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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Vayikra - Leviticus - Chapter 20

Vayikra - Leviticus - Chapter 20

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 20

1. And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,   א. וַיְדַבֵּר יְהוָֹה אֶל משֶׁה לֵּאמֹר:
2. And to the children of Israel, you shall say: Any man of the children of Israel or of the strangers who sojourn among Israel, who gives any of his offspring to Molech, shall surely be put to death; the people of the land shall pelt him with stones.   ב. וְאֶל בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל תֹּאמַר אִישׁ אִישׁ מִבְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וּמִן הַגֵּר | הַגָּר בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל אֲשֶׁר יִתֵּן מִזַּרְעוֹ לַמֹּלֶךְ מוֹת יוּמָת עַם הָאָרֶץ יִרְגְּמֻהוּ בָאָבֶן:
And to the children of Israel, you shall say: [i.e., enumerate the following] punishments for the warnings [that were given in chapter 18.].   ואל בני ישראל תאמר: עונשין על האזהרות:
shall surely be put to death: By the court. And if the court is not [physically] powerful [enough to kill him by themselves], “the people of the land” must assist them. — [Torath Kohanim 20:91]   מות יומת: בבית דין, ואם אין כח לבית דין עם הארץ מסייעין אותן:
the people of the land: עַם הָאָרֶץ. [This may be rendered either: “the people of the earth” or “ the people of the land,” as follows:] The people for whose sake the earth was created, the people who are destined to possess the Land [of Israel], through [the observance of] these commandments. — [Torath Kohanim 20:91]   עם הארץ: עם שבגינו נבראת הארץ. דבר אחר עם שעתידין לירש את הארץ ע"י מצות הללו:
3. And I will set My attention upon that man, and I will cut him off from amidst his people, because he gave of his offspring to Molech in order to defile My holy ones and to profane My holy Name.   ג. וַאֲנִי אֶתֵּן אֶת פָּנַי בָּאִישׁ הַהוּא וְהִכְרַתִּי אֹתוֹ מִקֶּרֶב עַמּוֹ כִּי מִזַּרְעוֹ נָתַן לַמֹּלֶךְ לְמַעַן טַמֵּא אֶת מִקְדָּשִׁי וּלְחַלֵּל אֶת שֵׁם קָדְשִׁי:
And I will set my attention: Heb., פָּנַי, i.e., My leisure (פְּנַאי). I will turn aside (פּוֹנֶה) from all My affairs and occupy Myself with him. — [Torath Kohanim 20:92]   אתן את פני: פנאי שלי, פונה אני מכל עסקי ועוסק בו:
[that] man: But not the [whole] community. — [Torath Kohanim 20:92] [I.e., if the entire community give their offspring over to Molech, they are not punished with excision,] because the entire community are not to be cut off.   באיש: ולא בצבור, שאין כל הצבור נכרתין:
because he gave of his offspring to Molech: [Are not this phrase here, and the phrase in the next verse, “when he gives of his offspring to Molech” superfluous? However,] since Scripture says, “[There shall not be found among you] anyone who passes his son or daughter through fire” (Deut. 18:10), how do we know [that the law applies as well to] his son’s son or his daughter’s son? Scripture, therefore, says, “because he gave of his offspring to Molech.” And how do we know that the law applies even to one’s illegitimate offspring [i.e., one produced from a halachically illegitimate union]? Scripture. therefore says (in the next verse),“when he gives of his offspring to Molech” [to include even his illegitimate offspring]. — [Torath Kohanim 20:93; Sanh. 64b]   כי מזרעו נתן למלך: לפי שנאמר מעביר בנו ובתו באש (דברים יח י), בן בנו ובן בתו מנין, תלמוד לומר כי מזרעו נתן למולך. זרע פסול מנין, תלמוד לומר בתתו מזרעו למולך:
