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Questions and Answers on Kiddush for the Shabbat Day

Questions and Answers on Kiddush for the Shabbat Day


"לעשות את השבת לדרתם"
“To make the Shabbat for their generations.”

QUESTION: Why is the word “ledorotam” (לדרתם) — “for their generations” — written without a "ו"?

ANSWER: The word “ledorotam” (לדרתם) without the "ו" can be read “ledirotam” (לְדִרֹתָם), meaning “their dwelling places.” The Torah is teaching that “la’asot et haShabbat” — the Jewish people should strive to make the Shabbat beautiful and majestic, “ledirotam” — in their dwelling places. Their homes should be permeated with a Shabbat spirit.

(עיטורי תורה)

"אם תשיב משבת רגלך עשות חפציך ביום קדשי"
“If you restrain your feet because of Shabbat from attending to your needs on My holy day.”

QUESTION: Why the emphasis “raglecha” — “your feet” — wouldn’t the same apply to attending one’s needs with one’s hands?

ANSWER: The rabbis of the Talmud (Megillah 29b) suspended the performance of three mitzvot when a Holiday falls on Shabbat: Shofar blowing, taking the lulav on Succot, and reading the Megillah on Purim. The reason is concern that one may take one of the three items used for these mitzvot to an expert to learn how to properly perform the mitzvah and inadvertently carry it four amot through a public domain, which is a violation of Biblical law.

One who observes this decree is not lacking a mitzvah, because in merit of the extra stringency in the observance of Shabbat, the Shabbat itself accomplishes for him what he would have achieved for himself from the fulfillment of these mitzvot.

The word “mishavat” (משבת) has the numerical value of seven hundred and forty-two, as do the words “shofar, lulav, megillah” (שופר, לולב, מגילה). Thus, the prophet is saying, “If you will restrain mishavat — from doing the threemitzvot alluded by the numerical value of mishavat [because of] raglecha — concern that you may inadvertently ‘walk’ with them in a public domain — be assured that you will not lose by this. On the contrary, Hashem will reward you: ‘I will make you ride on high places of the earth, and I will nourish you with the heritage of Yaakov your father.’ ”

(זר זהב - סטריקוב)

"ומלילו מלה מתיקא כדובשא"
“And speak the words [of Torah] which are sweet as honey.”

QUESTION: What is the significance of comparing Torah to honey?

ANSWER: The bee which makes the honey is a forbidden creature. Nevertheless, the honey which originates from a source which is tamei — contaminated — is halachically pure for human consumption (see Bechorot 6b).

Torah is compared to honey because of its power to elevate and purify even one who has fallen, G‑d forbid, into a state of spiritual contamination.

(עוללות אפרים)

Rabbi Moshe Bogomilsky has been a pulpit rabbi for over thirty years, and is author of more than ten highly acclaimed books on the Parshiot and holidays. His Parshah series, Vedibarta Bam, can be purchased here.
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