Questions tagged [commentaries]

Questions related to Jewish commentaries, their meaning and their origin.

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Why did HaShem allowed Yeshayahu to serve naked?

Maybe I misunderstood the verse, but Yeshayahu 20:3 teach us that Yeshayahu was a servant and walked naked and barefoot for three years. Why would HaShem allow him to do so? While Adam and Eve had to ...
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84 views

In Avraham all to be blessed?

In relation to another question of mine Avraham a father of many Bereshit 12:2-3 reads: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and be thou a blessing....
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151 views

Did the Rashbam Practice what he Preached Regarding Shabbat?

Rashbam, on Bereishit (Genesis) 1:5, states: ויהי ערב ויהי בקר - אין כתיב כאן ויהי לילה ויהי יום, אלא ויהי ערב, שהעריב יום ראשון ושיקע האור, ויהי בוקר, בוקרו של לילה, שעלה עמוד השחר, הרי הושלם יום ...
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533 views

Is there a Jewish tradition of commentary on Genesis prior to Philo? [closed]

I'm interested to know where I might find out more about Jewish commentators on the story of the Creation, Fall and Expulsion from Eden as described in Genesis. Is there a Jewish equivalent to the ...
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71 views

The name Mispar

Among the many peculiar and unusual names found in Tanach, some of them have reasons and explanations for why it was given. And some do not. What about Mispar found in Ezra 2:2. אֲשֶׁר־בָּאוּ עִם־...
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Keitsad tsolin mefarshim

I need advice on mefarshim for the seventh chapter of pessahim keitsad tsolin. Most mefarshim left it. I am looking for rishonim or kadmone achronim, like Pney Yehoshua.
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54 views

Two roots applied to the same verses

I was looking up the word להורות on the pealim.com website, from the root ירה. And it gave all kinds of conjugations. But it also gave some related words one of those was: הוראה. Both seem to have to ...
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Online commentary for 3 ENOCH — a Hekalot & Merkevah, mystical, apocalyptic, pseudepigraphal, Jewish text (400CE)?

I've been interested in Hekalot & Merkevah literature as of late. I'm not a Kabbalist, but I do study scriptures of the Near East, particularly within the realms of Judaism. I stumbled across 3 ...
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198 views

commentaries on the book Derech Hashem

Title says it all. I am looking for commentaries published for the Ramchal's book Derech Hashem (if any exist)
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120 views

looking for explanation of shemonei esrei

I, in an attempt to improve kavana (intent) in prayer, would like to study a perush (commentary) which explains the shemonei esrei in details (pshat of each word and maybe a bit more). Can anyone ...
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Elohim lower than YHWH?

The Zohar contains a reference to Elohim as lower than YHWH (vol. 1, 20a), but what does that mean? Could someone explain to me the plain meaning?
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make atonement - אכפרה

Shemot 32:30 teaches us that Moshe said to the people: “You have sinned a great sin, and now I will go up unto the Lord, peradventure I shall make atonement for you.” Bereshit 32:20 Likewise teaches ...
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52 views

Won’t let go unless you bless me

In the moment Yaakov is wrestling a adversary he says: ‘לא אשלחך כי אם ברכתני’, I wondered if there are any commentaries which reads this differently. I noticed that Rabbi Hirsch connects the root ...
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148 views

What does Judaism say about the Original sin?

DISCLAIMER: I am not Jewish nor am I a follower of Judaism. I have read the Torah, prophets and writings with Rashi commentary, also have read some of the Midrash, and read/watch some of today's ...
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101 views

With what and why did Ya’akov struggle?

Many times I came across teachings which stated that Ya’akov Avinu wrestled (struggled) with what could be described as something representative of Esav (I.e. Edom, Adam); of which it is said it was ...
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75 views

Did Aaron have daughters?

We are reading this Shabat parshat Pinchas. In this parsha the Torah mentioned the daughters of Tzelofchad as follows: וצלפחד בן חפר לא היו לו בנים כי אם בנות ושם בנות צלפחד מחלה ונעה חגלה מלכה ...
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163 views

Which men needed to be circumcised in Joshua 5

Joshua 5:2 talks about the moment in which Yehoshua is commanded to circumcise the children of Israel a second time. The reason to do so is that all the people that came forth out of Egypt, that were ...
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54 views

Who was uncircumcised, and by whom at which time and why was this person sought to be killed?

