The Fusion of Civil and Spiritual Practice by Ms. Rochi Lerner

(2006/5766) In Parshat Naso, we find the third and final account
of the building of the Mishkan.  The first account appears in
Sefer Shemot and the second appears in Sefer Vayikra.  As
the Torah does not unnecessarily repeat itself, each of these
accounts must communicate a particular message.
Sefer Shemot speaks of the meeting between Am
Yisrael and Hashem.  As such, the Mishkan account can be
understood as the nexus of that meeting.  Hashem instructs
Am Yisrael to construct a Mishkan so that He may dwell in
their midst.  Sefer Vayikra concerns itself with the laws of the
Kohanim and is therefore referred to as Torat Kohanim. 
Since the Kohanim worked in the Mishkan, it stands to
reason that the Mishkan should also appear in Sefer Vayikra.
Why is the Mishkan included in Sefer Bemidbar,
which relates the accomplishments of Am Yisrael? Rav Kook
explains that the answer resides in the wording of the
account.  “The princes of Israel, the heads of the families,
that had carried out the census, came to the Mishkan.  They
brought with them sacrifices” (Bemidbar 7:2-3).  The Torah
then provides a lengthy description of each of the sacrifices
brought by the twelve princes, despite the fact that each
prince brought the same sacrifice.  The Parsha then
concludes, “This was the dedication of the Mishkan on the
day that it was anointed by the princes of Israel” (Bemidbar
From this it appears that the princes’ sacrifices
constituted the final act of the dedication of the Mishkan.  The

Mishkan became functional with their contribution.  What made
these sacrifices so significant?  The Mishkan was always
associated with the Kohanim whose domain it was and who acted
in its service.  But Rav Kook explains that the Mishkan really
belongs to all of Am Yisrael.  The princes of the nation represented
the political aspirations of Am Yisrael, and this aspiration is equally
valid and relevant to the Mishkan as the Divine inclination of the
Kohanim.  The Mishkan was fused with both a spiritual and a civil
(political) dimension.  This fusion is substantiated by the Parsha
wherein the princes brought sacrifices to the Mishkan.  Not only did
they actively participate in the dedication of the Mishkan, the
Mishkan was deemed completed by their sacrifices.  It is when the
two forces within the nation join, the spiritual and the political, that
we create a true home within which Hashem can reside.

Persistence by Ephraim Tauber

A Separate Book by Mitch Levine