Questions tagged [parshanut-torah-comment]

interpretation of parts of Tanach by close reading, not derivation

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0answers
42 views

Why does Rashi say Avraham thought the angels were wayfarers?

Rashi on Breishis 18:16 And the men arose from there, and they looked upon Sodom, and Abraham went with them to escort them, says to escort them: Heb. לְשַׁלְּחָם, to escort them. He thought ...
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134 views

Lot's Reason for Marriage

Based on the fact that Lot was such a giving person (Bereishis 19:2) that he was willing to risk his life for kindliness וַיִּפְצַר־בָּם מְאֹד וַיָּסֻרוּ אֵלָיו וַיָּבֹאוּ אֶל־בֵּיתוֹ וַיַּעַשׂ ...
4
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1answer
92 views

What is the significance and/or purpose to the different ways the Commandment on covetousness is given?

The last of the Ten Commandments spoken from Mount Sinai is about covetousness: “You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his male servant, or his ...
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What is the source for the omnisignificance of Torah [duplicate]

In his book, The Idea of Biblical Poetry: Parallelism and Its History professor James Kugel discusses the idea that each and every word (letter?) in the Torah posses significant meaning (pp. 104-105), ...
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Why is Sarah faulting Avraham for impregnating Hagar?

Breishit 16:5: וַתֹּאמֶר שָׂרַי אֶל־אַבְרָם: חֲמָסִי עָלֶיךָ, אָנֹכִי נָתַתִּי שִׁפְחָתִי בְּחֵיקֶךָ וַתֵּרֶא כִּי הָרָתָה וָאֵקַל בְּעֵינֶיהָ. יִשְׁפֹּט ה' בֵּינִי וּבֵינֶיךָ׃ And Sarai said ...
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2answers
120 views

What was G-d's problem with building the Babel Tower? [duplicate]

In the story of the Babel Tower (Gen 11) people are trying to build a tower to the skies. I assume they followed the assumption that the firmament is real (firm) and it divides between the Heavens and ...
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66 views

What did G-d mean by “nothing will be out of their reach”?

וַיֹּאמֶר ה' הֵן עַם אֶחָד וְשָׂפָה אַחַת לְכֻלָּם וְזֶה הַחִלָּם לַעֲשׂוֹת וְעַתָּה לֹא־יִבָּצֵר מֵהֶם כֹּל אֲשֶׁר יָזְמוּ לַעֲשׂוֹת׃ and the LORD said, “If, as one people with one language ...
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1answer
102 views

Why did animals need to eat/be fed for a year in the Ark?

Why did animals need to eat/be fed for a year in the Ark? "Oh, because they need to eat", you'd say, but really the Mabul was one big miracle, overriding all laws of nature - physics, geology, ...
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1answer
110 views

What percentage of the humanity must sin to cause G-d to wipe them all?

In the story of the Mabul, the Torah's description of the overall disorder is very vague - "The Earth was corrupted and filled with Hamas". THe outcome is clear - the whole of humanity was judged. ...
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Doubling the reason for the flood in the Torah

At the end of Parashat Bereishit (6,7) the Torah repeats two very similar statements twice - in a form of "ABAB" instead of "AABB": Aוַיִּרְא֤וּ בְנֵי־הָֽאֱלֹהִים֙ ...וַיִּקְח֤וּ לָהֶם֙ נָשִׁ֔ים ...
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67 views

What does “the tree of life” mean when G-d decides on life solely?

My question is maybe an elaboration on this question "How does the tree of life work?: The Gemmorah says that G-d decides exclusively on a person’s lifespan. But the Torah says that G-d Himself is ...
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1answer
84 views

Were asexual animals gathered into the ark?

Breishit 6:19 says (quoting Sefaria): וּמִכָּל־הָ֠חַי מִֽכָּל־בָּשָׂ֞ר שְׁנַ֧יִם מִכֹּ֛ל תָּבִ֥יא אֶל־הַתֵּבָ֖ה לְהַחֲיֹ֣ת אִתָּ֑ךְ זָכָ֥ר וּנְקֵבָ֖ה יִֽהְיֽוּ׃ And of all that lives, of all ...
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41 views

Why was the commandment on eating the fruit said in single?

