Parashat Vayakhel-Pekudei

Chapter 35;v.5

קְחוּ מֵֽאִתְּכֶם תְּרוּמָה לַֽיהֹוָה כֹּל נְדִיב לִבּוֹ יְבִיאֶהָ אֵת תְּרוּמַת יְהוָֹה זָהָב וָכֶסֶף וּנְחֹֽשֶׁת

Take you from among you an offering to the Lord; whoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it, an offering of the Lord; gold, and silver, and bronze

Rebbe Baruch of Mezhibuzh said: ”There are three levels of charity. If one gives charity when he is physically and mentally healthy, this is ‘charity of gold’. If one gives charity only when he is ill or old and is worrying about his share in the World to Come, this is ‘charity of silver’. Those who find it difficult to separate themselves from their money, and just leave over a bit of money to be distributed to the poor at their funerals are considered to be giving ‘charity of brass’ – the lowest level of all.(R. Menachem HaCohen, Torat Am).

אומר רבי ברוך ממז’יבוז’: שלוש דרגות במתן צדקה. יש אדם הנותן בשעה שהוא בריא בגופו ושלם בנפשו – זו צדקה של “זהב”. יש אדם הנותן רק כשהוא חולה או לעת זקנתו, משהוא נעשה חרד לחלקו בעולם הבא – זו צדקה של “כסף”. יש אדם שבחייו קשה לו להיפרד מכספו, והוא משאיר מעט כסף לחלק לקבצנים בעת הלווייתו – זו צדקה של “נחושת”, הדרגה הנמוכה מכולן.

Chapter 38;v.21

אֵלֶּה פְקוּדֵי הַמִּשְׁכָּן מִשְׁכַּן הָֽעֵדֻת אֲשֶׁר פֻּקַּד עַל־פִּי מֹשֶׁה עֲבֹדַת הַֽלְוִיִּם בְּיַד אִֽיתָמָר בֶּֽן־אַֽהֲרֹן הַכֹּהֵֽן

This is the sum of the things of the tabernacle, of the tabernacle of Testimony, as it was counted, according to the commandment of Moses, for the service of the Levites, by the hand of Itamar, son to Aaron the priest.

It is noteworthy that, for the Golden Calf, vast amounts of precious metals were contributed and no one demanded an accounting or asked any questions. The same is true today. For worthy causes, scrupulous attention is paid to every detail of income and expenditure – but when it comes to “golden calves”, no questions are asked (Imrei Chen).