In order to defile My holy ones: Heb. מִקְדָּשִׁי. [This is] the congregation of Israel, which is sanctified to Me. [This reference to Israel as מִקְדָּשִׁי, what is sanctified to Me, is] reminiscent of the expression [referring to the holy sacrifices], “he shall not desecrate My holy things (מִקְדָּשַׁי) ” (Lev. 21:23).   למען טמא את מקדשי: את כנסת ישראל, שהיא מקודשת לי, כלשון (ויקרא כא כג) ולא יחלל את מקדשי:
4. But if the people of the land ignore that man when he gives of his offspring to Molech, not putting him to death   ד. וְאִם הַעְלֵם יַעְלִימוּ עַם הָאָרֶץ אֶת עֵינֵיהֶם מִן הָאִישׁ הַהוּא בְּתִתּוֹ מִזַּרְעוֹ לַמֹּלֶךְ לְבִלְתִּי הָמִית אֹתוֹ:
But if [the people of the land] ignore [that man]: Heb. הַעְלֵם יַעְלִימוּ. [The double expression intimates that] if they ignore one matter [i.e., even one sin], they will eventually ignore many matters, and if the Small Sanhedrin [of twenty-three judges] ignores the matter, eventually the Great Sanhedrin [of seventy-one judges, in Jerusalem,] will ignore the matter. — [Torath Kohanim 20:94]   ואם העלם יעלימו: אם העלימו בדבר אחד, סוף שיעלימו בדברים הרבה. אם העלימו סנהדרי קטנה, סוף שיעלימו סנהדרי גדולה:
5. I will set My attention upon that man, and upon his family, and I will cut him off, and all who stray after him to stray after Molech, from amidst their people.   ה. וְשַׂמְתִּי אֲנִי אֶת פָּנַי בָּאִישׁ הַהוּא וּבְמִשְׁפַּחְתּוֹ וְהִכְרַתִּי אֹתוֹ וְאֵת | כָּל הַזֹּנִים אַחֲרָיו לִזְנוֹת אַחֲרֵי הַמֹּלֶךְ מִקֶּרֶב עַמָּם:
and upon his family: Rabbi Shimon says: [In] what [way] did the family sin [that they are punished]? However, this teaches you that there is no family in which there is an [unfair] tax collector which may not [be regarded as consisting] entirely of tax collectors, for they all cover up for him. — [Torath Kohanim 20:95; Shev. 39a]   ובמשפחתו: אמר ר' שמעון וכי משפחה מה חטאה, אלא ללמדך שאין לך משפחה שיש בה מוכס שאין כולם מוכסין, שכולם מחפין עליו:
and I will cut him off: Why is this stated? Because since Scripture says, “[I will set My attention upon that man] and upon his family,” one might think that his entire family is included in [the punishment of] excision. Scripture, therefore, says, “[I will cut] him [off]”-that man is to be excised [from the people of Israel], but the entire family is not included in excision, but with suffering. — [Torath Kohanim 20:96]   והכרתי אתו: למה נאמר, לפי שנאמר ובמשפחתו, יכול יהיו כל המשפחה בהכרת, תלמוד לומר אותו. אותו בהכרת ולא כל המשפחה בהכרת, אלא ביסורין:
to stray after Molech: [This phrase comes to] include [in this penalty] any other pagan deity that one worshipped in this manner, even though it is not its mode of worship. — [Sanh. 64b]   לזנות אחרי המלך: לרבות שאר עבודה זרה שעבדה בכך, ואפילו אין זו עבודתה:
6. And the person who turns to Ov or Yid'oni, to stray after them I will set My attention upon that person, and I will cut him off from amidst his people.   ו. וְהַנֶּפֶשׁ אֲשֶׁר תִּפְנֶה אֶל הָאֹבֹת וְאֶל הַיִּדְּעֹנִים לִזְנֹת אַחֲרֵיהֶם וְנָתַתִּי אֶת פָּנַי בַּנֶּפֶשׁ הַהִוא וְהִכְרַתִּי אֹתוֹ מִקֶּרֶב עַמּוֹ:
