Why does Nedarim 37b contradict Shabbat 86a?

In Nedarim 37b, Children should not read a Torah passage [for the first time] on Shabbat :

Rather, with regard to Shabbat, this is the reason that children may not read a passage in the Bible for the first time on Shabbat, so that the fathers of the children will be at leisure to fulfill the mitzva of delighting in Shabbat. Teaching new material to their children would occupy more of their fathers’ time, limiting their opportunity to fulfill that mitzva. ( אֶלָּא גַּבֵּי שַׁבָּת הַיְינוּ טַעְמָא דְּאֵין קוֹרְאִין בַּתְּחִילָּה מִשּׁוּם דְּיִפְנוּ אֲבָהָתְהוֹן דְּיָנוֹקֵי לְמִצְוְתָא דְשַׁבְּתָא וְאִיבָּעֵית אֵימָא מִשּׁוּם דִּבְשַׁבְּתָא אָכְלִין וְשָׁתִין וְיַקִּיר עֲלֵיהוֹן עָלְמָא כִּדְאָמַר שְׁמוּאֵל שִׁינּוּי וֶסֶת תְּחִילַּת חוֹלִי מֵעַיִים )

Why then did Our Father give Torah [for the first time] to the children of Yisrael on Shabbat? - Stated in Shabbat 86a : Torah was given on Shabbat.

Shabbat 86a

The Rabbis said this before Rav Pappa, and some say that Rav Pappa said this to Rava: Granted, Rabbi Elazar ben Azarya holds in accordance with the opinion of the Rabbis, who say with regard to the revelation at Sinai that Moses instituted separation between husbands and wives on the fifth day of the week. Since everyone agrees that the Torah was given on Shabbat, husbands and wives were separated for two days.

Nedarim 37b appears false, if Shabbat 86a is true. Nedarim does not apply to G-d, and ignores the example set by Our Father אָבִינוּ

  • 2
    Do the reasons given in Nedarim apply to G-d?
    – Joel K
    Commented Feb 28, 2021 at 13:20

1 Answer 1



In nedareem the reason was given as

".....would occupy more of their fathers’ time, ", even though Hashem chooses to do the mitzvos that he commands us (chookuhv oomeeshpawtuhv), which (may, actually haven't verified one way or the other) include the rabbinic mitzvos, but still even if it was said that was the case, if the reasoning of the rabbinic institution (which it would seem pretty clear that that's what nedareem is talking about as there is no pawsook brought to support this idea) then it's questionable if it applies, since even by a person of the reason didn't apply at all, in some cases (but not all) the decree or suggestion wouldn't (always) necessarily apply

Just to clarify, Hashem's time isn't taken up, since just the name Hashem (besides for the Essence that is beyond names) means (according to one explanation) "hawyuh hoyveh viyeehiyeehiyeh kiehchawd" [was, is and will be (as one {sometimes the word "as one" is absent in the explanation})] meaning the name Hashem is completely beyond time, such as relative to it, all past present and future are the same, and for sure relative to the Essence that's beyond any name, and by the giving of the Torah we had both "awnoychee Hawvaweeyuh....." [I {the essence} am Hashem {the 4 letter name}]

In addition, we are told in some commentaries that (partially based on this above idea) that the giving of the Torah is constantly being regiven every second of every day, like it says "noysayn Hatoyruh" [giver of the Torah] in the present tense, implying all the time, which is why one cannot make a shavua for oneself to nullify a mitzvuh (as mentioned in rambam and in general etc) because one is constantly being resworn in to the Torah at every instant, and a shavua doesn't fall on anther shavua (as opposed to nedareem, see rambam), as well as if someone is "neespaws" meaning if they add on themselves, the shavua that moshe took in the Torah not to leave midyan, according to the rugawtshuhver the shavua takes affect, because the shavua of moshe (vayoyel moshe, mentioned in shemos after he met Yisro) is mentioned in the torah which is constantly being given

Blessings and success

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