The Gemara says Berachot 10a

אפי' חרב חדה מונחת על צוארו של אדם אל ימנע עצמו מן הרחמים

Even if a sharp sword is resting on one's thought he shouldn't hold back from (asking for) mercy."

Why does the Gemara have to say "sharp" rather than just a sword? A sword usually makes a connotation of sharpness.

  • Are we so madkadek on the choice of words the Gemara uses on non-halachic matters? – Hod - Monica's Army Apr 23 '12 at 1:52
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    @HodofHod, I think so (though I can't point to a specific example at the moment). – msh210 Apr 23 '12 at 2:18
  • Please explain the downvote so I can fix my question and further help you. – Hacham Gabriel Apr 23 '12 at 3:22
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    The phrase exists in Tehillim 57:5. I think it's just a pleonasm. – Double AA Apr 23 '12 at 3:43
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    sharp swords work faster the quote is implying last second a dull sword might not be able to do the Job hence more time – simchastorah Apr 23 '12 at 5:16

I have heard in the name of Rabbi Nachman M'Breslov that חדה (Chada) is Roshei Teivos חולאים (illnesses), דמים (money), and הריון (pregnancy). Even if one is very ill, or lacking money, or having a difficult time conceiving they should never give up.

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