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prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem

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Sotah 47

SOTAH 47, 48 - have been anonymously dedicated by a very special Marbitz Torah and student of the Daf from Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel.



(a) The forty-two youths who were killed by Elisha - were the result of the forty-two Korbanos brought by Balak king of Mo'av in the Name of Hashem (which did not produce results at the time).

(b) The positive reward that Balak received for bringing those Korbanos was - a son (i.e. descendant) called Eglon, King of Mo'av, whose daughter (i.e. descendant) was the ancestor of David, whose son Shlomoh brought a thousand Korbanos on the day that he inaugurated the Beis Hamikdash.

(c) Despite the latter reward , the forty-two youths also died - in order to bring to fruition Balak's destructive intentions to which end he brought the Korbanos (bear in mind that this is not described as a reward).

(a) Even though the water of Yericho was bad, and people died there, the residents nevertheless referred to it as a good land - because the place where one lives is one of the three things that, against all odds, finds favor with its owner.

(b) The other two things that Rebbi Yochanan included in his list are - a wife in the eyes of her husband and a purchased article in the eyes of the purchaser.

(a) We learn from the Pasuk "ve'Elisha *Chalah" es *Cholyo* *Asher Yamus Bah*" - that Elisha was sick three times in his life.

(b) If the last illness was the one from which he died - the other two were punishments for inciting the bears against the youths, and for rejecting his servant Geichazi out of hand.

(c) The mistake that Elisha made with regard to his handling of his servant Geichazi was totally rejecting him.

(d) The Tana of the Beraisa says - that he should have rejected him with his left hand, but drawn him close with his right.

(a) Elisha accused Geichazi of taking eight items from Na'aman, the Syrian general, though really - he only took two, money (two Kikar of silver) and clothes (two suits).

(b) Elisha listed eight items - as an indication of the reward that he would now receive in this world for the Torah that he had learned (because they had just been leaning Perek *Shemoneh* Sheratzim).

(c) Geichazi and his three sons.

(a) Elisha went to Damascus in order to bring Geichazi back into the fold. He did not however, succeed - because Geichazi claimed that Elisha himself had taught him that someone who sins and causes others to sin is not granted the opportunity of doing Teshuvah.

(b) Some say that he caused others to sin by using a magnet to lift Yeravam ben Nevat's calf into the air, conveying the impression that it was Divine. According to others - he engraved a name of Hashem on its mouth, and it began to announce 'Anochi' and 'Lo Yih'yeh Lecha'.

(c) The third version of his sin is - that he would refuse many Rabbanan entry to the Beis Hamedrash, which will explain their complaint to Elisha that there was not sufficient room in the Beis Hamedrash (suggesting that before there was).

(a) When Yanai ha'Melech fell out with the Chachamim, his wife hid Shimon ben Shetach (her brother) - whilst Yehoshua ben P'rachyah escaped to Alexandria of Egypt.

(b) When Shimon ben Shetach sent Rebbi Yehoshua ben P'rachyah a message 'From me Yerushalayim the holy city to you Alexandri'a my sister. My husband is dwelling in you and I am desolate' - he was informing him that Yanai had now made peace with the Chachamim and it was safe to return. He referred to Yehoshua ben P'rachyah (in the name of Yerushalayim) as 'my husband' - because he was the Nasi.

(c) When they arrived at an inn on their homeward journey, Yehoshua ben P'rachyah praised the good deeds of the proprietress, to which his Talmid (alias Yeshu) responded by praising her beautiful round eyes, resulting in his being placed in Cherem accompanied by the blowing of four hundred Shofros.

(d) That Talmid (Yeshu) believed that Yehoshua ben P'rachyah had rejected him - when after having refusing to accept him a number of times, he was once reciting the Sh'ma when Yeshu came to ask for forgiveness. In fact, he had in mind to accept him this time, and because he was reading the Sh'ma, he made a sign with his hand to that effect. Yeshu however, misunderstood the sign to be a negative one, and he left his presence with the intention of serving idols.

