Simcha's Torah Stories - Tetzaveh

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Parshas Tetzaveh


And now the 9:00 news brought to you by station WBBB. The final decision has been handed down by the High Court. Governor I. B. Ganiff has been convicted and sentenced on ten counts of bribery, extortion, theft, and grand larceny. And now for the weather . . .

Did you hear that Avi?

Sure, Chaim. Who is this Governor Ganiff? The name sounds so familiar. Ganiff, Ganiff, Ganiff . . .

Avi, is that Governor I. Binna Ganiff?

The name sounds right, Chaim. Where do I know that name?

He ran for office a few years ago. During his election campaign, he promised to fight corruption in government. He made speech after speech about the importance of honesty and integrity in government. He coined the slogan, "I. B. G. stands for Hon-es-ty."

And now he has been convicted on ten counts of bribery, extortion, theft, and grand larceny. Imagine that. When he was running for office, he seemed so knowledgeable on the subject of corruption, and so sincere in his commitment to fight it. Now we see that it was all just talk. He has proven to be a real disappointment.

Chaim, a person's knowledge does not always govern his actions. Governor Ganiff is very well educated in the subject of fighting corruption. However, that did not stop him from stealing himself. He may be very smart and knowledgeable, but he is not a wise man.

What do you mean, Avi?

The Torah uses the expression "Chacham-Leiv" in this week's parsha - Tetzaveh. The words seem to be a contradiction. "Chacham" usually refers to a person's knowledge. That is stored in the head, in the brain. "Leiv" is the word for heart. The heart is the seat of the emotions and desires. "Chacham-Leiv" means a wise heart. But how can the heart be wise? The head is wise, not the heart.

Good question Avi. What's the answer?

A "Chacham-Leiv" is someone who takes to heart the wisdom that he has learned. He lets wisdom govern his heart. If he knows something is right, he will do it. If he knows something is wrong, he will stay far away from it. A "Chacham-Leiv" is a living example of what he has learned. A "Chacham-Leiv" who is expert on corruption would never steal, bribe, or extort money. His integrity would be as solid as his knowledge.

Wow, Avi! This puts a whole new light on our Torah learning. I am going to try to put into practice everything that I learn.

I see that you're starting right now, Chaim. You learned how important it is to put into practice what you learn, and you are already putting that piece of knowledge into practice. You're a real "Chacham-Leiv".

Simcha's Quiz

Chavi promised Leah today that she will tell Leah a big secret on the day before four days from the day after tomorrow. If today is Shabbos the 12th, on what day and date will Chavi tell Leah her big secret?

Write Simcha with the correct answer to

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Simcha's Torah Stories is © 1999 by Simcha Groffman All rights reserved to the author
Written by Simcha Groffman
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