Friday, April 5
- 06:55 pm – Mincha
- 06:56 pm – Candle lighting
Saturday, April 6
- 08:45 am – Shacharit
- 09:32 am – Latest time for Kriat Shema
- 10:30 am – Jr. Congregation
- 11:15 am – Luncheon
- TBA – B’nos
- 05:30 pm – Men’s Class: Nefesh HaChaim
- 06:30 pm – Mincha and Se’udah Shlishit
- 07:50 pm – Ma’ariv
- 08:06 pm – Shabbat Ends
April 7 – 12
- 08:00 am – Sunday
- 06:40 am – Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday (Rosh Chodesh Iyar)
- 06:50 am – Tuesday and Friday
- 07:00 pm – Sunday – Thursday
- 07:30 pm – Monday – Thursday
To print this schedule, click here to go directly to the post, and then press ctrl-P (Windows) or cmd-P (Mac) to print it.
Weekly Words of Torah
Obedience to The King
Insights into Parshat Shemini of Mr. David Freilich of Yeshivat Sha’alvim, by Rav Re’uven Ungar of Sha’alvim.
This weeks parsha describes the tremendously joyous events of the הקמת המשכן, and, unfortunately, the tragedy that marred it; the death of Nadav and Avihu. The Torah tells us (ויקרא י:א), “ויקחו בני אהרן נדב ואביהוא איש מחתתו…ויקריבו לפני ה’ אש זרה אשר לא צוה אתם… וימתו לפני ה'”, “The sons of Aharon, Nadav and Avihu, each took his fire pan… and they brought before Hashem an alien fire that He had not commanded them… and they died before Hashem.”
There is a מחלוקת (debate) over what exactly the sin of Nadav and Avihu, as Rashi quotes the Medrash in ויקרא רבה (יב:א:ד) – whether it was their paskining in front of their rabbeim, or drinking of wine prior to their priestly service. Nonetheless, as the אבי עזר points out (שם:ג), it seems that they acted לשם שמים (for the sake of Heaven) in their actions; as is obvious from the fact that they offered the קטורת (incense) in a private manner, rather than the public one they would have done had it been to improve their own standing. This private offering was just an expression of their love and enthusiasm for Hashem, and their desire to give another קרבן to him. This seems rather strange, however, if one peeks ahead to the end of the story – for they were punished quite harshly for their seemingly good-intended act. If Nadav and Avihu were really acting לשם שמים, why were they then punished so harshly?
Rav Ganz, Ram Emeritus of Shaalvim, explains in his פני שבת (p. 175), that while it is apparent that Nadav and Avihu were tremendous צדיקים, as evidenced by the fact that Chazal tell us they were greater than Moshe and Aharon (see רש”י to י:ג, in ד”ה הוא אשר דבר), we see that they were lacking in the מידה (trait) of יראה, of proper Awe and Fear of Hashem. Bringing a קרבן which isn’t commanded, a נדבה (gift-offering) of this sort, is forbidden – but they, in their state of incredible passion, decided to bring it nonetheless. This, however, is clearly overstepping their bounds – for one who finds himself within the palace of the King, as Rav Ganz puts it, must be aware at all times that while he may love the King, he may not consider himself to be the “friend of the king”. As the פסוק in קהלת describes (ה:א), “כי האלקים בשמים ואתה על הארץ; על כן יהיו דבריך מעטים”, “For God is in the Heavens and you are on the land; therefore, let your words be few.” Nadav and Avihu allowed their passion to sway their logical judgment, and overstepped the bounds given to them by Hashem – and were punished as a result.
The lesson is clear, for we are all within the palace of the King, striving to serve Him as best we can. A lot of stress is put upon feeling the proper emotions when one does מצוות; but it is equally important to take a step back every once in a while and recognize that a person isn’t יוצא just through that – rather, in order to be a full עובד ה’, we are obligated to ensure that the actions themselves we do are also those sanctioned by הקב”ה, that they follow the bounds of הלכה and Torah.
And this theme, Rabbi Eytan Feiner explained, extends to the end of the parsha as well, which sets out the rules of כשרות; for kashrut is the archetype of restrictions set by Hashem, rules that tell us what exactly we can eat and what we can’t. Jewish life is about rules and regulations – and kashrut is something that constantly reminds us that we must follow the commands of Hashem, and aren’t free to just do what we wants; when in the ארמון המלך, one must act as the King wants!