Halachic discussions in the Gemoro can end with the word תיקו. According to one view in Hebrew Wikpedia it stands for

תשבי יתרץ קושיות ובעיות. שמשמעותן: השאלה תעמוד ותוכרע רק כאשר יבוא התשבי -אליהו הנביא

The question will be answered when Eliyohu comes.

The Gemoro in Shabbos 108a records a question asked of Rav Nachman bar Yitzchok whether tefillin cane be written on the skin of a fish. Rav Nachman answers

אם יבא אליהו ויאמר When Eliyohu comes, he will tell us.

The Gemoro asks what this last statement means and Rashi comments

היתר ואיסור אין תלוי בו דלא בשמים היא

(We do not rely on Eliyohu to teach us whether something is) permitted or forbidden. It does not depend on him because the Torah is not in heaven.

How does Rashi's comment fit with the understanding of תיקו referred to above?

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    The real answer is that תיקו doesn't mean that. It means it will stand and that is it. Commented Jul 12, 2016 at 17:23
  • (If we accept that that's what teku means...) It sounds like Rashi is explaining this question of the g'mara; maybe that understanding of teku is according to R. Nachman bar Yitzchak? (Disclaimer: I haven't looked up the g'mara. Or Wikipedia (l'havdil).)
    – msh210
    Commented Jul 12, 2016 at 17:44
  • In Dine Mamonot you find יהא מונח עד שיבא אליה In Kiddushin also about Yochasim.
    – kouty
    Commented Jul 12, 2016 at 19:55
  • If someone has a masoret for a psak we do not say it Lo bashamayim, Eliahu is Pinechass, he received a big masoret. So numerous doubts will be resolved by masoret through Eliahou
    – kouty
    Commented Jul 12, 2016 at 20:13

2 Answers 2


Commenting on a Talmudic passage (Berachot 3a) in which R. Yosi learned three laws from Elijah the Prophet, R. Zvi Hirsch Chajes essentially asks your question:

ק' ע"ד רש"י (שבת ק"ח ע"א) ד"ה מאי עד שיבא אליהו ויאמר ופירש"י איסור והיתר אין תלוי בו דלא בשמים הוא ע"ש ואיך למד הש"ס דינים אלו מאליהו ואפשר לומר דאם אליהו אומר דינים מצד הנבואה אזי שייך לא בשמים היא ואין נביא רשאי לחדש דבר אבל אם אומר מלתא בטעמא מה ששמע מפי חכמים אחרים אזי שומעין לו כמו שמצינו (עירובין מ"ב ע"ב) דרצה הש"ס לומר דהנהו שב שמעתתא אליהו אמרם מה ששמע בבית המדרש ע"ש

A question on the words of Rashi (Shabbat 108a) s.v. "what does it mean until Elijah comes and says?" and Rashi explains [that] prohibition and permission are not dependent on him since [the Torah] is not in Heaven, see there. So how can the Talmud [in Berachot] learn these laws from Elijah? and it is possible to say that if Elijah says the laws based on prophecy, then it is applicable to say "it is not in Heaven and a prophet is not allowed to innovate anything". But if he says a thing with a reason that he heard from other sages, then we do listen to him as we find (Eruvin 42b) that the Talmud wanted to say that these seven teachings Elijah said what he heard in the study hall, see there.


Rashi is commenting if Eliyahu would come and give a answer then. At that point היתר ואיסור אין תלוי בו דלא בשמים היא. When Moshiach comes then Eliyahu will be back on this world, and then his Psak will be accepted.

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    +1. This approach could reconcile Rashi with the Mabit (Sha'ar HaY'sodos §60). The Mabit explains that, among the righteous leaders of the past, only Eliyahu will be able to give halachic rulings in the future because he retained an uninterrupted aspect of physicality and a tether to 'Olam HaZeh throughout the generations. However, any other righteous person who will have to be resurrected will not be able to rule.
    – Fred
    Commented Jul 12, 2016 at 19:39

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