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Preparations for Pesach: Our Pesach Obligations

Preparations for Pesach: Our Pesach Obligations

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From Scriptural Law

a) Not to eat chametz from midday on the 14th of Nissan. Our Sages extended this prohibition and forbade the eating of chametz from the end of the fourth hour of the 14th of Nissan onward.

b) To destroy chametz from midday of the 14th of Nissan until the conclusion of the holiday of Pesach. Our Sages extended this commandment and required that all chametz be destroyed before the end of the fifth hour of the 14th of Nissan.

c) Not to possess chametz for the seven days of Pesach. In the diaspora, our Sages extended this prohibition to include the eighth day as well.

d) That chametz not be seen within one’s property for the seven days of Pesach. In the diaspora, our Sages extended this prohibition to include the eighth day as well.

e) Not to partake of chametz for the seven days of Pesach. In the diaspora, our Sages extended this prohibition to include the eighth day as well.

f) Not to partake of a mixture including chametz even when the taste of chametz cannot be detected, for the seven days of Pesach. In the diaspora, our Sages extended this prohibition to include the eighth day as well.

g) To eat matzah on the evening of the 15th of Nissan. In the diaspora, our Sages extended this commandment to include the second night of Pesach as well.

h) To tell the story of the exodus from Egypt on the evening of the 15th of Nissan. In the diaspora, our Sages extended this commandment to include the second night of Pesach as well.


From the Sages of the Talmud

a) To search for chametz — Our Sages ordained that in addition to destroying all the chametz which one knows one possesses, one must search one’s property to see if there exists chametz of which one is unaware.

b) To drink four cups of wine — To emphasize the freedom and joy experienced on Pesach, our Sages ordained that four cups of wine be drunk during the Seder, each one at a particular stage.

c) To eat marror — In the era of the Beis HaMikdash, the Paschal sacrifice would be eaten together with matzah and bitter herbs. Although the Paschal sacrifice cannot be offered until the Beis HaMikdash is rebuilt, our Sages ordained that marror be eaten during the Seder.

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