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T'tzaveh

T'tzaveh

[You] Shall Further Instruct
Exodus
27:20−30:10

You shall further instruct the Israelites to bring you clear oil of beaten olives for lighting, for kindling lamps regularly. - Exodus 27:20

Summary: 
  • The children of Israel are commanded to bring pure olive oil for the ner tamid "a constantly burning light," above the sanctuary. (27:20-21)
  • Aaron and his sons, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar, are chosen to serve as priests. (28:1)
  • God instructs Moses to make special clothes for the priests. (28:2-43)
  • Aaron and his sons are ordained in a seven-day ceremony (29:1-29:46)
  • Aaron is commanded to burn incense on an acacia altar every morning and evening. (30:1-10)

When do we read T'tzaveh?

2020 Mar 7
/11 Adar, 5780
2021 Feb 27
/15 Adar, 5781
2022 Feb 12
/11 Adar I, 5782

RECENT COMMENTARY

  • By Rabbi Reuven Greenvald

    According to modern academic scholarship of the Bible – the critical approach embraced by progressive Judaism in its centers of higher learning – the Torah is made up of separate literary strands, written in different times and places, and holding different ideologies about ancient Jewish life. In this week’s parashahT’tzaveh, we see the P-strand, which stands for Priestly code and was likely composed by the priests’ heirs to Temple authority during the Babylonian exile after the defeat of the Judean kingdom in 586 B.C.E. Understood this way, we, as the biblical readers of today, might appreciate P’s representation of priest and Temple as a mythic argument for how the exiles can see through and beyond the upheaval and uprooting of their time.

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    Explore this week’s Torah portion with “Family Shabbat Table Talk” lessons, perfect for families with tweens.

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    In this week’s parasha, Moses takes a census of the people. Then Moses goes up to the mountain to get the tablets. While he’s gone, the people and Aaron build a golden calf. God wants to destroy the people, but Moses tells God not to do so. But Moses sees the calf and gets so angry that he destroys the tablets. Listen to find out what happens next! 

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