This is the only Parsha in the Torah, after Moshe Rabainu was born, that his name does not appear. The Zohar explains that this is not a coincidence.
After B’nei Yisroel worshiped the Golden Calf, Moshe begged Hashem to forgive them. He begged so strongly that he told Hashem that if H. didn’t forgive them then “erase me from Y.ur books”. Even though that Hashem did forgive Bnei Yisroel, Moshe’s words were so potent that the curse that Moshe put on himself actually took hold and, therefore, his name “was erased” from our parsha.
The question arises, though, why was is his name not mentioned specifically in this parsha and not in some other parsha?
Zera Shimshon gives a novel explanation.
Chazal tell us that three halachos were difficult for Moshe to understand; the mitzvah to make the Menoro, the mitzvah to sanctify the new month, and the mitzvah to give machtsis hasheckel (a half a sheckel). They were so difficult for Moshe that Hashem had to actually show them to him!
Zera Shimshon asks, what was so difficult to understand in these halachos? It seems that there are a lot of just as, if not more, difficult halachos.
He answers that in actuality they really weren’t difficult to understand. Moshe’s difficulty was due to the fact that each of these halachos implied that Moshe would pass away in the desert and not enter Eretz Yisroel.
How is this?
Shlomo HaMelech was commanded to build put into the Beis HaMikdash ten Menorahs. The Sha“ch on the Torah explains the reason for this is that Shlomo ruled over all 70 nations and therefore 70 candles burnt on his menoros (7 candles on each menorah on ten Menoros). On the other hand, Moshe was commanded to build only one Menorah with seven candles which represents that Clal Yisroel will not rule over the whole world, but only over seven nations until Shlomo HaMelech.
When Moshe learnt this (there is a slight allusion in our parsha that Shlomo HaMelech will build ten menoros) he understood that he would not bring Bnei Yisroel into Eretz Yisroel and he would not be with them when the whole world would be under their rule.
Moshe reached the same conclusion when he heard the Mitzvo of machtsis hasheckel. Moshe Rabeinu wondered why is the mitzvah to give only a half a sheckel and not a whole one?
The word “sheckel” in the “at–bash” alphabet (which is that the first letter of the alphabet, “aleph“, turns into the last letter “tuff“. The second letter of the alphabet, “bais“, turns into the second to the last letter “shin” etc.) is spelled “bais“, “daleth“, “chuff“. The gematria of this word is twenty six which is also the gematria of Hashem’s name.
Moshe therefore reasoned that the reason that there is a mitzvah to give only a half a sheckel is because Hashem’s name will not be complete in his days. In other words he will not live to see comlete rule of Hashem in this world but he will die in the desert.
The same thing happened when he heard the mitzvah to sanctify the the new moon.
Moshe reasoned that if there is a new moon then there is also an old one; meaning the moon gets bigger and then gets smaller. This correlates and this is connected to Eretz Yisroel that it is “Eretz Tzvi“, a land like a deer. Just like the skin of a deer stretches so too Eretz Yisroel will stretch according to the population. Moshe Rabainu knew that if he would enter Eretz Yisroel then it would stay big and the moon will also always be full. Therefore when he heard from Hashem that there is a new (and therefore also) an old moon he concluded that he would not enter Eretz Yisroel but stay in the desert.
“What is the source that this is the explanation of Moshe’s difficulty? Maybe he simply didn’t understand these halachos?
Explains Zera Shimshon, it is from the fact that Moshe’s name is not mentioned in our Parsha!
The last word in last week’s parsha is “nechoshess” and it alludes to the fact that Moshe was showed these three halachos.
The letter “nun” is the first letter of “nair” (which means candle), the Menorah.
The letter “chess” is the first letter of “chodesh“, the new moon that starts the new month.
The letter “shin” is the first letter of Shekalim.
The letter “tuff” refers to the word “tireh” which means you will see. It is only after Moshe saw these three halachos was he able to understand and them.
Therefore, concludes Zera Shimshon, our parsha, where Moshe’s name is not mentioned, is right next to the last word of last week’s parsha, “nechoshess“, which alludes to these three halachos, to teach us that it was the realization that he would be concealed and hidden after he dies (just like his name is hidden in this parsha) caused Moshe’s difficulty in understanding these three halachos.
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