(a) After he worshipped a brick, Yehoshua ben P'rachyah tried to bring him back to the fold - to which he responded in the same way as Geichazi did (that Yehoshua ben P'rachyah himself had taught him that someone who sins and causes others to sin is not granted the opportunity of doing Teshuvah).

(b) Yeshu caused the people to sin - by performing witchcraft, and by persuading them to worship idols.

(c) The three things that one should at worst, reject with the left hand and draw back with the right are - the Yetzer ha'Ra (whom one cannot reject outright, otherwise he would not have children); a child and one's wife (both of whom will run away permanently if one is too hard with them).

(a) If the murderer is found before the Eglah Arufah's neck has been cut, the Eglah Arufah goes out to Chulin - this Tana disagrees with the Tana who forbids deriving any benefit from the Eglah from the moment it is taken down to the Nachal Eisan.

(b) If the murderer is found after the Eglah Arufah's neck has already been cut ...

1. ... the Eglah - must be buried (because it achieved its original purpose of temporary atonement [until the murderer is found] as it was meant to do).
2. ... the murderer - is put to death by the sword.
(c) In a case where ...
1. ... one witness claims that he saw the murderer and another witness claims that this is untrue - they kill the Eglah Arufah.
2. ... one women claimed that she saw the murderer and another woman claims that it is untrue - they also kill the Eglah Arufah.
3. ... one witness claimed that he saw the murderer and two witnesses claim that he did not - they cut its neck.
4. ... two witnesses claim that they saw the murderer and one claims that he did not - they would not cut its neck.
(a) The Eglah Arufah ceased to function - when murder became commonplace (and the murderers were well-known [based on the Pasuk "Lo Noda Mi Hikahu"]).

(b) The first of these was Eliezer ben Dina'i. The connection between Eliezer ben Dina'i, Techinah ben Perishah and ben ha'Ratzchan is - that they were all one and the same person.

(c) Rebbi Yochanan ben Zakai cancelled the Mei Sotah - when, due to an increase in adulterers (which had spread to their children), it no longer had any affect on their wives.

(d) We learn from the Pasuk "Lo Efkod al B'noseichem Ki Siznenah ve'Al Kaloseichem Ki Sinafenah ... " - that when a man's daughters and daughters-in-law are guilty of adultery, the Mei Sotah will no longer take affect on his wife.

(a) With the death of Yossi ben Yo'ezer Ish Tz'reidah and Yossi ben Yochanan Ish Yerushalayim - the 'Eshkolos' (Ish she'ha'Kol Bo' - whose learning was so perfect and clear that it was without Machlokes).

(b) The first Torah Machlokes (that occurred in their day) was about making Semichah on the Yom-Tov Korbanos).

(c) Yochanan Kohen Gadol negated - Hodayas Ma'aser ('the confession of Ma'asros on Erev Pesach of every fourth year).

(d) He also cancelled the Me'orerin and the Nokfin (which will be explained later in the Sugya). When the Tana of our Mishnah says that in his day ...

1. ... the hammer used to bang in Yerushalayim - he is referring to the concession of Meleches Davar ha'Aveid (performing a Melachah in order to prevent a monetary loss) on Chol ha'Mo'ed, which Yochanan Kohen Gadol negated.
2. ... it became unnecessary to ask about D'mai - he means that there was no longer any point in asking the owner (who was an Am ha'Aretz whether he had separated Ma'asros or not), because Yochanan Kohen Gadol instituted the Takanah of D'mai, obligating anyone who purchased products from the ground was obligated to separate Ma'asros anyway.


11) The Tana of the Beraisa learns from the Pasuk ...

