CHAMISHOH MI YODEI'A - FIVE QUESTIONS ON THE WEEKLY SEDRAH - PARSHAS B'HAALOS'CHO 5766 - BS"D
1) Ch. 8, v. 2: "El mul pnei ha'menorah" - What is the "mul pnei ha'menorah?"
2) Ch. 8, v. 2: "El mul pnei ha'menorah yo'iru SHIVAS ha'neiros" - It would
seem that the verse should have said SHEI'SHES, the SIX lights, if "pnei
ha'menorah" means the central stem.
3) Ch. 9, v. 2: "V'yaasu vnei Yisroel es haPosach" - And the bnei Yisroel
shall make the Pesach - Parshas Bo is replete with commands to offer the Paschal
lamb. Why was it necessary to repeat this?
4) Ch. 11, v. 4: "Hisavu taavoh .. va'yomru mi yaachi'leinu bosor" - Lusted a
lusting .. and they said, 'Who will feed us flesh' - Since they had large
herds of cattle, why didn't they have a steady supply of meat? As well, the manna
could take on the flavour of almost any imagined food.
5) Ch. 12, v. 7: "B'chol beisi NE'EMON hu" - What does NE'EMON mean?
Answer to questions on parshas Nosso:
1) Ch. 4, v. 32: "U'v'sheimos tif'k'du" - Whom or what was appointed by name?
1) The Ramban says that specific people by name were given specific amounts
of the Mishkon components to carry.
2) The Medrosh Hagodol says that names were given to the "kroshim," the
beams that formed the walls of the Mishkon, which are mentioned in the previous
verse. This means that numbers are to be written upon them so that upon
re-assembly each beam would be placed in its same position.
2) Ch. 5, v. 15: "V'heivi ho'ish es ishto el haKohein" - If we are in doubt
if a wife was faithful to her husband, why don't we simply approach this as we
do to all doubts? The woman has a status of kashrus unless proven otherwise.
If there are witnesses to her sinning, then she is guilty and is punished
accordingly. If there are no witnesses then she should be considered innocent. Why
does the Torah create a new status of doubt, carrying in its wake restrictions
on their marital relations, and entailing a complicated ritual that includes
erasing of Hashem's Holy Name and the bringing of sacrifices?
This question is raised by the Moshav Z'keinim in the name of "the Chosid,"
(perhaps Rabbeinu Simchoh Baal Machazor Vitri or Rabbi Elozor of Garmeiza Baal
Rokei'ach). He answers that if the Torah would not give us this new ruling,
which carries with it the risk of the woman dying as a result of the Sotoh
ritual, almost no man would fulfill the mitzvoh of "aliyoh l'regel," - the
pilgrimage thrice a year to Yerusholayim. Although all men above the age of thirteen
years are required to make the pilgrimage, no doubt some men would stay behind,
as there are some exemptions that are perfectly legitimate. Although women
should also make the pilgrimage, it is obvious that many women can't do so, as
they are burdened by bringing up toddlers, and the trip is simply impossible.
The husband will fear that while he is away his wife might stray. Because of
this fear, many men would not leave their homes for "aliyoh l'regel." Now that
there is the fear of being brought to the Beis Hamikdosh for the shameful
public display of the "sotoh" process coupled with the possibility that if found
guilty, the wayward wife would suffer a celestially orchestrated gruesome death
in public, weighing over the wife's head, the husband will be confident that
even in his absence his wife will walk the straight and narrow. If he fears
that an infidelity has taken place he can use the "sotoh" procedure option.
3) Ch. 5, v. 20: "V'AT ki sotis" - The word "v'at" seems totally superfluous,
as the Kohein is addressing the "sotoh." What need is there for this pronoun
of direct address?
The Apirion answers that the gemara Sotoh 47b says that for the "sotoh" water
to do its supernatural work requires that only the woman has acted immorally
and her husband is free of all sin in this realm. Hence the verse stresses,
"v'AT ki sotis," - You, and only you, have turned away from the right path, and
because of this you will be punished as per verse 20. If, however, your
husband has likewise sinned, the "sotoh" water will not bring about this result,
hence "AT" and not your husband too.
4) Ch. 7, v. 3: "Sheish eglos TZOV" - What is the translation of the word
1) COVERED wagons. This is explained as the same source word "m'tzupoh,"
Tzadi- Beis - Tzadi-Pei, as the Beis and Pei are interchangeable (Rashi Vayikroh
19:16) since their sound is produced by the same part of the mouth. Rabbi
S.R. Hirsch explains that they were covered out of respect for their contents.
Although the Mishkon's vessels were covered by "bigdei srod," the beams of the
Mishkon and other Mishkon components were not, thus the need for covered
wagons. (Rashi as per M.R. according to the opinion of Rebbi)
2) HANDSOME appearance, as in Shmuel 2:1:19, "haTZVI Yisroel." (variant text
3) Calves that are specially suited to pull wagons. Perhaps the word source
is "tzovo," - army. People who are active in army duty are usually very
strong. (Ibn Ezra, Rda"k, and Rabbeinu Bachyei)
4) FULL and BULGING, as in Bmidbar 5:21, "bitneich TZOVOH." Some say that
the source is "tzov," a rodent that has a bulging round cover, perhaps a turtle.
(Ramban and Ibn Ezra)
5) PAIRED calves. The source is the Aramaic "tzavso," meaning a pair.
(Targum Yerushalmi and M.R.)
6) COLOURFULLY PAINTED. The source word is "tzeva," paint. (M.R. according
to the opinion of Rabbi Yishmo'eil)
7) WHOSE CONTENTS ARE ORDERLY. This is a second opinion into the words of
Rabbi Yishmoel who says both "tz'vu'os" and "m'tukosos." (Haksav V'hakaboloh)
Perhaps the source word is similar to "nitzov," - standing erect and orderly.
8) Wagons to which the animals are TIED. The source word is the same as
"tzvosim" - tied bundles of grain (Rus 2:16). (Haksav V'hakaboloh)
9) ARMY wagons. The structure of these wagons was similar to that which
people who are in the army use to carry their supplies with them. (Rabbi Yitzchok
ben Rabbi Shimshon Katz, son-in-law of the Mahara"l of Prague)
10) DURABLE wagons. In spite of the great weight that they carried they were
durable. The source word is similar to "mutzov" or "nitzov." ((Rabbi Chaim
Paltiel and Paa'nei'ach Rozo)
11) SLOW MOVING. Because of their great size and the tremendous weight of
their cargo, they could only proceed slowly. This is the nature of the rodent
called "tzov," perhaps a turtle, which moves slowly. This fits very well with
Yeshayohu 66:20, "U'vaTZAVIM u'vaprodim u'vakirkoros." The "tzavim" were large
heavy slow moving wagons, while the wagons called "kirkoros" where
light-weight, small, and fast moving, from the source word "m'charkeir" (Shmuel 2:6:14),
describing King Dovid's dancing in a quick and light-footed manner. (Ramban and
5) Ch. 7, v. 13: "V'korbono" - Since Nach'shon was the first to bring the
donations and sacrifices for the dedication of the Mishkon, why do we have a
connecting Vov at the beginning of this word? It would seem to indicate that he
was not the first to bring a dedication sacrifice.
1) Rabbeinu Bachyei answers that it is exactly because he was the first that
we have a Vov which SEEMS to indicate that he was not the first. This way he
would not feel overly proud.
2) The Ibn Ezra and Rashbam say that since the previous verse tells us that
he brought his sacrifice, but did not specify what it was, the next verse is
saying, "AND the sacrifice (mentioned in the previous verse was) ......"
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