Questions tagged [vaeschanan]

The weekly Torah portion of Vaeschanan (Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11)

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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 ...
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Why did Moses tell the 10 commandments by heart instead of reading them from the Torah scroll?

In Parashat Vaetchanan Moses repeats the 10 commandments by heart with some degree of freedom, instead of reading the whole passage from the existing Torah scroll. (I assume here that the first 4 ...
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31 views

Why did G-d get angry with Moses prayers?

In Parshas Va'etchanan, Moses tells that he begged to enter the Land of Israel until G-d got angry: וַיִּתְעַבֵּר ה' בִּי לְמַעַנְכֶם וְלֹא שָׁמַע אֵלָי וַיֹּאמֶר ה' אֵלַי רַב־לָךְ אַל־תּוֹסֶף ...
2
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2answers
149 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 ...
4
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2answers
60 views

Rashi's commentary on Deut. 4:19

I'm having trouble understanding how Rashi is reading Tehillim 36:3 in his commentary on Deut. 4:19. In Rashi's commentary on Deut. 4:19, he puts forward two possible interpretations of "asher ...
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2answers
104 views

Are Devarim 4:32-33 an argument from ignorance? If so, why are they often used as a rational basis that Judaism is true?

I have read/heard myriad Rabbis1 cite Devarim 4:32-33: הֲשָׁמַע עָם קוֹל אֱלֹהִים מְדַבֵּר מִתּוֹךְ־הָאֵשׁ כַּאֲשֶׁר־שָׁמַעְתָּ אַתָּה וַיֶּחִי׃ Has any people heard the voice of God ...
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How are the feasts of Purim and Hanukkah justified in light of Devarim 4:2 and 13:1? [duplicate]

According to Devarim 4:2 (and 13:1), there are to be no additions to the Torah ('Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the Lord your God that I give ...
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135 views

Why are there two different versions of the Decalogue?

Why are there two different versions of the Shabbat commandment in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5? In Exodus 20 the Shabbat recalls the cosmogony in six days, but in Deuteronomy 5 the Shabbat ...
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31 views

Our I, Our Self leading us to separation and idolatry

Looking at the words: "Anochi HaShem Eloheichem - אָנֹכִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ " (Shemot 20:2 & 20:5, Devarim 5:6 & 5:9)" I noticed that on the one hand HaShem emphasizes that we should serve ...
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1answer
40 views

Swear by His Name, what the real meaning of this command?

Could someone explain to me the meaning of the phrase: וּבִשְׁמוֹ, תִּשָּׁבֵעַ in Devarim 6:13? It seems to be the positive command of the prohebition mentioned in Vayikra 19:12... I know that the ...
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2answers
64 views

Sun, Moon, Stars and all the host of heaven are allotted to all the people

"פֶן-תִּשָּׂא עֵינֶיךָ הַשָּׁמַיְמָה, וְרָאִיתָ אֶת-הַשֶּׁמֶשׁ וְאֶת-הַיָּרֵחַ וְאֶת-הַכּוֹכָבִים כֹּל צְבָא הַשָּׁמַיִם, וְנִדַּחְתָּ וְהִשְׁתַּחֲוִיתָ לָהֶם, וַעֲבַדְתָּם--אֲשֶׁר חָלַק ה' אֱלֹקיךָ, ...
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1answer
118 views

Choshech, Anan v'Araphel? What does this mean?

I have a question regards Devarim 4:11 which in Hebrew reads: "עַד-לֵב הַשָּׁמַיִם חֹשֶׁךְ, עָנָן וַעֲרָפֶל". Transliteration reads the words 'choshech, anan and araphel'. It seems to me that there ...
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2answers
155 views

What type of theft does Lo Signov refer to?

One of the Aseres Hadevarim (more commonly referred to as "Dibros") is "לא תגנוב". I can think of different types of theft / Geneivah such as stealing money/possesions, Geneivas Daas, and kidnapping. ...
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1answer
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Ramban and Shituf. What is his position?

The Ramban on Devarim 7:6 says: בך בחר ה' אלהיך להיות לו לעם סגלה שאין לך קצין שוטר ומושל בכל מלאכי מעלה אבל אתה סגולת ה' תחת ידו ולכך לא תטעה לעבוד ע"ז מאלהי העמים וכבר הזכרתי זה פעמים רבות ...
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1answer
93 views

What was actually written on the two tablets?

The two versions of the 10 Commandments (one in Yitro and the 2nd in Va'etchanan) have different phrasing, most notably in commandments 4, 5 and 10. What was actually written on the two tablets? ...
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103 views

How tall was Chava?

