# 2777 The Eternal Builders


Q. Why was it necessary to write the Sefer Devarim as a separate sefer that Moishe wrote in his own words (Al Pi Hashem). Since most of it is only a repetition of what already happened, could not all the new mitzvos added be included in the other chumashim? So why was this Sefer Devarim really necessary?
A. Parshas Devarim is read before Tisha Beav on Shabos Chazon, and there is an important reason for it.
The Talmud (Shabbos 114a, Brachos 64a)) writes that Talmidei Chachamim are named “banaim” or builders, because they build the world through their Torah, mitzvos, and maasim tovim.
Rashi and Tosafos (Suka 41a) quote Medresh Tanchuma that the third Beis Hamikdash made from fire will come down from heaven already built and complete.
However, the Alshich (quoted in Arvei Nachal – Netzovim) explains that they are called builders because through their Torah, mitzvos, and maasim tovim they constantly build that Beis Hamikdosh. While others with their wrong acts and sins, persistently destroy it. The Satmar Rebbe used to paraphrase the above idea on the tefilah “Uvnei Yerushalaim Bimhera Beyameinu,” as; we are asking from Hashem to rebuild Yerushalaim promptly with our days and with our acts.
It seems that there is a tremendous difference, between the two interpretations. Since according to the Alshich, we are already rebuilding now with our Torah and mitzvois the land, Yerushalim and the Beis Hamikdosh. However, it is likely that Rashi and Tosafos, also agree that tzadikim with their Torah, mitzvos, and maasim tovim build even that Beis Hamikdash made from fire that will eventually be completed and delivered.
But how does one merit to become that so special type of builder?
It is only when one actually feels in his heart and soul, that the Beis Hamikdosh is his place and his only place, the home where he truly belongs and without it, he has no real space anywhere. Then, whatever Torah he is learning and mitzvois he is keeping, he intends it to create and build the only location where he can actually exist. That is the meaning of the mourning for the Beis Hamikdosh; it is totally different from the grief and bereavement experienced by the departure of a dear one, whom we don’t expect to revive in the near future. This new building contract has to be understood, achieved and acquired before Tisha Beav, the day also named a Moed, since it is then that the rebuilding truly begins. It is erected with our deepest feelings of Hakoras Hatov, repaying all the chesed and sacrifice that the land and the Mikdosh did and constantly do for us. Therefore we must feel deeply that whenever we learn Torah and comply with mitzvos, we are adding and rebuilding a part of the Beis Hamikdosh. When we don’t we may be adding to its destruction.
Sefer Devarim is the story of how to reach our land, conquer it and build on it the Beis Hamikdosh. It is a story of fixing mistakes and wrongdoings, of truly understanding where we belong, how to get there and build it. It has to be read right before Tisha Beav, on Shabbos Chazon, the day, as the name implies, of perception and awareness.
Moshe Rabbenu wrote the Sefer Devarim a short while before his death and from his own experience gained from a lifetime of constantly building. It was only at that height of his incredible life of constantly constructing and elevating not only others, but also his own self, where the true and unique Beis Hamikdosh of “veshochanti betocham,” can exist. Day by day, edifying a home for the Shechina to rest inside one’s heart and mind, is the essence of Sefer Devarim that Moshe wrote and gave to us, at the end of his life.
Rabbi A. Bartfeld


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