THOUGHTS ON THE DAILY DAF
brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld
Ask A Question about the Daf
SHEKALIM 16 - Dedicated to the memory of Max (Meir Menachem) Turkel
(Yahrzeit: 5 Teves) by his wife Jean and children Eddie and Lawrence.
1) CORONATING A "MELECH BEN MELECH"
OPINIONS: The Gemara rules that a Melech Ben Melech, a king who becomes king
by virtue of being the son of a king, does not need to be anointed with the
Shemen ha'Mishchah. The Gemara asks from a number of cases in which we find
that a Melech Ben Melech was anointed with the Shemen ha'Mishchah (such as
Shlomo ha'Melech). The Gemara answers that whenever there is a dispute as to
who should inherit the throne, the king is anointed with the Shemen
(a) The KORBAN HA'EDAH and others explain that when no one disputes the
succession of the throne, the next king *inherits* his position and does not
need to be anointed. If there is disagreement concerning his right to the
throne, the throne *does not pass to him by inheritance* (since it is not
clear to whom this inheritance should go) and that is why he must be
anointed. This explanation is given by RASHI in Maseches Kerisus (5b, DH
b'Zeman). If so, the oil was only used to *bestow upon him* the status of
(b) The RAMBAM (Hilchos Klei ha'Mikdash 1:11) rules: "A king who is the son
of a king does not need to be anointed, because he inherits his father's
position. If his inheritance of the kingship is disputed, then he is
anointed *in order to dispel the dispute* and proclaim him unquestionably as
king." It would appear, according to the RAMBAM, that the anointing was not
necessary to actually bestow upon him the status of a king (that is, to
transform him from a layperson into a king), but rather it was merely to
dispel any doubts concerning his right to the kingship.
According to both opinions, it is clear why the son of a Kohen Gadol, unlike
the son of a king, must always be anointed. Kehunah Gedolah cannot be
bestowed purely through inheritance. It involves an elevated measure of
Kedushah, and Kedushah is not automatic. Therefore, the oil must be applied
to him to bestow upon him the *Kedushah* of the position.
2) THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FIRST AND SECOND LUCHOS
AGADAH: The Gemara describes the Luchos that Moshe Rabeinu received at Har
Sinai. Rebbi Chananyah says that between each of the Aseres ha'Dibros that
were on the Luchos, all of the details and letters of the entire Torah were
written as well (miraculously, see Shabbos 104a).
3) LACK OF ORDER IN A SINGLE VERSE IN THE TORAH
The BEIS HA'LEVI (Derush #18) makes a novel assertion that this feature of
the Luchos applied only to the *first* set of Luchos (which were broken by
Moshe Rabeinu when the Jewish people sinned with the golden calf). (See also
ha'K'sav ve'ha'Kabalah to Devarim 10:4.)
(a) He demonstrates this by citing the Midrash (Yalkut Shimoni #405, see
also Tosfos, Gitin 60b) that tells us that the only reason the Oral Torah
(Torah sh'Ba'al Peh) was not written down at the time the Torah was given
was to ensure the enduring uniqueness of the Jewish people; even though the
Jews would be subjugated and the written Torah would be taken away by the
gentiles and translated for themselves (as in the times of Ptolemy, see
Megilah 9a), the Jewish people would remain unique due to their possession
of the Oral Torah. He asks that the Gemara (Eruvin 54a) says that if the
first Luchos had never been broken (that is, if the sin of the Golden Calf
had never occurred) no nation would have been able to exercise dominion over
the Jewish people. The Gemara proves this from the verse, "[the writing] on
the Luchos was engraved ('Charus')" (Shemos 32: 16), which can be read,
"[the writing] on the Luchos was able to bring freedom ('Cherus')." We see
from here that at the time that the Torah was given, the Jewish people was
not yet destined to become subjugated by the nations of the world, and
therefore the Oral Torah *could* have been written down!
It must be, concludes the Beis ha'Levi, that the first Luchos did indeed
contain the entire Torah, including the entire Written and Oral Torah. The
Midrash is referring only to the *second* set of Luchos when it says that
the Oral Torah was not written down, for at the time of the writing of the
second Luchos it had already been decreed that the Jewish people would be
subjugated by the nations!
(b) The Beis ha'Levi offers several proofs for his thesis that only the
first Luchos, contained the entire Torah, including the Oral Torah.
Moshe Rabeinu said with regard to the first Luchos, "Hashem then gave me the
two stone Luchos that were written by the finger of Hashem, and *upon them*
were *all* of the words that Hashem spoke to you on the Mountain" (Devarim
9:10). The Midrash cited above derives from the word "all" in a different
(Shemos 20:1) that the entire body of Torah -- Written and Oral -- was
related to Moshe on Har Sinai. Similarly, this verse says that "all of the
words that Hashem spoke" at Har Sinai were written on the Luchos! (See also
Megilah 19b, which explains that the word "all" in this verse refers to
*all* sections of Torah, even to the later enactment of the reading of the
Megilas Esther on Purim.)
In reference to the second Luchos, however, the Torah repeats several times
that what was written on the Tablets was simply "the ten utterances" (Shemos
34:28, Devarim 10:4). This description is never given for the first Luchos,
because they indeed had more on them than the ten commandments! The second
Luchos had nothing on them but the Aseres ha'Dibros.
(c) The Beis Halevi takes this suggestion further. The Midrash (Yalkut
Shimoni #392) points out another contrast between the two sets of Luchos.
