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The construction of the Mishkan was finished on 25 Kislev. Yet, the Mishkan wasn't actually assembled - and the rituals performed - until the first of Nissan.

Immeiately after the construction was finished, everything was brought to Moshe. Shemot 39:36 says that thing included the Showbread (lechem hapanim). Did the Showbread really wait around, uneaten, for over three months?

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The Ha'amek Davar offers two explanations:

  1. His first answer is that a there was a constant miracle that the bread always stayed fresh for the week between its baking and its consumption. Similarly, the original bread miraculously stayed fresh for many months.
  2. His preferred answer is that the original bread was made by Betzalel just to demonstrate what it should look like, but was not eaten. A few months later, new bread was baked using Betzalel's bread as a guide, and this was placed on the Shulchan and then eaten.

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