BACKGROUND TO THE DAILY DAF
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[a - 52 lines; b - 53 lines]
1) [line 1] ASIRIS HA'EIFAH SHE'LO (MINCHAS CHINUCH)
(a) On the day that a Kohen first performs the Divine service in the Beis ha'Mikdash, he offers a Korban Minchah consisting of one-tenth of an Eifah of wheat flour known as an Asiris ha'Eifah. The dough is formed into twelve rolls that are boiled, baked, and then fried in olive oil in a flat pan. Six of these rolls are burned on the Mizbe'ach in the morning, and the remaining half towards evening.
(b) This Korban Minchah is identical to the Minchas Chavitin offered by the Kohen Gadol every single day (Vayikra 6:13).
(c) RASHI explains that our Gemara brings proof from the opinion of Rebbi Yehudah that a Metzora cannot send Korbanos while he is Tamei. Just as a Kohen who is a Metzora cannot offer his Asiris ha'Eifah until he becomes Tahor, nor may he -- nor any other Metzora, for that matter -- offer any Korban until he is Tahor. TOSFOS (to 15b, DH v'Acharei) maintains that the derivation of Rebbi Yehudah is unconnected to the first half of the verse, and the proof of our Gemara lies with the opinion of Rebbi Shimon.
2) [line 2] REBBI SHIMON OMER - Rebbi Shimon maintains that it is possible for the beginning of a verse to modify the end (Mikra Nidrash l'Fanav; RASHI KSAV YAD). Therefore, this verse can be understood to be stating a general rule that one who cannot enter the Beis ha'Mikdash himself (see next entry) cannot send his Korbanos through someone else either. TOSFOS (to 15b, DH v'Acharei) maintains that Rebbi Shimon's derivation applies only to a Metzora, which is what the verse discusses earlier.
3) [line 3] BI'AH (BI'AS MIKDASH)
(a) There are three Machanos (areas of designated holiness) within the city of Yerushalayim, which correspond to the three Machanos (encampments) in the Midbar.
1. MACHANEH YISRAEL - The entire area within the walls of Yerushalayim -- excluding Har ha'Bayis (the Temple Mount) -- is termed the Machaneh Yisrael. This area corresponds to the encampment of the twelve tribes in the Midbar. The Machaneh Yisrael is off-limits to Metzora'im, who are may not enter any walled city in Eretz Yisrael.
2. MACHANEH LEVIYAH - The area between the Azarah and the wall surrounding Har ha'Bayis, including the Ezras Nashim, is termed the Machaneh Leviyah. This corresponds to the area in the Midbar around the Mishkan, where the Leviyim camped. This area has a higher level of Kedushah; not only may Metzora'im not enter, but neither may Zavin, Zavos, Nidos or Yoldos.
3. MACHANEH SHECHINAH - The entire area contained within the Azarah is termed the Machaneh Shechinah. This includes the Ezras Yisrael, the Ezras Kohanim (containing the Beis ha'Mikdash, the Mizbe'ach, and various Lishkos [chambers]), and the area under the gate to the Azarah known as Sha'ar Nikanor -- but not the Ezras Nashim. This area corresponds to the part of the Mishkan in the Midbar that was within the Kela'im (curtains). This area has an even higher level of Kedushah; even a Temei Mes or Temei Sheretz may not enter the Machaneh Shechinah.
4a) [line 4] D'MESHADRIN SHELICHA D'VEI DINA - that Beis Din [first] sends a messenger [to the defendant in a court case]
b) [line 5] (U'MEZAMNINAN LEI L'DINA?) - and summons him to appear in Beis Din? (The Bach removes these words, since the Gemara below derives this law from another verse.)
5) [line 6] "VA'YISHLACH MOSHE LI'KRO L'DASAN VA'AVIRAM BNEI ELI'AV ... - "And Moshe sent [a messenger] to call Dasan and Aviram the sons of Eli'av ..." (Bamidbar 16:12). Dasan and Aviram were co-conspirators with Korach in his dispute with Moshe and Aharon.
