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Friday, March 7

The Weekly Shtikle - Pekudei

Unfortunately, it is difficult, if not impossible to proceed without making note of the tragic atrocity committed in Mercaz HaRav Kook yeshivah yesterday. This week's shtikle is dedicated le'iluy nishmos the kedoshim who perished in yesterday's attack, HaShem Yinkom Damam biMheira beKarov, as well as for a refuah sheleimah for those injured.
    As we venture into Adar II and enter the stretch run to Purim, one of the prevalent themes is that of the unsung hero. Of course, the ultimate unsung hero of the Megillah is HaShem, whose name does not appear once but whose Divine Providence is visible throughout. There are other unsung heroes such as Hasach, the valiant servant who carried messages between Esther and Mordechai back and forth and who, according to the midrash, was really Daniel. And there was Charvonah. Although, perhaps he does not earn the title "unsung" since we actually sing about him.
    So, as we close out Sefer Shemos, my vote for the unsung hero of Shemos is Chur. We are not told much about Chur personally in the pesukim. According to the gemara (Sotah 11b) Chur came from some pretty impressive yichus - the son of Miriam and Caleiv. When B'nei Yisroel battled Amaleik and Moshe's hands were becoming heavy, it was Chur, along with Aharon, who helped keep them up (17:12) and ensure a victory.
    We need to turn to the gemara once again to learn more about Chur's heroics. In Sanhedrin 7a, the gemara explains Aharon's decision to aid in the creation of the Golden Calf. Seemingly inheriting his father, Caleiv's virtue of standing up for what's right in the face of evil, Chur refused to have any part in the Golden Calf and was tragically murdered. Aharon decided to go along with the plan only because if they were to kill him, the Kohein Gadol, they would have sunk to depths from which they could not recover.
    Finally, as the Mishkan is constructed, we find that the master builder, Betzaleil, is the grandson of Chur. Just as the Megillah has its blatant heroes as well as its unsung heroes, Sefer Shemos has Moshe and Aharon, the main protagonists, and Chur, the unsung hero.
Good Shabbos and Chodesh Tov!
Mishenichnas Adar Marbim beSimchah! (For real this time.)


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