter that he heard from his teacher on the basis that he does not believe his teacher would ever lie.
- Thus, if a teacher told his student to testify on his behalf together with one more witness that an individual had borrowed money from him, it is forbidden for the student to testify even if the student knows that his teacher would never lie about such a thing, and if he does testify then he is a false witness.
Halacha 6: Pretending to be a witness to intimidate the defendant to confess
- It is forbidden for one to stand next to a single true witness and pretend to be the second witness in order to intimidate the defendant into admission, even if he will not say anything at all.
- On this the verse states that one must distance himself from falsehood.
Halacha 7: Punishments for transgressing testimony related laws
- A person who hires false witnesses: One who hires a false witness to testify against his friend is exempt from monetary liability in court although is held liable in the hands of heaven to reimburse the loss that he caused.
- A person who refuses to testify: One who witnessed an event and refused to testify, hence causing a monetary loss to an individual, is exempt from monetary liability in court although is held liable in the hands of heaven to reimburse the person for the loss that he caused.
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