7. You shall sanctify yourselves and be holy, for I am the Lord, your God.   ז. וְהִתְקַדִּשְׁתֶּם וִהְיִיתֶם קְדשִׁים כִּי אֲנִי יְהוָֹה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם:
You shall sanctify yourselves: This [refers to] separation from idolatry. — [Torath Kohanim 20:100]   והתקדשתם: זו פרישות עבודה זרה:
8. And you shall observe My statutes and fulfill them. I am the Lord, Who sanctifies you.   ח. וּשְׁמַרְתֶּם אֶת חֻקֹּתַי וַעֲשִׂיתֶם אֹתָם אֲנִי יְהוָֹה מְקַדִּשְׁכֶם:
9. For any man who curses his father or his mother shall be put to death; he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood is upon himself.   ט. כִּי אִישׁ אִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יְקַלֵּל אֶת אָבִיו וְאֶת אִמּוֹ מוֹת יוּמָת אָבִיו וְאִמּוֹ קִלֵּל דָּמָיו בּוֹ:
he has cursed his father or his mother: [This phrase] comes to include [in this prohibition and its penalty], cursing one’s father or mother even] after [their] death. — [Sanh. 85b]   אביו ואמו קלל: לרבות לאחר מיתה:
his blood is upon himself: This refers to [the death penalty by] stoning. And likewise, wherever it is stated, “his blood is upon himself,” or “their blood is upon themselves” (see verse 27 below) [it refers to death by stoning]. And we learn [this principle] from [those who practice the sorcery of] Ov or Yid’oni, for regarding them, Scripture says (verse 27), “they shall pelt them with stones; their blood is upon themselves.” - [Torath Kohanim 20:103; Sanh. 66a] [According to] the simple meaning of the verse, however, it is like “his blood is upon his [own] head” (Josh. 2:19), i.e., no one is punished for his death but he himself, because he brought it upon himself to be killed.   דמיו בו: זו סקילה, וכן כל מקום שנאמר דמיהם בם, ולמדנו מאוב וידעוני שנאמר בהם באבן ירגמו אותם דמיהם בם (פסוק כז). ופשוטו של מקרא, כמו דמו בראשו (יהושע ב יט), אין נענש על מיתתו אלא הוא, שהוא גרם לעצמו שיהרג:
10. And a man who commits adultery with [another] man's wife, committing adultery with the wife of his fellow the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.   י. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִנְאַף אֶת אֵשֶׁת אִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִנְאַף אֶת אֵשֶׁת רֵעֵהוּ מוֹת יוּמַת הַנֹּאֵף וְהַנֹּאָפֶת:
And a man [who commits adultery]: [The term “man”] comes to exclude a minor [from the death penalty]. — [Torath Kohanim 20:105; Sanh. 52b]   ואיש: פרט לקטן:
who commits adultery with [another] man’s wife: [The term “man’s wife” comes] to exclude the wife of a minor. [From here,] we learn that a minor cannot hold [the legal status of Jewish] marriage. And for which “man’s wife” have I held you liable ?   אשר ינאף את אשת איש: פרט לאשת קטן, למדנו שאין לקטן קידושין. ועל איזו אשת איש חייבתי לך:
committing adultery with the wife of his fellow: [Thus] excluding the wife of a non-Jew. [From here,] we learn that [the legal status of Jewish] marriage cannot be held by a non-Jew. — [Torath Kohanim 20:105; Sanh. 52b]   אשר ינאף את אשת רעהו: פרט לאשת גוי, למדנו שאין קידושין לגוי:
The adulterer and the adulteress shall be put to death: Wherever a death penalty is mentioned in the Torah without specification [as to the mode of death, it exclusively refers to strangulation. — [Torath Kohanim 20:106, Sanh. 52b]   מות יומת הנאף והנאפת: כל מיתה האמורה בתורה סתם אינה אלא חנק:
