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Parshas VaYakheil/Pekudei - Smooth Heart

By Reb Eliezer Bulka

Posted on 03/09/18

In this week’s parsha, (35:30-35) Moshe Rabbeinu informs B’nei Yisrael that Betzalel will be in charge of overseeing the construction of the mishkan. He states that HaShem has instilled in him a special spirit of wisdom and understanding. After explaining this wisdom in more detail, Moshe adds (35:34) “ulhoros nasan belibo,” and He has placed in his heart the ability or desire to teach. It was not sufficient for Betzalel to be familiar with all the crafts necessary for the construction of mishkan. He needed to be able to teach it to others so that they may participate as well.


In examining this pasuk more thoroughly, there are two very important lessons that are taught in this seemingly simple phrase. The first is that no wealth of knowledge ever guarantees the ability to teach. Betzalel was brought to the highest levels of knowledge and understanding but that was not enough. In addition to the wisdom vested in him by HaShem he also required a separate Divine inspiration for the ability to give over that wisdom to others. The art of teaching is a necessary wisdom unto itself. This point is made by Ohr HaChayim and R’ Moshe Shternbuch on this pasuk.


This pasuk also teaches us that while one might attribute other areas of wisdom to the brain or mind, the essence of teaching is in the heart. It is not even enough for one to spend day and night studying and learning how to teach. No matter how much knowledge one is able to place in his brain, without a teaching heart it just does not work. Therefore, in addition to enriching Betzalel’s intellect with the wisdom and knowledge to perform all the necessary tasks, HaShem instilled in him all the necessary components to make the training process as smooth as possible.