12th CYCLE DEDICATION
SOTAH 12 (2 Sivan) - This Daf has been dedicated in memory of Harry Bernard Zuckerman, Baruch Hersh ben Yitzchak (and Miryam Toba), by his children and sons-in-law.

1)

(a)The Pasuk writes in Divrei ha'Yamim "ve'Kalev ben Chetzron Holid es Azuvah Ishah ve'es Yeri'os". The Navi refers to Miriam as Azuvah because, following an illness in her younger years, everyone forsook her. Why does he ...

1. ... call her "Yeri'os"?

2. ... state that Chetzron bore Miriam, when really he married her? On which principle of Rebbi Yochanan is this based?

(b)The Pasuk continues "ve'Eleh Baneheh Yashar, ve'Shovav, ve'Ardon ben Chetzron". What does "ve'Eleh Banehah" mean? Was Kalev really Miriam's son?

(c)The Navi refers to Kalev as "Yashar" because he remained straight (and did not adopt the error of his fellow spies), and "Ardon", either because he rebelled against his Yetzer ha'Ra or because his face was red (aflame) like a rose. Why does he also call him ...

1. ... "Shovav"?

2. ... "Ashchur"?

(d)And he also refers to him as "Avi" because he was like a father to Miriam. Why does he call him "Tako'a"?

1)

(a)The Pasuk writes in Divrei ha'Yamim "ve'Kalev ben Chetzron Holid es Azuvah Ishah ve'es Yeri'os". The Navi refers to Miriam as Azuvah because, following an illness in her younger years, everyone forsook her. He ...

1. ... calls her "Yeri'os" - because her face was pale like the color of curtains (which were generally white in those days).

2. ... states that Chetzron bore Miriam, when really he married her - because of Rebbi Yochanan's principle that 'whoever marries a woman for the sake of the Mitzvah (and not for her beauty [and Miriam at that time, looked sickly]), it is as if he had given birth to her'.

(b)The Pasuk continues "ve'Eleh Banehah Yashar, ve'Shovav, ve'Ardon ben Chetzron". "ve'Eleh Baneheh" means - "These are her builders" (referring to her husband Kalev, as if it had written "ve'Eleh Bonehah").

(c)The Navi refers to Kalev as "Yashar" because he remained straight (and did not adopt the error of his fellow spies), and "Ardon", either because he rebelled against his Yetzer ha'Ra or because his face was red (aflame) like a rose. He also calls him ...

1. ... "Shovav" - for the same reason (because he rebelled against the Yetzer ha'Ra or against the other spies).

2. ... "Ashchur" - because his face turned black from all the fasts that he initiated followed the episode with the spies.

(d)And he also refers to him as "Avi" because he was like a father to Miriam, and "Tako'a" - because his heart cleaved to Hash-m (from 'Taka', meaning 'to stick').

2)

(a)Did Kalev really have two wives called Chal'ah and Na'arah, like the Navi says?

(b)And he continues "u'Venei Chal'ah Tzaras, Tzochar ve'Esnan". He referred to Miriam as Tzaras because she became so beautiful that all her contemporaries were jealous of her (like one Tzarah [rival wife] is jealous of another). Why did he refer to her as ...

1. ... "Tzochar"?

2. ... "Esnan"?

(c)What does Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Chanina Darshen from the Pasuk in Shemos "Va'yetzav Paroh le'Chol Amo"? Why did Paroh do that?

(d)Which three decrees issued by Paroh regarding new-born baby boys does Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Chanina list?

2)

(a)Kalev did not really have two wives called Chal'ah and Na'arah, like the Navi says - but one, who was first called 'Chal'ah' because she was sick (as we explained earlier), and then, 'Na'arah', when she recovered and regained her youthful beauty.

(b)And he continues "u'Venei Chal'ah Tzaras, Tzochar ve'Esnan". He referred to Miriam as Tzaras because she became so beautiful that all her contemporaries were jealous of her (like one Tzarah [rival wife] is jealous of another), and as ...

1. ... "Tzochar" - because her face then shone like the midday sun.

