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Weekly Torah Message: Parshas Vayikra

03/19/10 19:45:02


Many have heard the Hebrew word for love is Ahava. Many Hebrew words have roots, and the root of Ahava is Hav, which means to give. The message is very strong and clear that it is to our loved ones we give and give, and realize that by giving we are also getting in return.

Similarly, as we begin Sefer Vayikra the Book of Leviticus we find a similar and striking comparison to the love notion. The third of the five Books of Moshe is Leviticus or in Hebrew Toras Kohanim for it discusses many of the laws associated with the Priests and primarily discusses the Korbanos, the sacrifices. The second verse of this week's Torah portion says "Dabair el Bnai Yisrael v'amarta lahem, Adam ki yakriv mikem korban La'Hashem etc". "Speak to the Children of Israel and say to them: When a person from among you will bring an offering to Hashem etc. The root of the word Korban, sacrifice is Karov to get close. When we GIVE a sacrifice to Hashem we are actually trying to get close to God. We are the beneficiaries of that gesture. God does not need out sacrifices, rather we NEED Hashem to accept them so we feel closer to Him. It is interesting to note that the word Mikem (in the verse) which means from among you can be read backwards and forwards as it has three letters of which the first and last are the same. Hinting to the fact that when people give of themselves for the sake of giving and doing so for the sake of Heaven then they are the true benefactors of their offering to Hashem.

In our times the word sacrifice is sometimes interpreted that I am losing out on something. That I have given of myself that I am losing and will not retrieve. (Even in baseball when a person hits a sacrifice fly it does not go against his average as having made an out. Although he does not get any credit either). But in the Torah's perspective you actually gain by sacrificing to Hashem and for other human beings.

Unfortunately, many people fail to see this in life. Sometimes parents feel that they don't need to sacrifice to bring up their children and to make concessions on their own comfort levels. Paying more for tuition, getting a tutor, sending the children away for a positive summer experience, sending away for a better kind of education all require SACRIFICE. Hopefully, the results of those sacrifices will be a better product and relationship with those important loved ones.

I have noticed that people are jealous of others, it is a natural feeling that the Torah warns us against. But nevertheless, People are jealous of others but never recognize or appreciate the sacrifice those individuals made in getting them there! Nothing in life comes easy. In Pirkei Avos it says according to the pain will be the gain. We know that by the phrase "No pain, no gain.

Korbanos may be difficult, in sacrificing our lives for others. But when we do, we will hopefully sit back and enjoy the fruits of our labor and getting closer and a return for our Sacrifice.

Good Shabbos

Rabbi Avram Bogopulsky
Mon, January 25 2021 12 Shevat 5781