ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
Prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
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(a) According to Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmeni Amar Rebbi Yonasan, the Pasuk "Ashrei ha'Ish" (that we discussed earlier), refers to Avraham Avinu. "Atzas Resha'im" refers to the Dor Haflagah (the Generation of the Tower), whereas ...
1. ... "Derech Chata'im" refers to - S'dom, and ...
2. ... "Moshav Leitzim" to - the P'lishtim.
(b) We know that the P'lishtim were Leitzanim (jesters/mockers) - from the Pasuk in Shoftim (in connection with Shimshon) "Vayehi ke'Tov Libam, Va'yomru Kir'u le'Shimshon Viyesachek lanu" (an invitation to the captured Shimshon to 'jest' for them).
(c) Rebbi Amram Amar Rav interpret the word "ha'Ish" (in the Pasuk in Tehilim "Ashrei ha'Ish Yarei es Hash-m") - that it is considered praiseworthy to do Teshuvah whilst one is still a man (in one's prime), and not wait until one becomes old.
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(a) According to Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi, "Ish" comes to teach us the praiseworthiness of a person who overcomes his Yeitzer-ha'Ra when he is young. He extrapolates from the continuation of the Pasuk "be'Mitzvosav Chafetz Me'od" - that it is Mitzvos that one should want, and not their reward ...
(b) ... as we learned in the Mishnah in Pirkei Avos 'Do not be like servants who serve their master in order to receive reward; be like servants who serve their master not in order to receive reward (but out of love for Hash-m and His Mitzvos)'.
(c) Rebbi (or a S'tam Beraisa) learns from the continuation of the earlier Pasuk "Ki Im be'Soras Hash-m Cheftzo" - that a person should learn whatever he fancies learning.
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(a) Levi and Rebbi Shimon b'rei de'Rebbi had just fiinshed learning a Seifer with their Rebbi (their Rebbe). Levi wanted to begin learning Mishlei - Rebbi Shimon preferred Tehilim.
(b) Rebbi Shimon managed to convince Levi, and they began learning Tehilim. The moment however, they arrived at the Pasuk "Ki Im be'Soras Hash-m Cheftzo" - Rebbi taught them the explanation that we just learned, and Levi remarked that Rebbi had effectively given him permission to leave,
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(a) Rava explains the Pasuk "Ki Im be'Soras Hash-m Cheftzo" like Rebbi. Rav Avdimi bar Chama Darshens it to mean - that Hash-m carries out the needs of those who study Torah.
(b) Rava Darshens from the change ...
1. ... of person, from "Soras Hash-m" to "u've'Soraso Yehegeh ... " - that although initially, the Torah belongs to Hash-m, once a person has studied it, it becomes his.
2. ... from "Soras Hash-m" to "u've'Soraso Yehegeh ... " - that one should first learn the entire text with one's Rebbe, and only then, should he begin to elaborate ...
(c) ... a. because one's Rebbe will not always be available to answer all one's questions first time round, and one lacks the basic knowledge to deal with them oneself, and b. - because the more one becomes accustomed to learning, the more one is able to cope with the difficulties that one encounters in one's learning.
(d) And from ...
1. ... the Pasuk "Garsah Nafshi le'Sa'avah", Rava Darshens - that one should learn even if one does not undertand fully what he is learning, like grain that is only partially ground (which is what "Garsah" means), which is better than grain that has not been ground at all.
2. ... the change from one Pasuk "al Gapei Meromei Ka'res" to "al Kisei Meromei Ka'res" in another Pasuk (both in Mishlei), he learns - that Talmidim should learn, if need be, even if their understanding is unstable (like a bird's wings). Later, it will become more solid (like a chair). Alternatively, one should first learn alone (like "Im be'Gapo Yavo" [Mishpatim]), and later, one will acquire Talmidim.
(d) Similarly, from the change from ...
1. ... "al Rosh Meromim" to "Alei Derech" we Darshen - that one first learns in the alleyways (out of sight), and later, in public, where many Talmidim will learn from him.
2. ... "Sh'sei Mayim mi'Borcha" to "ve'Nozlim mi'Toch Be'ercha" Ula Darshens - that initially, a Talmid will drink the limited supply of water from his pit. Later, he will merit to drink from a fountain (whose supply is limitless).
