This week's Torah Portion: 


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  דַּבֵּר אֶל־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וְיִקְחוּ־לִי תְּרוּמָה מֵאֵת כָּל־אִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִדְּבֶנּוּ לִבֹּו תִּקְחוּ אֶת־תְּרוּמָתִֽי

dabeyr el-b'ney yisra'el v'yik'chu-li t'rumah meyeyt kol-ish asher yid'venu libo tik'chu eht-t'rumati

"Tell the people of Isra'el to take up a collection for me -accept a contribution from anyone who wholeheartedly wants to give.""

Sh’mot 25:1-2:

”ADONAI said to Moshe, “Tell the people of Isra’el to take up a collection for me—accept a contribution from anyone who wholeheartedly wants to give.”

This reflects the heart of our LORD’s relationship with his people: willingness to give. He did not want his Mishkan constructed with gifts given in coercion. He did not instruct Moshe to make the people give. HaShem wanted his bride to WANT their Husband to have a dwelling place. Our LORD delights in our free will, especially when we choose him!

If you’ll remember from a couple of parash’ot ago, when the offspring of Avraham left Egypt, HaShem put it in the Egyptians hearts to give large amounts of gold, silver, articles of clothing, and precious stones to them as they made their escape. Now we can understand why this event took place. HaShem, knowing the future, would give his people the opportunity to see whether or not they would hoard this fortune, or give it back freely to the one who provided it in the first place. Herein lies a lesson for us today. Many times, our natural resources have been given to us to grant us an opportunity to freely contribute them back to HaShem, for the building up of his Kingdom. The Torah teaches, “To whom much is given, much is required.” The reward comes to us when we make the wise choice to freely, and wholeheartedly, give as ‘Am Isra’el did in these opening few verses. To be sure, what good would all of those riches do for a bunch of desert-dwelling, former slaves?
— Parashat T'rumah