6) [line 8] "VA'YOMER MOSHE EL KORACH, 'ATAH V'CHOL ADASCHA HEYU LI'FNEI HASH-BackgroundEntriesColorStartM; ATAH, VA'HEM, V'AHARON, MACHAR.'" "And Moshe said to Korach, 'You and your entire congregation will be in front of Hash-m; you, they, and Aharon, tomorrow'" (Bamidbar 16:16).
7) [line 8] L'KAMEI GAVRA RABA? - [and how do we know that Beis Din should summon the defendant to appear] before a great sage?
8) [line 9] AT U'FLANYA? - [and how do we know that Beis Din should specify in their summons that] you (the defendant) and so-and-so (the plaintiff) [are to appear]?
9a) [line 9] D'KAV'INAN ZIMNA? - [and how do we know] that [Beis Din] should designate a time [for the defendant to appear in court]?
b) [line 10] ZIMNA BASAR ZIMNA? - [and how do we know that Beis Din should designate a second] time after [the first] time [if the defendant did not show up for the first one]?
10) [line 10] "KAR'U SHAM ..." - "There [the Bavliyim] exclaimed, 'Par'oh, the boastful king of Egypt, has let the appointed time pass by!" (Yirmeyahu 46:17). This verse describes the reaction of the Bavliyim to that which Par'oh, who had touted his nation's military prowess, neglected to show up for their designated clash. Our Gemara interprets the word "Sham" as a shortened form of "Shamta" (excommunication). Therefore, the verse refers to a Niduy declared after a) Par'oh missed the second appointed time (RASHI) b) the second time that was to be appointed (RASHI KSAV YAD).
11) [line 11] MISPAKER - [the defendant] disparages [the messenger of Beis Din]
12a) [line 11] V'ASI V'AMAR - and he (the Shali'ach) comes and relates [the disparaging words to Beis Din]
b) [line 11] LO MISCHAZI K'LISHNA BISHA - it does not appear as Lashon ha'Ra
13) [line 12] "... HA'EINEI HA'ANASHIM HA'HEM TANAKER LO NA'ALEH." - "... even if the eyes of those people (referring to themselves in the third person) were to be gouged out we would not come [to you]" (Bamidbar 16:14). This verse records the disrespectful response of Dasan and Aviram to the messenger sent by Moshe. Since Moshe knew of this response, clearly the messenger delivered it to him.
14) [line 12] MESHAMTINAN - the concept of excommunication exists
15) [line 13] "ORU MEROZ, [AMAR MAL'ACH HASH-BackgroundEntriesColorStartM, ORU AROR YOSHVEHA; KI LO VA'U L'EZRAS HASH-BackgroundEntriesColorStartM ...]" (MILCHEMES SISRA)
(a) Following the death of the Shofet Ehud Ben Geira, Bnei Yisrael became lax in their observance of Torah and Mitzvos. In response, and so as to prompt them to do Teshuvah, Hash-m allowed King Yavin of Chatzor to attack and subjugate them. After twenty years of subjugation under the cruel general Sisra, Bnei Yisrael finally repented and cried out to Hash-m to save them.
(b) As they were now worthy of redemption, Hash-m informed Devorah the prophetess that were Bnei Yisrael to wage war against Sisra, they would be victorious. She and her husband, Barak ben Avino'am, led Bnei Yisrael to the battlefield. Hash-m caused a flash flood in Nachal Kishon that wiped out much of Sisra's army, including all 900 of his iron chariots. Sisra himself escaped the battlefield, only to be killed by Ya'el, wife of Chever ha'Keini.
(c) After the war, Barak had harsh words for a certain individual by the name of Meroz. "Meroz is cursed, [says the angel of Hash-m, those who sit with him are surely cursed; for they did not come to the aid of the armies of Hash-m ...]" (Shoftim 5:23). The Gemara records a disagreement regarding the identity of Meroz on this Amud.
16) [line 13] D'HACHI SAVRA GAVRA RABAH? - [and how do we know that Beis Din must say, when placing someone in excommunication,] that doing so is the opinion of a great sage?