11. And a man who lies with his father's wife has uncovered his father's nakedness: both of them shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon themselves.   יא. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁכַּב אֶת אֵשֶׁת אָבִיו עֶרְוַת אָבִיו גִּלָּה מוֹת יוּמְתוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם דְּמֵיהֶם בָּם:
12. And a man who lies with his daughter in law both of them shall surely be put to death; they have committed a depravity; their blood is upon themselves.   יב. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁכַּב אֶת כַּלָּתוֹ מוֹת יוּמְתוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם תֶּבֶל עָשׂוּ דְּמֵיהֶם בָּם:
they have committed a depravity: Heb. תֶּבֶל, a shameful act. Another meaning: They mingle (בּלל) the seed of the father with the seed of the son. — [see Torath Kohanim 20:108]   תבל עשו: גנאי. לשון אחר מבלבלין זרע האב בזרע הבן:
13. And a man who lies with a male as one would with a woman both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon themselves.   יג. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁכַּב אֶת זָכָר מִשְׁכְּבֵי אִשָּׁה תּוֹעֵבָה עָשׂוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם מוֹת יוּמָתוּ דְּמֵיהֶם בָּם:
as one would with a woman: [I.e.,] if he inserts [his membrum] as an applicator [is inserted] into a tube [of eye shadow]. — [B.M. 91a]   משכבי אשה: מכניס כמכחול בשפופרת:
14. And a man who takes a woman and her mother it is evil counsel. They shall burn him and them in fire, and there shall be no evil counsel in your midst.   יד. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִקַּח אֶת אִשָּׁה וְאֶת אִמָּהּ זִמָּה הִוא בָּאֵשׁ יִשְׂרְפוּ אֹתוֹ וְאֶתְהֶן וְלֹא תִהְיֶה זִמָּה בְּתוֹכְכֶם:
They must burn him and them: You cannot say that they should burn his first wife, because he married her permissibly, and she did not become forbidden to him. Rather, [the case of a man marrying] “a woman and her mother” written here, is [one, in which] both were forbidden to him, [namely,] that he married his mother-in-law and then her mother [in which case both women are burned along with him]. There are some of our Rabbis who say: [This case] means that only his mother-in-law [is to be burnt]. [If so,] what is the expression אֶתְהֶן, them ? It means “one of them,” being derived from the Greek term hen, meaning “one.” - [Sanh. 76b]   ישרפו אתו ואתהן: אי אתה יכול לומר אשתו הראשונה ישרפו, שהרי נשאה בהיתר ולא נאסרה עליו, אלא אשה ואמה הכתובין כאן, שתיהן לאיסור, שנשא את חמותו ואמה. ויש מרבותינו שאומרים, אין כאן אלא חמותו. ומהו אתהן, את אחת מהן, ולשון יוני הוא הן אחת:
15. And a man who lies with an animal, shall surely be put to death, and you shall kill the animal.   טו. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִתֵּן שְׁכָבְתּוֹ בִּבְהֵמָה מוֹת יוּמָת וְאֶת הַבְּהֵמָה תַּהֲרֹגוּ:
