Calling all Kohanim

The Nezer HaKodesh Institute for Kohanic Studies: The World’s First Institute for Training Kohanim

נזר הקודש – המכון ללימודי הכהונה מיסודו של מכון המקדשThe Nezer HaKodesh Institute for Kohanic Studies

The Temple Institute, established nearly thirty years ago, has now established the world’s first school for training Levitical Priests to serve in the Holy Temple. Your support will help to strengthen and develop this school.

After millennia of yearning, only one organization is paving the way for the rebuilding of the Temple: the internationally-acclaimed Temple Institute (מכון המקדש), a research organization founded nearly thirty years ago and located in the Old City of Jerusalem. The Temple Institute is dedicated to every aspect of preparing for the renewal and ultimate construction of the Third Temple, and has succeeded in bringing about a spiritual awakening – bringing the concept of the Holy Temple back to forefront of our consciousness. The Institute has created nearly all of the sacred vessels needed to resume the Divine service in the Holy Temple, including the High Priest’s breastplate featuring the twelve precious stones of the tribes of Israel, the half-ton golden menorah, and the musical instruments of the Levitical choir. It has also made huge advances in preparing the architectural plans for the building of the Temple, and many other areas of research.

But who will serve in the rebuilt Holy Temple? The Temple Institute has established the world’s first school for the training and preparation of Kohanim – the Levitical Priests: Nezer Hakodesh, Hebrew for ‘Crown of Holiness,’ the Institute for Kohanic Studies. The Kohanim (plural for Kohen, the Temple priests) are the representatives of both the Creator and all of Israel, as well as all of humanity. The Institute’s goal is to prepare these men to assume their duties and responsibilities in the Holy Temple.

Nezer Hakodesh brings alive the knowledge required by the kohanim through educational practice drills on every aspect of the Temple service, held throughout the year. In addition to all the relevant sources of Torah halacha and knowledge, the school’s curriculum also includes in-depth courses such as:

  • The Role and Application of Modern Technology in the Third Temple
  • The Mathematics of the Holy Temple
  • The Temple Service: Theory and Practice
  • Holy Temple Administration
  • The Sacred Temple Vessels: Aspects of Engineering and Design
  • The Topography of the Temple Mount and the Structure of Ezekiel’s Temple

The Nezer Hakodesh Institute for Kohanic Studies was established four years ago with an initial student body of 12 participants. At present there are many potential students from all over Israel with whom this great responsibility resonates, who wish to register for these programs to prepare for their duties.

Some More Information About the Kohanim (Levitical Priests):

Who are the Kohanim ?

“And it shall be for them an appointment as priests forever, for all generations” (Ex. 40:15)

“For the L-rd your G-d has chosen him out of all of your tribes, to stand to serve in the name of the L-rd, him and his sons forever” (Deut. 18:5)

The first kohen, the founder of the priestly clan of Israel, was Aaron, brother of Moses, of the tribe of Levi. Levi was the patriarch Jacob’s third son, and Aaron was a fourth generation descendant of Levi. Aaron and his four sons were designated as the first priests; Aaron served as the first High Priest. As the verses indicate, all of his male descendants were chosen by G-d to be priests forever; it is an eternal covenant. Thus even today, a kohen among the Jewish people is genealogically a direct descendant of Aaron. In our time, new advances in science and medicine have established the identity of the descendants of Aaron beyond any doubt, through DNA.

The Role of the Kohanim in the Holy Temple

G-d chose these men to be in a position of spiritual leadership. They are responsible for the sacred service in the Holy Temple — and in general they are responsible for our spiritual welfare. The Hebrew word kohen actually means ‘to serve,’ and a deeper linguistic connection can be found in the word ken, meaning ‘yes,’ itself related to the word kivun,‘to direct.’ Thus a kohen is called upon to direct in the proper service of G-d: “And you, separate your brother Aaron and his sons from among the Israelites, and bring them close to you… so they can serve me” (Ex. 28:1).

A Conduit for Divine Blessing

In attending to the various aspects of the Divine service, the kohanim serve as a conduit to bring G-d’s radiant blessing into this world. It is on this account that they are commanded to deliver G-d’s blessing of peace and love to the people, as well: “Say to Aaron and his sons… Thus shall you bless the people of Israel: ‘May the L-rd bless you and protect you. May the L-rd shine His face upon you, and be gracious unto you. May the L-rd lift up His face to you and may He grant you peace’ ” (Numbers 6:22 – 26).

The kohanim represent the attribute of kindness, and the focusing of life’s energies on sanctity and Divine purpose. It was the attribute of kindness, understanding and love for all which Aaron, the first Kohen Gadol – High Priest, was best known for, and his descendants are entrusted to exemplify Hillel’s famous dictum in the Chapters of the Fathers (Avot 1:12): “Be of the disciples of Aaron, loving peace and pursuing peace, loving your fellow-creatures, and drawing them near to the Torah.”

The daily blessing of the kohanim in the Temple serves to open the Heavenly gates of mercy. Through it, the people of Israel and the entire world merit not only material well-being – including offspring and longevity – but spiritual blessings as well; mercy, Divine protection and the greatest blessing of all… true peace. Since the kohanim represent the attribute of kindness, G-d channels His blessing through their service in the Holy Temple.

Myth and Fact

Myths:

  • The Temple will come down miraculously from the sky.
  • The Temple will be achieved through violence.
  • The Temple will be open to limited Jewish groups.

Facts:

  • The Third Temple will be built through human effort in the natural course of human events.
  • As stated by the prophets: the Holy Temple stands for the sanctity of human life and peace and therefore will be rebuilt as an expression of unity and peace;
  • The Holy Temple will once again be the focus of prayer for the entire world;
  • The Holy Temple will be the focus of an inspiring pilgrimage for all people.

 

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