Beit Midrash

  • Torah Portion and Tanach
  • Tazria
To dedicate this lesson

The Torah study is dedicated to the full recovery of

Asher Ishaayahu Ben Rivka

Parashat Tazri'a

Human Effort

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Rabbi Phill Chernofsky

5763
When you think of the difference between Eretz Yisrael and the diaspora in the context of mitzvot, you immediately think of mitzvot hat'luyot ba’aretz, the precepts that apply only in the Holy Land (viz., shmita, terumot & maasrot, et al).

In Tazri'a we encounter another difference. Various afflictions of the skin or of clothing generate tumah regardless of whether they occur in Eretz Yisrael or outside the Land. However, since tumat zoraat can only be ended with the prescribed offerings in the BeitHaMikdash, the treatment of zoraat for someone living in Chutz LaAretz would be highly difficult, to say the least.

And, at the beginning of the sedra, we learn that a woman giving birth is commanded to bring a special offering.

Clearly, living outside Israel makes it very difficult to observe many mitzvot, not only those directly linked to the Land.

But wait! We have no Beit HaMikdash. What's the difference where you live?

The difference is HISHTADLUS. Human effort. If we were to be challenged as to why we have not fulfilled these mitzvot, the only valid excuse can be that we have no Beit HaMikdash yet. But we should be able to say that we did as much as we were capable of doing - we keep as many mitzvot as we can... AND we live in Eretz Yisrael, eagerly awaiting G-d's help in being able to do all of His Mitzvot - speedily in our time, Amen.

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