And you shall kill the animal: If the man sinned, in what way did the animal sin? However, since a failing came [upon a person] through [the animal], therefore, Scripture says: It must be stoned [to death]! How much more so [is this relevant] to a human being, who knows how to distinguish between good and evil, and yet brings evil upon his fellow [by causing him] to commit a transgression. Similar to this matter, it says, “You shall utterly destroy from all the places [where the nations…worshipped-their gods]” (Deut. 12:2). It is surely [possible here to draw] an inference from minor to major: If [in the case of] trees, which do not see and do not hear, when a failing comes [upon a man] through them, the Torah says, Destroy them! Burn them! Annihilate them!- how much more culpable is a human who leads his fellow astray from the path of life to the paths of death! - [Torath Kohanim 20:115]   ואת הבהמה תהרגו: אם אדם חטא בהמה מה חטאה, אלא מפני שבאה לאדם תקלה על ידה, לפיכך אמר הכתוב תסקל. קל וחומר לאדם שיודע להבחין בין טוב לרע וגורם רעה לחבירו לעבור עבירה. כיוצא בדבר אתה אומר (דברים יב ב) אבד תאבדון את כל המקומות, הרי דברים קל וחומר, מה אילנות שאינן רואין ואינן שומעין על שבאת תקלה על ידם אמרה תורה השחת שרוף וכלה, המטה את חבירו מדרך חיים לדרכי מיתה על אחת כמה וכמה:
16. And a woman who comes close to any animal so that it will mate with her you shall kill the woman and the animal; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon themselves.   טז. וְאִשָּׁה אֲשֶׁר תִּקְרַב אֶל כָּל בְּהֵמָה לְרִבְעָה אֹתָהּ וְהָרַגְתָּ אֶת הָאִשָּׁה וְאֶת הַבְּהֵמָה מוֹת יוּמָתוּ דְּמֵיהֶם בָּם:
17. And a man who takes his sister, whether his father's daughter or his mother's daughter, and he sees her nakedness, and she sees his nakedness it is a disgraceful act, and they shall be cut off before the eyes of the members of their people; he uncovered his sister's nakedness; he shall bear his sin.   יז. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִקַּח אֶת אֲחֹתוֹ בַּת אָבִיו אוֹ בַת אִמּוֹ וְרָאָה אֶת עֶרְוָתָהּ וְהִיא תִרְאֶה אֶת עֶרְוָתוֹ חֶסֶד הוּא וְנִכְרְתוּ לְעֵינֵי בְּנֵי עַמָּם עֶרְוַת אֲחֹתוֹ גִּלָּה עֲו‍ֹנוֹ יִשָּׂא:
it is a disgraceful act: The Aramaic term for “disgrace” is חִסוּדָא. - [see Onkelos on Gen. 34:14] Its Midrashic interpretation, however, is: If you [object and] say, “But Cain married his sister!” [the answer is:] the Omnipresent [in permitting this marriage,] performed an act of kindness (חֶסֶד), to build His world through him, as it is said: “the world is built on kindness (חֶסֶד) ” (Ps. 89:3). - [Torath Kohanim 20:116]   חסד הוא: לשון ארמי חרפה (בראשית לד יד) חסודא. ומדרשו אם תאמר קין נשא אחותו, חסד עשה המקום לבנות עולמו ממנו, שנאמר (תהלים פט ג) עולם חסד יבנה:
18. And a man who lies with a woman who has a flow, and he uncovers her nakedness he has bared her fountain, and she has uncovered the fountain of her blood. Both of them shall be cut off from the midst of their people.   יח. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁכַּב אֶת אִשָּׁה דָּוָה וְגִלָּה אֶת עֶרְוָתָהּ אֶת מְקֹרָהּ הֶעֱרָה וְהִוא גִּלְּתָה אֶת מְקוֹר דָּמֶיהָ וְנִכְרְתוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם מִקֶּרֶב עַמָּם:
he has bared: Heb. הֶעֱרָה, he has uncovered. And likewise, every instance of the term עֶרְוָה [in Scripture], denotes “uncovering,” and the “vav” is inserted into the word [root ערה] for the noun form. Similarly, [the noun] זַעֲוָה, “trembling,” stems from the root [זָע, “tremble,” as in the verse], “and he did not rise, nor did he tremble (זָע) ” (Esther 5:9). Likewise, the noun אַחֲוָה, “brotherhood,” stems from the root אָח, “brother.” Now, regarding this הַעֲרָאָה, “uncovering” [in the context of illicit relations], our Rabbis differed [with respect to what constitutes “uncovering”]. Some say that it is the [mere] contact ofthe membrum, while others say that it is the insertion of the tip of the membrum. — [Yev. 55b]   הערה: גלה. וכן כל לשון ערוה גלוי הוא, והוי"ו יורדת בתיבה לשם דבר, כמו זעוה, מגזרת (אסתר ה ט) ולא קם ולא זע, וכן אחוה מגזרת אח. והעראה זו נחלקו בה רבותינו, יש אומרים זו נשיקת שמש, ויש אומרים זו הכנסת עטרה:
