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Parsha Mitzvot: BeHaalotecha: Mitzvah 384 – Concept 416

“God spoke To Moses, saying, ‘Speak to the Children of Israel, saying: If any man will become contaminated through a human corpse or a distant road, whether you or your generations, he shall make the Pesach-Offering to God in the second month, on the fourteenth day, in the afternoon, shall he make it; with Matzot and bitter herbs shall they eat it. They shall not leave over from it until morning nor shall they break a bone of it. Like all the decrees of the Pesach Offering shall they make it.” (Numbers 9:9-13) We may not break any bones of the Pesach Sheini Offering. (Rambam, Hilchot Korban Pesach – The Laws of The Pesach Offering)

When I was a little boy, my father zt”l used different types of hugs at specific times. He had a “Fireman’s Hug,” which was accompanied by his making the sound of a siren while enveloping me in his arms. The message was one of total protection and never letting go.

Then there was the, “I will break your bones hug,” which was accompanied by a growl. Its message was, “I can’t find the words to tell you how much I love you. If I hugged you with the intensity of all my love for you, I would break your bones!”

There are times we have to restrain our love.

The person offering the Pesach Sheini has greater reason to be excited and to love the Mitzvah than the person offering the Pesach on time. As we have seen, the Pesach Sheini is a powerful expression of love, relationship, and Teshuva. The person wants to devour every little bit. He wants to give one of my father’s “I will break your bones” hugs.   An actual bone breaking hug may express great love, but it would not be respectful of the hugee. Our love for the Pesach Sheini must be expressed with restraint and respect.

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