The taste of Shabbat – Bahalotcha 5777
Rav Mordechai Elon
Speak to Aharon and say to him, when you light the candles, on the menorah, seven candles will burn
With these words, Moshe was instructed by God to speak to Aharon, to inform him that the job of refilling and relighting the candles was his alone. We will ask a question that is the opposite of what is usually asked. We know that the menorah represents the Torah, as Shlomo Hamelech tells us:
The mitzvot are candles and the Torah light
Chazal taught us that the Menorah was in the southern end of the sanctuary , and so:
He who wishes to become knowledgeable should go south .
We must asj why is Aharon singled out for this mitzvah? Would it not have been more appropriate for it to be given to Moshe, who gave us the Torah? The question deepens when we read the following pesukim, that repeat, for no obvious reason, how the menorah was made:
This was the form of the menorah: hammered work of gold, from its base to its flower it was hammered work; according to the form that the Lord had shown Moses, so did he construct the menorah.
In other words, the making of the menorah was an act that only Moshe could understand and do. So, why were the replenishing and the relighting done by Aharon.