Questions tagged [parshanut-torah-comment]

interpretation of parts of Tanach by close reading, not derivation

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Theological importance of the Noah's flood story in the Torah [closed]

I"m trying to contemplate the place of the flood story in the Torah. The story of the flood spans roughly three chapters of the Torah, seemingly implying its importance, yet: it has no Halachic ...
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2answers
103 views

Who or what was Gilaad?

In parshas pinchas ch 26 vs 29 we find Menasheh had a son Machir who had a son Gilaad (גלעד). In fact this family group was called "Gilaadi" (גלעדי). At the end of parshas Matos ch 32 vs 39 - 40 we ...
3
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1answer
26 views

Plural and singular in Shmuel 2:24:14

In Shmuel 2:24:14 it says: "David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let us fall into the hands of the LORD, for His compassion is great; and let me not fall into the hands of men.”" ...
6
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2answers
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38 years or 40 years in the desert?

I'm confused regarding several apparently contradictory verses: Bamidbar 14:33 says that B;nai Yisra'el will wander the desert for 40 years. In Devarim 1:19 - 22, Moshe says that they arrived at ...
13
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6answers
3k views

Who is Adam guarding Eden from?

In Bereshis 2:15 Adam is placed in Gan Eden to work and guard it. Guard it from what or whom?
5
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3answers
228 views

Why doesn't Yitzchak chastise Avimelech about the wells the way his father did?

In parshat Toldot, we see a number of situations that occur to Yitzhak that are (almost) identical to those that occurred to his father, Avraham. Examples: There is a famine. Yitzchak seeks to go to ...
2
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3answers
735 views

Avraham's knife was called Ma'achelet. Why?

What is the reason behind the word Ma'achelet used for the knife used by Avraham in the binding of Yitzchok? Is it an indication of specific function? Is this name used elsewhere? Does it indicate any ...
3
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2answers
87 views

Why does Rashi's explain “bread” as Putiferah's wife?

In Breishit 39:6 it says that Potiphar did not pay attention to anything that Yosef handled "except for the bread that he (Potiphar) eats." "וַיַּעֲזֹב כָּל־אֲשֶׁר־לוֹ בְּיַד־יוֹסֵף וְלֹא־יָדַע ...
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0answers
57 views

On what day was the air created?

Since we're back to Bereyshis, I was wondering, the air is not mentioned in the Torah, besides the wind, of course. THe Hebrew "אויר" is actually the Greek "aero" as they ...
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3answers
115 views

HaShem Himself a reward?

I noticed that some translations chose to teach to translate the words of Bereshit 15:1 אנכי מגן לך שכרך הרבה מאד as something like: I am thy shield and thy (exceeding) great reward OR , your very ...
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3answers
201 views

Why didn't the Snake kill Adam only and keep Chava for himself?

Tosefta on Soytah (Liehbermann): "הנחש בקש להרוג את אדם ולישא את חוה" Rashi on Shabbos 146a: "כשבא נחש על חוה - כשנתן לה עצה לאכול מן העץ בא עליה דכתיב (בראשית ג:יג) הנחש השיאני לשון נשואין" ...
5
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1answer
276 views

Was Gad Strong or weak?

In Vezos Habracha where Rashi says on Perek 33:18 that the last 5 tribes he doubled over, Moshe did this because these tribes were weak so he wanted to strengthen them. However Rashi later on, on ...
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3answers
343 views

Why was Noach allowed to eat fish?

The Ramban (Bereshit 1:29) says the reason Noach was allowed to eat animals is because he maintained them in the Ark. If he would not have brought them into the Ark they would all have perished, so ...
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5answers
464 views

Why did Korach have to be buried alive?

Korach had to die an unnatural death; otherwise his death wouldn't prove Moshe right, because a natural death could be because his time had come. But why did he have to still stay alive after being ...
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2answers
83 views

Why didn’t Yehuda (or Shelah) perform Chaliza for Tamar?

