14 Mar PARASHAT VAYAKHEL: THE PRECIOUS VALUE OF A TORAH HOME
Upon reading Parashat Vay-akhel, we cannot help but be struck – and perplexed – by the Torah’s ver-bosity. The Torah laboriously repeats all the details regarding the construc-tion of the Mishkan which were already presented earlier, in Parashat Teruma. There, we read of Hashem presenting the commands for how to build the Mishkan and its furnishings, and here in Parashat Vayakhel, we read of how Beneh Yisrael fully complied with these commands. But why did all the details need to be repeated? Why did the To-rah not simply relate that Beneh Yisrael built everything as Hashem had com-manded? Why was it necessary for the Torah to specify each and every detail of the construction a second time?The Or Ha’hayim Ha’kadosh (Rav Haim Ben-Attar, 1696-1743), in his commentary to this Parasha (36:11), explains that Hashem repeated all the details of the construction of the Mish-kan “Ki Habib Alav” – because this information is especially “beloved” to Hashem. When we feel excited over something, we want to talk about it re-peatedly. The Torah, too, is repetitive when it comes to particularly precious information. The Or Ha’hayim draws a comparison to the story of Eliezer, Abraham’s servant, who went to Aram Naharayim to find a wife for Yishak, and met Ribka, as we read in Para-shat Hayeh-Sara. There, too, the Torah seems to be repetitive. After telling us of Eliezer’s experiences at the well out-side the city, where he met Ribka, the Torah then records Eliezer lengthy ac-count of his experiences when he spoke to Ribka’s family. The Midrash, as the Or Ha’hayim cites, comments that all this is repeated because “Habiba Alav” – this section is precious and beloved to Hashem. Similarly, the Or Ha’hayim explains, the details of the Mishkan’s construction are repeated because this subject is especially beloved to Hashem.It is noteworthy that the Or Ha’hayim draws a comparison between the build-ing of the Mishkan and Eliezer’s suc-cessful efforts to find a wife for Yishak – the story of the building of a Jewish home. The Or Ha’hayim here is teach-ing us that building a Jewish home is as precious and beloved to Hashem as the building of a Mishkan. After all, when a husband and wife conduct themselves the right way, and run their home on the foundations of Torah values and Torah observance, then their home be-comes worthy of the Shechina (divine presence). In essence, such a home be-comes a Bet Ha’mikdash, a sanctuary, where Hashem is present. We are to en-sure to build our homes properly, the way the Torah instructs, so that our homes will be beautiful and sublime like the Bet Ha’mikdash, worthy of Hashem’s presence and of His unlim-ited blessings.