According to the Midrash (quoted in Rashi on the Parsha), when Hashem spoke at Sinai, the effect was so powerful that פרחו נשמתם - the souls of the Jewish nation left their bodies. Hashem resurrected them, and this was repeated a second time.

If they all died, did the regular halachic ramifications of death apply?

  1. Were they all ritually impure?

  2. Were their marriages terminated (מיתת הבעל is a termination of Ishus)?

If not, why not?

  • The first question is obviously answered. When they live a second time, they are new men, as a keli tame broken and next reconstructed, becomes tahor
    – kouty
    Commented Jan 25, 2019 at 0:43
  • kouty - See Nidda 70b, with Maharsha.
    – chortkov2
    Commented Jan 25, 2019 at 11:01
  • Very good source, I didn't understand what the point of Maharsha, it seems that he address the machloket RS rabanan about tumat ohel in nochri
    – kouty
    Commented Jan 25, 2019 at 12:00
  • You can write an answer to your question
    – kouty
    Commented Jan 25, 2019 at 12:44

1 Answer 1


Rabbi Yosef Hayyim of Baghdad in his book Ben Yehoyada (Meg. 7b s.v. Rabba) asserts that there was no need to redo kiddushin (their marriages were not terminated) and goes on to answer the (related) question raised by early authorities whether or not R. Zera (see Meg. 7b) needed to remarry his wife after he was brought back to life. (For the "why not?" see next paragraph.)

Regarding ritual impurity, the same query is discussed by many poskim in a couple of other cases (e.g. Elijah and the Shunamite) and the consensus seems to be that only when still a corpse would the question be valid but not once the subject was brought back to life. Even then, many opine that in such a case of supernatural death standard halachot wouldn't apply.

For a lengthy discussion of both these questions, not specifically pertaining to OP's example, see R. Pinchas Zabihi in Ateret Paz (Vol. 1 Part 3 - Even HaEzer no. 9).

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