29.7. The Collection of Contributions is Complete (36:2 7)

 (2) Moses then called Bezalel and Oholiab, and every skilled person whom the Lord had endowed with skill, everyone who excelled in ability, to undertake the task and carry it out.

(3) They took over from Moses all the gifts that the Israelites had brought, to carry out the tasks connected with the service of the sanctuary. But when these continued to bring freewill offerings to him morning after morning,

(4) all the artisans who were engaged in the tasks of the sanctuary came, each from the task upon which he was engaged,

(5) and said to Moses, “The people are bringing more than is needed for the tasks entailed in the work that the Lord has commanded to be done.”

(6) Moses thereupon had this proclamation made throughout the camp: “Let no man or woman make further effort toward gifts for the sanctuary!” So the people stopped bringing:

(7) their efforts had been more than enough for all the tasks to be done.

(5) And said to Moses, “The people are bringing more than is needed for the tasks entailed in the work”: This demonstrates that the sin of calf has found its correction. Because the Jews had so willingly contributed to the creation of the golden calf, it is important that they now show how much more willingly, and in greater abundance, they contribute to the building of the Tabernacle.

(6) Moses thereupon had this proclamation made throughout the camp: “Let no man or woman make further effort toward gifts for the sanctuary!” So the people stopped bringing: The literal translation is: “The people were restrained from bringing,” that is, they had to be restrained by force. The Temple is only a part of life; it is not everything there is in life. The enthusiasm that the construction of the Temple arouses in the people must not be so overblown that they are unable to stop when it becomes necessary to stop.

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Bible Dynamics, VOL. 2. EXODUS Copyright © by Orot Yerushalaim / P. Polonsky / English translation of the Torah by the Jewish Publication Society, New JPS Translation, 1985. With sincere gratitude for the permission to use. All Rights Reserved.

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