Tuesday, March 6, 2018


1.     The Torah portion, the last one in Exodus, speaks of the setting up of the portable sanctuary and the consecration of the priests.
2.     Ex.40: 13: God says to Moses, “consecrate [veqidashta] him”(Aaron). What does “consecrate” mean? The noun qadosh is often translated as “holy” or “sacred.” In reality, the word means, “to be set aside.” In the city of Arad, south West of Israel, they found two shallow bowls on which it was written QK, for qdsh khnm (reserved for the priests). See, BAR, 3/1987, 30. So, qadosh means, “one who is set aside for a specific religious purpose.”
3.     Ex.36:2: Moses called for “every wise-hearted man” (hakam-lev) (Soncino). What does hakam mean? Today, it means, a sage. However, the basic meaning is “skillful.” In the Akkadian of Mari, a hakammum is an “expert.” In the Bible, Lev (heart) is not the seat of the emotions, but the seat of understanding. So, haham lev is one who is skillful at rational thinking.