In (פרשת וישב (פרק לח we have the story of Yehuda marrying off Er to Tamar and then perform a pre-מתן תורה version of יבום with Onan, who also subsequently dies. Which left Yehuda’s third son,Shelah,...
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105 views

Yishmael - if he did Teshuva why does he continue to be punished

We know that Yishmael early on acted in an improper manner (see for example Bereishis Rabbah 53:11) and was resultantly banished from Avraham's household - Bereishis 21:9-10 However, we learn later on ...
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2answers
187 views

Why was Pinchas allowed to kill Kazbi Bat Tzur?

In order to explain why Pinchas killed Zimri, Chazal tell us that הבועל ארמית קנעין פוגעין בו. However, this law should not apply to the woman. Moreover, she was not even Jewish! So, under what ...
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1answer
139 views

Commentary of Rav Saadiah Gaon

Other than Tafsir Rasag, what else did Rav Saadiah Gaon write on Tanach? Did he write a full commentary on it? Can I find these writings online?
5
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1answer
180 views

Who is Artaxerxes of Ezra 4?

Ezra 4:4-24: 4. Thereupon the people of the land undermined the resolve of the people of Judah, and made them afraid to build. 5. They bribed ministers in order to thwart their plans all the years of ...
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1answer
78 views

Why at first did Hashem tell Moshe to go to Bnei Yisrael and to Pharoh, but later only mention going to Pharoh?

Shemos 3:16: לֵךְ וְאָֽסַפְתָּ אֶת־זִקְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵהֶם ה' אֱלֹקי אֲבֹֽתֵיכֶם נִרְאָה אֵלַי אֱלֹקי אַבְרָהָם יִצְחָק וְיַעֲקֹב לֵאמֹר פָּקֹד פָּקַדְתִּי אֶתְכֶם וְאֶת־הֶעָשׂוּי ...
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1answer
74 views

Blessing the Beasts

And…blessed them (Bereshis 1:22): Rash - Because [people] decimate them and hunt them and eat them, they required a blessing; and the beasts also required a blessing, but because the serpent was ...
3
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1answer
100 views

Assist with Rash“i's explanation of verb usage - ”N-CH-L" in describing the tribal heads who will inherit the land

Numbers 34:18: וְנָשִׂ֥יא אֶחָ֛ד נָשִׂ֥יא אֶחָ֖ד מִמַּטֶּ֑ה תִּקְח֖וּ לִנְחֹ֥ל אֶת־הָאָֽרֶץ׃ Numbers 34:29 אֵ֕לֶּה אֲשֶׁ֖ר צִוָּ֣ה יְהוָ֑ה לְנַחֵ֥ל אֶת־בְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל בְּאֶ֥רֶץ ...
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119 views

Why does the description of Yitzchak change?

When Avraham is told to take Yitzchak to the akeida, Yitzchak is specified with a series of 3 descriptions (Bereishit 22:2): אֶת־בִּנְךָ֨ אֶת־יְחִֽידְךָ֤ אֲשֶׁר־אָהַ֙בְתָּ֙ your singular son whom you ...
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1answer
38 views

Was it a specific knife and fire?

related Avraham's knife was called Ma'achelet. Why? Why doesn't Yitzchak mention the knife? When Avraham takes Yitzchak to the Akeida, the pasuk reads וַיִּקַּ֣ח בְּיָד֔וֹ אֶת־הָאֵ֖שׁ ...
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1answer
151 views

How did the Shela make the brothers less culpable?

Rashi brings the Midrash that Yosef told Yaakov three sins the brothers did: אבר מן החי - They ate a limb from a live animal עריות - They were guilty of illicit relations שקורין לאחיהם עבדים - They ...
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1answer
48 views

Yom Teruah a Rosh HaShanah and commemoration or memorial of what exactly?

The Tenach mentions that the first (day) of the seventh month (Tishri) shall be for us a solemn rest and a remembrance of blasts, a sacred occasion/convocation; no work shall be done, it shall be a ...
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1answer
92 views

Why at the Seder night it is not sufficient to be wise?