What exactly is happening in the passage about the circumcision of Shemot 4:24-26? First of all, who was met, sought to kill and let from - at which time in the story did this occur - and by whom? ...
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The Meshech Chochma on Bereishis 49:26 and Rashi on Bereishis 43:34

The Meshech Chochma on Bereishis 49:26 comments: (Source(s) from Sefaria.org) ברכות אביך גברו על ברכות הורי וכו' תהיין וכו' נזיר אחיו הענין. דכל בניו של יעקב היו מצערים את אביהם במה שלא הגידו לו ...
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Atzeret to gather or store?

Atzeret (עצרת) comes from the root עצר which means (nifal, as a verb) to stop, be delayed or to be arrested. But I also heard that R.S.Hirsch explains it means 'to collect, to store or to gather' as ...
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What's the deal with Melchizedek

After the narrative of the battle of Siddim (between a coalition of four kings and a coalition of five kings). It's stated that the king of Sodom went out to meet Avram (see Bereshit 14:17) - followed ...
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Avraham drove away the birds

At the time of the brit bein habetarim it is stated, that after Avraham took the animals which HaShem commanded and divides them, drove away the birds that came after these carcasses. (Bereshit/...
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Help Finding the Radak's Introduction to His Commentary on Torah

Rabbi Eliyahu Munk wrote an English translation of various Biblical commentaries called Hachut Hameshulash: Commentaries on the Torah by Rabbeinu Chananel, Rashbam, Radak & Seforno-4 Vol. Set. ...
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17 and 8 refering to YHVH, His Torah and Good?

I found out that the gematria of the word tov is 17, which contracted to 1+7=8. Then I found out that the 17th word of the Torah is Elohim, but also that the words Torah (611=6+1+1=8) and YHVH (26=2+6=...
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71 views

Fasting only physical?

What's the meaning of fasts, is it only a physical deed of abstain from food and drinks? Because often in scriptures it's listed or placed in context of prayer, repentance, mourning or done to show a ...
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78 views

Psalm 34:9 Taste or perceive?

Tehillim, Psalm 34:9 is most often translated as: Taste and see, (that) HaShem is good. Sometimes this verse is explained as to taste and see His Goodness. But Rabbi Elimelech of Lizhensk interprets ...
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609 views

How the idea of “the bread of shame” aligns with free will

Jewish thinkers(Who?) sum up G-d's creation of the world as follows: It was the ultimate act of goodness. G-d is perfect and infinite. He has no need for a universe; He has nothing to gain from ...
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Why does Koheleth 12:1 use בוראיך instead of בוראך?

Koheleth 12:1 says: וּזְכֹר, אֶת-בּוֹרְאֶיךָ, בִּימֵי, בְּחוּרֹתֶיךָ: עַד אֲשֶׁר לֹא-יָבֹאוּ, יְמֵי הָרָעָה, וְהִגִּיעוּ שָׁנִים, אֲשֶׁר תֹּאמַר אֵין-לִי בָהֶם חֵפֶץ. 1 Remember then thy ...
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The meaning of ירך

I’m unclear as to the meaning of the word ירך that appears in Vayishlach, in 32:26. What’s the precise meaning of ירך often translated as hip, thigh, loin, gird etc. Which body part, bone or muscle is ...
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58 views

Hang up people to cause the anger of the Lord to turn

Could someone explain to me how the anger of the Lord is turned by hanging people in view for all to watch? Numbers 25:4 (Mechon-mamre translation): "Take all the chiefs of the people, and hang them ...
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61 views

Nehushtan destroyed

Could someone explain to me why we read in Melachim II 2:18 that the brass serpent that Moses had made had been kept al this time? And how or why did the people became to honor it; for until that ...
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The encampment around the Tabernacle: What did it look like?

