ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Chagigah 27
CHAGIGAH 27 (Grand Siyum of Moed!) - dedicated by Rabbi Ari and Esther
Maryles of Chicago in memory of his grandfather, Rav Shimon Maryles zt'l. He
survived the destruction of European Jewry, living through immense suffering
with endless trust in Hashem, and he rebuilt a family committed to Torah and
(a) The Halachah in Hilchos Tum'ah that we learn from the Pasuk
"ha'Mizbei'ach Eitz Shalosh Amos Gavo'ah ... va'Yedaber Elai, 'Zeh
ha'Shulchan Asher Lifnei Hashem' " - is that although the Shulchan was
overlaid with *gold*, the Torah still considers it a *wooden* vessel (i.e.
that it was not Bateil to the gold with which it was overlaid).
Rebbi Eliezer in our Mishnah learns from ...
(b) This Pasuk is irregular - inasmuch as it begins with the Mizbei'ach and
ends with the Shulchan (as if they were one and the same thing).
(c) Rebbi Yochanan and Resh Lakish learn from this - that nowadays, when
there is no Mizbei'ach, the Shulchan atones for our sins (through the
Hachnasas Orchim that one performs there (or through the Divrei Torah that
one says at meal-times - see Pirkei Avos 3:3, or the Berachos that one
recites there [Torah, Avodah and Gemilus Chasadim]).
1. ... the Pasuk "Mizbach Adamah Ta'aseh Li" - that the Mizbei'ach
ha'Nechoshes was considered fixed to the ground (and therefore not subject to
2. ... the Pasuk in Bamidbar (regarding the holy vessels carried by the B'nei
Kehas) "ha'Menorah ve'ha'Mizbechos" - that the Mizbei'ach ha'Zahav is
compared to the Mizbei'ach ha'Nechoshes, and is therefore not subject to
(a) According to our Mishnah, the Chachamim's response to Rebbi Eliezer, who
precludes the two Mizbechos from Tum'ah because they are considered joined to
the ground, is 'Mipnei she'Hein Metzupin'. This statement is senseless
however - because being overlaid with gold, if anything, is a reason to be
subject to Tum'ah, not to be precluded from it (as we learned earlier).
(b) We initially amend the Mishnah to read 'va'Chamamim *Metam'in* Mipnei
(c) Alternatively, we answer 'Rabanan le'Rebbi Eliezer ka'Amri ... ' -
meaning that the Rabbanan were simply responding to Rebbi Eiezer: 'You
require the Pasuk "Mizbach Adamah ... ", because otherwise you contend, they
would have been Tamei 'because they were overlaid with gold'. But that is not
correct! They would have been Tahor anyway, because the Torah refers to all
vessels as wooden ones' (because we learn this from the Shulchan, which we
(a) Rebbi Avahu Amar Resh Lakish says - that, if someone who anoints himself
with the blood of the salamander (lizard) cannot be burned by fire, then how
much more so Talmidei-Chachamim, whose whole body is made of fire.
***** Hadran Alach Chomer ba'Kodesh u'Selika Lah Maseches Chagigah *****
(b) He learns from the Pasuk "ha'Lo Koh Devarai ka'Aish, Ne'um Hashem" - that
the Torah that a Talmid-Chacham learns transforms his body into fire (which
rises, and is the most spiritual of all the elements. See also Agados
(c) Resh Lakish derives from the surface of the golden Mizbei'ach - that, if
the fire of the Mizbei'ach was unable to make any impression in the surface
of the Mizbei'ach ha'Zahav ([see Agados Maharsha] - which was no more than
the thickness of a Dinar [coin]), then the fires of Gehinom should certainly
not be able to burn the Posh'ei Yisrael in Gehinom (see Tosfos DH 'Posh'ei
(d) And he learns from the Pasuk in Shir ha'Shirim "ke'Felach ha'Rimon
Rakasech" - that even the Posh'ei Yisrael are full of Mitzvos like a
pomegranate ('Al Tikri Rakasech, Ela Reikanin she'Bach').
On to Yevamos