The Torah says that G-d created "them": וַיִּבְרָא אֱלֹהִים אֶת־הָאָדָם ... זָכָר וּנְקֵבָה בָּרָא אֹתָם׃ And God created man ... male and female He created them. Later He blesses them: ...
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Why does the Man need a Brachah to multiply?

According to Rashi (Ber 1.20), animals needed a blessing to multiply because humans hunt and exterminate them. Why do humans need a Bracha to multiply?
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28 views

Redundancy in the commandment to multiply

וְאַתֶּם פְּרוּ וּרְבוּ שִׁרְצוּ בָאָרֶץ וּרְבוּ־בָהּ׃ Be fertile, then, and increase; abound on the earth and increase on it.” (Ber 9) Why the repetition of רבו - increase?
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How did animals get their soul?

We know that in the process of the creation of Man, his body was shaped from the earth but his soul (נשמה) was blown by G-d. Animals, IIRC, appeared from the earth and from the water already with ...
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Torah confusion between “daylight” and “a day”

The Torah uses the same word יום in the same verse to denote both "daylight" and "24 hours": וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים לָאוֹר יוֹם וְלַחֹשֶׁךְ קָרָא לָיְלָה וַיְהִי־עֶרֶב וַיְהִי־בֹקֶר יוֹם אֶחָד׃ ...
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1answer
44 views

Importance of “Days” in the process of Creation

Why is it important that the Creation process is divided into 6 "days", as opposed to "parts" or "stages" or even presented in simple succession without mentioning "units"?
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Theological importance of the Noah's flood [closed]

The story of the flood spans roughly three chapters of the Torah, yet it has no practical Halachic value. It describes numerous miraculous events that have no relation to the Jewish people and ...
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1answer
106 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 ...
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1answer
34 views

What does it mean that G-d calls names to things?

In the process of Creation G-d eventually calls names of different things: וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים לָאוֹר יוֹם וְלַחֹשֶׁךְ קָרָא לָיְלָה ...׃ God called the light Day, and the darkness He called ...
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49 views

What does it mean “a man leaves his father and mother”?

Please help me understand the meaning of this phrase (Gen 2.24: עַל־כֵּן יַעֲזָב־אִישׁ אֶת־אָבִיו וְאֶת־אִמּוֹ וְדָבַק בְּאִשְׁתּוֹ וְהָיוּ לְבָשָׂר אֶחָד׃ Hence a man leaves his father and ...
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48 views

Why should G-d correct His Creation as He goes?

THe Torah and the commentaries clearly suggest in several places that G-d corrected His Creation while still in the process: וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים אֶת־הָאוֹר כִּי־טוֹב וַיַּבְדֵּל אֱלֹהִים בֵּין הָאוֹר ...
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1answer
55 views

Was Adam aware of his other part before separation?

וַיִּבְרָא אֱלֹקים אֶת־הָאָדָם ... זָכָר וּנְקֵבָה בָּרָא אֹתָם׃ And God created man in His image, ... male and female He created them. (Gen 1.27) Rashi brings Midrashim: But according to a ...
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85 views

Why so much genealogical detail in Bereshit?

I'm looking for reasons (Pshat, but not only) in giving so much detail in Bereshit regarding the sons of Adam, Kain, and so on. Some of the characters born and die, and have no clear role, at least in ...
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1answer
52 views

Why did Da'as Zekeinim leave out the mitzvah to procreate?

Da'as Zekeinim (compilations of teachings from the Ba'alei Tosafos) to Genesis 1:1 ask a question on one of the first comments of Rashi: ועוד פרש"י א"ר יצחק לא היה צריך להתחיל התורה וכו', וקשה שהרי ...
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Why does a contradiction need to be resolved?

