Peace and Order by Jonathan Weinstein


In this week’s Parsha, we read the ברכת כהנים that Hashem told to the כהנים to bless בני ישראל.This is put right after the portion dealing with a Nazir. This juxtaposition teaches us that the כהנים may not recite ברכת כהנים if they recently drank wine.  This is also why Kohanim do not recite ברכת כהנים  atמנחה , as Kohanim might have drunk some wine during the course of the day.  By reciting the ברכת כהנים , we understand that Hashem is blessing us in order to show us         חסד. So of course, ברכת כהנים must be said by religious devoted people such as the כהנים in order for בני ישראל to show Hashem that they want to be blessed.  But why did Hashem not bless us directly?  An answer might be that Hashem wanted to give the כהנים  a special gift by letting them recite the blessing, as it says in  (12:4) that “ they who bless בני ישראל will be blessed by Hashem.” Also, when the             כהן  blesses בני ישראל , Hashem is actually blessing בני ישראל (the כהן is just an intermediary between Hashem and  בני ישראל).

Let us now explain the content of ברכת כהנים .  The first section focuses on material blessing.  We ask for material blessing and for Hashem to protect our possessions.  The ספורנו explains that you need to take care of your physical goals in order to reach your spiritual goal.  We are praying that Hashem bless and protect our material interests.  The second section talks about other people perceiving you as a spiritually eager person.  The ספורנו explains that the blessing is that you should see the grace of Hashem and therefore you will be able to observe Hashem’s miracles and תורה. The last ברכה focuses on peace.  After praying for our physical and spiritual needs, we conclude with a ברכה  of peace.  According to the Sifri, we may only maintain our physical and spiritual needs in a peaceful environment.  The  ספורנו explains that we pray for a full reward of peace in order that we should have in עולם הבא a full reward with no punishment.  We need Hashem to help us achieve peace inעולם הזה . The כלי יקר says that peace was the last ברכה  because peace completes everything.  The first two ברכות were missing something and the last ברכה  brings it all together.  A similar phenomenon occurs Creation where man was created last and everything created before man was created primarily for man.  Peace is so important that even dead people want it but since they cannot have it, they want living people to have it.  If there is no peace among the living, then the dead people cannot rest.  Accordingly, we pray to Hashem to provide us with peace and order.

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