Following Shacharit Shemonah Esreh, during Shabbat Mincha, and after the Amidah on Motza'ei Shabbat, קדושה דסדרא also called, ובא לציון is said. The beginning contains 3 verses, 2 of which are part of Kedusha that is recited as part of the chazzan's Amidah repetition, and the third from Shemot (Exodus) 15:

וְקָרָא זֶה אֶל זֶה וְאָמַר קָדוֹשׁ קָדוֹשׁ | קָדוֹשׁ יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת מְלֹא כָל הָאָרֶץ כְּבוֹדוֹ: וּמְקַבְּלִין דֵין מִן דֵין וְאָמְרִין קַדִּישׁ בִּשְמֵי מֵרוֹמַא עִלָאַה בֵּית שְכִינְתֵּהּ, קַדִּישׁ עַל אַרְעָא עוֹבַד גְּבוּרְתֵּהּ, קַדִּישׁ לְעָלַם וּלְעָלְמֵי עָלְמַיָּא, יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת מַלְיָא כָּל אַרְעָא זִיו יְקָרֵהּ: וַתִּשָּׂאֵנִי רוּחַ וָאֶשְׁמַע אַחֲרַי קוֹל רַעַשׁ גָּדוֹל בָּרוּךְ כְּבוֹד יְהֹוָה מִמְּקוֹמוֹ: וּנְטָלַתְנִי רוּחָא וּשְׁמָעִית בַּתְרַי קַל זִיעַ שַׂגִּיא דִמְשַׁבְּחִין וְאָמְרִין, בְּרִיךְ יְקָרָא דְיְהֹוָה מֵאֲתָר בֵּית שְכִינְתֵּהּ, יְהֹוָה יִמְלוֹךְ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד, יְהֹוָה מַלְכוּתֵיהּ קָאִים לְעָלַם וּלְעָלְמֵי עָלְמַיָּא

Why are these 3 verses recited with the Aramaic Targum Yonatan translation? None of the other verses are translated. What is the functional purpose of doing this as part of the tefillah?

1 Answer 1


Rabbi Eliyahu Munk, in his book עולם התפילות, gives several reasons for this (which we say every day, not only on Shabbat):

  • This is the end of the teffilah, after we already reached the hights during Shma Yisrael and Amida, and we are slowly descending and equipping ourselves towards our day. Therefore we need the explanation of the targum for example that states that "קדוש קדוש קדוש" doesn't just mean that Hashem is holy and far away from us, but he is "קדיש על ארעא" - holy down on earth as well.

  • The Abudraham explains that this kedushah is here for those who came late to prayer, and missed the regular kedushah of amida. They added the Aramaic translation because in that time that was the spoken language.

  • Rav Natrunai also explains that Aramaic was the spoken language, but that they put this kedushah and its translations there as part of a limud of psukim and Mishna etc. that were done towards the end of the prayer. After some time, the rest was gone, but this part stayed on.

  • Rashi on Sota 49a also gives the same explanation:

    סדר קדושה שלא תקנוה אלא שיהו כל ישראל עוסקין בתורה בכל יום דבר מועט שאומר קריאתו ותרגומו והן כעוסקין בתורה...‏

  • Once, our enemies forbade us from saying kedushah, and they even posted guards during prayer hours to make sure no one does. So the Jews postponed the kedushah to the end of teffilah, when the guards left, and added the Aramaic translation so that it is like two different kedushot replacing the two that were missed. During Shabbat, they could say kedushah in Mussaf, so it doesn't appear in the morning prayer.

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