Human psychological nature allows for intrinsic contradictions between one's beliefs. For example, "I love Daddy the most" vs "I love Mammy the most", or "Shabbos is G-d's greatest gift to the Jews", "...
3
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1answer
74 views

Reference to future Kings of Edomites in Breishit 36:31

I have been looking for an authentic Jewish approach to the question of the unique instance of the highly specific future reference in Breishit 36:31: ואלה המלכים אשר מלכו בארץ אדום לפני מלך־מלך ...
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Ramifications of lack of Brachah for the tribe of Shimon

I have a hard time understanding Moses' Brochos to the tribes and how it correlates to the actual course of history. As I can see, the interpreters felt the same problem and tried to pick single ...
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1answer
119 views

Why is only the iniquity (עון) of the parents passed on to the children?

In Exodus 34:6-7 it is written וַיַּעֲבֹר יְהוָה עַל־פָּנָיו וַיִּקְרָא יְהוָה יְהוָה אֵל רַחוּם וְחַנּוּן אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם וְרַב־חֶסֶד וֶאֱמֶת: נֹצֵר חֶסֶד לָאֲלָפִים נֹשֵׂא עָוֺן וָפֶשַׁע ...
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1answer
57 views

Meaning of “Don't deviate from the verdict to the right or to the left”

Wile completely understood metaphorically, the sentence makes no sense Halachically, for example: "You should pay this man $20, but don't deviate to the right or to the left." "This tool is Tamei, ...
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2answers
91 views

Why didn't the Egyptian people react violently to the Plagues?

The Egyptian people surely knew that the Jewish people were immune to the plagues and many must have suspected that all these catastrophes were happening to them on our account (either through Moshe's ...
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1answer
76 views

Slavery, an apparent contradiction?

In the Exodus, G-d hears the suffering of Israel as follows: “The Israelites were groaning under the bonding and cried out, and their cry for help from the bondage rose to G-d” (Exod 2:23); “I will ...
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19 views

Why does G-d carry out all the curses by Himself?

In Parashat Ki Tavo (28:15-on) Moses threatens the Nation with very descriptive curses. It starts from a distance: 'וּבָאוּ עָלֶיךָ כָּל־הַקְּלָלוֹת הָאֵלֶּה וְהִשִּׂיגוּךָ׃ אָרוּר אַתָּה וכו One ...
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73 views

Does Devarim 30:4 hint at space travel possibility?

Devarim 30:4 says "Even if your exiles are at the end of the heavens, the Lord, your God, will gather you from there, and He will take you from there." Why does it use the expression "בִּקְצֵ֣ה ...
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1answer
42 views

Why is Moshe's version of the tochacha longer than God's?

The version of the tochacha (warnings / "curses") in parshat Ki Tavo are much longer (i.e. occupy almost double as many verses) as the ones in parshat Bechukotai. I am assuming that nearly all the ...
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1answer
65 views

Why count the stars in the daytime? [closed]

It says in Lech Lecha that Hashem took Abraham outside and asked him to count the stars. And from the word "habet" we learn it was during the daytime. Why would it be during the daytime when stars ...
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2answers
163 views

Shadal Gen.2,24.1

Please can anyone give me an English translation (does not exist) of Shadal Gen.2,24.1? על כן יעזב איש: על כן אינו משמש אלא על מה שעבר ועל מה שהוא עתה, ולכן על העתיד, לפיכך אין אלה דברי אדם, אלא ...
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1answer
65 views

Why does the Torah have to explain why judges shouldn't take bribes?

The Torah says: לֹא־תַטֶּ֣ה מִשְׁפָּ֔ט לֹ֥א תַכִּ֖יר פָּנִ֑ים וְלֹא־תִקַּ֣ח שֹׁ֔חַד כִּ֣י הַשֹּׁ֗חַד יְעַוֵּר֙ עֵינֵ֣י חֲכָמִ֔ים וִֽיסַלֵּ֖ף דִּבְרֵ֥י צַדִּיקִֽם׃ You shall not judge unfairly: ...
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1answer
99 views

What is the difference in meaning between a Pesucha and a Setuma?