2. ... "Esnan" - because every man who saw her would immediately bring his wife an Esnan (a gift), as a result of the desire that had been aroused.

(c)Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Chanina Darshens from the Pasuk "va'Yetzav Paroh le'Chol Amo" - that, on the day that Moshe was born, he decreed even on the new-born Egyptian babies - because his astrologers announced that the savior of the Jews was born on that day, but they did not know whether he was a Jew or an Egyptian.

(d)The three decrees issued by Paroh regarding new-born babies, listed by Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Chanina are - that the midwives had to kill all new-born Jewish baby boys; that they must all be thrown into the Nile, and that even the new-born Egyptian babies must suffer the same fate.

3)

(a)Who was the man from Beis Levi mentioned in the Pasuk in Shemos "And a man from Beis ha'Levi went"?

(b)And what name does Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina (mentioned later in the Sugya) ascribe to the 'daughter of Levi' whom he married?

(c)How does Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevina explain the word "went"? Where did he go?

(d)The Beraisa presents the sequence of events that took place here. What made Amram divorce his wife (with whom he had no quarrel)?

(e)On what basis did 'everybody else' follow suit?

3)

(a)The man from Beis Levi mentioned in the Pasuk in Shemos "And a man from Beis ha'Levi went" was - Amram, son of K'has, who went, according to ...

(b)And the name Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina (mentioned later in the Sugya) ascribes to the 'daughter of Levi' whom he married is - Yocheved.

(c)Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevina ... after the advice of his daughter.

(d)The Beraisa presents the sequence of events that took place here. Amram divorced his wife (with whom he had no quarrel) - because, he claimed, following Paroh's decree to throw all the newborn baby boys in the River, it was futile fo continue having children.

(e)'Everybody else' follow suit - because he was the Gadol ha'Dor.

4)

(a)Then, says the Tana, his little daughter (Miriam) rebuked him. What argument did she present that caused him to retract?

(b)His decree, she told him, was worse than Paroh's on three scores. Firstly, because whereas Paroh's decree meant that there would be no Jewish boys, his meant that there would be no girls either, and secondly, because his decree incorporated both worlds, whereas Paroh's was confined to this world only. What did she mean by that?

(c)Her third argument was based on the Pasuk in Iyov "ve'Sigzar Omer va'Yakam Lach". What do we learn from there? What was her argument?

(d)What did Miriam achieve by her rebuke?

4)

(a)Then, says the Tana, his little daughter (Miriam) rebuked him. She caused him to retract - by pointing out that his decree was worse than that of Paroh ...

(b)... on three scores. Firstly, because whereas Paroh's decree meant that there would be no Jewish boys, his meant that there would be no girls either, and secondly, because his decree incorporated both worlds, whereas Paroh's was confined to this world only - meaning that Paroh could throw the babies into the Nile, but that would not prevent them from later receiving a portion in the World to Come, whereas if nobody would marry, the potential babies would be deprived of life in both worlds.

(c)Her third argument based on the Pasuk in Iyov "ve'Sigzar Omer va'Yakam Lach" was - that whereas the decree of Paroh, who was a Rasha, was not certain to come into effect, her father's decree was (since a Tzadik's decree is bound to materialize).

(d)As a result of his daughter's rebuke - not only did Amram remarry Yocheved, and 'everybody else' took their cue from him, and took back their wives too.

5)

(a)What does Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevina comment on the Pasuk "Va'yikach es bas Levi" (as if Amram was marrying Yocheved for the first time), rather than "Va'yachzir"?

(b)Who danced in front of the Chasan and Kalah?

(c)And what did the angels declare?

5)

(a)Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevina comments that the Torah writes "Va'yikach es bas Levi" (as if Amram was marrying Yocheved for the first time), rather than "Va'yachzir" - because they arranged a proper wedding (to publicise his mistake) as if it was a first one.

(b)Aharon and Miriam - danced in front of the Chasan and Kalah whilst ...

(c)... the angels declared - "Eim ha'Banim Semeichah".

