Terumah – Shlishi

The Menorah

By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

G-d commanded Moshe to have the Menorah hammered out of a single piece of gold (as opposed to welding different pieces together). There would be six branches, three on either side. Each branch would have decorative cups, balls and flowers, all hammered out of the same single piece of gold. The Menorah would have seven lamps, those on the six branches facing the one in the center. The utensils of the Menorah were to be made of pure gold.

Moshe had a little trouble understanding the complex design of the Menorah, with its cups and flowers and balls, so G-d showed him a vision of what it was to look like.

Next, G-d described what the Mishkan itself should be. Moshe was to start with ten 28-cubit tapestries with embroidered cherubim. (A cubit is about a foot and a half.) These were to be sewn into two sets of five tapestries each, which were then to have loops sewn on them. They were then connected into a single unit by golden hooks.

Sheets of goats’ wool were to serve as the Mishkan’s cover. There were 11 such sheets, each 30 cubits long. Five of them were sewn into one piece, as were the other six. (The sixth sheet hung over the front of the Mishkan, like a tent flap.) The “skirts” of the Mishkan trailed behind, like a the train of a woman’s dress (see Talmud Shabbos 98b). The roof of the Mishkan was to be made of dyed skins.

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