In the portion of Tetzaveh, we read about the garments of the Kohen Gadol, the High Priest. One of them was the me’il. It was a turquoise robe that had golden bells and pomegranate-shaped balls on its hem. When the Kohen Gadol did the Divine Temple service, he had to be wearing the me’il. “Its sound should be heard when he came to the Holy before G‑d, and when he exits, and he won’t die.”1

What was the me’il all about? Why was it so important that if he was not wearing it, he would die?

The me’il had two additional vestments that went over it. In front was the choshen, the breastplate, which represented the righteous. Around the back was the eifod, the apron, which represented those who found their way back to Torah observance.

The me’il had pomegranates on bottom. Pomegranates represent those who are at the lowest possible level of observance. Concerning these people, our sages say that even “they are full of mitzvahs like a pomegranate [is filled with seeds].”2 It has noisy bells, because unlike the righteous and the returnees who find themselves content and comfortable in spiritual bliss, the pomegranate realizes his lowly state and clamors to reach higher. Aside for the bells and pomegranates, it was entirely turquoise, which reminds us of heaven and represents the unbreakable bond even the pomegranate Jew has with G‑d.

When the Kohen Gadol entered the Holies to do the Temple service, he was representing every Jew. If he did not, his service was found lacking. Being the spiritual leader of the Jewish people, the Heavenly Court held him to a higher standard. If he chose not to represent even one Jew—even the pomegranate Jew—he could die.

This shows you the value and significance of every individual, without whom no service could be done in the Temple. This also tells us that everyone is close to G‑d. No matter where you feel you are spiritually and religiously right now, look up to Heaven. G‑d wants you, loves you and welcomes you home.

The lesson to us is to recognize the significance of every single person and to include everyone in our service to G‑d. We are whole when we are united. When we are whole, our service is most powerful; when we are not, our service is lacking.

Through our efforts to be united, we will once again merit to see the Kohen Gadol wearing the me’il doing the service in the Third Temple, with the coming of Moshiach. May he come soon!