Family, Religion, and Nationality by David Teicher


At the end of Parshat Naso, we see a description of the sacrifices each Nasi brought, even though they all brought the same things.  We know that the Torah does not use extra text, so why doesn’t the Torah just say, “The first Nasi brought this and all the rest of the Nesiim brought the same things?”  Rabbi Zechariah Breuer gives an answer.  He says that there are two other places where we see an entire story repeated.  The first is when Avraham sent Eliezer to find a wife for Yitzchak.  There we learn of the sign Eliezer prayed for.  When Eliezer meets Rivka’s brother, the Torah again tells us of the sign and Eliezer’s realization of it.  The other time we see a multiple telling is regarding the building of the Mishkan.  The Torah tells us how the Mishkan is supposed to be built, with every detail.  Then the Torah tells us that it was built, and does so word for word as per its instructions.

Rabbi Breuer teaches that Hashem put emphasis on these three items for a reason: the world revolves around each of these three things:

·       Getting married and having children who will grow up to serve Hashem.

·       Serving Hashem in the Mishkan and becoming close to Him.

·       Being proud, and not jealous, of one’s Nasi when he goes to give the sacrifices because in a way, the whole tribe is there with the Nasi.

Heavily condensed, these become the tenets that we must always keep in mind to guard: family, religion, and nationality.  By taking the Torah’s queue and embracing these aspects of our lives, we are sure to become stronger Jews.

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