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    Rebuilding the Temple – T’rumah

    Model of the Second Temple

    “They shall make for Me a sanctuary, and I shall dwell in their midst” (Ex. 25:8) – that’s the keynote of the sidra.

    Maimonides says in his code of Jewish law, “It is a positive commandment to build a house to the Lord” (Hilchot Bet HaBechirah 1:1). So what is keeping us from fulfilling the command now that the Temple site is accessible, presuming that the political difficulties could be overcome?

    A fascinating answer is given by Rabbi Shlomo HaCohen Aviner, author of “Tal Hermon”. There is an order of procedure that applies when performing mitzvot, he says. Certain things have to be done first before there can be a rebuilding of the Temple. One of them, according to Maimonides, is the eradication of the spirit of Amalek from the earth. Amalek is the Biblical symbol of exploitation of the weak and defenceless.

    If Amalek still stalks abroad, how can there be a Temple erected to the service of God? The Divine dictates of love, truth and peace need to be assured and observed before the sanctuary can be built.

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