The talmud in berachos 2a asserts that the verse ודברת בם בשבתך בביתך ובלכתך בדרך ובשכבך ובקומך is the source for the mitzva of reciting shema twice daily.

Yet later on in daf 13, the talmud says this verse refers to the mitzva of torah study.

How do we reconcile the two statements?

  • @WAF the Gemorah only quotes the part of the pasuk that I mentioned. It does not bring the full verse as you mention. It is very common in the Gemorah that 1 halacha is learnt from one part of the pasuk and another halacha is learnt from a different part
    – eramm
    Dec 25, 2013 at 23:00
  • @eramm Did I say something? (I'm not being sarcastic. I don't see what I said.)
    – WAF
    Dec 26, 2013 at 13:39
  • I thought you had edited the question to include the full pasuk to try to strengthen the original question.
    – eramm
    Dec 26, 2013 at 14:02
  • Why can't the two Mitzvot be sourced in the same verse, one in the "ve-Sinantam le-Vanecha" phrase, and the other in the "ve-Dibarta Bam" phrase( see Mishneh Torah, Mitzvot Aseh, Nos. 10, 11), regardless of what Halakhot are derived from the rest of the verse?
    – Tamir Evan
    Dec 27, 2013 at 9:43
  • Can it not refer to both?
    – ezra
    Mar 2, 2018 at 17:24

2 Answers 2


When the Gemara on 13b says that these words are referring to Torah study, it is talking about the words "לדבר בם" in the second passage of Shema. The source for the recitation of Kerias Shema is from the words "ודברת בם" in the first passage of Shema. Thus, there is no contradiction. As Rashi says:

'ה"ג ההוא בדברי תורה כתיב. כדמוכח קרא ולמדתם אותם את בניכם וגו

It should be noted, however, that this is actually a dispute among the amoraim. On 21a R. Yehuda holds that the entire mitzvah of Kerias Shema is only derabanan, and even the words in the first passage of Shema are referring to Torah study. Tosafos there brings up the Gemara on 2a which cited the verse of ובשכבך, and says that (according to R. Yehuda) that is just an asmachta b'almah.


My understanding of the Brachos 2a is the Talmud learns the obligation to recite shema twice daily from the verse

(בשכבך ובקומך" (דברים ו, ז ...when you lie down and when you rise.

The Rambam when discussing the source for twice daily Shema recitel (Kryiat Shema 1:1) also quotes this verse

We [are obligated to] recite the Shema twice daily - in the evening and in the morning - as [Deuteronomy 6:7] states: "...when you lie down and when you rise" - i.e., when people are accustomed to sleep - this being the night - and when people are accustomed to rise, this being daytime.

Sources: http://he.wikisource.org/wiki/%D7%91%D7%A8%D7%9B%D7%95%D7%AA_%D7%91_%D7%90


  • the Rambam you quoted could just be quoting the part of the verse that refers to night and day but the actual reciting is learned from vedibarta bam. seems the whole verse is going on shema since the earlier part of the verse "beshivtecha bevetehcha, ubliechtecha baderech", the talmud also uses to derive halachot of the shema. such as that a chatan is patur from shema.
    – ray
    Dec 26, 2013 at 8:12
  • @TamirEvan in the sefer mitzvos of the chafetz chaim he writesas the source of the shema "vedibarta bam...bshachbecha uvkumecha". so he is learning the mitzva of shema is derived from the whole verse
    – ray
    Jan 25, 2014 at 20:31
  • @ray (I assume you were responding to my comment to your question.) (1) The Mishneh Torah I cited brings the source that way. (2) Even if you can argue that all the words that are between the words quoted is part of the source for saying the Shema, I still don't see how the words that come before those quoted (i.e. "ve-Sinantam le-Vanekha") are to be included.
    – Tamir Evan
    Feb 2, 2014 at 11:47

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