1. ... in Mas'ei "ve'la'Aretz Lo Yechupar le'Dam Asher Shupach Bah Ki Im be'Dam Shofcho" - that a murderer who is found after the neck of the Eglah Arufah has been cut, must nevertheless be apprehended and punished (even though there are no witnesses!).
2. ... in Shoftim "Lo Noda Mi Hikahu" - that if one witness saw the murder and knows who the murderer is (even if he is on the other side of the world), they do not cut the neck of the Eglah.
3. ... "ve'Einenu Lo Ra'u" (Rebbi Akiva) - that in the event that the Sanhedrin witnessed the murder, even if they do not recognize the murderer, the neck of the Eglah is not cut.
(The Sugya of 'Eid Echad' is a replica of the Sugya that we learned above 31b.)


(a) They canceled the Eglah Arufah when the murderers increased and became known - because the Eglah is only brought when there is a Safek, but not when the facts are known.

(b) We learn from the Pasuk (in connection with the Sotah) "ve'Nikah ha'Ish me'Avon" - that if the husband is guilty of immoral conduct, the Mei Sotah will not take effect.

(c) Having quoted the Pasuk ...

1. ... "ve'Nikah ha'Ish me'Avon", the Tana nevertheless goes on to quote the Pasuk "Lo Efkod al Benoseichem Ki Siznenah ... " - to teach us that even if it is only his children who commit adultery, the water will not work either.
2. ... "Lo Efkod al Benoseichem Ki Siznenah ... " he nevertheless finds it necessary to quote the Pasuk "Ki Heim Im ha'Zonos Yipareidu ve'Im ha'Kedeishos Yizaveichu" - to teach us that even if his illicit relations involved, not with married women but unmarried prostitutes (for which he is not Chayav Kareis), the water will not work either.
(d) Rebbi Elazar learns from the conclusion of that Pasuk "ve'Am Lo Yavin Yilbat" - that if the men are not careful to behave correctly, the Mei Sotah will not work on their wives.
(a) Running after personal pleasures resulted in the breakdown of law and order and caused Hashem to derive no Naches from His world - because the judges too, got taken up with it, and as a result, they were too busy to judge properly and to teach the people what they must do.

(b) When the judges began to show favoritism in judgment, they simultaneously began to fear the powerful, to lose their integrity and man's rule took over from that of G-d. What caused ...

1. ... G-d to vent His anger against Yisrael and to remove His Shechinah from them - was the employment of lawyers, who advised the judges as to who was innocent and who was guilty.
2. ... people to lose their perception of the difference between good and bad (i.e. praising the Resha'im) - was the pursuit of monetary gains.
3. ... all the woes enumerated in Yeshayah 5 to materialize - was the people losing their perception of the difference between good and bad.
(c) Drawing in their spittle resulted in an increase of snobs and a decrease in Torah-study. Drawing spittle is indicative of - vanity.

(d) The women of that time became attracted to these snobs. The statement that a conceited man is not even accepted by his wife - pertains to later in the marriage. What happens is that - initially, the women are attracted to them, but later, all their respect dissipates.

(a) When the judges ...
1. ... entered into lucrative business deals with the populace (supplying them with funds for business assignments, to share in the ultimate profits) - the result was judicial corruption, perversion of justice and the stopping of good from Yisrael.
2. ... began eliciting favors from them - the result was complete anarchy, the breakdown of all social barriers and the weakening of the (Jewish) ruling power.
(b) The increase of misers and grabbers (i.e. robbers) brought about tough-hearted characters and people who refused to lend money to those who needed it. Women strutting around with outstretched necks and with painted eyes brought about a potential increase in Mei Sotah, which did not materialize - because it coincided with an increase in adultery, and we have already learned that when that happened, the Mei Sotah stopped functioning.

(c) Based on the Pasuk "ve'Sonei Matanos Yichyeh" - people's lives were curtailed (and their lives became more miserable), commensurate with the increase of people who accepted presents.

(d) A growth in the Talmidim of Shamai and Hillel resulted in a growth in Machlokes - because, in their vanity, they did not listen carefully to what their Rebbes taught them, and inevitably, misunderstandings crept in.

15) The result of Jews accepting Tzedakah from Nochrim was - that the Nochrim gained the upper-hand over the Jews.

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