17) [line 14] MACHREMINAN (NIDUY / CHEREM)
(a) The following twenty-four people are placed into Niduy (excommunication) by Beis Din (SHULCHAN ARUCH Yoreh De'ah 334:43, based upon the RAMBAM Hilchos Talmud Torah 6:14):
1. One who denigrates a Talmid Chacham worthy of ruling on Halachic matters, even after his death
2. One who denigrates a messenger of Beis Din
3. One who defames another by calling him a slave
4. One who did not arrive in Beis Din when summoned
5. One who treats a Mitzvah -- whether Biblical or Rabbinic in origin -- with contempt
6. One who refuses to accept the verdict of Beis Din (until he complies)
7. One who retains that which damages others in his possession (until he removes it)
8. One who sells his property to a powerful Nochri (until he agrees to pay for all damages incurred by those who own the adjoining properties)
9. One who testifies against another in a Nochri court -- causing that Jew to lose money -- when the ruling does not conform with Torah law (until he makes restitution)
10. A Kohen, working as a butcher, who refuses to give Matnas Kehunah (the twenty-four priestly gifts; see Background to Megilah 28:1) to other Kohanim (until he agrees to do so)
11. One who refuses to observe the second day of Yom Tov outside of Eretz Yisrael
12. One who performs Melachah on Erev Pesach after midday
13. One who takes Hashem's name in vain or in an unnecessary vow
14. One who causes many people to eat Kodshim outside of the places in which it is permitted to eat
15. One who is the cause for many others to act in a way that brings about a Chilul Hash-m (a desecration of Hashem's name)
16. One who makes his own calculation of the lunar calendar, and publicizes it outside of Eretz Yisrael
17. One who causes another to sin
18. One who prevents the public from performing a Mitzvah
19. A butcher who sold a non-kosher animal
20. A butcher who did not have a Chacham check his knife before slaughtering (this no longer applies)
21. One who willfully arouses his desires (ha'Maksheh Atzmo la'Da'as)
22. One who enters into a business partnership with his ex-wife (since this puts them into contact with each other)
23. A Talmid Chacham who has a bad reputation
24. One who places another into Niduy unjustly
(b) One who is placed into Niduy remains in that status for at least thirty days in Eretz Yisrael, and seven days outside of Eretz Yisrael. If the Menudeh does not repent after this period, then he is placed into Niduy for a second thirty-day period. If he still does not repent, then he is then put into Cherem. Cherem is a state of excommunication whose laws are more stringent than those of Niduy.
(c) One may not approach to within four Amos of a Menudeh (regarding his wife and other family members, See Insights). He may not eat or drink with others, nor may he be counted toward a Minyan, Zimun, or any other Mitzvah that requires a quorum of ten men. He may not wash his clothing, shave or cut his hair, nor wear shoes. He may, however, both learn and teach Torah, as well as engage in work. A Muchram, by contrast, must learn by himself, and may only engage in the minimum amount of work necessary to provide him with his needs for the day. Others may speak with a Menudeh or Muchram unless this is specifically prohibited by Beis Din.
(d) Once the period of Niduy or Cherem is up, the Menudeh or Muchram may not rejoin society until he is expressly permitted by either three others or one Talmid Chacham who is an expert in these matters. (SHULCHAN ARUCH 334:27 and REMA 334:24)
18) [line 14] D'ACHIL V'SHASI BAHADEI, V'KAI B'ARBA AMOS DIDEI? - [and how do we know] that [Beis Din places in Cherem] one who eats and drinks with him, and stands within four Amos of him [as well]?
19) [line 15] D'PARTINAN CHATA'EI B'TZIBUREI? - [and how do we know] that [Beis Din] details his transgressions in public?
20) [line 16] SHIFUREI - Shofaros
21a) [line 16] GAVRA RABAH - a great sage
b) [line 17] KOCHAVA - lit. a star; the spiritual entity appointed over Sisra
22) [line 18] MAFKERINAN NICHSEI - [Beis Din] renders the property of [one placed in excommunication] ownerless?
23) [line 18] "V'CHOL ASHER LO YAVO LI'SHELOSHES HA'YAMIM KA'ATZAS HA'SARIM VEHA'ZEKENIM YOCHORAM KOL RECHUSHO, V'HU YIBADEL MI'KEHAL HA'GOLAH." (Ezra's ultimatum)
(a) Upon discovering that those who had returned from Bavel had married women from the various nations of Kena'an as well as Amoniyos and Mo'aviyos, Ezra became extremely distraught. These people, realizing to some degree the severity of their actions, undertook to separate from their Nochri wives. Ezra seized upon this opportunity to bind the leaders of the Kohanim, Leviyim, and Yisraelim in an oath that they would abide by their resolution.
(b) To further insure that the people would not again sin in such a fashion, Ezra severely lectured everyone in person about the gravity of the Aveirah. "[A proclamation was issued in Yehudah and Yerushalayim for all of the people of the exile to assemble in Yerushalayim.] And that whomever would not come within three days in accordance with the plan of the officers and the elders would have his property confiscated, and he would be isolated from the congregation of the exile" (Ezra 10:7-8).
24a) [line 19] NATZINAN - [Beis Din] argues [with one placed in excommunication if necessary]
b) [line 19] LAITINAN - [Beis Din] curses [one placed in excommunication if necessary]
c) [line 20] MACHINAN - [Beis Din] hits [one placed in excommunication if necessary]
d) [line 20] TALSHINAN SE'AR - [Beis Din] tears out the hair [of one placed in excommunication if necessary]
e) [line 20] MASHBE'INAN - [Beis Din] places [one placed in excommunication] under oath [if necessary]
25) [line 21] "VA'ARIV IMAM, VA'AKALELEM, VA'AKEH ME'HEM ANASHIM, VA'EMRETEM, VA'ASHBI'EM [BE'LOKIM ...]" - "And I argued with them, I cursed them, I hit some of them, and I tore their hair out, and I placed them under oath [to G-d ...]" (Nechemyah 13:25). This verse describes some of the actions taken by Beis Din to insure that members of Klal Yisrael did not marry Nochri wives (see above, entry #23).
26a) [line 21] KAFTINAN - [Beis Din] bind the hands and feet [of one placed in excommunication if necessary]
b) [line 21] ASRINAN - [Beis Din] tie [one placed in excommunication] to a post [for flogging if necessary]
c) [line 21] AVDINAN HARDAFAH - lit. we chase him; [Beis Din may] place one into excommunication immediately [if necessary]
27) [line 22] "... HEN L'MOS HEN LI'SHROSHI HEN LA'ANASH NICHSIN VELE'ESURIN." - "[And whoever will not obey the law of his G-d and the law of the king, strict judgment will be executed upon him,] whether for death, banishment, confiscation of goods, or imprisonment" (Ezra 7:26).
28) [line 25] L'ALTER - immediately
29) [line 25] SHONIN - repeat
30) [line 26] MASRIN BEI SHENI V'CHAMISHI V'SHENI - a) [Beis Din] warns him on Monday [to repent, after excommunicating him], on Thursday [to repent, after reiterating the excommunication], and on [the following] Monday [he is placed into Cherem if he has not repented] (RASHI cited by TOSFOS DH Masrin); b) [Beis Din] warns him on [the] Monday, Thursday, and Monday [prior to excommunicating him that they plan on doing so if he does not repent] (YESH MEFARSHIM cited by TOSFOS DH Masrin)
31a) [line 26] L'MAMONA - regarding [one who has been excommunicated for refusing to listen to Beis Din in] monetary matters
b) [line 27] L'AFKIRUSA - regarding [one who has been excommunicated for] demonstrating contempt for the Torah or its scholars
32) [line 27] TABACHA - butcher
33) [line 27] IMNU ALEI - lit. voted on him; made a decision regarding him
34) [line 28] AZAL PAISEI L'BA'AL DINEI - he went and appeased the plaintiff (Rav Tuvi bar Masna)
35) [line 29] LI'SHREI LEI? - [should we] lift his excommunication?
36) [line 29] TELASIN - thirty
37) [line 30] L'MEI'AL - to go [and purchase meat from him]
38) [line 30] MIDI SHEMI'A LACH B'HA? - did you hear anything regarding such a situation?
39) [line 31] TUT ASAR, V'TUT SHARI - a [Shofar] blast bound, and a [Shofar] blast releases
40) [line 32] CHAILA - rest
41) [line 32] HANEI BEI TELASA - those three members [of Beis Din]
42) [line 33] ASU - come
43) [line 34] MENUDEH L'RAV - one who has been excommunicated by a Rav [in response to a personal affront, as opposed to an objective transgression]
44) [line 36] NASI - lit. prince; the hereditary position of spiritual leader of the generation
45) [line 38] CHELKO EINO MUFAR - his portion of the excommunication has not been lifted [and presumably, the offender is stuck as a Menudeh]
46) [line 38] SHE'NIDAH LI'CHVODO - who has excommunicated another in response to a personal affront
47) [line 44] NEZIFAH
(a) One who has been sternly reprimanded by a respected Torah scholar is termed a Nazuf. This status obligates the Nazuf to behave in certain ways. A Nazuf must distance himself from people out of shame, and must not show himself to he who rebuked him. He may speak, laugh, and conduct his business only minimally, and demonstrate public distress. Even if one merely senses that a great Talmid Chacham bears resentment against him, he must act as a Nazuf.
(b) A Nazuf may eat and drink with others, and ask after their welfare. He need not act as if he is in mourning, nor need he ask forgiveness of he toward whom he acted arrogantly. The period of Nezifah concludes automatically after seven days in Eretz Yisrael, and after one day in Chutz la'Aretz.
48) [line 45] "[VA'YOMER HASH-BackgroundEntriesColorStartM EL MOSHE,] 'V'AVIHA YAROK YARAK B'FANEHA, HA'LO SIKALEM SHIV'AS YAMIM ...'" (Miriam speaks against her brother Moshe)
(a) Unaware that Moshe had been instructed by Hash-m to separate from his wife Tziporah, his brother Miriam expressed her dissatisfaction to their brother Aharon. "Is only Moshe a prophet? We, too, have spoken with G-d -- yet we remain married to our spouses!"
(b) Hash-m responded to this affront immediately. He informed Miriam and Aharon that Moshe was, indeed, unique. He spoke with Hash-m on a level never reached by any other prophet before or since, and, as such, was required to be available at all times. Hash-m then "grew angry" and withdrew. At that point, Miriam was stuck with leprosy (Bamidbar 12:1-10).
(c) Moshe prayed that Hash-m heal his sister. "[And Hash-m said to Moshe,] 'And if her father had spat in her face, would she not be ashamed for seven days? [She will be shut outside of the camp for seven days, and only afterward let back in]" (Bamidbar 12:14).
49a) [line 46] SHELA'NU - of ours [in Bavel, outside of Eretz Yisrael]
b) [line 46] SHELA'HEM - of theirs [in Eretz Yisrael]
50) [line 46] SHIV'AH - seven [days]
51a) [line 47] YASVEI - sitting
b) [line 47] GARSEI - learning
52) [line 47] SHEMAITA - the subject that they were learning
53) [line 47] REBBI - [my father and our teacher,] Rebbi [to explain it to us]
54) [line 48] U'MAH REBBI OMER BA'DAVAR HA'ZEH? - What Rebbi could possibly explain this?
55) [line 48] IKPID - he took offense
56) [line 49] L'ISCHAZUYEI LEI - to visit him [as he was ill]
57) [line 49] EINI MAKIRCHA ME'OLAM - I have never met you. With this, Rebbi alluded to the fact that he was not pleased to see bar Kapara.
58) [line 49] NAKAT MILSA B'DA'ATEI - he held something against him
59) [last line] YESHANU - teach
60) [last line] "[MAH YAFU FE'AMAYICH BA'NE'ALIM, BAS NADIV;] CHAMUKEI YERECHAYICH KEMO CHALA'IM, MA'ASEH YEDEI AMAN" - "[How lovely are your footsteps in sandals, O daughter of nobility;] the roundness of your flanks are like jewels, the work of a master's hand" (Shir ha'Shirim 7:2). Rebbi interpreted "Chamukei Yerechayich" to mean "the hiddenness of your thighs".
61) [line 1] DIVREI TORAH - the words of Torah. Rebbi understood that "the work of a master's hand" refers to the Torah, the work of the Master Himself.
62) [line 4] IYA - a derogatory term for Rebbi Chiya (since he was unable to pronounce the letter "Ches"; see Megilah 24b)
62a) [line 6] SHALACH LEI, "TA" - he sent [a messenger] to him, [telling him] "come"
b) [line 6] HADAR SHALACH LEI D'LO ASI - he sent another [messenger] to him, [telling him] not to come
63) [line 11] MAR - a third-person term of respect
64) [line 11] ZEH - this [messenger]
65) [line 12] "BI'RTZOS HASH-M DARCHEI ISH, GAM OYVAV YASHLIM ITO." - "When Hash-m is pleased with the ways of a man, even his enemies make peace with him" (Mishlei 16:7).
66) [line 14] HACHI - such [that you taught Torah in public]
67) [line 14] "CHACHMOS BA'CHUTZ TARONA, [BA'RECHOVOS TITEN KOLAH.]" - "Wisdom rings out in the open, [she lends her voice in the thoroughfares]" (Mishlei 1:20).
68) [line 18] MIBI'FNIM - privately
69) [line 18] MACHREZES - announces
70) [line 18] "... LO ME'ROSH BA'SESER DIBARTI ..." - "... from the beginning, I did not speak in hiding ..." (Yeshayah 48:16). Although this statement was made by Yeshayah regarding a prophecy of the downfall of Bavel, our Gemara interprets it in a broader sense.
71) [line 18] YOMEI D'CHALAH - the days of the Yarchei Kalah. The Yarchei Kalah are the months of Adar and Elul, when all Talmidei Chachamim in Bavel assembled in Yeshivos to learn.
72a) [line 20] SHMUEL - the superior of Mar Ukva in Torah
b) [line 20] MAR UKVA - the Nasi, and therefore the one who led the Beis Din
73) [line 22] HAVU CHAIKEI LEI DUCHTA - they would prepare a lowered place for him
74) [line 22] TZIFTA - a mat
75) [line 22] KI HEICHI D'LISHTAM'AN MILEI - so that he could hear the words [of Shmuel]
76) [line 23] MELAVEI - escort
77) [line 23] USHPIZEI - where he stayed
78) [line 23] ITRID B'DINEI HAVA - he was preoccupied with his rulings
79a) [line 24] LO NAGAH LACH? - is it not enough for you [that I have walked behind you all the way to your house]?
b) [line 24] LISHRI LI MAR B'TIGREI?! - can you now [at least] grant me permission to return to my own house?!
80) [line 25] ITESA - a woman
81) [line 25] SHEVILAH - the path
82) [line 25] HAVAS PASHTAH KAR'AH - she had stretched out her leg
83) [line 25] KA MENIFAH CHUSHLAI - she was winnowing hulled barley
84) [line 26] CHALIF - passing
85) [line 26] TZURBA ME'RABANAN - a sharp young Torah scholar (RASHI to Ta'anis 4a)
86) [line 26] ICHNA'AH - humble herself [by moving deferentially]
87) [line 26] CHATZIFA - impudent
88) [line 27] MI'PUMEI - from his mouth
89) [line 28] PASIK SIDRA - learning chapters of Nevi'im or Kesuvim (RASHI to Yoma 87a)
90) [line 28] "V'ELEH DIVREI DAVID HA'ACHARONIM; NE'UM DAVID BEN YISHAI, U'NE'UM GEVER HUKAM AL ..." - "And these are the last words of David; the utterances of David son of Yishai, and the utterances of the man who has been placed above ..." (Shmuel II 23:1). The characterization of the previous chapter as "Divrei" implies that it had been transcribed with prophetic inspiration.
91) [line 29] MI'CHLAL D'IKA RISHONIM - this implies that there were earlier [prophecies of David] (see Insights for other explanations of this Gemara.)
92) [line 30] [KOL] D'LO YADA PEIRUSHA D'HAI KRA LAV GAVRA RABA HU? - [Do you think that anyone] who does not know the explanation of the this verse is not a great sage?
93) [line 31] UD'ASAN ALAH - and now that we have come across this subject
94) [line 33] MI'KAF - from the hands of
95) [line 33] MAPALASO - the downfall
96a) [line 34] ILMALEI ATAH SHA'UL V'HU DAVID - if [what had been preordained for] Sha'ul had been [preordained for] you and [what had been preordained for] you had been [preordained for] Sha'ul
b) [line 34] IBADTI KAMAH DAVID MI'PANAV - I would have swept away many Davids from before him
97) [line 34] "SHIGAYON L'DAVID, ASHER SHAR LA'SHEM AL DIVREI CHUSH BEN YEMINI." - "[A prayer] concerning the mistake of David, that he sang to Hash-m regarding Chush from the Shevet of Binyamin" (Tehilim 7:1).
98) [line 35] KUSHI - a black person from Kush, identified with either Ethiopia or Arabia (in Africa; see Background to Yoma 34:25:b)
99) [line 35] MESHUNAH - conspicuous
100) [line 36] MESHUNAH B'MA'ASAV - was of outstanding character
101) [line 36] "VA'TEDABER MIRIAM V'AHARON B'MOSHE AL ODOS HA'ISHAH HA'KUSHIS ASHER LAKACH, KI ISHAH KUSHIS LAKACH." - "And Miriam and Aharon spoke against Moshe, regarding the Kushite woman whom he had married, for he had indeed married a Kushite woman" (Bamidbar 12:1). This verse refers to Tziporah, wife of Moshe Rabeinu; see above, entry #48.
102) [line 36] V'CHI KUSHIS SHEMAH? - i.e., was she really from Kush?
103) [line 38] "VA'YISHMA EVED MELECH HA'KUSHI [ISH SARIS V'HU B'VEIS HA'MELECH, KI NASNU ES YIRMIYAHU EL HA'BOR ...]" (Yirmeyahu ha'Navi is Saved)
(a) Certain community leaders approached king Tzidkiyahu requesting permission to kill Yirmeyahu ha'Navi. Their given reason was that he had been prophesying that those who left the besieged city of Yerushalayim and surrendered to Nevuchadnetzar would live, whereas those who remained in the city would die by the sword, through famine, or through pestilence. They claimed that this weakened the spirit of those who remained to defend Yerushalayim, and so he deserved to die. Greatly diminished in power, the king felt forced to grant permission. The leaders then lowered Yirmeyahu into a deep muddy pit, where he partially sank into the mud.
(b) "And Eved Melech the Kushi, an aristocrat, heard while he was in the palace that Yirmeyahu had been thrown into the pit ..." (Yirmeyahu 38:7). Eved Melech ha'Kushi immediately reported this evil to the king, and demanded that Yirmeyahu be released. He was dying of hunger anyway, he reasoned, and there was no need to hasten his death. Tzidkiyahu acceded to the request of Eved Melech ha'Kushi, and instructed him to take thirty men and draw Yirmeyahu from the pit immediately.
(c) Our Gemara interprets "Eved Melech ha'Kushi" to mean "the servant of the black king (Tzidkiyahu)".
104) [line 38] TZIDKEYAH - the last king of Yehudah; he ruled until the destruction of the Beis ha'Mikdash
105) [line 39] "HA'LO CHI'VNEI CHUSHIYIM ATEM LI BNEI YISRAEL ..." - "Behold you have acted toward Me like the [rebellious] Kushites, Bnei Yisrael ..." (Amos 9:7).
106) [line 41] NE'UM ... - see above, entry #90
107) [line 41] SHE'HEKIM OLAH SHEL TESHUVAH - who erected a burnt offering of Teshuvah. The Midrash explains that David was confronted with an overpowering temptation that caused him to sin with Bas Sheva (see below, entry #120). This was so that he could set a precedent for those who would sin and might otherwise feel unworthy of repentance.
108) [line 42] "AMAR ELOKEI YISRAEL ..." - "The G-d of Yisrael said; the Rock of Yisrael spoke to me, 'He who rules over men must be just, he who rules must have fear of G-d'" (Shmuel II 23:3).
109) [line 43] AMAR [DAVID], ELOKEI YISRAEL LI DIBER - [David] said, the G-d of Yisrael spoke to me
110) [line 43] MI MOSHEL BI? TZADIK! - [yet] who rules over me? A righteous individual!
111) [line 44] "ELEH SHEMOS HA'GIBORIM ASHER L'DAVID ..." - "These are the names of those mighty men available to David: Yoshev-Basheves, the Tachkemonite, head of the captains -- that is, Adino the Eznite -- he slew eight hundred in one battle" (Shmuel II 23:8).
112a) [line 45] KARIM - mattresses
b) [line 45] KESASOS - pillows
113) [line 46] RABEI IRA HA'YA'IRI - his Rebbi, Ira ha'Ya'iri. Ira ha'Ya'iri was a great Torah sage and the Rebbi of as well as an advisor to King David (TARGUM YONASAN to Shmuel II 20:26). He was the same person as Ira ben Ikesh ha'Teko'i (Shmuel II 23:26); he was called "ha'Ya'iri" since a) one of his ancestors was named Ya'ir; or b) his city of Teko'a was renowned for its abundant olive oil (Menachos 85b). Olive oil at the time was the primary source of lamplight, and the word "Ya'ir" means "it will give light" (RADAK to Shmuel II 20:26).
114) [line 48] HISHPALTA ATZMECHA - you lowered yourself
115) [line 49] TEHEI ROSH LI'SHELOSHES AVOS - you will [walk] before the three forefathers [of Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yaakov in the next world]
116) [line 49] HAYAH ME'ADEN ATZMO K'SOLA'AS - he softened himself like a worm [when sitting on the earthen floor]
117) [line 51] MIS'ANACH - groaning
118) [line 51] "EICHAH YIRDOF ECHAD ELEF, [U'SHNAYIM YANUSU REVAVA ...]" - "How can one chase after one thousand, [and two after ten thousand, if not for that which their Creator has sold them, and Hash-m has delivered them into our hands]?" (Devarim 32:30). This verse refers to the manner in which Klal Yisrael will be victorious over their enemies.
119) [line 52] BAS KOL
(a) One form of revelation below that of true prophecy is called a Bas Kol (lit. echo). This refers to a heavenly voice that can be heard only by individuals on a high spiritual level. In numerous places throughout the Talmud, we find instances in which those on earth gained information from Heaven relayed through a Bas Kol.
120) [line 52] "... RAK BI'DVAR URIYAH HA'CHITI." (MA'ASEH D'BAS SHEVA)
(a) David ha'Melech requested that Hash-m test him, as he had Avraham and others, in order to prove his loyalty.
(b) David observed Bas Sheva, the wife of Uriyah ha'Chiti, bathing on her rooftop. He foresaw with Ru'ach ha'Kodesh that he was destined to have a son with her who was to be the next king. She was not technically married at the time, as the custom among David's soldiers was to divorce their wives before going to war in case they should fall in battle and their bodies fail to be recovered. David summoned her and had relations with her. Subsequently, her husband was deservedly put to death by David (see Background to Yoma 22:38a), and David married Bas Sheva.
(c) Noson ha'Navi came to David and told him a story of two men, one rich and the other poor. The rich man, although he had many animals, stole the lone sheep belonging to the poor man. What was the king's ruling in such a case? David was incensed and exclaimed that the rich man should receive the death penalty for exhibiting such insolence! Additionally, he should repay the sheep four-fold.
(d) The Navi explained that the story was an analogy, and that David, who had many wives, was the rich man who took Bas Sheva, the lone wife of Uriyah. Overcome with remorse, David could only manage the words "Chatasi la'Hashem" -- "I have sinned to Hash-m." Noson informed the king that Hash-m had accepted his repentance and that he would not die (Shmuel II 11,12).
(e) We are informed that "[David acted in an upstanding manner in the eyes of Hash-m, and he did not stray from all that He commanded him over his entire lifetime --] with the exception of the matter concerning Uriyah the Chitite" (Melachim I 15:5). Our Gemara informs us that a Bas Kol quoted this verse in explanation of why David did not merit the full blessing of the verse in Devarim. (See also Insights.)
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