Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  LifeLine
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Terumah

by Rabbi Yaakov Menken


"And they shall make a Temple for Me, and I will dwell among them..." [25:8]

In the (Medrash) Pesikta, it says that when G-d said this, Moshe trembled. "How is it possible to build a house for G-d, who encompasses and transcends all the heavens?" And G-d replied, "not by my standards, but in accordance with their abilities: twenty boards in the North..."

Then when G-d began to discuss the sacrifices, Moshe said, "would all the animals in the world provide even a single fitting sacrifice?" And G-d replied, "not like your thinking, but a single sheep in the morning..." And when G-d began to discuss the annual gift to the Temple, "each person in redemption for his soul," Moshe again said "how could a person ever give enough to redeem himself?" And once again, G-d replied, "not like your thinking, but one-half Shekel according to the sanctified Shekel measure..."

The Chofetz Chaim learns from this Medrash that G-d does not make impossible demands upon us. Every person is obligated to do only that which he or she can. As King Solomon said in Mishlei (Ecclesiastes) 9:10, "All that you find within your ability to do, act upon it..." which is to say, only that which is within your ability. We must do only that which has been placed upon us.

Every person is obligated to study, but according to one's abilities -- be that Mishna, Talmud, or Codes of Law. Similarly, a person is obligated to give charity according to his or her wealth. A wealthy person cannot give only the amount expected of a poor person, and claim to have fulfilled his or her obligation, but neither should a poor person give away everything trying to meet the standards of the rich.

A person must not become discouraged, worrying that it is impossible to do everything -- and then do nothing. On the contrary: we must do everything that we can!

Good Shabbos,

Rabbi Yaakov Menken


 






ARTICLES ON YOM KIPPUR:

View Complete List

Ideas for Inspiration
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5760

Perfect Mitzvos
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5764

Deep Heat Therapy
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5758

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

A Lesson for Life
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5755

Shabbos Shuva - A Year-long Effect
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5759

Picture Perfect
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5763

Looking for a Chavrusah?

The Holy of Holies
Rabbi Label Lam - 5774

Call to Arms
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5758

Completing The Process
Rabbi Moshe Peretz Gilden - 5764

ArtScroll

Benevolent Soldiers
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5759

The Fast of Gedalya
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5760

Yom Kippur
Shlomo Katz - 5773

> Saying Is Believing
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5772

Merits, Middles and Majorities
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5765

Must it Be the Same Old Me?
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5761

Yom Kippur and the Pathways to Joy
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5756



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information