Praying for Others
After the heads of the Tribes complete their offerings, the Torah immediately turns to the lighting of the menorah – the beautiful candelabra that glorified the Temple and provided spiritual light. It is this menorah that would stand the test of time, surviving the Greek attack and becoming the foundation of the Chanukah Miracle. Aaron is commanded to light it, but not in the normal sense; the directive to him was “to raise up” the flames, as opposed to “kindling” them.
This Sedra also deals with the Children of Israel’s displeasure at their dietary situation, demanding a supply of meat. We also hear of the laws of Pesach Sheni – literally the Second Pesach, which was an opportunity to bring the Pesach Sacrifice exactly one month later, for those who were spiritually impure the first time around.
The commentator Rashi notes that when the people went to Moshe to complain of not being able to partake in the Pesach Sacrifice on Pesach itself, therefore losing the opportunity to perform this mitzvah, Moshe proclaimed that he would seek an answer from God Himself. Wasn’t this somewhat brazen of Moshe to almost demand an explanation from the Creator?
Rabbi Twerski answers, that when Moshe saw how heartbroken these people were by being unable to partake in the divine service, he was certain that their sincere desire to serve God would merit a divine response. He was essentially confronting God in their merit, and not his.
Moshe was the greatest of leaders; he had many virtuous traits and was a role model to all of the Jewish People. This was true both then, and for us here today. One of his many inspiring attributes was his love and devotion to his people. He was not just a messenger for Hashem, but a conduit that connected God to His people. He showed us the will and want of God as well as how to build our connection with Him and each other.
Praying for others can elevate our soul in so many ways. We bring love and kindness to the world, breed peace, and raise our spiritual selves to new heights. Moshe was showing us this power, so much so that he went straight to God in the merit of those righteous people in order to help them fulfil their service to God. This is yet another example of how we can always be looking to help our neighbours. This shows us how we can do our own little bit to bring peace into this world, and in the merit of our love for others may we see our own fortune.