Oroh V'Simchoh

Meshech Chochmoh
on the Weekly Parsha

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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 32, v. 20: "Astiro poh'nei maihem er'eh ma acharisom" The MESHECH CHOCHMOH explains that if things were to always go well for the righteous and difficult for the evildoers, then people would not have free will. Hashem chooses to hide His countenance, meaning that the righteous sometimes endure difficulties and the evildoers sometimes seem to have things go well for them, with the intention of er'eh ma acharisom, so that Hashem will see what choices will be made, when a person has free will.

Ch. 32, v. 50: "Kaa'sher MEIS Aharon ochicho" - Here the verse says "as your brother Aharon DIED." In Bmidbar 27:13 it says "V'ne'esafto ...... kaasher ne'esaf Aharon ochicho," - You will be GATHERED ...... as your brother Aharon was GATHERED." Why the change from Meis to NE'ESAF? The Meshech Chochmoh answers that the gemara B.B. 116b says that one who leaves over a son who is of equal stature as himself, it is considered as if he hasn"t dies. Aharon left over his son Elozor who was considered his equal, as indicated by the verse in Bmidbar 27:31. Therefore in Bmidbar 27:13 the Torah does not want to express Aharon's passing with the term MEIS. However, later on in Bmidbar 31:21 Elozor ruled regarding the kashering of vessels, which he should not have done in front of Moshe, and fell from his level, as explained in the gemara Eiruvin 63. From this point on, Aharon's son was no longer his equal, and when his passing is mentioned it may be expressed as MEIS. I have a slight difficulty in understanding this since we have no indication that either of Moshe's sons was his equal, and yet the Torah expressed Moshe's impending death as "v'ne'esafto" in Bmidbar 27:13, as mentioned earlier. Perhaps out of respect for Moshe this was done to align the term used for Moshe as that used for Aharon in this same verse.

Ch. 32, v. 51: "Asher m'altem Bi ... v'lo kidashtem Osi" - The MESHECH CHOCHMOH explains this verse with a well known explanation of the GR"A of the words in the Mishna Pirkei Avos 3:1, "Din v'cheshbon" When a person sins, he is accountable for two matters. One is din, the judgement of the appropriate punishment for the transgression. The second matter is cheshbon, a calculation of the time spent on doing the aveiroh which could have been used for a productive mitzvoh activity. Hashem is saying in our verse that there is a responsibility of "M'altem Bi," you have sinned against Me and at the same time, "Lo kidashtem Osi," you have not used that time productively to sanctify Me.


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