The Haggadah says: וַאֲפִילוּ כֻּלָּנוּ חֲכָמִים, כֻּלָּנוּ נְבוֹנִים, כֻּלָנוּ זְקֵנִים, כֻּלָנוּ יוֹדְעִים אֶת הַתּוֹרָה Listing 4 different qualities means that each one is not sufficient, and ...
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2answers
83 views

if there are narrative contradictions in the 5 books of moses,why is it so?

there are many narrative contradictions in the 5 books of moses.does this prove the Torah is manmade or is there a deeper layer?Rabbi ishmael said the torah was written in the language of men etc ...
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2answers
120 views

Rashi's logic in understanding animal mating patterns

מָאתַיִם עִזִּים צְרִיכוֹת עֶשְׂרִים תְּיָשִׁים, וְכֵן כֻּלָּם, הַזְּכָרִים כְּדֵי צֹרֶךְ הַנְּקֵבוֹת; ... לְפִי שֶׁהֵם פְּנוּיִים מִמְּלָאכָה דַּרְכָּם לְהַרְבּוֹת תַּשְׁמִישׁ וּלְעַבֵּר עֶשֶׂר ...
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1answer
88 views

Missing Korach in Deuteronomy

In Parashat Korach we read that the Jews distanced themselves from the tents of Korach, Datan and Aviram (Bemidbar 16:27), and then the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up Korach and his company (...
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1answer
151 views

Eisav's angel fought Yaakov. Why Eisav's angel and not Gavriel?

I saw this dvar torah in a forum. "וַיֵּאָבֵק אִישׁ עִמּוֹ" (לב/כה) פירש רש"י ז"ל : "הוא שרו של עשיו" שואלים: בפסוק הנאמר על יוסף "וַיִּמְצָאֵהוּ אִישׁ וְהִנֵּה ...
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0answers
39 views

Do some explain that Bnei Israel were 400 years in Egypt? [duplicate]

The standard understanding is that Bnei Israel were 210 years in Egypt, and the 430 years that the Torah speaks of (chemot 12:40): וּמוֹשַׁב֙ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל אֲשֶׁ֥ר יָשְׁב֖וּ בְּמִצְרָ֑יִם ...
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4answers
560 views

Is the king of Israel called 'God' at Psalm 45:7, as Aquila seems to read it?

Psalm 45 is a wedding song for the marriage of a king of Israel. At verse 7 the lyric says: כִּסְאֲךָ אֱלֹהִים, עוֹלָם וָעֶד The Jewish Greek translation which came to be called the Septuagint ...
3
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2answers
61 views

A voice is heard in Ramah

Jeremiah 31:15 teaches us that ‘A voice is heard in Ramah (could also be understood as ‘on high’)’, it seems to exist of lamenting and weeping (a mourning of some kind). And it’s connected to the ...
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6answers
566 views

Let there be light! But from where?

According to Genesis 1:3, "And G-d said, Let there be light; and there was light." What light is the Torah referring to if the sun which produces light by day was created only on the 4th day of ...
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2answers
123 views

The fear and anxiety of Yaakov before meeting Eisav

Bereshit 32:8: "וַיִּירָא יַעֲקֹב מְאֹד וַיֵּצֶר לוֹ וַיַּחַץ אֶת־הָעָם אֲשֶׁר־אִתּוֹ וְאֶת־הַצֹּאן וְאֶת־הַבָּקָר וְהַגְּמַלִּים לִשְׁנֵי מַחֲנוֹת׃" "Jacob was greatly frightened; in ...
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2answers
229 views

How could Lot's wife have been behind Lot when looking back?

It says in Genesis 19 that Lot had escaped to the city of Zoar, and the overthrowing of Sodom and Gomorrah did not begin until the next morning, when the sun rose. By this time, Lot was already safe ...
2
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3answers
155 views

How is it that no one spots Potiphar's wife's lie?

There appears to be something strange about Potiphar telling people in her home that she called out in a loud voice. Genesis 39:14: וַתִּקְרָ֞א לְאַנְשֵׁ֣י בֵיתָ֗הּ וַתֹּ֤אמֶר לָהֶם֙ לֵאמֹ֔ר ...
8
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1answer
153 views

Why doesn't the Torah use more efficient ways to say “both” or “each” when describing the Mishkan utensils?

