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Parsha of the Week

        This week’s Parsha is Parshas Pinchas. We will discuss the subject of the final counting of Jewish people in the Desert. The Jewish people were counted before this, about one month after they received the Mishkan, which is mentioned in Parshas Bamidbar.

        G-d commanded that the Jews should be counted one more time. They were counted in the Desert, during the 40th year in their exile. There were a few reasons for the new census. Let’s discuss some of them

1)       During the evil times of Balak and Bilam, which was discussed in last week’s Parsha, many Jewish people sinned. There was a suspicion that the Jewish nation was mixed together with the gentile (Non-Jewish) nation. In order to change people’s mind, Hashem made the Jewish boys look like their Jewish Father.  Also, many sinners died during the plague, and they needed to know how many righteous people survived. The righteous people were dear to Hashem, and they were rewarded by Hashem.  There is a story, that a herd of sheep was attacked by a wolf. Many sheep were killed by the wolf. When they got rid of the bad wolf, they needed to know how many sheep were left, because they were very dear to the shepherd. In this story, Balak and Bilam are compared to the wolf, and the sheep to Jewish nation.

2)       The Jewish people were very close to the border of the Land of Israel. They needed to know exactly how many people will enter the land, because the land was divided between the people.
Moshe and Elazar (Aharon’s son) were in charge of the counting. Every man between the ages of 20 and 60 received a half shekel coin. The Levites were counted separately, from the age of one month old and older. At the end, Elazar added up the numbers per each tribe.

 Shabbat Shalom! Have a Good Shabbos!

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