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August 01, 2003 - Image 95

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-08-01

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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also is the spot of the Akedah, where
Isaac was offered as a sacrifice.

An eternal light, the "western can-
dle," burned in the Temple. It was the

middle candle located on a menorah,
the candles of which were lit each day by
the priest.


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Among the miracles seen at the
Temple was the pattern of the smoke
from the sacrifices at the altar. It always
rose to heaven in a straight, unbending

To maintain the Temple, each
Jewish male 20 and older was to pay
one-half shekel, regardless of his finan-
cial situation and of his place of resi-
dence (even those Jews who lived out-
side of Jerusalem and did not use the
Temple as often as the city's residents
were expected to pay the half shekel).
There weren't any IRS agents at the
time, or any tax forms either, but amaz-
ingly enough almost everyone seems to
have paid up, for in its long history the
Temple never ran out of funds.

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All the priests who served in the
Temple were descended from Aaron.

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Among the decorations known in
the Temple were palm trees, wood carv-

ings and flowers.

The Temple contained two altars.

e first, and smaller, was made of cedar

covered with gold, which stood at the
entrance of the Holy of Holies. The sec-
ond altar, used for sacrifices and peace
offerings, was made of bronze. The sec-
ond altar was located in the Temple

The very first Tisha b'Av, the day of
the destruction of the First Temple, was


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Initially, the Second Temple was
not as impressive as its predecessor. The

same materials simply were not available
and so, for example, a menorah was
constructed out of lead, rather than sil-
ver. King Herod, however, became
determined to make the new Temple as
magnificent as the first. He ordered that
it be rebuilt.
When the Second Temple was com-
plete, it was exactly as Herod had envi-
sioned. The Talmud recounts, "Whoever
has not seen Herod's building has never
seen a beautiful building in his life. Of
what was it constructed? Of marble
stones in variegated colors: blue, red and

THE TEMPLE on page 72

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