Rashi here brings a Midrash that Adam Harishon's height was from earth until the Heavens. Based on the Midrash, was Chava that tall as well? Otherwise it would have been quite difficult to be married ...
3
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1answer
101 views

Why didn't Rashi mention lo sechanem includes gifts

Devarim 7:2 says: וּנְתָנָ֞ם יְהוָ֧ה אֱלֹהֶ֛יךָ לְפָנֶ֖יךָ וְהִכִּיתָ֑ם הַחֲרֵ֤ם תַּחֲרִים֙ אֹתָ֔ם לֹא־תִכְרֹ֥ת לָהֶ֛ם בְּרִ֖ית וְלֹ֥א תְחָנֵּֽם׃ and the LORD your God delivers them to you and ...
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2answers
154 views

Only arm tefillin are a sign?

The four parshas of tefillin appear slightly differently each time when the Torah describes the mitzvah. Shemos 13:9 וְהָיָה֩ לְךָ֨ לְא֜וֹת עַל־יָדְךָ֗ וּלְזִכָּרוֹן֙ בֵּ֣ין עֵינֶ֔יךָ לְמַ֗עַן ...
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1answer
85 views

Repetition of 10 commandments

The 10 commandments first appear in Shemos Chapter 20. In Devarim Chapter 5 they make a second appearance, this time with slight changes. What is the purpose for the repetition? Is it just for the ...
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0answers
28 views

Why do we lein past sheini during the week of Parshas Vaeschanan? [duplicate]

There was a Takanah instituted by Moshe Rabbeinu to read from the Torah on Monday & Thursday from that week's Parshah. See SA סימן קלה for more details on these halachos. On almost all weeks this ...
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1answer
400 views

Moshe davening 515 times to enter Eretz Yisrael

I have recently heard that since the gematria of Va'etchanan is 515, Moshe davened 515 times to enter Eretz Yisrael before Hashem told him he couldn't daven anymore. The reason is that if he would ...
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3answers
317 views

Are there contradictory verses describing G-d's uniqueness?

My own translation of verses. Devarim (Deut.) 4:39 - "You should now, today, and return it to your heart that the Lord is G-d in the heavens and the earth below. There is no other" Devarim (Deut.) 10:...
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2answers
69 views

Lo Sachmod Prat U'klal

Don't covet your friend's house. Don't covet the wife of your friend, nor his slave, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is to your friend (Shemos 20:14). Once the ...
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0answers
56 views

How do we know where the Dibros start and end?

Each of the Aseres HaDibros, generally speaking, begin and end at consecutive Parshah breaks. Nevertheless, the first and second are combined into one parshah, while the last one is split into two. ...
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14 views

Pesuchah and Setumah between Third and Fourth Dibros [duplicate]

In Parshas Yisro, between the third and fourth commandments (20:7-8), there is a pesuchah, not found anywhere else in the Aseres HaDibros. In Parshas Va'Eschanan, in fact, this Pesuchah is a Setumah,...
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118 views

Where was Moses standing when he spoke the Shema?

Having a visual sometimes helps. When reading scripture I like to visualize it. I would like to be as accurate as possible. If we went back in time to the moment Moses said "Hear O Israel", and ...
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1answer
53 views

What do commentaries say about the different version of “Honor Thy Parents”?

Regarding the mitzva of Honor Thy Father and Mother, the reading of the Aseret Hadibrot in V'etchanan is slightly different than the previous reading in Yitro. The words "because God has commanded ...
4
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3answers
122 views

שקר and שוא The difference between

What's the difference between these 'falses' (שקר and שוא?), how does one distinguish them from one another? Exodus 20:16 עד שקר Exodus 23:1 שמע שוא Exodus 23:7 שקר Deuteronomium 5:20 עד שוא Or ...
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2answers
103 views

Different words for “desire”

In the (second presentation of the) tenth commandment (Deut 5:17), why does the Torah use two different words in Hebrew (תחמד and תתאוה) that mean almost the same thing is English ("covet" or "desire")...
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0answers
235 views

Esnachta in taam elyon

Except in Tehillim, Mishlei, and most of Iyov, the esnachta indicates the biggest break in a pasuk. In the taam elyon in both Yisro and Vaetchanan, the second dibra is one pasuk, with the esnachta ...
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3answers
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Love HaShem with lev, nefesh en me'od, why not something else or just lev and nefesh

Why does the command to love HaShem tells us to love him with all our lev, with all our nefesh and with all our me'od? Why doesn't the verse says or add something like, with all you neshama or with ...
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1answer
169 views

Why does it say to love HaShem meodecha

The verse of Devarim 6:5 reads: Love HaShem your G'd, with all your heart bechol levav'cha, with all your being uvechol nafshecha, and uvechol ... meodecha. If I'm correct it's the only place in the ...
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1answer
198 views

Why does the weekday Torah reading for Va'etchanan end in the middle of the Shabbat's 2nd aliyah?

While reading Va'etchanan last Thursday, I notice that the weekday reading ends in the middle of an aliyah (spec. the Sheni aliyah.) I am unaware of any minhag that ends the reading of Va'etchanan at ...
3
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3answers
205 views

River flowing from the southern end of the Dead Sea?

