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13

Seder Hadorot tells us that Moshe Rabbeinu was born in the year 2368. It then tells us that G-d spoke to Moshe at the burning bush on the 15th of Nissan in the year 2447. This would mean that Moshe had just turned 79 a little over a month before, on the 7th of Adar. Moshe then goes to talk to Pharoah when he is 79. (Incidentally, the Seder HaDorot brings ...


10

Ibn Ezra said that only the above ground water (such as in the river) turned to blood, but water that was underground before the plague stayed water. "And all of Egypt dug around the river to find water to drink" (7:24) Thus , when the Egyptian magicians needed water to emulate the plague, they dug a new well The medrash Rabbah states that the ...


9

I don't think this is the simple answer, but it is nonetheless an interesting answer I heard: normally, prayer should be "just loud enough to hear yourself" -- but with all the frogs croaking, Moshe had to scream!


7

אמר רבי אבהו כל המעשה את חבירו לדבר מצוה מעלה עליו הכתיב כאילו עשאה שנאמר ומטך אשר הכית בו את היאר וכי משה הכהו והלא אהרן הכהו אלא לאמר לך כל המעשה את חבירו לדבר מצוה מעלה עליו הכתיב כאילו עשאה סנהדרין צ״ט׃ The Gemara says that whoever encourages his friend to do a Mitzva the Posuk considers it as if he did it since it says "And your stick which you hit ...


7

Abarbanel discusses this and gives two reasons why the parshiyos were split this way (which, incidentally, are the reasons @LarryK and @GershonGold have offered). The plague of arbeh was chosen to begin Parshas Bo with because it begins the makkos for which Pharaoh began to fear the plagues and negotiate with Moshe before the plague started. All the last ...


7

The Shir Maon writes they turned blood into "water" (looked like it) and then turned it back into its original state which is blood.Magic cannot work on water(see Sanhedrin) but blood could.


7

Technically, "modern science" incorporates quantum mechanics, which includes the ideas of particles "blipping" in and out of existence, as well as that of all that science predicts are probabilities not definitive absolutes. So modern science doesn't really contradict the miraculous (which are essentially then statistical anomalies). Furthermore, at a ...


7

First of all, the whole point of the 'river turning to blood' was that it was supposed to be a miracle, an event showing that superiority of a force over the natural world (i.e. science). So, if anything, your example proves that the Jews DO believe in modern science, as they believe that there's no natural way to turn water into blood without divine ...


6

The Ba'al HaTurim (9:33) says that after the plague of Hail the Jewish nation no longer suffered from the burdens of Egyptian oppression. There would therefore be a clear distinction between the first 7 plagues and the last three, which might be why the plagues are separated there.


6

Here is a way to read this Rashi other that advancing corporealism: Usually, when we see Yad, it means to signify strength. So one might understand that Hashem will apply his strength against the Egyptians. However, Rashi here is saying that there is a metaphor here, of someone striking another. And that is an actual hand performing an act of hitting. To ...


5

At first glance, this appears to be a great question, and it immediately brings to mind the controversy over the rock in the wilderness. But upon further consideration, I'm wondering if this question is based on a faulty interpretation (although perfectly fine translation) of "struck". In English, we say the Egyptians were "struck" with 10 plagues. Same in ...


5

Although I don't have a source, I would say that they didn't have the power to do that. Their point was still accomplished, though, because they proved that they could do the same as Moshe...


5

The seventh, Hail, marks a turning point. So it is also a good place to divide the parshiot. The plague is a turning point since it is the first one whereby Moses/Gd gives Pharoh three choices: Let B'nei Israel leave Fully suffer the plague Partially suffer the plague: save your fieldworkers and animals by bringing them indoors away from the hail (Ex ...


5

A couple of the classical commentators address this as well. Ibn Ezra writes that Moshe, on his own initiative, had given Pharaoh the option when the plague should be gone (8:5-6) - without first consulting Hashem whether this was the right thing to do, or whether the stated deadline was acceptable to Him. Now he was concerned that Hashem might not approve ...


5

To summarize the Chabad.org link that Hacham Gabriel provided: Shemos Rabba (11:3) brings a disagreement between R' Yehudah and R' Nechemia. R' Yehudah maintains that it was a swarm of different wild animals. R' Nechemia says it was a swarm of insects. The Midrash and most commentators (Rashi, ibn Ezra, Targum Yonatan, et al) hold like R' Yehudah. However ...


5

Perush Yonason asks this question and does not give an answer. I once heard an answer (do not remember from who) which is difficult to accept. Levi lived 137 years in Egypt. The problems with this answer is numerous, and I think this is a question that has no good answer.