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(a) Rava Amar ... Rav Huna learns from the Pasuk "Hon me'Hevel Yim'at, ve'Kovetz al Yad Yirbeh" - that rather than learning vast quantities of Gemara without revision, one should learn little by little, and constantly revise it.
(b) Rava lamented the fact that the Rabbanan were aware of this Limud, yet they chose to ignore it - Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak claimed that he practiced it and succeeded in his learning.
(c) Rebbi Shizbi in the name of Rebbi Elazar ben Azaryah explaining the Pasuk in Mishlei "Lo Yachroch, Remiyah Tzeido", interpreted ...
1. ... "Remiyah Tzeido" with reference to a person who tricks people into thinking that he is a great Talmid-Chacham, by accumulating huge amounts of knowledge (by learning vast quantities of Gemara without revision) ...
2. ... and "Lo Yachroch" - which is the acronym of 'Lo Yichyeh ve'Ya'arich') to mean - that he will not live long ...
(d) ... because he will forget his learning (and the Torah writes "Ki Hu Chayecha ve'Orech Yamecha" with regard to those who learn and revise).
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(a) When Rav Dimi arrived from Eretz Yisrael, he Darshened the Pasuk to mean - that surely someone who is cunning and revises the little that he learns at one time, will remember what he learns ...
(b) ... just like a clever hunter scorches the wings of the birds that he catches so that they should not fly away, ending up with a large catch.
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(a) The Pasuk in Tehilim (that we discussed earlier on the Amud) continues "Ve'hayah ke'Eitz Shasul al Palgei Mayim". It uses the word "Shasul" and not "Natu'a" - because the former (as opposed to the latter) refers to a tree that is planted temporarily in one spot, which will later be transplanted to a better location. Likewise, one should learn from one Rebbe and then from another ... , and not restrict one's entire learning to one Rebbe.
(b) de'bei Rebbi Yanai says that someone who learns from one Rebbe - will not see a Si'man B'rachah in his learning.
(c) Before teaching them the Meimra of de'bei Rebbi Yanai, Rav Chisda told his Talmidim - that he was afraid that what he was about to teach them would result in their leaving him to go and learn with another Rebbe ...
(d) ... which is precisely what they did.
(e) When Rav Chisda's Talmidim joined Rabah's Yeshivah, he qualified the Meimra of de'Bei Rebbi Yanai - by confining it to learning Iyun (S'vara, since it is advantageous to hear the S'varos of different Rebbes), but not to Beki'us (the learning of text, because learning different versions of the same text from different Rebbes will result in the Talmidim becoming confused).
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(a) Rebbi Tanchum bar Chanila'i learns from the continuation of the current Pasuk " ... al Palgei Mayim" - that one should divide one's life's learning ('Shenosav') into three, a third, Chumash, a third, Mishnah and a third, Gemara.
(b) We object do this however - in that nobody knows when he is going to die.
(c) So we amend it from years into - days, meaning that one divide one's weeks into three: two weekdays, Chumash; two, Mishnah and two, Gemara (see also Tosfos DH 'Yeshalesh Adam').
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(a) Rava ...
1. ... explains the Pasuk there " ... asher Piryo Yiten be'Ito ve'Aleihu Lo Yibol" to mean - that one's learning will not flounder only if one fixes times to learn (and not just whenever one has time).
2. ... correlate this with the following Pasuk "Lo Chein ha'Resha'im ki Im ka'Motz asher Tidfenu Ru'ach" - by ascribing it to both a Rebbe and a Talmid who do not make their learning a fixture, as we explained.
(b) Alternatively, "Piryo Yiten be'Ito" might refer, not to learning without fixed times, but - to learning theory without putting it into practice. And this is the preferred explanation.
(c) According to Rebbi Aba ... Amar Rav, the Pasuk in Mishlei "Ki Rabim Chalalim Hipilah" refers to a Talmid who Paskens (issues rulings) even though he is unqualified to do so - and "Va'atzumim Kol Harugehah" to someone who is qualified to Pasken, but doesn't.
(d) The connotations of "Va'atzumim" are- that he keeps his mouth shut (like "Otzem Einav" in Yeshayah).
