Compare Leviticus 21:17 and 24:

דַּבֵּ֥ר אֶֽל־אַהֲרֹ֖ן לֵאמֹ֑ר אִ֣ישׁ מִֽזַּרְעֲךָ֞ לְדֹרֹתָ֗ם אֲשֶׁ֨ר יִהְיֶ֥ה בוֹ֙ מ֔וּם לֹ֣א יִקְרַ֔ב לְהַקְרִ֖יב לֶ֥חֶם אֱלֹהָֽיו׃

Speak unto Aaron, saying: Whosoever he be of thy seed throughout their generations that hath a blemish, let him not approach to offer the bread of his God.

Leviticus 21:24:

וַיְדַבֵּ֣ר מֹשֶׁ֔ה אֶֽל־אַהֲרֹ֖ן וְאֶל־בָּנָ֑יו וְאֶֽל־כָּל־בְּנֵ֖י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃

So Moses spoke unto Aaron, and to his sons, and unto all the children of Israel.

Rash"i, Ib'n Ezra and others explain why Moses spoke to B'nai Isra'el as well, even though that wasn't explicitly stated in the commandment in v. 17. I understand that, and I assume that since the commandment was mainly for Aharon and Kohanim, Aharon's sons needed to know, as well.

My question is, that if these two other groups of people were to know these laws, why didn't G-d explicitly include them in verse 17?

1 Answer 1


Ramban explains that Hashem specifically said to tell Aharon about his sons. Not tell Aharon and his sons about themselves, or his sons about themselves.


ולא ירצה להזהיר את אהרן עצמו בתורת המומין כי אהרן קדוש ה' כולו יפה ומום לא יהיה בו אבל יזהירנו על זרעו שיורם ויזהיר אותם לדורותם

... And he doesn't want to warn Aharon himself about the blemishes, because Aharon is "holy to Hashem", and is all good and will never have a mum, but he warns him about his descendants so that he will teach them.

If the passage had been told to Aharon and his sons as equals, we might have thought that Aharon himself could get a mum, but Ramban assures us that he doesn't.

As to why it then can't be told only to his children: Then we might think that just as the Kohein Gadol gets special dispensation to serve despite being an onein (mourner, before the dead is buried), perhaps he will also be able to serve despite having a blemish or tzara'at. Therefore, it is told to Aharon himself, and also includes the teaching of כל איש -- anyone (next pasuk).

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