5

Each plague was done with a finger of Hashem, as it says "אצבע אלקים היא" (Shemos 8:15) by כנים, and דבר was the fifth plague, making it 5 fingers, a full hand. (my) Source: Maaseh Nisim Hagada by Rabbeinu Yaakov m'Lisa (aka the Nesivos Hamishpat) quoting "the commentaries" While I was looking back through my Haggadas for the source, I found this as ...


4

Tol'dos Yotzchak (by Rabbi Yitzchak Karo, uncle of the Bes Yosef), in his commentary to 4:10, says that "כבד לשון" refers to an impediment in pronouncing the so-called tongue letters, דטלנת;‎ "ערל שפתים", the lip letters, בומף; and "כבד פה", the rest. ["לא איש דברים", then, would seem to be an all-embracing expression.]


4

I think it seems clear from the narrative (8:4–9) (but I have no further source) that his prayer for the plague to cease was for it to cease from the Egyptians, and was pursuant to Pharaoh's request. As to why he cried out (rather than merely praying): Ibn Ezra explains (if I understand him correctly) that he really wanted the frogs gone, lest he be shamed ...


4

I see where Daas Soferim has an interesting take on it. Really, he says, Pharaoh didn't deserve to have the plague taken away at this point. However, Moshe wanted to do him a favor and make it possible for him to recognize Hashem's greatness (by seeing how Hashem removes the plague at his, Moshe's, request). So he had to "cry out" because he was asking for ...


4

Imagine there was a magician claiming to have a super-natural ability to turn water into blood, and you want to discredit him and prove that it's just a trick. You would need to perform the exact illusion that the magician was performing, turn water into blood. Doing the reverse would not discredit the initial "miracle" that the magician performed. ...


4

Rav Hirsch suggests an alternate explanation of the magicians’ behavior according to your suggestion: that they were attempting to undo the effects of the plague with no success—or in the case of the frogs, more frogs came when they attempted to banish them. After their third failure, they acknowledged that it was “God’s Finger” at work.


4

Moshe was 79 plus when he came first to pharaoh. His 80th birthday preceded the Exodus. He died about 40 days before Israel enterred the land which was exactly 40 years after the Exodus. When a person is past 79 he is in his 80th year, which is what the Torah refers to.


4

Moshe repeats that he has a speech impediment in Shemos 6,12 because it is part of his argument to Hashem that Pharaoh would not hearken to him, as it says: "And Moshe spoke before Hashem, saying: Behold, Yisrael did not hearken to me, how then will Pharaoh hearken to me, seeing that I am of closed lips?". The sefer Binyan Ariel explains Moshe's argument ...


4

Maayan Bais Has'shoeivah by Rabbi Shimon Schwab Zatzal explains that Moshe and Aharon were telling Pharaoh that his genocidal decrees against the Jewish people were doomed for failure. Eighty years ago you decreed that every boy born shall be thrown into the Nile River to be drowned. Eighty three years ago you ordered that all Jewish boys shall be killed at ...


4

It seems the ו׳ is functioning to introduce the apodosis, or the result of a cause. Thus, "When Par'oh let the people go, then God did not lead them..." See Wilhelm Gesenius' A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament, on ו׳, p. 266, §bb. As for the Arabic ف, see William Edward Lane's An English-Arabic Lexicon on the entry for ف. Lane writes, ...


4

Most of the commentators understand ערוב as being derived from the word for "mixture", the animals being a "mixture" of a certain type. What type is subject to speculation. Shemos Rabbah (11:3) brings a difference of opinion between R' Nechemia and R' Yehuda as to what type of animals were involved: either insects or what we would think of as wild animals ...


4

@Menachem's answer addresses your question regarding sources that suggest that some of the plagues affected the Jews as well as the Egyptians. However, regarding your question of why the distinction is "spelled out" only prior to the fourth plague, arov, I will offer the explanation of Abarbanel (who, by the way, believes that the Jews were not affected by ...


4

The Haggadah explicitly learns that the Hand of G-d refers to Pestilence from Shemot 9:3, where it talks about Pestilence coming from the Hand of G-d. Of interest is Shemot Rabbah 10:1, which quotes R' Yehoshua ben Levi's teaching that each of the 10 plagues came with a side-plague of Pestilence. While looking for that source I came across this on ...


4

In Shemos 5:3, Moshe introduces his request: נלכה נא דרך שלשת ימים במידבר ונזבחה ליהוה Now let us go on a three day journey in the desert and sacrifice to the Lord our God



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