Israel 365: On Sunday, a woman went out to collect tiny insects that once a year, produce the flame-colored dye that was used in the Temple.
The time-consuming work produced a minuscule amount of dye but she is determined to continue moving forward towards bringing the Third Temple.
“Come, let us reach an understanding, —says Hashem. Be your sins like crimson, They can turn snow-white; Be they red as dyed wool, They can become like fleece.” Isaiah 1:18 (The Israel BibleTM)
Bringing back the Temple service requires attention to the multitude of details described in the Bible. תּוֹלַעַת שָׁנִי (Tola’at shani) is usually translated as crimson wool but the actual term refers to the worm which is the source of the dye used for the Temple curtain, as well as the garments of the High Priest:
As for the Mishkan, make it of ten strips of cloth; make these of fine twisted linen, of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, with a design of cherubim worked into them. Exodus 26:1
The ephod was made of gold, blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and fine twisted linen. Exodus 39:2
t was an essential element as Tola’at shani is mentioned 25 times throughout the sections of the Torah dealing with the Tabernacle. It was used to dye the wool for the tapestries of the Mishkan, the the sash worn by the regular Kohen and several of the garments specific to the Kohen Gadol.
It was also was added to the ashes of the red heifer and for purifying lepers: Read More