19. And you shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother's sister or your father's sister, for he would be baring his close relative; they shall bear their sin.   יט. וְעֶרְוַת אֲחוֹת אִמְּךָ וַאֲחוֹת אָבִיךָ לֹא תְגַלֵּה כִּי אֶת שְׁאֵרוֹ הֶעֱרָה עֲו‍ֹנָם יִשָּׂאוּ:
the nakedness of your mother’s sister [or your father’s sister]: Scripture repeats the warning [already given in 18:12,13], to tell us that one is warned against [cohabiting with] these [specific relatives], whether it is with one’s father’s or mother’s sister from one father or whether it is their sisters from one mother. However, [concerning] the nakedness of the wife of his father’s brother, he is warned only if she is the wife of his father’s brother from one father. — [Torath Kohanim 20:118]   וערות אחות אמך וגו': שנה הכתוב באזהרתן, לומר שהוזהר עליהן בין על אחות אביו ואמו מן האב בין על אחיותיהן מן האם, אבל ערות אשת אחי אביו לא הוזהר אלא על אשת אחי אביו מן האב:
20. And a man who lies with his aunt he has uncovered his uncle's nakedness; they shall bear their transgression; they shall die childless.   כ. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁכַּב אֶת דֹּדָתוֹ עֶרְוַת דֹּדוֹ גִּלָּה חֶטְאָם יִשָּׂאוּ עֲרִירִים יָמֻתוּ:
who lies with his aunt […they shall die childless]: This verse comes to teach us concerning the punishment of excision stated above, [“anyone who does any of these abominations… shall be cut off” (Lev. 18:29)] that it constitutes the punishment of going childless.   אשר ישכב את דדתו: המקרא הזה בא ללמד על כרת האמור למעלה, שהוא בעונש הליכת ערירי:
childless: Heb. עֲרִירִי, as the Targum renders: בְּלָא וְלָד, without child. Similar to this [is the verse], “for I am going childless (עֲרִירִי) ” (Gen. 15:2). If he has children, he will bury them [i.e., they will die during his lifetime]. And if he has no children [when he commits this sin], he will die childless. This is why Scripture varied the expression in these two verses: (a) they shall die without children (our verse), and (b) they shall be childless (next verse)-“they shall die childless” [means that] if he has children at the time of the sin, he will not have any when he dies, because he will bury them in his lifetime; and “they will be childless” [means that] if he has no children at the time of the sin, he will remain all his life as he is now. — [See Torath Kohanim 20:120; Yev. 55a]   ערירים: כתרגומו בלא ולד, ודומה לו (בראשית טו ב) ואנכי הולך ערירי, יש לו בנים קוברן, אין לו בנים מת בלא בנים, לכך שנה בשני מקראות אלו ערירים ימותו ערירים יהיו. ערירים ימותו, אם יהיו לו בשעת עבירה, לא יהיו לו כשימות לפי שקוברן בחייו. ערירים יהיו, שאם אין לו בשעת עבירה, יהיה כל ימיו כמו שהוא עכשיו:
21. And a man who takes his brother's wife it is a repulsive act; he has uncovered his brother's nakedness; they shall be childless.   כא. וְאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר יִקַּח אֶת אֵשֶׁת אָחִיו נִדָּה הִוא עֶרְוַת אָחִיו גִּלָּה עֲרִירִים יִהְיוּ:
