What is the significance of the statement "Zos Chanukas ha'Mizbe'ach"?
Seforno: The Torah is deliberately describing the Chanukas ha'Mizbe'ach here, which was tiny compared to Shlomo's Chanukas ha'Bayis. 1
Moshav Zekeinim: They finished the work for the Mishkan on the 25th of Kislev, but Hashem delayed the erection until Nisan (Riva - the month of Yitzchak's birth, or the Akeidah. Kislev complained; Hashem said, it is upon Me to repay you. This is why it says (Shabbos 21b) 'the 25th of Kislev [begins] the days of Chanukah.' "Mi Hikdimani va'Ashalem" - Iyov 41:3). This is why we read the Nesi'im's Korbanos on Chanukah.
How do we reconcile the phrase "Acharei Himashach oso" (in Pasuk 88), implying that Moshe brought the Nesi'im's Korbanos long after he anointed the Mizbe'ach, with the phrase in this Pasuk "b'Yom Himashach oso"?
Rashi and Rashbam: From "b'Yom Himashach oso" we learn that Moshe brought the Nesi'im's Korbanos on the same day as he anointed the Mizbe'ach (on Rosh Chodesh Nisan), whereas "Acharei Himashach oso" merely teaches us that the anointing preceded the bringing. 1
Rashi: It cannot mean that he brought the Nesi'im's Korbanos long after the anointing, as is evident from the Pasuk in Vayikra 7:36. (Amora'im argue about whether 'Acharei' means much later and 'Achar' means right after, or vice-versa (Bereishis Rabah 44:5). The question holds like the first opinion. - PF)
Why does the Torah see fit to state the sum total of the dishes and the bowls that the Nesi'im donated?
Rashi (on Pasuk 2, citing the Sifri): To teach us that the ones that Moshe sacrificed were the same ones that the Nesi'im brought and that not one item became Pasul. 1
Ramban #2: Even though each Nasi had a different reason in mind for choosing the Korbanos and Kelim, 2 they all had the same thought at the same time and they all brought them simultaneously to before the Mishkan.
Targum Yonasan: Because each total figure had a special significance XXX: The 12 silver dishes corresponded to the 12 tribes, the 12 silver bowls to the 12 princes and the 12 golden incense-bowls to the 12 Mazalos (constellations). 3
Why was this Chanukas ha'Mizbe'ach so much smaller than Shlomo's?
Hadar Zekeinim (17): A parable for this is a king who was on the road. [His servants] brought to him a meal based on the road and the inn. He asked 'do you honor me with such a small meal?!' They said, this is for the road. When you are in your palace, you will see how we honor you! So Hashem asked, do you [Nesi'im] honor Me with such meager Korbanos?! They said, this is for the Midbar. When the Beis ha'Mikdash will be built, and You enter Your palace, you will see how many Korbanos and bulls we offer to You! 1 "Az Ya'alu Al Mizbechecha Parim" (Tehilim 51:21) - and not a lone bull (that each Nasi offered for an Olah).
Hadar Zekeinim: Shlomo offered 22,000 bulls and 120,000 Tzon. Ezra offered 100 bulls, 200 rams and 400 lambs.