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17

According to Maimonides (Hil. Melachim 6:4), the obligation to kill Amalek only applies to those Amalekite communities that refuse to accept the terms demanded by the Jewish king (including the acceptance of the seven Noahide laws). Those communities that accept these terms are not to be harmed, even Amalekites. (As the Kesef Mishneh puts it, by accepting ...


14

Rashi to Shmuel Aleph 15:3 explains that the Amalekites were sorcerers and were capable of disguising themselves as animals - and for this reason Shaul was commanded to kill even the animals. In his commentary to Devarim 25:19 he brings another explanation: The eradication of the memory of Amaleik had to be absolute, and even if animals remained alive they ...


12

I think there may be a few misconceptions at work here. The Torah does not tell us to "love" the Egyptians, just (as DoubleAA pointed out in a comment) to not abhor them (Deut. 23:8) - which, as the Torah goes on to say in the next verse, means that we are to allow the grandchildren of Egyptian converts to freely intermarry into the body of the Jewish ...


12

The Chidushei HaGriz (§ 161) comments that the narrative between Shmuel and Shaul is a basis for the Rambam's opinion in 6:4. In verse 18, Sh'mu'el says that Sha'ul was told to destroy אֶת-הַחַטָּאִים אֶת-עֲמָלֵק: And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said: Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed....


10

Maybe this is why Rashi (to 25:19) understands זכר in a more concrete sense: it doesn't mean eradicating "their memory" in the abstract, but "anything which is a remembrance of them" - i.e., as he says, any person from that nation or anything that ever belonged to them. That we'll still remember them annually isn't a contradiction to that. (Incidentally, ...


9

The impetus for the drasha in the medrash is specifically because the first nation the spies mentioned was amalek, and as the ikar sifsei chachamim explains why not mention the amori and chiti who live in the mountains first, must be they were trying to scare klal yisrael with the bad memory as the medrash continues with the mashal of the child who got hit ...


9

We can see how the commandment to eradicate Amalek does not contradict the possibility of converting to Judaism, from Rambam's description of the eradication process (Hilchot Melachim 6:1-4, Touger translation, my emphasis): אין עושין מלחמה עם אדם בעולם עד שקוראין לו שלום אחד מלחמת הרשות ואחד מלחמת מצוה שנאמר כי תקרב אל עיר להלחם עליה וקראת אליה לשלום אם ...


7

The Gur Aryeh says that all the other miracles Yisro saw were localized, but these miracles affected the whole world. Rashi (Shemot 14:21) previously stated that all the water in the world split when the sea split. Rashi (Shemot 17:12) also says that during the war with Amalek, Moshe stopped the sun from setting. When Yisro saw that all the water split, he ...


7

R' Rachmiel Zelcer in סימן יב of his נר למאה on פורים cites the צפנת פענח on מסכת סופרים: The name of Agag, king of Amalek, was in fact Hamdata. And "Agag" is actually the title for kings of Amalek. So why does the מגילה call Haman an Agagite (instead of Amalekite)? Since Sanherib mixed up all the nations, we can't be certain that any individual is in fact ...


7

The Alter Rebbe (R' Shneur Zalman of Liadi) gives approximately this explanation in Torah Or (T'tzaveh, page פה). He breaks the name of the nation into component words "עם מלק" ("'am malak") meaning "severed nation" in that the nation's metaphysical brain and heart are severed at the neck. Thus, says the Alter Rebbe, even though that nation observed the ...


7

Yaavetz address this. He suggests that the tipcha on the word לא in לא תשכח hints to an allowance to mention the name in order to remember Torah. In accordance to the Gemara 'to bring the disgusting one into the study hall', in order to release the holy sparks that are contained within. He also points to the Gemara stating Haman's children taught Torah in ...


6

Sefer Moshav Zekeinim end Parshas Beshalach brings it in the name of a Medrash, however does not indicate where this Medrash is.


6

Haman is called an Agagite to link him directly to the failure of Saul to kill Agag before he could reproduce. Mordechai and Saul were both of the tribe of Benjamin and it is literarily significant that one Benjaminite avenges the failure of another. That is why it is specified that he is an Agagite and not a mere Amalekite. I have also heard that Mordechai ...


6

The fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe spoke at a Simchas Torah (1915) farbrengen regarding Germany and Kaiser Wilhelm. [One of the things said then] was "I know him already for thirty one years. He is Amalek and his end must be obliterated."