it is a repulsive act: Heb. נִדָּה הִוא. This cohabitation is [an act from which one should] separate himself (מְנוּדָה) and is disgusting. Our Rabbis, however, expounded [this verse, as follows] (Yev. 54b): Scripture comes to prohibit uncovering her [nakedness] just like [the prohibition of uncovering the nakedness of] a menstruant woman (נִדָּה), concerning whom “baring” is explicitly stated (verse 18 above),“he has bared (הֶערָה) her fountain.” [I.e., one is liable for sexual contact, as is defined in the commentary on verse 18.]   נדה הוא: השכיבה הזאת מנודה היא ומאוסה. ורבותינו דרשו לאסור העראה בה כנדה, שהעראה מפורשת בה (פסוק יח) את מקורה הערה (לעיל יח):
22. And you shall observe all My statutes and all My ordinances, and fulfill them, then the Land, to which I am bringing you to dwell therein, will not vomit you out.   כב. וּשְׁמַרְתֶּם אֶת כָּל חֻקֹּתַי וְאֶת כָּל מִשְׁפָּטַי וַעֲשִׂיתֶם אֹתָם וְלֹא תָקִיא אֶתְכֶם הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי מֵבִיא אֶתְכֶם שָׁמָּה לָשֶׁבֶת בָּהּ:
23. You shall not follow the practices of the nation that I am sending away from before you, for they committed all these [sins], and I was disgusted with them.   כג. וְלֹא תֵלְכוּ בְּחֻקֹּת הַגּוֹי אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי מְשַׁלֵּחַ מִפְּנֵיכֶם כִּי אֶת כָּל אֵלֶּה עָשׂוּ וָאָקֻץ בָּם:
and so I was disgusted with them: Denotes “disgust,” just as [in the verse], “I am disgusted (קַצְתִּי) with my life” (Gen. 27:46), like a man who loathes (קָץ) his food [so God loathed those nations]. — [Torath Kohanim 20:125]   ואקץ: לשון מיאוס, כמו (בראשית כז מו) קצתי בחיי, כאדם שהוא קץ במזונו:
24. So I said to you, You shall possess their land, and I shall give it to you to possess it a land flowing with milk and honey. I am the Lord your God, Who has distinguished you from the peoples.   כד. וָאֹמַר לָכֶם אַתֶּם תִּירְשׁוּ אֶת אַדְמָתָם וַאֲנִי אֶתְּנֶנָּה לָכֶם לָרֶשֶׁת אֹתָהּ אֶרֶץ זָבַת חָלָב וּדְבָשׁ אֲנִי יְהוָֹה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר הִבְדַּלְתִּי אֶתְכֶם מִן הָעַמִּים:
25. And you shall distinguish between clean animals and unclean ones, and between unclean birds and clean ones; thus you shall not make yourselves disgusting through [unclean] animals and birds and any [creature] which crawls on the earth, that I have distinguished for you to render unclean.   כה. וְהִבְדַּלְתֶּם בֵּין הַבְּהֵמָה הַטְּהֹרָה לַטְּמֵאָה וּבֵין הָעוֹף הַטָּמֵא לַטָּהֹר וְלֹא תְשַׁקְּצוּ אֶת נַפְשֹׁתֵיכֶם בַּבְּהֵמָה וּבָעוֹף וּבְכֹל אֲשֶׁר תִּרְמֹשׂ הָאֲדָמָה אֲשֶׁר הִבְדַּלְתִּי לָכֶם לְטַמֵּא:
And you shall distinguish between clean animals and unclean ones: It is not necessary for Scripture to say [that we must distinguish] between a cow and a donkey, since they are easily distinguishable and identifiable. Rather, [the Torah means that we must distinguish] between [an animal that] is clean because of you [i.e., permissible for you to eat because of your slaughtering], and [one that is] unclean because of you [i.e., forbidden for you to eat because of your slaughtering. [When an animal is slaughtered, both “signs,” i.e., organs, must be severed, namely, the esophagus, (gullet) and the trachea (windpipe), or at least, the majority of each. Thus, our verse here is referring to the following: The