In Parshas Terumah, in the description of many of the utensils of the Temple, the Torah seems to be very repetitive in its description of parts that are meant to be the same. For example, chapter 25 ...
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4answers
117 views

Moses at fault for spies?

Looking to better understand if, per the sources, Moses was at fault for sending spies, especially as it relates to sending them on a seemingly military mission.
10
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4answers
14k views

Why blessings on Mt. Gerizim and curses on Mt. Ebal?

Devarim 11:29 says: וְהָיָה, כִּי יְבִיאֲךָ יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ, אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר-אַתָּה בָא-שָׁמָּה לְרִשְׁתָּהּ--וְנָתַתָּה אֶת-הַבְּרָכָה עַל-הַר גְּרִזִים, וְאֶת-הַקְּלָלָה עַל-הַר עֵיבָל. And it ...
3
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1answer
139 views

Are there different types of fasts from a Torah/halacha perspective?

Generally speaking, when people think about fasting in terms of Torah, they are thinking about the type of fasting associated to the 9th of Av or Yom Kippur, meaning neither eating nor drinking. This ...
6
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1answer
75 views

Source for Ir Miklat used to improve one's character

I heard in a shiur that one purpose for sending an accidental killer to the arei miklat, the cities of refuge, was so that they could improve their character. They would be surrounded by the Leviim, ...
5
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1answer
95 views

How should Rashi's comment about Noah's belief be parsed?

Rashi in his commentary to Genesis 7:7 writes: אף נח מקטני אמנה היה מאמין ואינו מאמין שיבא המבול ולא נכנס לתיבה עד שדחקוהו המים I see (at least) two ways to read this: Noah believed in general (in ...
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2answers
58 views

When and how did Aharon make the peace between people?

We just read that the people grieved after Aharon much longer than after Moses and the Midrash infers that Aharon was involved in bringing peace between people and especially couples. When and how ...
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2answers
102 views

Which Abigail is this?

In Shmuel II 17:25, it says: וְאֶת עֲמָשָֹא שָֹם אַבְשָׁלֹם תַּחַת יוֹאָב עַל הַצָּבָא וַעֲמָשָֹא בֶן אִישׁ וּשְׁמוֹ יִתְרָא הַיִּשְׂרְאֵלִי אֲשֶׁר בָּא אֶל אֲבִיגַל בַּת נָחָשׁ אֲחוֹת צְרוּיָה אֵם ...
1
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2answers
145 views

What do the pre-rabbinic and/or rabbinic authorities say about the nurse of Rebecca?

Genesis 24:59 So they sent away Rebecca their sister and her nurse and Abraham's servant and his men. וַיְשַׁלְּח֛וּ אֶת־רִבְקָ֥ה אֲחֹתָ֖ם וְאֶת־מֵֽנִקְתָּ֑הּ וְאֶת־עֶ֥בֶד אַבְרָהָ֖ם וְאֶת־אֲנָשָֽׁיו:...
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0answers
67 views

Yosef & Dina switched in the womb - source for maintaining their initial gender characteristics & behaviours

We know famously that upon Leah becoming pregnant with her seventh child, she realized that if she were to give birth to a boy it would mean that out of the twelve tribes, she would have given birth ...
8
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5answers
437 views

Is there a substantive difference in meaning when the Torah uses the Hebrew verb root דבר rather than אמר?

Is there a substantive difference in meaning when the Torah uses the Hebrew verb root דבר rather than אמר, or do they both pretty much mean "to say" or "to speak"? Do any sages see the choice of one ...
6
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1answer
98 views

Did the Israelites walk bare foot in the desert, or did they have shoes (comment on Deut. 8:4)?

Deuteronomy 8:4 says שִׂמְלָ֨תְךָ֜ לֹ֤א בָֽלְתָה֙ מֵֽעָלֶ֔יךָ וְרַגְלְךָ֖ לֹ֣א בָצֵ֑קָה זֶ֖ה אַרְבָּעִ֥ים שָׁנָֽה׃ Your clothes did not get old upon you, neither did your feet swell, these forty ...

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