Here's a great tip:
Enter your email address and we'll send you our weekly magazine by email with fresh, exciting and thoughtful content that will enrich your inbox and your life, week after week. And it's free.
Oh, and don't forget to like our facebook page too!
A new online course
Starting January 22nd
Register »
Contact Us

Tetzaveh in a Nutshell

Tetzaveh in a Nutshell

Exodus 27:20–30:10


G‑d tells Moses to receive from the children of Israel pure olive oil to feed the “everlasting flame” of the menorah, which Aaron is to kindle each day, “from evening till morning.”

The priestly garments, to be worn by the kohanim (priests) while serving in the Sanctuary, are described. All kohanim wore: 1) the ketonet—a full-length linen tunic; 2) michnasayim—linen breeches; 3) mitznefet or migba’at—a linen turban; 4) avnet—a long sash wound above the waist.

In addition, the kohen gadol (high priest) wore: 5) the efod—an apron-like garment made of blue-, purple- and red-dyed wool, linen and gold thread; 6) the choshen—a breastplate containing twelve precious stones inscribed with the names of the twelve tribes of Israel; 7) the me’il—a cloak of blue wool, with gold bells and decorative pomegranates on its hem; 8) the tzitz—a golden plate worn on the forehead, bearing the inscription “Holy to G‑d.”

Tetzaveh also includes G‑d’s detailed instructions for the seven-day initiation of Aaron and his four sons—Nadav, Avihu, Elazar and Itamar—into the priesthood, and for the making of the golden altar, on which the ketoret (incense) was burned.

© Copyright, all rights reserved. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you comply with's copyright policy.
Join the Discussion
Sort By:
1000 characters remaining
Vivienne Rachmansky District 12, Panem March 10, 2017

The clothing obligations are so detailed! If you were a priest and wore something different would god punish you? Have a great day everybody! Reply

Michael D'Antonio March 9, 2017

This is so very interesting! Reply

Awesomeness West Hartford CT February 17, 2016

this helped Reply

kathy colton,or March 1, 2015

Now I know where the disco bell bottoms and butterfly colors came from.I am a 70's favorite son was 'staying alive'.wow!!it always was cool to be colorful.thank God for making feel better about my self.amen Reply

bob the unicorn February 27, 2015

i like this parsha Reply

Rod Koozmin Frederick Md February 23, 2015

It would be good to hear your Torah summations read on morning radio shows. Reply

ANNIS Markovitz Brooklyn NY February 6, 2014

Very knowledgeable and explains well. Reply

Yael S. N.J. February 5, 2014

The bells on the bottom of the High Priest's garment are also warning the people to refrain from speaking Lashon Ha'ra..... Reply

Anonymous January 28, 2014

Great Summaries! These summaries are great! Thank you for them! Reply

Casey Phoenix, Az February 22, 2013

Dianas input Thank you for your input. it makes it easier for me a new convert to understand. I do agree that everything we do, say, feel, and every action done has impact everyday. Thank you again. Reply

Barry Augusta, KS March 2, 2012

Gerson McGreevey Gerson, Are you still in Wichita? I only ask because I live in Augusta and I am always looking for other Torah observant people! Reply

Shawn Boston, MA March 2, 2012

the 12 gemstones Any thoughts on the connection between this list of 12 precious stones and the 9 in Ezekiel 28? Reply

Dianne Mulders Whangarei, New Zealand March 1, 2012

kohen gadol Rabbi Mordechai Gifter (of the Telshe Yeshiva in Cleveland, 20th century) said that if a righteous man would ever so slightly move one foot several inches, his motion would be heard. This teaches that everything we do, even the seemingly insignificant Mitzvot that we perform, have an impact.

Rabbi Moshe Alshich (Israel, 1508-1593) taught: the bells and pomegranates were placed in alternating fashion: a bell, followed by a pomegranate, followed by a bell, followed by a pomegranate, and so on.

As the Talmud teaches, for every measure of speech one should have two measures of silence. The Torah thus emphasizes that each bell – each sound that a person makes – must be surrounded by two silent pomegranates. "Seyag La'chochma Shetika" – reticence is the safeguard of wisdom Reply

Gerson McGreevey March 1, 2012

High Priest and the Torah scroll I am not aware of the source of these connections. However here are some things that come to mind:

The Torah is wrapped with a sash, like the priests.

Both the High Priest and the Torah crown have bells attached so that people can know when they are coming and respect them accordingly. Reply

Derek Fort Smith, AR February 28, 2012

How does this relate I know that many of the items we use to "dress" the Torah scrolls with are based on things presented here. I will be conducting Friday night Shabbat service at my schul, and would love to point some of these things out - could you give a little detail on that subject? Reply

Related Topics
This page in other languages