Below is a collection of Parashat Tetzaveh resources created by The Lookstein Center staff or contributed to the site by Jewish educators.
This is a growing collection. Check back soon or write to us at email@example.com if you didn’t find what you’re looking for.
DISCUSSION AND REFLECTION QUESTIONS
Question #1: There is one person who is in every single parasha from Shemot until the end of Devarim, except for this parasha! Can you guess who it is? Why is he missing? One reason is that this parasha deals with the clothes of the Kohanim (priests) and their inauguration. Perhaps Moses, in his modesty, lets the Kohanim (priests) have center stage. The Midrash offers another reason. After the sin of the golden calf, Moses tells God, “If you don’t forgive your people erase me from your book.” The Rabbis explain that the words of a righteous person are taken very seriously. Even though God did forgive the people, Moses’s name was not included in Parashat Tetzaveh. Can a person be careful about everything they say? How important is this?
Look inside the text, (Shemot 32:32),
וְעַתָּה אִם תִּשָּׂא חַטָּאתָם וְאִם אַיִן מְחֵנִי נָא מִסִּפְרְךָ אֲשֶׁר כָּתָבְתָּ – If you don’t forgive your people erase me from your book.
Question #2: Do you think it’s important for people with certain jobs to have a uniform? Why? What kind of uniforms can you think of? In Parashat Tetzaveh, we read about the special clothing that Aaron and his sons, the Kohanim (priests) wore. Many people wear uniforms in their jobs. While a uniform offers a mark of distinction, it also sets the individual apart. Why did they need to wear special clothes when they served in the Mishkan (Tabernacle)? Do uniforms separate different levels of society? Do people wearing special clothes feel superior to those who are not wearing them? Is it possible to bridge the gaps within society without removing the special place each individual has?
Question #3: On the one hand, the Kohen Gadol (High Priest) is to be totally dedicated to God, sanctified to God, and on the other, he was to wear a number of garments whose function was for him to carry a symbol representing the people before God. Is the job of public officials – Rabbis, politicians, judges, etc. – to protect and preserve the ancient traditions, the things which are considered sacred in their culture, or to serve the needs of the people?