The first Luchos were readable from both sides and were "the work of G-d"
(Shemos 32:15-16). The second Luchos, on the other hand, were hewn by Moshe
himself from ordinary rock (Shemos 34:1). Based on the Beis ha'Levi's
thesis, the need for these differences can be easily explained. The first
Luchos, which contained a vast amount of information, had to be made of a
supernatural substance, and had to be written in a miraculous handwriting.
The second Luchos, which contained only the ten statements, could be written
on ordinary hewn stone, and Moshe himself could easily inscribe the Written
Law alone in his own hand. Miracles were, therefore, unnecessary in the
material and inscription of the second Luchos!
(d) The Beis ha'Levi uses this thesis to explain the meaning of another
Midrash (Yalkut Shimoni #393) which says that when Moshe Rabeinu saw that
the people had sinned with the golden calf, he looked at the Luchos and saw
the words begin to fly off from them. At that point the Luchos became heavy
in his hands and they fell down to the ground, shattering.
When the Jewish people sinned, their entire destiny changed. That was the
point in time at which it was decreed that they would one day become
subjugated to the nations of the world, as explained earlier. At this time,
then, it became impossible to have both components of the Torah -- the Oral
Torah and Written Torah -- in writing. Thus Moshe saw the words of the Oral
Torah "flying off" from the Luchos at this time. Hashem had decided not to
commit the Oral Torah to writing, and He removed that part of the miraculous
engraving from the miraculous Tablets. These were the "words flying off"
from the Luchos!
Moshe knew that it would be impossible for anyone to be able to understand
the Written Torah without the guidance of the Oral Torah (and the idea of
teaching the Oral Law orally was not yet introduced by Hashem). The Luchos
thus "became heavy in his hands" -- that is, he realized that it was no
longer possible for them to be given as an independent entity. Without the
Oral Torah to go with them, they would be "too heavy to bear." This is what
the Midrash means when it relates that the Luchos became heavy in Moshe's
hands, and fell to the ground!
Based on this Midrash, we can understand what the Torah means when it says
that what was written on the second Luchos was that which was "written on
the first Luchos *which you [Moshe] broke*" (Shemos 34:1, Devarim 10:2).
Most of the material that had originally been engraved on the first Luchos
had already "flown off" as soon as the sin of the golden calf took place.
By the time Moshe broke these Luchos, the only writing left on them was the
"Ten Commandments." Only these ten statements that were on the Luchos "when
you broke them" were reproduced on the second set of Luchos!
QUESTION: The Gemara cites the verse in which Hashem commands Moshe to
"place the Kapores atop the Aron, and into the Aron place the Edus which I
will give to you" (Shemos 25:21). The Gemara challenges the opinion of Rebbi
Yehudah (according to the Girsa of the G'RA) from this verse. Rebbi Yehudah
maintains that only the Luchos were placed inside the Aron, while the Sefer
Torah was placed outside of it. According to Rebbi Yehudah, the order in the
verse is incorrect -- it should say that the Edus (the Luchos) be placed in
the Aron *before* placing the Kapores on top, and not afterwards! The Gemara
answers that Rebbi Yehudah maintains "that there is no order in the Torah" -
- "Ein Mukdam u'Me'uchar ba'Torah."
How can Rebbi Yehudah apply to this verse the principle that there is no
order in the Torah? This contradicts the rule (Pesachim 6b) that in one
subject (i.e. one Parshah, -Rashi), everyone agrees that there *is* order,
because otherwise no Halachos could be learned through a "Klal u'Prat,"
which is dependent upon the order in a verse. How can the Gemara here
suggest that Rebbi Yehudah maintains that there is no order in even a single
(a) TOSFOS (Pesachim 6b, DH Aval b'Chad) cites a similar case in Sanhedrin
(45a) where Chazal reverse the order of occurrences mentioned in one verse.
Tosfos explains that there is license to say that the order in a verse
should be reversed when there is a "Derashah v'Ta'am," either a good reason
or a source from another verse to reverse it. The same license might apply
here, since we have good reason to say that the Luchos were put in first, as
that is what the Torah clearly states later (Shemos 40:20) and says, "He
took and placed the Edus into the Aron... and he placed the Kapores atop the
(b) RASHI (Shemos 25:21) explains that when the verse says, "... into the
Aron place the Edus," after it says to put the Kapores on the Aron, it does
not mean that Moshe was to put in the Luchos after the Kapores was already
on top of the Aron, because a previous verse already said, "Place the Edus
into the Aron" (Shemos 25:16) before stating in this verse to place the
Kapores on the Aron. Rather, the Torah is teaching that there is no
necessity to put the Kapores on the Aron first and then take it off and put
in the Luchos. The Luchos may be placed in the Aron first. Even though this
verse (Shemos 25:21) says to put the Kapores on the Aron, the verse later
(40:20) limits that and says not to put it on until the Luchos are placed
Why would we have thought that we must put on the Kapores first? Perhaps we
might have thought that the Aron is not considered a completed Kli until the
Kapores is placed upon it. The verse, therefore, teaches that the Aron is
considered one Kli, and the Kapores is considered another Kli. Consequently,
when Rebbi Yehudah says there is no order in the verse, he does not mean
literally that the stages in the verse are out of order; rather, he means
that there is a different way to learn the verse which excludes any
implication of order, which is the way that Rashi explains the verse.