6)

(a)How does Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevida explain the fact that the Torah refers to Yocheved as "bas Levi", even though she was already a hundred and thirty?

(b)What do we extrapolate from the Pasuk "Asher Yaldah Osah le'Levi be'Mitzrayim"?

(c)How can we work out from here how many years Yisrael spent in Egypt?

(d)Seeing as Yocheved was already pregnant with Moshe, what does Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevida say to explain why the Torah writes that she became pregnant and gave birth only after Amram re-married her?

6)

(a)Rebbi Yehudah bar Zevida explains the fact that the Torah refers to Yocheved as "bas Levi" (despite the fact that she was already a hundred and thirty) - because (like Sarah) she regained her youth at that time.

(b)We extrapolate from the Pasuk "Asher Yaldah Osah le'Levi be'Mitzrayim" - that although Yocheved was born in Egypt, she was not pregnant in Egypt (meaning that she was born as they entered the walls).

(c)We can work out from here that Yisrael spent two hundred and ten years in Egypt, because Moshe was born at this stage and he took Yisrael out of Egypt eighty years later, and a hundred and thirty plus eighty eqauls two hundred and ten.

(d)Despite the fact that Yocheved was already pregnant with Moshe when Amram re-married her, says Rebbi Yehudah, the Torah writes that she became pregnant and gave birth only afterwards - to compare her pregnancy to the birth (to teach us that Nashim Tzidkaniyos enjoy a special blessing inasmuch as they do not suffer birth pains [just as they do not suffer pains during pregnancy], because they are excluded from the curse of Chavah).

7)

(a)Commenting on the Pasuk "Va'teire Oso Ki Tov Hu", Rebbi Meir explains that Moshe's name was Tov. What similar name does Rebbi Yehudah ascribe to him?

(b)According to Rebbi Nechemya, "Tov" indicates that he was eligible to become a Navi. What does Acherim say?

(c)How do the Chachamim explain "Ki Tov Hu", based on the Pasuk in Bereishis "Va'yar Elokim es ha'Or Ki Tov"?

(d)How did Yocheved succeed in hiding Moshe for three months? How come the Egyptians did not discover him immediately?

(e)Having hidden Moshe for those three months, why could she not continue to hide him? Who were "the little foxes" referred to by the Pasuk in Shir ha'Shirim?

7)

(a)Commenting on the Pasuk "Va'teire Oso Ki Tov Hu", Rebbi Meir explains that Moshe's name was Tov. According to Rebbi Yehudah, his name was - Tuvia.

(b)According to Rebbi Nechemya, "Tov" indicates that he was eligible to become a Navi, whereas Acherim says - that he was born circumcised.

(c)Based on the Pasuk in Bereishis "Va'yar Elokim es ha'Or Ki Tov", the Chachamim explain "Ki Tov Hu" to mean - that when Moshe was born, the entire house was filled with light.

(d)Yocheved succeeded to hide Moshe for three months - because as we explained, she had already been pregnant for three months prior to the second marriage, and the Egyptians tended to count nine months from the time of the marriage.

(e)In spite of having hidden Moshe for those three months, she could not continue to hide him - the Egyptians would soon have discovered him; because they used to bring Egyptian babies (referred to in Shir ha'Shirim as "little foxes"), whom they would make cry, causing the Jewish babies in the vicinity to cry too.

8)

(a)Rebbi Elazar explains that Yocheved made the casket into which she placed Moshe, of cheap reeds, and not of a stronger material, since Tzadikim are more concerned about their money than about their bodies. Why is that?

(b)Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmani however, attributes it to common sense. What was the advantage of using reeds for that purpose?

(c)Why did Yocheved overlay the casket with pitch on the outside but lime on the inside?

(d)According to Rebbi Elazar, "Va'tasem ba'Suf" hints to the Yam-Suf. What does Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmani say?

8)

(a)Rebbi Elazar explains that Yocheved made the casket into which she placed Moshe, of cheap reeds, and not of a stronger material, since Tzadikim are more concerned about their money than about their bodies - because all their money is earned honestly.

