In preparation for the upcoming holiday of Purim, Jews around the world will be reading the section of the Torah that describes the giving of the sanctified half-shekel silver coin to the Tabernacle. The Hebrew month of Adar will begin next Tuesday evening,
From the time of the Tabernacle until well after the Temple was destroyed, every Jewish man was required to give one half-shekel weight of silver, approximately eight grams of silver (worth about $4 today), as a mandatory tax to support the Temple.
This is what everyone who is entered in the records shall pay: a half-shekel by the sanctuary weight—twenty giera to the shekel —a half- shekel as an offering to Hashem. Exodus 30:13
This money was used to operate the Temple, thereby making the animals purchased a communal sacrifice. Each man was obligated to give the same amount, regardless of his economic condition, with collection beginning on the first day of the month of Adar. The coins, once deposited in the Temple courtyard, were hekdesh (sanctified) and not permitted to be used for any other purpose.
“The half-shekel was a tax intended to be used for a specific purpose,” Rabbi Hillel Weiss, spokesman for the Sanhedrin, explained to Breaking Israel News. “As such, it was dynamic and not simply stored away. As the preparations for the Temple move forward, the need for that tax is reemerging. Without the half-shekel right now, there can be no Third Temple.”
It is towards that end that the Sanhedrin minted a coin specifically for the current era. Mordechai Persoff who established the Mikdash Educational Center, a non-profit organization for education about the Temple, is marketing the coin. Persoff explained the significance of the new project.
“We are minting a series of coins to reflect a prophetic process that is unfolding right now,” Persoff said. “Just as Cyrus paved the way that enabled the Jews to build the Second Temple, President Trump began a similar process.”
“With his Deal of the Century, Trump acknowledged the covenant that gave all of Israel to the Jewish People. Just as any significant national even is commemorated by minting a coin, we are minting a coin to announce that, for the first time in 2,000 years, a major world leader is acknowledging this covenant.”
“This is not a political event. This is an opening for each country, for each individual, to take part in what is becoming a global reawakening to the Biblical covenant. This is the starting point from which the Messiah will grow.”
Persoff warned that such moves towards Redemption can be a catalyst for trouble.
“Throughout history, whenever any move is made to bring geula (redemption), the dark side increases its efforts to topple the righteous. Amalek came to battle Israel at Refidim just before the giving of the Torah. Before building the First Temple in Jerusalem, King David’s enemies all gathered together against him. This happens all throughout the Bible.”
“But this is not only Biblical. After World War II, the world began to awaken to bringing the Jews back to Israel and the Balfour Declaration was issued. It was precisely at that point that Hitler began to rise.”
“Great light brings dark shadows,” Persoff said. “But the real way to fight this darkness is not to fight it. The victory comes from joining with the light and making it stronger. There are forces that we are seeing now that are joining with darkness in unprecedented ways. We want to increase the light, to give people a way to identify with the forces of light. The real way to do this is through the Temple in Jerusalem but lacking that, we are counting the armies of light through coins, in the same way it was done in the Temple.”
Rabbi Weiss noted that the first coin issued by the Sanhedrin featuring Donald Trump and an image of King Cryus was wildly popular.
“Unfortunately, that popularity came at a price,” Rabbi Weiss said. “Other sources began minting and selling counterfeit versions of the coin. This is not a simple matter of theft or copyright infringement. This is stealing from resources intended for the Temple and has very different consequences that are specified in the Torah.”
Since it is forbidden to count the Congregation of Israel, the half-shekels were counted. Rabbi Weiss cited a verse pertaining to the half-shekel.
When you take a census of B’nei Yisrael according to their enrollment, each shall pay Hashem a ransom for himself on being enrolled, that no plague may come upon them through their being enrolled. Exodus 30:12
“Most of the counterfeiters were from China and Asia where the copyright laws are not as stringently enforced,” Rabbi Weiss said. “It is no wonder that the coronavirus plague originated in a region that stole from the holy half-shekel.”
It is important to note that the coin does not adhere to the Biblical requirements of the silver half-shekel and therefore cannot be considered to fulfill the commandment. Proceeds from the sale of the coin will be used in reenactments of Temple services as well as in other educational and practical endeavors that help prepare for the Third Temple. Should the need arise, the proceeds will be used for the actual building of the Temple.
“The special coin was produced to praise President Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu for doing all they can to bring the light to the World,” the webstore says. “As part of a historical and divine process towards the Rebuilding of the Third Temple.”
“The diameter of the coin is 50 m”m made from pewter metal and plated with 10 grams of silver.”
The coin can be purchased at the Mikdash Educational Site.