Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz – December 21, 2016
Last Saturday, a Shabbat reenactment of a Temple ritual took place in the holy city of Hebron, giving participants a taste of the Temple service as it was in Biblical times while taking a practical step towards preparing for the Third Temple.
More than 80 participants were greeted in Hebron Friday afternoon by the lighting of the Temple Menorah, lit by Shimshon Album and Rabbi Yaakov Hayman, the newly-elected chairman of the Temple Movement.
The lechem panim is unleavened bread, similar to the matzah eaten on Passover, and the 12 loaves are required by Biblical commandment to be on display inside the Temple sanctuary at all times. Cups of frankincense mixed with salt were placed on the bread.
And thou shalt take fine flour, and bake twelve cakes thereof: two tenth deals shall be in one cake. Leviticus 24:5
In the times of the Temple, Kohanim (men of the Jewish priestly caste) were separated into family groups that came to Jerusalem to serve in the Temple one week out of every year. The incoming group of priests would arrive on Friday to begin their service on the Sabbath. On Saturday afternoon, the outgoing priests would remove the showbread that had been on display for a week, replacing it with newly-baked bread.