(b)Others attribute it to common sense. The advantage of using reeds for that purpose is - that it can stand up to both hard and soft substances (making it virtually indestructible).

(c)Yocheved overlaid the casket with pitch on the outside but lime on the inside - so that the Tzadik Moshe should not smell the unpleasant smell of pitch.

(d)According to Rebbi Elazar, "Va'tasem ba'Suf" hints to the Yam-Suf - Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmani translates it as 'reeds'.

12b----------------------------------------12b

9)

(a)How does Rebbi Yochanan...

1. ... in the name of Rebbi Shimon explain the Pasuk "Va'teilech Bas Paroh Li'rechotz al ha'Ye'or"?

2. ... explain the Pasuk "ve'Na'arosehah Holchos ... "?

(b)Why did Gavriel knock them to the ground and kill them? What had they said?

(c)In the Pasuk "Va'tishlach es Amasah Vatikachehah", Rebbi Yehudah and Rebbi Nechemyah argue over the meaning of the word "Amasah". Because the Torah uses the word "Amasah" rather than "Yadah", one of them explains it to mean her maidservant. But did we not just explain that Gavriel killed all her maidservants?

(d)If, on the other hand, "Amasah" means 'her hand', why does the Torah use this word and not "Yadah"?

9)

(a)Rebbi Yochanan ...

1. ... in the name of Rebbi Shimon explains the Pasuk "Va'teilech Bas Paroh Li'rechotz al ha'Ye'or" to mean - that she went to cleanse herself of the idolatry of her father (which Chazal refer to as 'converting').

2. ... explains the Pasuk "ve'Na'arosehah Holchos ... " to mean - that they were going to their death.

(b)Gavriel knocked them to the ground and killed them - because they accused their mistress of disobeying her own father, and tried to prevent her from saving Moshe.

(c)In the Pasuk "Va'tishlach es Amasah Vatikachehah", Rebbi Yehudah and Rebbi Nechemyah argue over the meaning of the word "Amasah". Because the Torah uses the word "Amasah" rather than "Yadah", one of them explains it to mean her maidservant. Even though Gavriel had killed her maidservants - he kept one alive, because it is undignified for a princess to walk alone.

(d)On the other hand, in spite of the fact that "Amasah" means 'her hand', the Torah uses this word and not "Yadah" - to teach us that her hand stretched to the length that was required to pull in the casket from the reeds (from which we can learn that a person must never decline to perform a good deed on the grounds that it is too difficult. Invariably, like Bas Paroh, one receives Divine assistance beyond one's expectations and capabilities).

10)

(a)In light of the previous Derashah, how do Chazal explain the Pasuk in Tehilim "Shinei Resha'im Shibarta"? Whose teeth is this referring to?

(b)How does Resh Lakish therefore explain the word "Shibarta"?

(c)To whom else did a similar miracle occur?

10)

(a)In light of the previous Derashah, Chazal explain the Pasuk "Shinei Resha'im Shibarta" to mean that Hash-m stretched the teeth of Og Melech ha'Bashan, to encircle the hugh rock he was holding to hurl at Klal Yisrael.

(b)Resh Lakish therefore explains the word "Shibarta" - as 'stretched' (as if the Pasuk had written 'Sh'rivavta').

(c)A similar miracle occurred - to Esther ha'Malkah, when her scepter stretched until it reached Achashverosh.

11)

(a)How do we explain the Pasuk "Va'tiftach Va'tir'eihu es ha'Yeled" (when it would have sufficed to have written "Va'tir'eh ... "? What will "es" then mean?

(b)Rebbi Yehudah and Rebbi Nechemyah argue over the word "ve'Hinei Na'ar Bocheh" when the Pasuk should have written "Yeled". One explains that he was crying like a lad. On what grounds does the other one object to this explanation?

(c)So how does he explain "Na'ar"?

11)

(a)We explain the Pasuk "Va'tiftach Va'tir'eihu es ha'Yeled" (when it would have sufficed to have written "Va'tir'eh ... " to mean - that she saw the Shechinah with the boy.