distinction] between an animal of which [one organ was severed completely and] the majority of the [other] organ was severed, [thus rendering the animal kosher], and [an animal of which one organ was completely severed] whereas only half the [other] organ was severed [thus rendering that animal nonkosher]. And what is the difference between its majority and half of it [that would mean the difference between kosher and nonkosher]? A hairbreadth [and consequently, Scripture commands us to make a careful distinction]. — [Torath Kohanim 20:116]   והבדלתם בין הבהמה הטהרה לטמאה: אין צריך לומר בין פרה לחמור, שהרי מובדלין ונכרין הם, אלא בין טהורה לך לטמאה לך, בין שנשחט רובו של סימן לנשחט חציו. וכמה בין רובו לחציו, מלא שערה:
that I have distinguished for you to render unclean: [I.e.,] to render] forbidden [to eat, as above]. — [Torath Kohanim 20:116]   אשר הבדלתי לכם לטמא: לאסור:
26. And you shall be holy to Me, for I, the Lord, am holy, and I have distinguished you from the peoples, to be Mine.   כו. וִהְיִיתֶם לִי קְדשִׁים כִּי קָדוֹשׁ אֲנִי יְהוָֹה וָאַבְדִּל אֶתְכֶם מִן הָעַמִּים לִהְיוֹת לִי:
And I have distinguished you from the peoples, to be Mine: If you are separated from them [through your observance of Torah], you will be Mine, but if not, you will belong to Nebuchadnezzar and his ilk. Rabbi Eleazar ben Azariah says: How do we know that a person should not say, “I find pork disgusting,” or “It is impossible for me to wear a mixture [of wool and linen],” but rather, one should say, “I indeed wish to, but what can I do-my Father in heaven has imposed these decrees upon me?” Because Scripture says here, “And I have distinguished you from the peoples, to be Mine”-your very distinction from the other peoples must be for My Name, separating yourself from transgression and accepting upon yourself the yoke of the Kingdom of Heaven. — [Torath Kohanim 20:128]   ואבדל אתכם מן העמים להיות לי: אם אתם מובדלים מהם הרי אתם שלי, ואם לאו הרי אתם של נבוכדנצר וחביריו. רבי אלעזר בן עזריה אומר מנין שלא יאמר אדם נפשי קצה בבשר חזיר, אי אפשי ללבוש כלאים, אבל יאמר אפשי, ומה אעשה ואבי שבשמים גזר עלי, תלמוד לומר ואבדיל אתכם מן העמים להיות לי, שתהא הבדלתכם מהם לשמי, פורש מן העבירה ומקבל עליו עול מלכות שמים:
27. And a man or a woman who has [the sorcery of] Ov or Yid'oni, shall surely be put to death; they shall pelt them with stones; their blood is upon themselves.   כז. וְאִישׁ אוֹ אִשָּׁה כִּי יִהְיֶה בָהֶם אוֹב אוֹ יִדְּעֹנִי מוֹת יוּמָתוּ בָּאֶבֶן יִרְגְּמוּ אֹתָם דְּמֵיהֶם בָּם:
[And a man or a woman] who has [the sorcery of] Ov or Yid’oni: Here, regarding those [who practice the sorcery of Ov or Yid’oni,] Scripture states death, while above (verse 6), Scripture states excision. [With] witnesses and warning [not to commit the sin], they incur [death by] stoning, but if [the perpetrators transgress] willfully but without warning, they incur excision; and if they transgress unintentionally, [they must bring] a sin-offering. And this [general principle regarding death, excision or sin-offering,] applies to all who are subject to the death penalty, about whom excision is also stated.   כי יהיה בהם אוב וגו': כאן נאמר בהם מיתה ולמעלה כרת. עדים והתראה בסקילה, מזיד בלא התראה בהכרת ושגגתם חטאת, וכן בכל חייבי מיתות שנאמר בהם כרת:
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