Paragraphs in a Torah scroll are separated in two ways: "open" breaks (a “Pesucha," generally a gap to the end of the line) and "closed" breaks (a “Setumah,” generally a gap in the middle of the line)....
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41 views

What does Rashi mean by the words “לחבר ולפטרון”?

In Parshas Vayigash (פרק מה פסוק ח), Yosef tells his brothers to tell Yaakov Avinu that וישימני לאב לפרעה "[G-d] made me a father to Pharaoh". Rashi comments and says that this means לחבר ...
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0answers
91 views

When did Jewish court systems replace Yisro's “chiefs” system?

The Jews in the desert implemented Yisro's "chiefs" system to act as judges, but we know at some point the nation transitioned to the courts system with judges of 3, 23, 71, etc. At what point and ...
4
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2answers
64 views

Anomalous directive and obvious condition in Parashat Re’eh

Within Perek 14, passukim 3-21, discusses the dietary prohibitions and permissions. My first inquiry is the anomaly particularly found in Passuk 11. ״כל ציפור טהורה תאכלו״- “Every clean bird, you may ...
1
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1answer
60 views

and daughters were born to them (bereishis 6:1)

There is a strange way of saying that the human population increase on parsha Bereishis (6:1). The pasuk says: וַֽיְהִי֙ כִּֽי־הֵחֵ֣ל הָֽאָדָ֔ם לָרֹ֖ב עַל־פְּנֵ֣י הָֽאֲדָמָ֑ה וּבָנ֖וֹת יֻלְּד֥וּ ...
4
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1answer
57 views

Source for ויראת מאלקיך because of loss of money

HaKesav VeHaKabbalah (Deuteronomy 10:12) writes: והנה מצאנו בחמשה מקומות שדברה תורה ממצות שבין אדם לחברו שסיימה בהם ויראת מאלהיך, כמו אל תקלל חרש ויראת מאלהיך, מפני שיבה תקום ויראת מאלהיך, ולא תונו ...
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1answer
51 views

Is there a connection between the serpent in Eden and the brass serpent in the wilderness?

Often unrelated stories are related to each other, (sometimes even despite non similar words). In this present case, one particular animal has a (some kind of) central role to its development. In the ...
3
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1answer
228 views

When did G-d say to Yaakov that he will have 12 sons?

As a preliminary question for "yaakov's-hurry-to-have-kids-at-84": On the Posuk (Gen 29,21) "וַיֹּאמֶר יַעֲקֹב אֶל־לָבָן הָבָה אֶת־אִשְׁתִּי כִּי מָלְאוּ יָמָי וְאָבוֹאָה אֵלֶיהָ׃" Bereyshis Rabba 70,...
5
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1answer
69 views

Use of the singular word 'Mitzvah' in Devarim 7:11

The last verse in Parshas Vaeschanan (Devarim 7:11) says: וְשָֽׁמַרְתָּ֨ אֶת־הַמִּצְוָ֜ה וְאֶת־הַֽחֻקִּ֣ים וְאֶת־הַמִּשְׁפָּטִ֗ים אֲשֶׁ֨ר אָֽנֹכִ֧י מְצַוְּךָ֛ הַיּ֖וֹם לַֽעֲשׂתָֽם: You ...
4
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0answers
71 views

Rashi on Adam and on the Snake cunningness

The snake was able to speak from its creation (Likutei Sichos (10) p. 13) so why is man singled out as being capable of speech (דעה ודבור acc. to Rashi) if the snake already had it?
2
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2answers
163 views

Were the Jews so few in number?

Please see Devarim 7:7. How can Moshe say the Jews were the fewest? There were 601730 men between 20 and 60. That’s quite a large population. For the Jews to be smaller than all the other nations ...