(b)Rebbi Yehudah and Rebbi Nechemyah argue over the word "Ve'hinei Na'ar Bocheh" when the Pasuk should have written "Yeled". One explains that he was crying like a lad, to which the other one objects, on the grounds that - this would have made him blemished (a blemish which would invalidate Moshe, a Levi, from singing together with the other Leviyim - Rashi [see Agados Maharsha]).

(c)He therefore explains that Yocheved had placed in the casket the materials to make a Chupah for when he grew up and got married, in case she would not see his wedding.

12)

(a)"Va'tomer, mi'Yaldei ha'Ivrim Zeh"! How according to Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Chanina, did Paroh's daughter know for sure that Moshe was a Jewish child?

(b)What does Rebbi Yochanan comment on the word "Zeh"?

(c)What does Rebbi Elazar comment on the Pasuk in Yeshayah "ve'Chi Yomru Aleichem Dirshu el ha'Ovos ve'el ha'Yid'onim ve'ha'Metzaftzefim ve'ha'Mehagim"? To whom does this refer?

(d)Why did Paroh's decree terminate at that moment? What was the astrologer's mistake?

(e)How does Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina connect the astrologer's error and the Pasuk ...

1. ... in Shelach-Lecha "Heimah Mei Merivah ... "?

2. ... in Beha'aloscha (when they complained about not having meat) "Shesh Me'os Elef Ragli ..."?

12)

(a)"Va'tomer, mi'Yaldei ha'Ivrim Zeh"! Rebbi Yosi b'Rebbi Chanina, Paroh's daughter knew for sure that Moshe was a Jewish child - because she saw that he had been circumcised.

(b)Rebbi Yochanan comments on "Zeh" - that even though the daughter of Paroh did not realize it, she was prophesying that this child had been cast into the water, but that no other child would be (in other words, the decree had terminated).

(c)Rebbi Elazar commenting on the Pasuk in Yeshayah "ve'Chi Yomru Aleichem Dirshu el ha'Ovos ve'el ha'Yid'onim ve'ha'Metzaftzefim ve'ha'Mehagim", explains - that it refers to the very episode that we just explained.

(d)Paroh's decree ended then - because the astrologers, who had read in the stars that Yisrael's savior would be smitten by water (which they interpreted to mean by drowning, but which really referred to the 'Mei Merivah'), now no longer saw a sign that he would be smitten, so they thought that the threat to them was over (because the baby concerned must have drowned).

(e)Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina connect the astrologer's error and the Pasuk ...

1. ... in Shelach-Lecha "Heimah Mei Merivah ... " - by pointing to the word "Heimah", implying that this was the punishment to which the stars referred and not drowning in the Nile, as the astrologers had thought.

2. ... in Beha'aloscha "Shesh Me'os Elef Ragli ... " (when they complained about not having meat) - by pointing to the word "Ragli" (which means 'due to me'). Moshe was telling Yisrael that it was due to him that the babies were no longer drowned in Egypt, and that this was why they had now reached a total of six hundred thousand.

13)

(a)Rebbi Chanina bar Papa and Rav Acha bar Chanina respectively over the on which Moshe was thrown into the Nile. What is the significance of the opinion that Moshe was thrown into the Nile on ...

1. ... the twenty-first of Nisan?

2. ... the sixth of Sivan?

(b)How will we reconcile the first of these opinions with our tradition that Moshe was born and died on the seventh of Adar? How can the twenty-first of Nisan fall three months after the seventh of Adar?

(c)Given that Yisrael cried for Moshe thirty days, and that they crossed the Jordan River on the tenth of Nisan, how do we know that Moshe died on the seventh of Adar?

13)

(a)Rebbi Chanina bar Papa and Rav Acha bar Chanina respectively over the on which Moshe was thrown into the Nile. The significance of the one who holds that it took place on ...

1. ... the twenty-first of Nisan is - that the angels beseeched Hash-m to save from drowning the one who would sing Shirah at the Yam-Suf on this very day.

2. ... the sixth of Sivan is - that they beseeched Him to save the one who would receive the Torah (which is compared to water) from drowning.

