Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

The concept of לֹא-תְבַשֵּׁל גְּדִי, בַּחֲלֵב אִמּוֹ is brought down three times in the Torah. The Gemarah learns from this that there are three prohibitions: 1) The prohibition against cooking milk and meat 2) The prohibition of eating milk and meat together 3) the prohibition against deriving any benefit from a cooked mixture of milk and meat.

Why does the Torah use the same language to indicate three different things? Why isn't the verb used to separate each of the three prohibitions used in the Torah?

share|improve this question
They are all about eating – Double AA May 13 '14 at 2:13
@DoubleAA only 1 is about eating. The others are not. – Bochur613 May 13 '14 at 2:14
Depends how narrowly you take "eating". – Double AA May 13 '14 at 2:16
Sanhedrin uses the same logic with the clause "el ha'elokim" to enumerate three dayanim for a court. – Noach MiFrankfurt May 13 '14 at 2:16
@DoubleAA even if you have a different definition of eating, it still should not say לֹא-תְבַשֵּׁל – Bochur613 May 13 '14 at 2:19

This exact question is asked on the Daat website, and they answer as follows:

If the Torah had written "Don't eat a kid in its mother's milk," it would have prohibited all such forms. Therefore the Torah wrote "cook" to be lenient and only prohibit eating via cooking ("אכילה דרך בישול"). (See Chullin 108a) The word "cook" also serves to be more stringent that the word "eat," for "cook" prohibits this act even if one does not benefit from it. (See Pesachim 25a).

The Rambam (Forbidden Foods 9:2) answer this question by saying it's a kal v'chomer: The Torah says "cooking" which includes "eating."

(Translation is mine; Can't copy-paste because Daat has messed-up character encoding; article continues here)

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.