What G!d Lacks

"David and Bathsheeba," by Marc Chagall

A teaching of Uziel Meizlish, from Tiferet Uziel, Parshat Pekudei

פקודי ה’ ישרים משמחי לב The commands of the L!RD are just, gladdening the heart. Psalms 19:9

The word for “commands,” pekudei, also means “lacks” (1). Sometimes G!d causes us to lack something. This is for our good, for through the strength required to endure we are purified, and it gladdens our hearts, that is, our souls, the most vital part of our selves. This is the meaning of the verse, “There is none like You b’elohim, L!RD” (2) — even when G!d appears as Elohim, as the G!d of Judgment, we can still say “There is none like You,” none so merciful, for it is all for our good. And in this way we can understand the verse, “Yet for all this, when they are in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them or abhor them so as to destroy them completely, breaking my covenant with them. I am the L!RD their G!d” (3) — for “this,” for the Shekhinah, I will not reject them, but rather redeem them from their souls’ troubles (4). This is the meaning of pekudei adonai, “what G!d lacks” — for G!d’s own glory is in exile with us — and so we understand the verse, “This is my comfort in my affliction” (5).


1) As in lo nipaked mimenu ish, “not a man was lacking” (Numbers 31:49)   2) Psalms 6:8; b’elohim is usually translated “among the gods,” but Elohim is also the name for G!d in His attribute of stern judgment.   3) Leviticus 26:44; Again G!d calls Himself by both names, L!RD (YHVH) and Elohim, Mercy and Judgment.   4) Zot is the feminine form of “this,” and the Shekhinah is the feminine, indwelling aspect of divinity, manifesting as the world. So whatever we point at and call “this” is the Shekhinah.   5) Psalms 119:50

See also this teaching from the Baal Shem Tov.

This entry was posted in Concepts, Hasidic Masters, Nach/ Prophets and Writings, Parsha, Pekudei, Psalms/Tehillim, Uziel Meizlish/ Tiferes Uziel. Bookmark the permalink.

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