This week'sTorah portion is called Tzav. Tzav means “Command.” It expresses a command from G‑d about the donation of offerings in the Sanctuary, relating to the general concept of giving charity. But Tzav also means: “Connect.” It expresses the idea that G‑d’s laws establish a connection between the individual and G‑d.
The very fact that
G‑d has issued a command to the person imparts a sense of significance
to that person’s life. He or she is now bonded with G-d
by a Divine instruction.
The Lubavitcher Rebbe
points out that this connection is there even if the person does not
fulfill the instruction. As the Sages put it, “even though he
sinned, he is a Jew.” The fact that the 613 commands in the Torah are
addressed to the individual gives that person a significant role and
purpose. And of course, this role is properly fulfilled by observance of
commands. Yet the person who does not yet observe them has not lost his
role in the system.
When it comes to a command such as charity, in which one has to
give something away, we all need encouragement. The Sages tell
us that this is the force of the word “Tzav” : to give us encouragement through the generations. The
encouragement is the knowledge that through this command of G-d we
are truly connected with Him.
This Shabbat, is the Shabbat before Pesach it's called Shabbat haGadol, the Great Shabbat.
When the Jews were in Egypt, they were commanded on that day to
take a lamb and
tie it to the bedpost. Which they were later to bring as a Pesach
sacrifice. The lamb was the god for the Egyptians and so when they saw
this it made them very angry but they could not utter a sound in
Many miracles were performed at that time, so we refer to this day as Shabbat haGadol.
We have a custom on this shabbat to read a portion of the Haggadah which tells the story of the Exodus