Based on Bamidbar/Numbers 2:2 the Israelites had to pitch their tents by tribe around the Ohel Mo'ed/Mishkan. But what I would like to know is How it would look from above? What shape would it be (...
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A heap of people and ingathering of food

Is there any connection between the word אסף (to gather, collect) and אסם (literally a barn or storehouse but could be from an unised root meaning to heap up). I wondered because there is a feast in ...
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78 views

Who went with whom? Lot and Avram

Genesis 12:4 reads: Vayelech Avram... Avram went according as HaShem had sproken to him, vayelech Lot ito, and Lot went with him. But the next verse reads: Vayikach Avram.. et Lot, and Avram took Lot, ...
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45 views

What's the need for Avraham to become nation

Bereshit 12 (verse 2-3) reads: "I will make of thee a great nation, I will bless thee and make thy name great; be thou a blessing. I will bless them that bless thee, and him that curseth thee will I ...
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41 views

Regret, remorsefull, repentance

They all seem to deal with some part of a process of reconciliation but could someone explain the difference between Teshuvah (תשובה) Charatah (חרטה) and L'hiNachem (להינחם) ?
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101 views

Was Adam HaRishon made incomplete? If so why?

Rav Yosef Albo (Sefer Halkkarim 3:2) explains that the expression 'Ki Tov' is used to describe something that has reached i.e. fulfilled its potential and reached its (goal, purpose) shleimus (...
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Genesis 1 and 2 are both displaying a correct order based on the words 'making' and 'forming'?

Looking for a possible explanation why Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 seem to contradict each other, I noticed a difference in the order of things being 'made' in Genesis 1 and the order of things being '...
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Let the sun come in.. or is it under?

Genesis 15:17 states: ויהי השמש באה ועלטה היה What I would like to know why השמש באה is often translated as: 'the sun set (the going away of the sun) or was going down' while באה or בא has the ...
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155 views

The anger of HaShem, Satan or David Himself? - 2 Samuel 24:1 v.s. 1 Chronicles 21:1

2 Samuel 24:1 v.s. 1 Chronicles 21:1 Both describe the same situation, but one verse talks about the anger of HaShem to be kindled against Israel, while the other one talks about 'satan'. When ...
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35 views

Akrasia and the Yetzer Harah

I asked many questions about the Yetzarim before trying to figure out the concept, the meaning and the way it works looking at myself and different cognitive studies. Recently I found a concept ...
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98 views

Yetzer machshevot libo

There is a phrase in Bereshit/Genesis 6:5 which reads in hebrew: '.... v'kol yetzer machshevot libo...' I found different translations starting of with: The entire, every, the whole.. And ending ...
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90 views

How did Yom Teruah or Yom HaZikaron became known as Rosh HaShana?

I noticed that the Torah never call this day of Yom Teruah with the name Rosh HaShana. So how en when did it got the name Rosh HaShana? And more important how does one relate the terms 'Rosh HaShana' ...
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83 views

Changing our perspective

I once found this kind of quote online: "G-d grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference". It popped up in my ...
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173 views

changing the decree in heaven by prayer

Quote: Many Seforim ask a question, how does tefillah work? If Hashem has decreed that a person will be lacking parnasah, how should Tefillah be able to change the bodings [see Ramban (Parshas ...
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Why is the Ba'eir Heiteiv citing himself?

In the Ba'eir Heiteiv (באר היטב) commentary to the Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 1, at the end of s'if katan 13, we find the words: וכן העתיק הבאר היטב אשר לפני ע״ש ולא ידעתי למה. And likewise, ...
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57 views

Authorship of Rabbenu Gershom's Commentary to Talmud

Who authored the commentary attributed to Rabbenu Gershom to tractate Temurah and other tractates such as Bava Batra? I recall reading some who doubted the traditional attribution, or suggesting that ...
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67 views

goodness and pleasure the purpose of creation

The Ramchal teaches that goodness is the reason that G-d created the world, to give of His goodness to another (human). But he also wrote: Man was created for the sole purpose of rejoicing in G-d ...
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53 views

searching for the source for Kulo Tov?

What is the original source for HaShem being called 'Kulo Tov', 'Completely Good'? It seems to be the source for the idea that HaShem created the creation to bestow His goodness. Could anyone explain ...
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53 views

what is rah good for? [duplicate]

Question 1: Yeshayahu 45:7 describes the fact that Adonai created rah. Bereshit 1:31 tells us that Adonai did watch all that he had made and saw that it was tov me'od. If something like rah is created ...