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Parsha Mitzvot: Tzav: Mitzvah 131 – Concept 376

“The Kohen shall don his fitted linen tunic, and he shall don linen breeches on his flesh; he shall separate the ash of what the fire consumed of the elevation-offering on the Altar, and place it next to the Altar (Vayikra 6:3).” We are commanded to remove the ashes from the Altar every day (Rambam, Hilchot Timidim u’Mussafim – The Laws of the Constant and Additional Offerings).


After burning all night, the fires of the Altar are tended first thing in the morning (actually a bit before dawn). This first task of the day is relatively menial, although it was enthusiastically sought after by younger kohanim who vied for the honor of “T’rumat HaDeshen.” The kohen performing this task would remove the ashes from the Altar fires and place them beside the Altar. He would then change into other garments (of a slightly lesser quality than those worn for the service).

“The Kohen shall don his fitted linen tunic,” ‘mido vad,” his measured part: One who desires to serve God, must know see the world as created for him; all depends on his service, as if he were “alone,” or ‘vad,” in the world. (Degel Machneh Ephraim)

He must also feel as if all was made for measure for him; that everything in his life was designed for him to achieve his purpose.

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