6

The Maskil LeDavid on this Rashi asks the same thing. If changing clothes is easier, than why didn't the Amalekim do it? He gives an answer that he admits is a stretch. He says that it is possible that they didn't change their clothes because they had some kind of witchcraft in their clothes, and didn't want to give that up. [My note - Rashi in Shemot 17:9 ...


6

Like all Torah commandments, "timche et zecher amalek" has a clear halachic definition. Rashi (Devarim 25:19) tells us what "zecher amalek" means: "From man unto woman, from infant unto suckling, from ox unto sheep" (translated from Artscroll Rashi) Similarly, Rambam writes (Hilchot Milachim 1:1) 'ולהכרית זרעו של עמלק שנאמר 'תמחה את זכר עמלק - [...


6

The Baal HaTurim on Shemot 23:5 breaks the verse down into separate commandments for a Jewish enemy and a non-Jewish enemy: non-Jewish Enemy - "You shall refrain from helping him" (as a statement, not as a question, like Rashi interprets it) Jewish Enemy - "You shall surely help him"


6

The simple answer to this is really very simple. Just because Shaul attacked and killed every person that he was able to find, doesn't preclude the fact that people were able to hide, and survive, or escape and regroup later. Our own history is testament to this fact.


6

What's the difference between Amalek and his nation? On “Amalek and his nation” Seforno says “who were collected from another people to fight”. I understand him to mean that the “nation” were his in the sense that he assembled them to fight with him but that they were not amalekites (may their name be erased). The Sefer שערי אהרון quotes the שכל טוב to ...


6

According to the Seder Olam Rabbah (Chapter 5) - it was during the week which started on the 23rd of Iyyar. There are other Rabbinic sources which indicate that the battle was on a Friday. Since the Torah describes a battle of two days (Exodus 17:9) - that would make it Thursday and Friday 27th and 28th of Iyyar. 3. סדר עולם רבה (ליינר) פרק ה ...


5

If I understand him correctly, Alshich explains as follows. Shaul thought the words "והכיתה את עמלק", "smite Amalek", referred to the people, but not the king, who is referred to as "Amaleki" (see e.g. verses 3, 15, 20). He made this mistake because the yetzer hara was influencing him heavily so as to save his nation, Amalek (for the yetzer hara is the sar, ...


5

This is addressed directly in the link to Rashi you provide: [Midrash Aggadah , Yalkut Shimoni from Midrash Yelammedenu . Note that in these sources, the Amalekites changed their dress as well, and that version is found also in the Reggio edition of Rashi . The Yemenite manuscript, however, conforms with our reading. See Chavel fn. 87, Yosef Hallel , ...


5

As far as more recently recorded descendants, don't forget that the Gemara (Gitin 57b) says that Haman's descendants taught Torah in Bnei Brak (or small children, depending on which version you follow). Although our texts do not reveal who these descendants of Haman and Sisera were, the text available to the early commentators apparently did. The ...


5

Minchas Chinuch 527 writes that the rules of any milchemes mitzva apply to Amalek: whether that means you allow them make peace before annihilating them is, he says, a machlokes rishonim.


5

As seen in Rambam here, there is a peace process even when dealing with Amalek and the other seven nations. "A war is never waged against anyone before peace is offered. This applies both to an obligatory war and to a permitted war, as it is written “when you get near a city to wage war against it, you must offer peace” (Deut. 20:10). If they agree and ...


4

Rashi notes to verse 1 that he interprets this psalm as about Amalek in the future: And I say: "למנצח עלמות לבן", this song is about the future, when the youth and earliness of Israel will be brightened, their righteousness revealed, and their redemption brought, when Esav and his progeny are erased, as per our Torah. It is not uncommon to find, in ...


4

I don't remember the source, but one of the earlier understandings of "wipe out the memory of Amalek" is that it is a euphemism which means that you wipe out the descendants and people. Meaning, if they have no children, they have nobody to remember them. One could tie this to Yizkor as a concept. I don't like that answer, because the Torah would not ...


4

I don't think it's really contradictory. One is on a national level, and one is on an individual level. If you find out someone is from 'Amalek and then kill him, you are guilty of murder. (I think so, anyway; I stand open to correction by the community.) Secondly, the Mitzvah is to wipe out 'Amalek, particularly the memory of 'Amalek, not necessarily to ...


4

R Eliezer Melamed (Peninei Halakha here) answers as follows Three mitzvot in the Torah relate to Amalek. The first is a positive commandment to remember what Amalek did to us, as the Torah says: “Remember what Amalek did to you on your journey, as you left Egypt” (Devarim 25:17). The second is a negative commandment not to forget what ...


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