July 24, 2024
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July 24, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

The first verse of Parshat Tetzaveh, a commandment was placed on the Jews by Hashem. Hashem commanded that it should be that Bnei Yisrael should take pure olive oil for the נר תמיד (everlasting candle). What a strange commandment especially since they are not the ones lighting it. One can understand why we need to get the material for Chanukah, Shabbat or Yom Tov candles, but why does all of Israel have the commandment to get the oil for something that not everyone lights?

I think that Bnei Yisrael’s need to bring pure olive oil is also a metaphor. Bnei Yisrael, us, is the oil which is something that is used for holy purposes and when you add it to a substance like water it separates from it. When the Jews start acting like themselves and stop doing what all the other nations around them do, then the Jews can become one everlasting flame. Only one person needs to light and start the flame because they are united. The flame, therefore, symbolizes that when we are one and united as Jews, we can see and help others see clearer. We can be passionate people who follow Hashem with love and Torah in our hearts. We must use our flame to spread it to the world. We were all commanded to get the pure olive oil. Each of us needs to take the flame we have inside ourselves as the Jews, the flame we received at Har Sinai, and help others catch a flame. Now is the perfect time with so much antisemitism to let our fire burn.

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