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(a) When Rabah died, he was - forty years old.
(b) A Talmid is considered fit to Pasken - from the age of forty.
(c) Nonetheless, Rabah Paskened in his lifetime - because he was on a par with the greatest Talmidei-Chachamim of his time.
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(a) Rav Acha bar Ada Amar Rav (or Rav Acha bar Aba ... Amar Rav) interprets the next phrase "ve'Aleihu Lo Yibol" to mean - that one can even learn from the Talmid-Chacham's 'idle chatter' (which, compared to his Torah is like the leaves of a tree compared to its fruit).
(b) The Pasuk concludes "ve'Chol asher Ya'aseh Yatzli'ach". Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi explains - that this Pasuk from Kesuvim, together with the Pesukim "u'Shemartem es Divrei ha'B'ris ha'Zos ... Lema'an Taskilu es Kol Asher Ta'asun" (in Nitzavim [Torah]), and "Lo Yamush Seifer ha'Torah ha'Zeh mi'Picha ... Ki Az Tatzli'ach es Derachecha ve'Az Taskil" (in Yehoshua [Nevi'im]) - form a triumvirate which teach us that Hash-m blesses a person who learns Torah, with material success.
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(a) When Rebbi Alexandri arrived in town, he announced - 'Who wants life? Who wants life'?
(b) When the people came for the prescription - he simply quoted them the Pasuk "Mi ha'Ish he'Chafetz Chayim ... Netzor Leshoncha me'Ra", which is the true elixir of life.
(c) This cannot mean that a person can attain the greatest heights by going to bed and sleeping all day - because the Pasuk continues "Sur me'Ra va'Asei Tov ... ". In other words, after running away from evil, one remains obligated to do good (by which the Pasuk means to learn Torah).
(d) And we know that "Tov" refers to Torah - because of the Pasuk in Mishlei "Ki Lekach Tov Nasati lachem Torasi Al Ta'azovu".
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(a) We learned in our Mishnah that one must stop building upon reaching the archway of the bathhouse. We ask - why Rebbi Elazar Amar Rebbi Yochanan finds it necessary to allow the builder to receive payment for his work, in the event that he did build it, seeing as it is only Tashmishei Avodah-Zarah (an accessory of Avodah-Zarah, and not Avodah-Zarah itself).
(b) And this Kashya goes both according to Rebbi Akiva and Rebbi Yishmael, who argue over - whether the Avodah-Zarah of a Nochri becomes Asur immediately (Rebbi Akiva) or only after he worships it (Rebbi Yishmael).
(c) Rebbi Yirmiyah therefore establishes the case with regard to the manufacture of the Avodah-Zarah itself, which is permitted - because it was made on behalf of a Nochri, but would be forbidden if it was made on behalf of a Yisrael.
(d) The problem with this explanation is that it follows the opinion of Rebbi Yishmael (but not that of Rebbi Akiva (who holds the opposite [and there is no indication that our Mishnah is subject to a Machlokes]).
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(a) Rabah bar Ula finally establishes the case with regard to payment for the last hammer-blow, which is permitted - because it is not worth a P'rutah (see Tosfos DH 'Alma').
(b) And the Chidush is - that this Tana holds 'Yeshnah li'Sechirus mi'Techilah ve'Ad Sof' (that a worker acquires his wages as he works, and not only at the end [like other Tana'im who hold 'Einah li'Sechirus Ela li'be'Sof']).
(c) Our Mishnah forbids manufacturing various types of rings as ornaments for Avodah-Zarah. We erase the wording 'Rebbi Eliezer Omer bi'Shechar Mutar' - because nobody would permit such a thing.
(d) The Tana Kama forbids selling to Nochrim whatever is joined to the ground, but permits whatever has been detached. The Pasuk in va'Eschanan does Rebbi Yossi b'Rebbi Chanina cite as the source for this ruling is - "ve'Lo Sechanem", which he translates as 'Do not give them 'Chaniyah' (encampment) in the ground.
(e) According to Rebbi Yehudah - it will suffice for the purchaser to undertake to detach what he buys.
Index to Review Questions and Answers for Maseches Avodah Zarah