Thursday, March 22, 2012

Thursday's Parsha Tidbits - Parshas Vayikra

The following is a brief summary of a thought said over by R' Frand on the parshios this evening. I have attempted to reproduce this vort to the best of my ability. Any perceived inconsistency is the result of my efforts to transcribe the shiur and should not be attributed to R' Frand.

The second pasuk of this week's Parsha details the general rules of karbanos. The pasuk reiterates that Hashem told Moshe to tell the Jews that when a man (Adam) among you brings an offering... (Vayikra 1:2).

Rashi teaches a number of thoughts on this pasuk. The first thought involves the words "adam ki yakriv", which Rashi explains is the Torah's way of advising that these rules relate to a voluntary sacrifice - a nedavah. Rashi then teaches that the word Adam is used in order to teach that just like Adam Harishon did not bring sacrifices from stolen propety, so too we should not offer stolen property as sacrifices.

Rabbi Frand asked - why does Rashi teach these thoughts out of order? It would have been more logical to teach the thought about Adam Harishon first, since the word Adam appears earlier in the pasuk.

Rabbi Frand answered by quoting a vort from the Tolner Rebbi, who prefaced the answer with yet another question. The Rebbi asked, why did Rashi need to learn from Adam that stolen property should not be brought as a sacrifice? This was taught in a medrashic fashion, but it could have been learned from a gemara in Sukkah which utilized the word Mikem (from among you) to teach that a person can only offer what is his as a sacrifice!

R Frand answered these questions by first giving a preface about human nature. He explained that there are two types of people - those who love money and want to acquire more at all costs or those who are happy with what they have and do not need to chase after more. Who is the person who wants to bring a voluntary offering? Obviously, it is the person who is happy with what he has and is not possessed by an overwhelming desire to acquire more. It does not bother him to part with his money and that is why he willing to show how happy he is - by offering a voluntary sacrifice.

These two personalities are seen in Yaakov and Esav. Yaakov says - yesh li kol - I have it all. Esav says yesh li rav - I have a lot. If a person says I have it all - I can voluntarily share and give to Hashem.

Rashi teaches that a person like Adam Harishon who feels that "I have it all" can give voluntarily with a full heart - this is a person who can bring a nedavah. Rashi is not teaching us a halacha, he is showing us the type of person who can bring a proper nedavah. This is why Rashi mentions this first - these are the laws of nedavah. Who can bring a nedavah, a person like Adam Harishon.

This is also why Rashi does not teach the law from the gemara about stolen property. That relates to the actual karban itself. Rashi is not trying to teach us about the quality of the karban, he is teaching us how to be the proper donor.

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