The weekly Torah portion of Mishpatim (Exodus 21:1-24:18)

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Is G-d chasing out the Cananite nations or does B'nai Yisra'el have to do this?

There appears to be a conflict of ideas regarding who should rid the land of Cana'an from its inhabitants: Exodus 23:28-29 (Sefaria): וְשָׁלַחְתִּ֥י אֶת־הַצִּרְעָ֖ה לְפָנֶ֑יךָ וְגֵרְשָׁ֗ה ...
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Makaf in כי-תראה but not in כי תפגע

In Mishpatim 23:4-5, why is there a makaf in כי-תראה but not in כי תפגע? The words are very similar. As far as I can tell the only difference is that the patach at the end of תפגע ends in an ע, ...
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2 Sifrei Torah for close readings

This morning we read Parashat Mishpatim (Exodus 21:1 - 24:18) and the special reading of Parashat Shekalim (Exodus 30:11-16). The custom everywhere I have ever seen is to remove two Sifrei Torah from ...
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Divine Providence and Mishpatim 21:13

The Rambam, and many other Rishonim believed that divine providence extends to people in accordance with their righteousness. It follows that they believed that many times, G-d lets things happen ...
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Is there a difference between Simlah and Salmah?

In Parshat Mishpatim (22:8), the text, discussing guarded and stolen items, the list includes the word Salmah ("garment") which the Onkelos translates as "ksu". A similar word, Salmat, is used in ...
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What did the 70 elders see?

Parshat Mishpatim says of the 70 elders who went up on Har Sinai with Moshe and Aharon: וַיִּרְאוּ, אֵת אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל; וְתַחַת רַגְלָיו, כְּמַעֲשֵׂה לִבְנַת הַסַּפִּיר, וּכְעֶצֶם הַשָּׁמַיִם, ...
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Can a parent “victim” forgive a child due the death penalty?

There are two capital offences against parents: cursing a parent or striking a parent (and causing an injury). If someone did this in front of 2 witnesses with a warning etc. so they were due the ...
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Where was Joshua waiting while Moses was on Mt. Sinai receiving the 1st tablets?

In the "Ten Commandments" movie, they depict Joshua waiting for Moses somewhere just below the top of the mountain. I know that Hollywood tends to embellish the facts, but I'm curious if Joshua ...
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What was the “tzir'a”?

Exodus 23:28: וְשָׁלַחְתִּ֥י אֶת־הַצִּרְעָ֖ה לְפָנֶ֑יךָ וְגֵרְשָׁ֗ה אֶת־הַחִוִּ֧י אֶת־הַֽכְּנַעֲנִ֛י וְאֶת־הַחִתִּ֖י מִלְּפָנֶֽיךָ׃ And I will send the hornet before thee, which shall drive ...
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Understanding G-d's description as a “doctor” or “healer”

I am trying to understand the concept of describing G-d's role as a רופא- loosely translated as "healer" and how it relates to His connection with sickness or ailments. Compare: Exodus 15:26: ...
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Why isn't restitution for a goat mentioned in Shemot 21:37?

My Artscroll English Tanach, Shemot 21:37 goes like this: "If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep or goat, and slaughter it or sell it, he shall pay five cattle in place of the ox, and four sheep in ...
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Does a maidservant have the right to refuse marriage to her master or his son when the time for it comes?

We learn from Mishpatim that a father can sell his daughter into the service of a master. This master then designates her as a future bride for himself or his son. At what age is the maidservant ...
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If my ox gores an androgynous, am i liable?

(Playing devil's advocate with this question.) In Shmot 21:31, Rashi says: לפי שנאמר והמית איש או אשה, יכול אינו חיב אלא על הגדולים, תלמוד לומר או בן יגח וגו' , לחייב על הקטנים כגדולים: The ...
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The Ear That Heard “Don't Steal”

Rashi to Exodus (21:6) quotes the Mechilta which connects the drilling of the ear of the slave to hearing "don't steal" at Sinai. The obvious question asked by the Moshav Z'keinim (there) is that ...
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In Moses' time, would freeing a slave be harmful to the slave?

Exodus 21:26 is about letting a (Canaanite - Rashi) slave go free if they are injured by their owner. This appears to be a good thing, but I'm also wondering if it would be detrimental to a slave to ...
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Soul for a Soul?

בס"ד In both Mishpatim and Shoftim there is a verse (Exodus 21:23 and Devarim 19:21) saying "a soul for a soul". I know that we don't take these verses literally and restitution is the punishment. ...
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Why can't Hashem chase the people out of Canaan quickly?

Exodus 23:29 says that Hashem promised not to drive out the indigenous peoples of Canaan too quickly lest the wild animals become too plentiful. This is repeated in Deuteronomy 7:22. However the ...
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Why did Chizkiyahu Hide the book of Refuos

...and he shall provide for healing" (Mishpatim 21:19) nitna reshus larofeh lerapos (Bava Kama 85a) - so why did Chizkiyahu Hamelech hide the Sefer Herefuos (Brachos 10b)
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Giving a slave multiple wives

The posuk says I can provide my Jewish servant with a slavewoman to make me children-slaves. Can I give him multiple wives?
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Ruining the celebration of the Mishkan but not Har Sinai

Hashem did not want to mete out any punishments at the giving of the Torah in order to not ruin the joy of the moment (Rashi to Shemos 24:11). But Hashem was fine with seemingly ruining the joy of ...
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How is it permissible for a Jewish slave to marry a Canaanite slavewoman?

In Shemot, chapter 21 verse 4, we learn that a master can give his Jewish slave a Canaanite slavewoman to bear the master slave children: If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or ...
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Second and third person at beginning of Mishpatim

The start of Mishpatim (Exodus 21:2-6) discusses the Hebrew slave. It starts with "Ki sikneh eved ivri" - "When you will buy a Hebrew slave", referring to the master in the second person. The ...
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Why does the Haftara of Mishpatim end before it starts?

The Haftara of Mishpatim starts at Yirmiyahu Ch. 34:8 and continues to the end of the chapter. It then jumps to Ch. 33 verses 25-26, some 8 verses before it started. Obviously we do not want to end ...
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The righteous man who suffers

In Ra'aya Mehemna (Parshat mishpatim) , it's explained that "the righteous man who suffers" is one whose evil nature is subservient to his good nature. I honestly did not understand what that line ...
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What's up with this pasuk in mishpatim?

The Chumash in Shemot 23:14 begins describing the three regalim: Pesach, Shavuot, Sukkot, in that order. In Pasuk 17, the Chumash begins again with Pesach and Shavuot. Instead of listing sukkot again ...
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The application of “harm” in Shemot (Exodus) 21:22

Shemot (Exodus) 21:22: And if men strive together, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart, and yet no harm follow, he shall be surely fined, according as the woman's husband shall ...
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Translation Issue, Exodus 21

Exodus 21:22 - This verse deals with two men fighting, and injuring a pregnant woman causing her to [miscarry] | [give birth prematurely]. The bracketed terms are in dispute due to different ...