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Friday, February 28

The Weekly Shtikle - Pekudei

This coming Tuesday, 2 Adar, is the yahrtzeit of my Zadie, Rabbi Yaakov Bulka. The shtikle is dedicated le'iluy nishmaso, Chaim Yaakov ben Yitzchak, z"l.

The pasuk (40:22) recounts the placing of the shulchan in the north before the placing of the menorah in the south. However, points out R' Chaim Brisker, the mishkan was arranged from the kodesh hakadashim and out, i.e. they began in the west and moved eastward. There is a general rule in matters pertaining to the holy service, kol pinos she'atah poneh, lo yehu ela derech yamin.(Sotah 15b and various other sources). This is to say that any time there is a choice between turning to the left or to the right, one must turn to the right. If so, when facing east, one should theoretically turn right to the south and place the menorah first and then place the shulchan in the north.

R' Chaim answers that we find in the layout that Moshe was commanded (26:35) that aside from being in the south, the menorah should be nochach hashulchan, opposite the shulchan. Therefore, it had to be placed after the shulchan so that it would face it immediately. This is also the reason why the outer altar was put in its place before the kiyor which was closer to the mishkan for in the description of the kiyor (30:18) we find it is to be placed bein ohel moed uvein hamizbeiach, between ohel moed and the altar which is only possible if both are in place beforehand. R' Chaim Kanievsky gives this answer as well.

Ironically, the Mishan Yomis program has just completed the 10th perek of Zevachim which discussed various different matters of precedence and the complicated hierarchy that determines which process comes before the other, beginning with the source well-known adage, "tadir veshe-eino tadir, tadir kodem." There are numerous aspects that may determine the proper sequence such has whether a korban is brought to atone for sin and how many times the blood is sprinkled on the mizabeiach. As we see from the above, there are many different rules involved and one must know when one trumps the other. We even see this to some extent in the laining of the haftarah. With Rosh Chodesh on Sunday, we would usually read the special haftarah of Machar Chodesh. Even though this is read more often than the haftarah of Shekalim, the rule of tadir is trumped by the rule that the haftaros of the four parshiyos can never be pushed aside. 

Chazak, chazak venischazeik!

Have a good Shabbos. Mishenichnas Adar Marbim beSimchah!

Eliezer Bulka

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