Parshas Vayakhel – The Crafting of the Mishkan

By Shalom Olensky


This week in the Torah:

In vivid detail, the Torah recounts the actual crafting of the Mishkan, (the portable Temple which accompanied the Jews in the wilderness), regarding which the Jews were commanded a few chapters back, in vivid detail.


Why does the Torah, dictated to Moses from On High with total precision, seemingly squander numerous repetitive chapters of details regarding the structure of the Mishkan?


Each word of Torah contains a Holiness such as is not contained in any other word of Torah. Therefore, in a case of seeming repetition, the truth is that the repeated word or verse has a different spiritual effect.

In our case:

The original tale of the structure of the Mishkan was directly quoting, a) G-d Almighty’s words, b) to Moses, the holiest of men, c) as he stood on the top of Mt. Sinai in a completely spiritual state.

This week’s recounting is a documentation of, a) Moses’ words, b) on the ground, to all the Jews, and c) as a tale of the actual practice and physical fulfillment of G-d’s command.


This latter retelling was recorded in seemingly repetitive detail, also in order to teach us the importance of following through on G-d’s commandments in the actual physical sense of His word. It is the practical fulfillment of the Mitzvah which draws down the Divine Presence to dwell within it and within us. And for this reason, the punctiliously precise Torah recounts the potential structure, again; this time, in terms of practice.

(Based on Likkutei Sichos Vol. 2, Vayakhel-Pekudei)


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