(b)According to our tradition that Moshe was born and died on the seventh of Adar - the three months refer, not to three complete months, but to the best part of three months. That year was a leap year, leaving us with most of Adar Rishon, the whole of Adar Sheni, and most of Nisan.

(c)Given that Yisrael cried for Moshe thirty days, and that they crossed the Jordan River on the tenth of Nisan, we know that Moshe died on the seventh of Adar - because Yehoshua told Yisrael that they would cross the Yarden in another three days, and thirty-three days before the tenth of Nisan is the seventh of Adar.

14)

(a)Why did Miriam offer Paroh's daughter to go and fetch specifically a Jewish 'wet nurse' to feed Moshe?

(b)Why was Moshe so fussy from whom he fed?

(c)How is this hinted in the Pasuk in Yeshayah "es Mi Yoreh De'ah ... Gemulei me'Chalav ... "?

(d)According to Rebbi Elazar, "Va'teilech ha'Almah" (following bas Paroh's permission to fetch a wet nurse) teaches us that Miriam went with alacrity. How does Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmani explain it?

14)

(a)Miriam offered Paroh's daughter to go and fetch specifically a Jewish 'wet nurse' to feed Moshe - because he refused to feed from the Egyptian wet-nurses who first tried to feed him.

(b)And the reason that Moshe was fussy from whom he fed was - because the mouth which would speak with Hash-m could not bring itself to feed from a woman who had eaten food that the Torah would subsequently forbid.

(c)This is hinted in the Pasuk in Yeshayah "es Mi Yoreh De'ah ... Gemulei me'Chalav ... " - which means that Hash-m only taught the chain of tradition to the one who refused to drink milk (from the breast of an Egyptian woman).

(d)According to Rebbi Elazar, "Va'teilech ha'Almah" (following bas Paroh's permission to fetch a wet nurse) teaches us that Miriam went with alacrity. Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmani explains - that it has connotations of hiding (like "Ve'ne'elam me'Einei Iyshah", in connection with Sotah), hinting at the fact that she hid from bas Paroh the fact that Yocheved was Moshe's mother.

15)

(a)What does Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina comments on the words (spoken by bas Paroh to Yocheved) ...

1. ... "Heilichi es ha'Yeled ... "?

2. ... "va'Ani Etein es S'charech"?

(b)How does Rav Amaram (or Rav Nachman) Amar Rav explain the fact that the Pasuk in Beshalach refers to Miriam as the sister of Aharon (and not of Moshe)?

(c)What did she prophecy?

(d)When Moshe was born and the house lit up, Amram kissed his daughter on the head and praised her. What does that have to do with the Pasuk "va'Teisatzav Achoso me'Rachok le'De'ah Mah Ye'aseh Lo"?

15)

(a)Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina comments on the words (spoken by bas Paroh to Yocheved) ...

1. ... "Heilichi es ha'Yeled ... " - that they contained an unintentional prophecy, inasmuch as they are the acronym of 'Hey Yeled she'Lichi' ('Here is your own boy').

2. ... "va'Ani Etein es S'charech" - how remarkable it is that, not only did Yocheved get to feed her own baby, but that she even received reward for doing it.

(b)Rav Amaram (or Rav Nachman) Amar Rav explains the fact that the Pasuk in Beshalach refers to Miriam as the sister of Aharon (and not of Moshe) refers to Miriam as the sister of Aharon (and not of Moshe) - because when she prophesied, Aharon was already born, but not Moshe.

(c)She prophesied - that her mother was about to give birth to a child who was destined to save Yisrael.

(d)When Moshe was born and the house lit up, Amram kissed his daughter on the head and praised her. Following the decree to throw all the new-born babies into the Nile, however, he tapped her on the head and asked her what had happened to her prophesy. That is why the Torah writes "va'Teisatzav Achoso me'Rachok le'De'ah Mah Ye'aseh Lo" - because, after Moshe was placed in the Nile, she stood nearby to see what would happen to him (and to her prophesy).

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