A footnote on page 966 of the Artscroll chumash (this week's reading) has a map that includes the dead sea. The map shows a river flowing from the southern tip of the sea. According to a Duke U site: ...
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1answer
94 views

How to understand Gd eating? [closed]

How does our tradition understand the mention in Devarim 4:28 of our Gd eating? In what respects does Gd "eat"? וַעֲבַדְתֶּם־שָׁ֣ם אֱלֹהִ֔ים מַעֲשֵׂ֖ה יְדֵ֣י אָדָ֑ם עֵ֣ץ וָאֶ֔בֶן אֲשֶׁ֤ר לֹֽא־...
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2answers
208 views

Channukah and Bal Tosif

There are questions on the site which deal with saying Hallel on Channukah but my question seeks a more fundamental insight: The Ramban writes on Devarim 4:2 that a violation of Bal Tosif is creating ...
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4answers
325 views

Significance of “Shema Yisrael”

The verse Shema Yisrael (Devarim 6:4) is highly significant. It is Biblically required to be recited twice daily, it is to be said at the end of one's life, and appears in the liturgy at the end of ...
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2answers
332 views

Why is the wording “הערים האל” used? (Deut 4:42)

Devarim 4:42: לָנֻס שָׁמָּה רוֹצֵחַ אֲשֶׁר יִרְצַח אֶת רֵעֵהוּ בִּבְלִי דַעַת וְהוּא לֹא שֹׂנֵא לוֹ מִתְּמוֹל שִׁלְשׁוֹם וְנָס אֶל אַחַת מִן הֶעָרִים הָאֵל וָחָי so that a murderer might ...
5
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2answers
568 views

How does the oral Torah not contradict Dvarim 4:2?

If God intended there to be an oral Torah, why would He say not to add anything? Shouldn't He have at least mention this exception in the Torah, so we know the Talmud is divine? Devarim 4:2 ב לֹא ...
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2answers
145 views

How far do I have to go to take care of myself?

The mitzvah of V'nishmartem (Devarim 4:15) requires a person to take care of their health (Shulchan Aruch C.M. 427:8, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 32:1). How far does this go? Do I have to exercise daily? ...
3
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0answers
68 views

What constitutes an “Enemy of God”?

(I'm not referring here to Tenokim Shenishbu.) Devarim 7: "And he repays his enemies in his lifetime to make him perish, he shall noy delay for his enemy, in his lifetime shall he pay him". Who are ...
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2answers
3k views

Does the Torah ever allude to Earth being a spherical celestial body in space?

Taken at face value, the instances in which the Heavens and Earth are mentioned in the Torah, it is the Heavens above and Earth below. From what I gather, many secular scholars take from this that the ...
5
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1answer
111 views

In Devarim 5:5 why does Moshe connect the people's fear with not going up Mt. Sinai?

In Devarim 5:5 Moshe says: "Because you were afraid of the fire and you didn't go up the mountain..." It seems that Moshe is saying that the fear of the fire coming from the mountain was why B'nai ...
9
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3answers
1k views

What is the difference between the following words referring to commandments?

What is the difference between the following words? Commandments Law Testimonies Precepts Judgements Statutes Ordinances Deut 26:16 - 19 reads 16: This day, the Lord, ...
4
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1answer
227 views

How is it permissible for a Jewish slave to marry a Canaanite slavewoman?

In Shemot, chapter 21 verse 4, we learn that a master can give his Jewish slave a Canaanite slavewoman to bear the master slave children: If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or ...
5
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2answers
177 views

Discrepancy in number of Pesukim in Va'eschanan

At the end of Parshas Va'eschanan all the Chumashim I have seen (example 1) (example 2) (example 3) mention that there are 118 verses - Uziel Siman - as Uziel = 118. Artscroll Chumash has the same ...
10
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1answer
184 views

Why are some sons' answers different from what's written in the Torah?

In the Hagada, the 4 sons ask questions (except, of course, for the son who doesn't know how to ask…), and they get answers. In most cases, both the questions and the answers are put in the form of ...
2
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0answers
58 views

Singular and plural language in Deut. 4:25

Why does the Pasuk (Deut. 4:25) switch between singular and plural when building up to the consequences of what "you will [do]"? "When you (sing.) will have children and grandchildren, and you (pl.) ...
2
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2answers
132 views

Onkelos on Deut. 4:19

In Devarim 4:19, Onkelos translates ונדחת as ותטעי and והשתחוית as ותסגוד. First, what exactly is he trying to convey with ותטעי? I think of טעות as "whoops", and hopefully there's no serious damage, ...
3
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1answer
74 views

UvLechtecha VaDerech? With Kavanah?

How can one maintain Kavanah reciting Keriath Shema' while walking along the way? Or is the requirement waived in this case?