Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Thanksgiving Offering

Perhaps the most difficult middah to acquire is bitachon, real trust in Hashem that is expressed in action. The Mishnah Berurah writes that we recite the Torah portion detailing the arrival of the manna every day, “so that one should believe that all of his sustenance comes from Hashem’s providence. As the verse writes regarding the manna, ‘And the one who added did not gain, and the one who depleted did not lack.’” Yet the Zohar uses the manna as a paradigm of an even higher level of bitachon—the person who is so aware that everything he has is from Hashem that he doesn’t keep food in his possession from one day to the next. It is well known that the Baal Shem Tov, zy”a, never kept any extra money in his possession overnight. He would give it all away to the poor on the day that it came to his hands, relying on Hashem that he would have enough for the next day. Although this is a very great level, the Meorah Shel Torah writes that there was a time when a similar level was demanded of one who brings a sacrifice. He wrote, “We may wonder why the breads of the korban todah may not be left over to be eaten the next day. One who brings a thanksgiving offering must be emotionally moved to closeness to Hashem since the todah is an admission of His amazing providence. One who truly appreciates that Hashem has made a miracle for him must redouble his bitachon. It is not appropriate to leave over from this sacrifice because this shows a lack of faith that Hashem will provide for him the next day. This is forbidden; holding over the todah breads is a demonstration of a lack of bitachon that contradicts the very meaning of the offering and blemishes it.”

No comments: