1) COOKING IN A POT USED FOR KORBANOS
QUESTIONS: The Mishnah records an argument between Rebbi Tarfon and the Chachamim with regard to performing Merikah u'Shetifah during the Regel. Rebbi Tarfon maintains that when one cooks a Korban in a pot at the beginning of the Regel, he may continue using the pot throughout the entire Regel without performing Merikah u'Shetifah. Only after the Regel passes must he perform Merikah u'Shetifah. The Chachamim argue and maintain that one may use the pot without Merikah u'Shetifah only until "Zeman Achilah," until the time during which the Korban may be eaten.
The Gemara explains that the logic of Rebbi Tarfon is that on each day of the Regel, when a different Korban is cooked in the pot, the Beli'ah (the taste absorbed in the walls of the pot) from the previous Korban is purged from the walls of the pot and the Beli'ah from the new Korban takes its place ("Na'aseh Gi'ul la'Chaveiro"). Since the Beli'ah in the pot is never Nosar but always the Beli'ah of a new Korban, Merikah u'Shetifah are not required.
RASHI explains that Rebbi Tarfon refers to the cooking of a Korban Shelamim in the pot after all of the other Korbanos have been cooked in the pot during the day. A Korban Shelamim may be eaten for two days, and thus the Beli'ah left in the pot at the end of the day (after the Korban Shelamim has been cooked) is always a Beli'ah which has another full day before it becomes Nosar.
The Chachamim who disagree with Rebbi Tarfon apparently do not accept this argument and do not consider this a valid way to exempt the pot from the requirement of Merikah u'Shetifah.
There are a number of points in this Gemara which require further elucidation.
1. Why do the Chachamim not accept Rebbi Tarfon's argument? It certainly is true that as long as there is no Beli'ah of Nosar in the pot, there is no requirement to perform Merikah u'Shetifah with metal cookware, or to perform Shevirah with earthenware. Even the Chachamim agree with this, as is evident from the Gemara earlier (beginning of 96a) which suggests that earthenware pots should be placed in a furnace to remove the Beli'ah, in order to circumvent the requirement of Shevirah. Rashi there (DH Ela) explains that Shevirah is not required unless the Korban which was cooked in the pot left behind a Beli'ah (see TOSFOS there). The same should apply to Merikah u'Shetifah. Why, then, do the Chachamim disagree with Rebbi Tarfon in the Mishnah? (RA'AVAD in Toras Kohanim, Parshas Tzav 7:2)
2. The converse may also be asked. Although Rashi (on 96a) explains that the Halachah is that an earthenware vessel in which food was cooked (Bishul) does not require Shevirah unless there was a Beli'ah, the Gemara (95b) entertains the possibility that a vessel with Bishul requires Shevirah even when there is no Beli'ah. The Gemara attempts to resolve this question with various proofs from the Mishnah, but it refutes all of the proofs. Presumably, the same question applies to Merikah u'Shetifah when there is no Beli'ah, since they are compared to Shevirah. Why, then, does the Gemara not prove from the Mishnah here that Bishul without Beli'ah does not require Shevirah, or Merikah u'Shetifah? Rebbi Tarfon states that one may cook in a pot throughout the Regel as long as one cooks a Shelamim in the pot at the end of each day to remove the previous day's Beli'ah. If Bishul alone, with no Beli'ah, requires Merikah u'Shetifah, then even Rebbi Tarfon should require Merikah u'Shetifah in such a case! (MIKDASH DAVID, Kodshim 31:3)
3. The Mikdash David asks further, how can Rebbi Tarfon rule that one may cook without Merikah u'Shetifah throughout the Regel, when the Regel lasts for seven (or eight) days? One of those days must be a Shabbos, and on Shabbos a Korban Shelamim may not be offered, and cooking in a pot is prohibited! Consequently, the Korbanos of Erev Shabbos will become Nosar when Shabbos ends. Why should Rebbi Tarfon not require Merikah u'Shetifah after the Shabbos of the Regel?
4. Why is Rebbi Tarfon's ruling limited to the Regel? On any ordinary day of the year one should be permitted to delay the Merikah u'Shetifah by cooking Shelamim in the pot after it was used for other Korbanos. Why does Rebbi Tarfon's ruling apply only to the Regel? (RA'AVAD, Toras Kohanim, ibid.)
5. Why is it necessary to cook a Korban Shelamim in the pot to remove the Isur? Why can one not cook Chulin in the pot to remove the Isur? Once Chulin has been cooked in the pot, it cannot become Nosar and it will not be necessary to cook anything else in the pot the next day to prevent it from becoming Nosar!
6. Why is one permitted to cook Shelamim that was slaughtered today inside of a pot in which Shelamim from yesterday, or a Korban Chatas from today, was cooked? The Gemara earlier (75b) discusses the principle of "Ein Mevi'in Kodshim l'Veis ha'Pesul" -- we may not cause an item of Kodshim to become Pasul before its allotted time, and we may not limit its consumption in any way, such as by restricting the population that may eat it. If one cooks the Korban Shelamim of today inside of a pot which contains a Beli'ah of a Korban Shelamim from yesterday, then the taste of yesterday's Shelamim that enters today's Shelamim will cause it to become forbidden to be eaten after one day, instead of after two days. The Shelamim that is cooked now in the pot absorbs the taste of the Korban that must be eaten by tonight. Furthermore, if it is cooked in a pot in which a Chatas was cooked, then the population of people who may eat the Shelamim becomes limited to male Kohanim! (TOSFOS to 96a, DH v'Im, and RITVA to Avodah Zarah 76a)
(a) According to the way RASHI and TOSFOS explain the Gemara, the answers to these questions are as follows.
1. With regard to the first question (why do the Chachamim prohibit using the pot until the end of the Regel), the RA'AVAD in Toras Kohanim (ibid.) suggests that perhaps the Chachamim did not want to permit cooking a Shelamim in the pot to remove the taste of the Chatas, either because they were concerned that the Shelamim would not fill the pot as much as the Chatas and some of the taste of the Chatas would remain, or because they were concerned that people might begin to be negligent with the practice of Merikah u'Shetifah.
TOSFOS (96a, DH v'Im) appears to take a different approach. Tosfos asks that if a Chatas was cooked in the pot, one should not be permitted to cook a Shelamim in the pot, since doing so reduces the number of people who may eat the Shelamim (as mentioned in the sixth question). Tosfos answers that it is true that, normally, a Beli'ah of Isur in a pot prohibits the food that is subsequently cooked in the pot, even if the food of Heter that is cooked in the pot is the same type of food as the Isur that is absorbed in the pot. (This is known as "Nosen Ta'am Bar Nasan Ta'am d'Isura," the taste absorbed in the pot becomes re-absorbed by another item; since the taste is Asur, it is able to prohibit the item that absorbs it.) However, if the Heter and the Isur are the same type of food, then the prohibition is only mid'Rabanan, since, mid'Oraisa, Min b'Mino is Batel b'Rov. Perhaps Rebbi Tarfon permits cooking the Shelamim in a pot in which Chatas was cooked during the Regel, because he maintains that the Rabanan were lenient due to the great demand for pots during the Regel.
According to Tosfos, it is evident that Rebbi Tarfon permits an Isur d'Rabanan due to external considerations. Perhaps the Chachamim who disagree with Rebbi Tarfon do not permit cooking Shelamim in a pot used for a Chatas for the very reason that Tosfos suggests; they do not agree that the Rabanan were lenient merely because of the demand for pots during the Regel.
2. Why does the Gemara not prove from Rebbi Tarfon's ruling that Bishul does not require Merikah u'Shetifah when it leaves no Beli'ah in the pot? The answer is that perhaps the Gemara indeed could have proved this from Rebbi Tarfon's ruling. However, the Halachah follows the opinion of the Chachamim. The Gemara is in doubt about whether the Chachamim prohibit leaving the pot throughout the Regel without Merikah u'Shetifah because of the reasons mentioned above in the answer to the first question, or whether they prohibit it because Bishul requires Merikah u'Shetifah even when there is no Beli'ah. (M. KORNFELD)
3. To answer the question of the Mikdash David regarding the Shabbos that occurs during the Regel, one may suggest that there is a case in which a pot may be left without Merikah u'Shetifah until the end of the Regel without facing the problem of Shabbos. That case is when the last day of the Regel is Shabbos, when there is no Shabbos in the middle of the Regel. When, however, Shabbos occurs during the middle of the Regel, even Rebbi Tarfon will require Merikah u'Shetifah during the Regel, right after Shabbos.
4. Why does Rebbi Tarfon permit this method only during the Regel, and not during the rest of the year? According to Tosfos (cited above in the answer to the first question), it is clear that during the rest of the year there is an Isur d'Rabanan to cook Shelamim in a pot in which Chatas was cooked, because the Shelamim absorbs the Beli'ah of the Chatas, which thereby limits the consumption of the Korban to Kohanim.
However, other Rishonim do not accept the answer of Tosfos (as will be discussed below, in the answer to the sixth question). The Ra'avad answers that, indeed, during the rest of the year Rebbi Tarfon permits using the pot in such a manner. However, the Kohen may not be able to find a Shelamim every day to cook inside of his Chatas pot. Only during the Regel, when many Shelamim are brought to the Beis ha'Mikdash to be offered, will he certainly find a Shelamim to cook in his Chatas pot every day. This may be the intention of Rashi (DH Na'aseh) as well.
5. Although one is permitted to bring Chulin into the Azarah to be eaten (see Tosfos to Menachos 80b, DH v'Chi), one is not permitted to cook Chulin in a pot of Hekdesh. This is prohibited by the Isur of Me'ilah, using a sanctified pot for a non-sanctified purpose.
6. Tosfos (see above, in the answer to the first question) answers the sixth question. Tosfos maintains that the prohibition of "Nosen Ta'am bar Nosen Ta'am d'Isura" is only mid'Rabanan when the Isur and Heter are the same type of food. The Rabanan suspended this Isur during the Regel.
The Ra'avad in Toras Kohanim explains that the taste left in the pot is not enough to leave a taste in the Shelamim, and therefore it does not cause it to become prohibited. The Ra'avad might mean that the Kohanim were careful to put a large amount of Shelamim in a pot in which a small amount of Chatas was cooked. The RITVA in Avodah Zarah (76a) cites the RAMBAN who gives a similar explanation. He writes that the Kohanim first perform Hag'alah with the pot and thereby remove most of the absorbed Isur so that only a minute amount remains, and that minute amount is not able to prohibit the Shelamim. However, if Shelamim is not cooked in the pot afterwards, the minute amount of Chatas that remains absorbed in the pot becomes Nosar; once it becomes Nosar and is prohibited, even a minute amount can prohibit what is cooked subsequently in the pot. (This is because of the rule, "Ein Mevatlin Isur l'Chatchilah" -- we may not annul something that has already become prohibited.)
These are the answers to the questions according to the way Rashi, Tosfos, and most Rishonim understand the Sugya.
(b) The RAMBAM (in Perush ha'Mishnayos and in Hilchos Ma'aseh ha'Korbanos 8:14) has an entirely different approach to the Sugya. The Rambam understands that the Gemara's final interpretation of Rebbi Tarfon's ruling is not that the Beli'ah is removed by cooking a new Shelamim in the pot after it was used for other Korbanos. Rather, he learns that according to the Gemara's conclusion, Rebbi Tarfon does not permit leaving the pot until the end of the Regel to perform Merikah u'Shetifah. Rebbi Tarfon in the Mishnah means that during the Regel, one is permitted to leave the pot until the end of that day of the Regel. Before the day ends, however, the Merikah u'Shetifah must be performed. The Chachamim who argue with Rebbi Tarfon maintain that one must perform Merikah u'Shetifah immediately after cooking with that pot, and one may not wait until the end of the day if he has finished cooking with the pot for now. Their view is based on the verse that the Gemara cites.
It is evident that the Rambam has a different Girsa than the one in our text. In the Gemara's final explanation of Rebbi Tarfon, the Rambam's Girsa reads, "Na'aseh Gi'ul" without the word "la'Chaveiro." The Rambam understands that this means that every day one must perform Merikah u'Shetifah, and when Rebbi Tarfon says that one may use the pot "throughout all of the Regel," he means that one may use the pot throughout every day of the Regel, performing Merikah u'Shetifah only at the end of the day.
This answers all of the questions posed above.
1. The first question was why the Chachamim disagree with Rebbi Tarfon. From the Rambam's words it seems that the requirement to perform Merikah u'Shetifah immediately after cooking is mid'Rabanan, based on an Asmachta. Mid'Oraisa, though, as long as the Kohanim can eat the Korban, it is permitted to perform Merikah u'Shetifah. That is, Merikah u'Shetifah may be performed until the end of the day. Rebbi Tarfon maintains that the Rabanan were lenient and permitted the Kohanim to wait until the end of the day, due to their involvement with the festivities of the Regel.
2. Since Rebbi Tarfon's ruling is unrelated to removing the Beli'ah to circumvent Merikah u'Shetifah, the Mishnah has no bearing on the discussion of whether Bishul without Beli'ah requires Merikah u'Shetifah.
3. A Shabbos that occurs during the Regel is the same as any other day of the Regel, according to both Rebbi Tarfon and the Chachamim. According to Rebbi Tarfon, one may perform the Merikah u'Shetifah until daybreak after Shabbos. According to the Chachamim, the Merikah u'Shetifah is performed immediately after Bishul (after Shabbos), as usual.
4. The reason why Rebbi Tarfon's ruling applies only during the Regel is that he agrees with the Chachamim that during the rest of the year, when the Kohanim are not as busy, Merikah u'Shetifah must be performed immediately after cooking with the pot. (This is similar to the point that Tosfos makes.)
5. According to the Rambam, Rebbi Tarfon does not permit the usage of the pot by removing the Beli'ah by cooking a new Korban in it (perhaps because of the sixth question).
6. According to the Rambam, Rebbi Tarfon does not permit one to cook a Shelamim in a Chatas pot, and thus no Isur becomes absorbed in the Shelamim.
2) A "DAVAR KAL" COOKED WITH A "DAVAR CHAMUR"
QUESTION: The Mishnah teaches that when one cooks Kodshim and Chulin, or Kodshei Kodashim and Kodshim Kalim, together, if the more stringent item ("Davar Chamur") gives taste ("Nosen Ta'am") to the less stringent item ("Davar Kal"), then the Davar Kal must be eaten in accordance with all of the stringent laws of the Davar Chamur.
The Mishnah continues and says, "And they do not require Merikah u'Shetifah and they do not disqualify through contact." The Gemara points out that this is self-contradictory; if the Davar Chamur is Nosen Ta'am, then the pot should require Merikah u'Shetifah and it should be Posel whatever it touches. The Gemara answers that there are words missing from the Mishnah. The Mishnah means that when the Davar Chamur is Nosen Ta'am, then indeed the pot requires Merikah u'Shetifah and the mixture is Posel through contact. When the Mishnah then says that it does not require Merikah u'Shetifah and is not Posel through contact, it refers to a case in which the Davar Chamur is not Nosen Ta'am.
Why, though, does the Mishnah itself omit all of these words and present the Halachah in such a misleading manner?
Moreover, why does the Mishnah mention only one Halachah with regard to a case in which the Davar Chamur is Nosen Ta'am, and two different Halachos with regard to a case in which it is not Nosen Ta'am? The Mishnah should mention all three Halachos for both cases.
ANSWER: To understand the intent of the Mishnah, it is necessary to address a different question. What is the difference between saying that the more lenient food must be eaten like the more Chamur, and saying that it is Posel through contact? The words "Posel b'Maga" mean simply that the more lenient food acquires the stringent status of the more Chamur food, and thus it is the same as saying that the more lenient food must be eaten with the stringencies of the more Chamur food!
RASHI (in the Mishnah, DH v'Ein Poslin) explains that "Posel b'Maga" does not mean that the Davar Kal becomes like the Davar Chamur. Rather, it means that whatever the Davar Kal touches becomes Pasul.
This explanation presents a number of difficulties. Why does the Mishnah say that the Davar Kal makes what it touches Pasul? The Mishnah still should say that the Davar Kal makes what it touches to be like the Davar Chamur. Why does it say that it is "Posel" what it touches?
Rashi (in the Gemara, DH v'Ein Poslin) answers this question by saying that this part of the Mishnah is discussing Kodshei Kodashim that were Pasul that touched Kodshim Kalim.
However, the difficulty remains. If the Korban was Pasul, then it makes no difference whether it was Kodshei Kodashim or Kodshim Kalim! Moreover, in the end of the Mishnah, the Mishnah says that if the Davar Chamur is not Nosen Ta'am to the Davar Kal, then the Davar Kal is not Posel what it touches. Why does the Mishnah say that the Davar Kal does not Posel what it touches? It should say that the Davar Kal itself does not become Pasul! Rashi in the Gemara answers this question by saying that since the Reisha of the Mishnah says that the Davar Kal is Posel what it touches, the Seifa of the Mishnah uses a similar wording and says that the Davar Kal is not Posel what it touches. The Mishnah means, however, that the Davar Kal itself does not become Pasul.
Perhaps another interpretation of the Mishnah may be suggested, which will answer this question differently.
The Gemara in Beitzah (7b) teaches that there are occasions in which the Mishnah uses the letter "Shin" ("because" or "when") with the meaning of the letter "Vav" ("and"). The Acharonim point out a number of places in the Mishnah where the opposite transposition applies: the Mishnah uses a "Vav" which is meant to be interpreted as a "Shin." Accordingly, one may suggest that when the Mishnah says "v'Einan Poslin b'Maga," it means, "she'Einan Poslin b'Maga" -- when they are not Poslin b'Maga. The Mishnah is saying that if the Davar Chamur is Nosen Ta'am, then the Davar Kal is eaten like the Chamur. The Mishnah then concludes, "And they do not require Merikah u'Shetifah and they do not disqualify through contact," which should be read, "And they do not require Merikah u'Shetifah, when they do not disqualify through contact"; that is, because the Davar Chamur does not invalidate the Davar Kal through contact, the pot does not require Merikah u'Shetifah.
The Mishnah is teaching that when the Davar Chamur is Nosen Ta'am, the Davar Kal has all of the laws of the Davar Chamur, including the requirement of Merikah u'Shetifah. However, when the Davar Chamur is not Nosen Ta'am, one might have thought that although the Davar Kal does not have to be eaten by the time that the Davar Chamur must be eaten, it still requires Merikah u'Shetifah at the time that the Davar Chamur becomes prohibited. This is because Merikah u'Shetifah might not be directly connected to a Beli'ah; rather, perhaps even a Beli'ah which cannot be tasted requires Merikah u'Shetifah, since the requirement of Merikah u'Shetifah is not due to the Isur that the Beli'ah creates but is due to the fact that the Korban is present. The Mishnah then says that when the Davar Chamur is not Nosen Ta'am ("she'Einan Poslin b'Maga" -- when they do not disqualify through contact) -- and, therefore, the Davar Kal does not become prohibited at the time limit of the Davar Chamur -- there is no obligation of Merikah u'Shetifah at all for the Davar Kal, because it is only the Isur of Nosar that creates the obligation of Merikah u'Shetifah. This is what the Mishnah means when it says that the Davar Kal does not require Merikah u'Shetifah because the Davar Chamur does not make the Davar Kal become Nosar through contact, when there is no Nosen Ta'am.
According to this approach, the Mishnah may be read without adding any words. (Rather, the "Vav" of the word "v'Einan" must be read as a "Shin," or perhaps as a "Kaf" and "Shin" -- "k'she'Einan.") The Mishnah indeed notes in the Seifa that the latter part of its statement is referring to a case in which there is no Nosan Ta'am, and thus the Davar Kal does not acquire the status of the Davar Chamur.
3) BREAKING THE BONE OF THE KORBAN PESACH IN ORDER TO EAT THE MARROW
QUESTION: The Torah prohibits one from breaking a bone of the Korban Pesach. A Beraisa teaches that this prohibition applies not only to a bone that contains no marrow, but also to a bone that contains marrow. (Perhaps the Beraisa derives this from the letter "Vav" of the word "v'Etzem" in the verse.)
The Gemara asks that there is a Mitzvas Aseh to eat all of the meat of the Korban Pesach, and the marrow inside of the bone is considered part of the meat, since it is edible. Why, then, does the Mitzvas Aseh to eat the marrow not override the Lo Sa'aseh against breaking the bone (which is necessary to do in order to get the marrow), in accordance with the principle of "Aseh Docheh Lo Sa'aseh"? (If the Torah is teaching that a Mitzvas Aseh does not override the Lo Sa'aseh in this case, then this should be a source to teach that a Mitzvas Aseh never overrides a Lo Sa'aseh!)
The Gemara answers that it must be that a Mitzvas Aseh does not override a Lo Sa'aseh in the Beis ha'Mikdash. The principle of "Aseh Docheh Lo Sa'aseh" applies only to an ordinary Lo Sa'aseh that is observed outside of the Beis ha'Mikdash.
Why does the Gemara assume that the rule of "Aseh Docheh Lo Sa'aseh" should apply to the marrow of the bone of the Korban Pesach? The Gemara in Shabbos (133b) teaches that the rule of "Aseh Docheh Lo Sa'aseh" applies only when one transgresses the Lo Sa'aseh at the same time that he fulfills the Mitzvas Aseh. It does not apply when he transgresses the Lo Sa'aseh before he fulfills the Mitzvas Aseh. In the case of eating the marrow of the Korban, one must break the bone (and transgress the Lo Sa'aseh) before he obtains the marrow, and thus the Mitzvas Aseh should not override the Lo Sa'aseh in such a case. (TOSFOS, end of DH v'Echad; see also Insights to Pesachim 85:1.)
(a) Although TOSFOS, as printed in our texts, provides no answer to this question, the PISKEI TOSFOS (#69), a summary of the Halachic conclusions of Tosfos, provides an answer to this question in the name of Tosfos.
He explains that when it is impossible to fulfill the Aseh without transgressing the Lo Sa'aseh, the Torah permits one to transgress the Lo Sa'aseh even before he actually fulfills the Aseh.
The logic of this answer is difficult to understand. One of the conditions of the principle of "Aseh Docheh Lo Sa'aseh" is that the Aseh is Docheh the Lo Sa'aseh only when it is impossible to fulfill the Aseh in any manner other than by violating the Lo Sa'aseh (see Yevamos 20b). Accordingly, the second condition -- that an Aseh does not override a Lo Sa'aseh when it is necessary to violate the Lo Sa'aseh first -- must apply to a situation in which it is impossible to fulfill the Aseh without violating the Lo Sa'aseh, and nevertheless one may not violate the Lo Sa'aseh before he fulfills the Aseh. How can the Piskei Tosfos suggest otherwise?
The Acharonim explain the intention of the Piskei Tosfos as follows. Normally, the situation in which an Aseh overrides a Lo Sa'aseh is a specific, limited occasion of the fulfillment of the Aseh. For example, there is a Mitzvas Aseh to place Tzitzis on a four cornered garment. This Mitzvah can be fulfilled with garments other than linen without violating any Lo Sa'aseh. However, when a four cornered garment is made of linen, placing wool Tzitzis on the garment will violate the Lo Sa'aseh of Sha'atnez. In such a case, the law is that the Aseh is Docheh the Lo Sa'aseh, since it is impossible to fulfill the Aseh for this particular garment without violating the Lo Sa'aseh. Nevertheless, the Torah permits violating the Lo Sa'aseh only at the time one fulfills the Aseh of Tzitzis, since the Mitzvah of Tzitzis itself does apply in other occasions in which it is not necessary to wear Sha'atnez and violate a Lo Sa'aseh.
However, the case of the Gemara here is different. It is impossible to fulfill the Mitzvah of eating all of the meat of the Korban Pesach, including the marrow, without breaking a bone, since there always remains some marrow inside the bone. The Piskei Tosfos proposes that in such a situation one should be permitted to violate the Lo Sa'aseh even before he fulfills the Mitzvas Aseh.
The Acharonim suggest two different ways to understand the logic for such a distinction (see KEHILOS YAKOV, Beitzah #6).
The simple understanding is that not only a Mitzvas Aseh overrides a Lo Sa'aseh, but even preparatory acts for the fulfillment of a Mitzvas Aseh override a Lo Sa'aseh. However, the only time a preparatory act is given the power of an Aseh to override a Lo Sa'aseh is when the Torah reveals this by giving a Mitzvas Aseh which can be fulfilled only through the prior violation of a Lo Sa'aseh. (See CHOK NASAN, CHEMDAS DANIEL.)
However, most Acharonim (see REBBI AKIVA EIGER, TUREI EVEN to Chagigah 2b) have a different understanding of the Piskei Tosfos. The Piskei Tosfos does not mean that one may violate the Lo Sa'aseh first when it is impossible to fulfill the Aseh without violating the Lo Sa'aseh. Rather, he means that one may violate the Lo Sa'aseh first when it is impossible to fulfill the Aseh without performing this action (whether it is permitted or prohibited). Any action that is inherently necessary in order to fulfill the Aseh is not considered merely a preparatory act, but it becomes a part of the Mitzvas Aseh itself. It is part of the act that the Torah mandates as a Mitzvas Aseh. Since it is not possible to eat the marrow without breaking the bone, the act of breaking the bone is part of the Mitzvas Aseh of eating the Korban Pesach. As such, it overrides the Lo Sa'aseh against breaking the bone, since the Aseh (of breaking the bone to get the marrow) is done at the same time as the Lo Sa'aseh (not to break the bone).
(b) Another approach may be suggested to answer the question of Tosfos and to explain why the Aseh of eating the Korban indeed is fulfilled at the same time that the bone is broken. Perhaps the Mitzvah to eat the Korban is not the act of swallowing the food, but rather it is the entire process of chewing and consuming the Korban. If a person chews on the bone and chews right through to the marrow and eats the marrow in such a manner, at the moment that he starts to chew on the bone he is in the process of chewing the marrow in the bone as well, since the bone and the marrow are chewed together. Accordingly, the Mitzvah to eat the Korban indeed is fulfilled at the time that the bone is broken. Even though the Mitzvah is not completed until later when the person swallows the marrow, nevertheless the entire process of the Mitzvah overrides the Lo Sa'aseh.
This concept is expressed elsewhere. The NIMUKEI YOSEF in Bava Metzia (33a) points out that the Gemara in Shabbos (132b) says that the Mitzvah of Bris Milah overrides the Lo Sa'aseh of removing Tzara'as from one's body when there is a Nega of Tzara'as on the Orlah. The Nimukei Yosef asks that the Milah is not completed until the Peri'ah is done, and thus the Lo Sa'aseh is being violated before the completion of the Mitzvah of Milah! The Nimukei Yosef proves from here that every part of the fulfillment of a Mitzvas Aseh is able to override the Lo Sa'aseh.
Similarly, the Gemara here is asking that the entire process of chewing and swallowing should be Docheh the Lo Sa'aseh. (Even before the person's teeth touch the marrow, he is chewing the marrow that is being pressed within the bone between his teeth.)
However, this explanation needs further clarification. Why should the chewing be part of the Mitzvah? The Gemara in Chulin (103b) teaches that one transgresses an Isur when he eats a prohibited food either when the food enters his throat or when he swallows it, but not before that time. Presumably, the same should apply to a Mitzvah of eating, such as the Mitzvah to eat Matzah or the Korban Pesach. The Mitzvah should be fulfilled only at the time that the food enters his throat or when he swallows it!
The answer to this question depends on an analysis of the Mitzvah of eating Kodshim, which is derived from the verse, "v'Achlu Osam" (Shemos 29:33). What is the nature of the Mitzvah to eat a Korban? Is it the same as the Mitzvah to eat Matzah, or is it a different type of Mitzvah of eating altogether?
This topic is discussed by many Acharonim at length.
1. The MINCHAS CHINUCH (Mitzvah 102:2, and the beginning of Mitzvah 134) assumes that the Mitzvah to eat a Korban is identical to the Mitzvah to eat Matzah. Based on this assumption, he asks why the Gemara later (109a) states that a Katan, a minor, is permitted to eat a Korban. Why is a minor permitted to eat a Korban if he is not included in the Mitzvah? His eating prevents those who are obligated to perform the Mitzvah from eating (and fulfilling the Mitzvah with) the meat which he eats! Why should he be permitted to prevent the Mitzvah from being fulfilled?
The Minchas Chinuch answers that the Mitzvah to eat Kodshim is similar to the Mitzvah to eat Matzah; the Mitzvah is fulfilled when one eats only a k'Zayis. If there is enough meat to provide a k'Zayis to every Kohen, then the remaining meat may be fed to Ketanim.
Based on this understanding of the Mitzvah to eat Kodshim, the Minchas Chinuch writes that it is possible that one does not fulfill the Mitzvah to eat Kodshim when he eats it in an unusual manner ("she'Lo k'Derech Achilah"), or if he wraps a piece of lettuce around it so that it does not touch his throat, or if he eats less than a k'Zayis, just one does not fulfill the Mitzvah to eat Matzah if he consumes the Matzah in any of these ways. (The Acharonim discuss each of these methods of eating with regard to the Mitzvah of Matzah.)
According to the Minchas Chinuch, it is clear that the Mitzvah is not fulfilled at the time of the chewing, but only when the marrow enters the person's mouth and he swallows it. The Minchas Chinuch finds support for this view in the TOSFOS YESHANIM in Yoma (39a). The Gemara there teaches that after the times of Shimon ha'Tzadik, when a Kohen would receive his portion of the Lechem ha'Panim, it would be only a small amount (the size of a bean), and the modest Kohanim ("Tzenu'im") would withdraw their hands and not take any, while the gluttonous Kohanim would grab whatever they could. The Tosfos Yeshanim comments that the Tzenu'im refused to take the Lechem ha'Panim because it was less than a k'Zayis; it was not enough to fulfill the Mitzvah to eat the Lechem ha'Panim, since there was less than a k'Zayis and it did not satiate them. This shows that the Mitzvah is to eat a k'Zayis of Kodshim. The Minchas Chinuch suggests that if there is not enough bread for each Kohen to receive a full k'Zayis, since the bread must be divided among all of the Kohanim, there is no Mitzvah for any Kohen to eat the Lechem ha'Panim. Only when there is enough to give a k'Zayis to each Kohen is there a Mitzvah to eat it.
2. Many Acharonim, however, find this view difficult. The SHA'AGAS ARYEH (#96) questions this view from the Sugya here. The Gemara says that the Mitzvas Aseh to eat the Korban Pesach should override the Lo Sa'aseh against breaking a bone. If the Mitzvah is to eat only a k'Zayis of a Korban, then why should the Mitzvah to eat the Korban Pesach permit one to break the bone of the Korban? Even if marrow remains inside the bones, there is no Mitzvas Aseh to eat it once each person has eaten a k'Zayis of meat. Since one can eat the other meat of the Korban and fulfill the Mitzvah, there is no basis for the Aseh to be Docheh the Lo Sa'aseh. (There still will be a Lo Sa'aseh not to leave over the marrow in the bones, but a Lo Sa'aseh is not Docheh another Lo Sa'aseh.)
The Minchas Chinuch suggests that the Gemara means that one is prohibited to break the bones even when there is not a k'Zayis of meat for each person.
However, the Gemara does not provide proof that one indeed is prohibited to break the bones in such a case. The Beraisa teaches only that one is prohibited to break bones with marrow when there is no Mitzvah to do so. Perhaps when there is a Mitzvah to do so, the Mitzvas Aseh will be Docheh the Lo Sa'aseh against breaking the bones, since a Mitzvas Aseh is always Docheh a Lo Sa'aseh!
A second difficulty on the Minchas Chinuch's approach is expressed by the Minchas Chinuch himself. The Gemara in Yoma (ibid.) says that during the times of Shimon ha'Tzadik, many blessings were witnessed in the Avodos of the Beis ha'Mikdash. One of those blessings was that each Kohen received a full k'Zayis from the Lechem ha'Panim, and some of the Kohanim found the single k'Zayis so filling that they even left some of it over. How is that considered a blessing, if leaving over some of the k'Zayis means that they did not fulfill the Mitzvah properly?
A third difficulty is posed by the RASHASH in Menachos (100a), who points out that Tosfos there implies that the Mitzvah to eat Kodshim is nothing more than a Mitzvah to prevent it from becoming Nosar. There is no Mitzvah per se to eat a k'Zayis of Kodshim. Tosfos discusses the Gemara which teaches that when Motza'i Yom Kippur occurred on Shabbos, and it was not possible to cook the meat of the Chatas of Musaf of Yom Kippur the night after Yom Kippur, certain Kohanim would eat it raw. Others would make fun of those Kohanim and call them, "Bavliyim," because of their unusual manner of eating. Why were they called gluttons if they were performing a Mitzvah by preventing the Chatas from becoming Nosar? Tosfos answers that their friends called them gluttons because they became accustomed to eating Korbanos raw even in years when Motza'i Yom Kippur did not occur on Shabbos.
Why does Tosfos not say that they were fulfilling the Mitzvah to eat a k'Zayis of Kodshim, and they were not merely preventing the Korban from becoming Nosar? Although the Rashash suggests that perhaps they did not fulfill the Mitzvah of eating since they ate in an unusual manner ("she'Lo k'Derech Achilah"), he points out that this contradicts the conclusion of Tosfos, that the gluttons would eat the Korban raw during the years when Motza'i Yom Kippur was not on Shabbos. Tosfos implies that the Kohanim who ate in such a manner were poor-mannered, but not that they were violating a Mitzvas Aseh of Achilas Kodshim by eating in such a manner.
A fourth question on the Minchas Chinuch is raised by the BEIS HA'LEVI (1:2:7). The Beis ha'Levi points out that the Rambam counts as two separate Mitzvos the Mitzvah to offer a Korban Pesach and the Mitzvah to eat a Korban Pesach. However, for other Korbanos, he does not count a separate Mitzvah to eat each Korban. Rather, he counts only a general Mitzvah of eating Kodshim. This implies that there is a difference between the Achilah of Korban Pesach and the Achilah of all other Kodshim. For a Korban Pesach, there is a Mitzvas Aseh to eat a k'Zayis. For other Kodshim, there is no specific Mitzvah on each Kohen to eat a k'Zayis of the Korban.
Therefore, the Beis ha'Levi and CHASAM SOFER (OC 140) conclude that the Mitzvas Aseh to eat Kodshim is simply a "Lav ha'Ba Michlal Aseh," a negative prohibition that is expressed as a Mitzvas Aseh, which enforces the Mitzvas Lo Sa'aseh of "Lo Sosiru Mimenu Ad Boker" (Shemos 12:10), leaving over the meat after its time limit, which also prohibits giving the meat to a person who is not fit to eat it (such as giving Kodshei Kodashim to a Zar, or Kodshei Kalim to an animal). Hence, eating a k'Zayis is not a fulfillment of a Mitzvas Aseh. The Mitzvah is merely to ensure that nothing is left over.
According to this understanding of the Mitzvah, there is both a leniency and a stringency when compared to the Minchas Chinuch's understanding of the Mitzvah. According to the Beis ha'Levi, there is no need to eat a k'Zayis (in contrast to the Minchas Chinuch's understanding). The Mitzvah may be fulfilled by eating less than a k'Zayis if that is the size of the portion that one receives. Moreover, one does not need to eat it himself; if he gives it to another person to eat it and he sees to it that it is eaten, then the Mitzvah has been fulfilled. Therefore, eating it in an unusual manner or swallowing it while wrapped in lettuce also constitutes fulfillment of the Mitzvah. However, if the person's portion is more than a k'Zayis and he does not eat the entire amount or does not give it to someone else to eat, he violates the Mitzvah. In this sense, the understanding of the Beis ha'Levi has a more stringent consequence than the understanding of the Minchas Chinuch.
This approach answers all of the questions posed above. The Gemara here means that there is a Mitzvah to finish the entire Korban so that none of it becomes Nosar. Therefore, even if a k'Zayis remains for every person, there still is a Mitzvah to finish all of the meat of the Korban, even the marrow. This is also the understanding of the BRISKER RAV here, who writes that when Rashi says that the "Mitzvas Aseh is the Mitzvah of 'v'Achlu Osam,'" he means that in addition to the Mitzvas Aseh for each person to eat a k'Zayis of the Korban Pesach, there is a general Mitzvah for the Korban Pesach to be consumed completely so that none of it becomes Nosar.
This also explains the Gemara in Yoma that says that during the years of Shimon ha'Tzadik, the Kohanim would eat a k'Zayis of the Lechem ha'Panim and they would be so full from it that they would leave some over. Even though they left some over, they still fulfilled the Mitzvah as long as they saw to it that what remained would be eaten eventually.
This answers the Rashash's question from Tosfos in Menachos (100a). The Mitzvas Aseh of eating Kodshim is only to prevent it from being left over.
This also answers the question of the Beis ha'Levi. The Mitzvah of Korban Pesach indeed differs from the Mitzvas Achilah of other Korbanos, because, for other Korbanos, the Mitzvah is merely to see to it that it does not become Nosar. This is not a Mitzvah that applies to each person, but rather it is a detail in the offering of the Korban, which is included in the Mitzvah of sacrificing the Korban. It is only in the case of a Korban Pesach that there is a Mitzvah for each person to eat a k'Zayis.
The Tosfos Yeshanim cited by the Minchas Chinuch does not necessarily support the Minchas Chinuch's view. The Tosfos Yeshanim does not write that there is no Mitzvah to eat less than a k'Zayis, but rather that eating less is not a complete Mitzvah. He means that it is a Mitzvah to eat Kodshim in a manner becoming of royalty, as the Gemara earlier in Zevachim (91a) mentions. One who eats the Korban in an unbecoming manner does not fulfill the Mitzvah in its entirety. This is evident from the conclusion of the Tosfos Yeshanim, where he writes clearly that one does fulfill a Mitzvah by eating less than a k'Zayis, but eating a k'Zayis certainly is better. He explains that this is why the Gemara in Pesachim (3b) says that on the occasions when there was not enough Lechem ha'Panim to distribute one k'Zayis to every Kohen, each Kohen took less than a k'Zayis of the Lechem ha'Panim, in the times when it had a blessing and was filling. (See also TIFERES YISRAEL in Bo'az, Menachos 11:3. The Tiferes Yisrael rejects this explanation based on his understanding of Tosfos in Zevachim 75b, DH Bechor. However, the intention of Tosfos there seems differ from the Tiferes Yisrael's understanding of his intention.)
According to the way these Acharonim understand the Mitzvah to eat Kodshim, it may be that the entire process of chewing the Korban is considered a fulfillment of the Mitzvas Aseh of preventing it from becoming Nosar. Therefore, the person indeed fulfills the Mitzvas Aseh at the same time that he transgresses the Lo Sa'aseh of breaking a bone, and therefore the Mitzvas Aseh overrides the Lo Sa'aseh. (M. KORNFELD)