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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Devarim - Deuteronomy - Chapter 26

Devarim - Deuteronomy - Chapter 26

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 26

1. And it will be, when you come into the land which the Lord, your God, gives you for an inheritance, and you possess it and settle in it,   א. וְהָיָה כִּי תָבוֹא אֶל הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ נֹתֵן לְךָ נַחֲלָה וִירִשְׁתָּהּ וְיָשַׁבְתָּ בָּהּ:
And it will be, when you come… and you possess it and settle in it: This [verse, which is immediately followed by the commandment of bringing the firstfruits,] teaches us that they were not obligated [to bring] “firstfruits” until they conquered the Land and divided it. - [Kid. 37b]   והיה כי תבוא וירשתה וישבת בה: מגיד שלא נתחייבו בבכורים עד שכבשו את הארץ וחלקוה:
2. that you shall take of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you will bring from your land, which the Lord, your God, is giving you. And you shall put [them] into a basket and go to the place which the Lord, your God, will choose to have His Name dwell there.   ב. וְלָקַחְתָּ מֵרֵאשִׁית | כָּל פְּרִי הָאֲדָמָה אֲשֶׁר תָּבִיא מֵאַרְצְךָ אֲשֶׁר יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ נֹתֵן לָךְ וְשַׂמְתָּ בַטֶּנֶא וְהָלַכְתָּ אֶל הַמָּקוֹם אֲשֶׁר יִבְחַר יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ לְשַׁכֵּן שְׁמוֹ שָׁם:
of the first: but not all the first, because not all fruits are subject to [the mitzvah of] “firstfruits”-only the seven species [for which the land of Israel is noted]. Here, in our verse, it says the word אֶרֶץ, “land,” and there [in the verse describing the praise of Eretz Israel], it says, “A land (אֶרֶץ) of wheat and barley, vines and figs and pomegranates, a land of oil-producing olives and honey” (Deut. 8:8). Just as the earlier verse (Deut. 8:8) is referring to the seven species through which Eretz Israel is praised, here too, [the verse is dealing with] the praise of the Land. [Rashi proceeds to explain two expressions in Deut. 8:8, which are relevant to the mitzvah of firstfruits, in light of the connection taught by our Rabbis above:] “Oil-producing olives” [refers to] “אֲגוּרִי olives,” [see Sifrei 26:2, meaning superior quality] olives that retain their oil, keeping it gathered (אָגוּר) [as it were] inside it. [Hence, it is the superior fruits which must be brought here]. — [Ber. 39a] [And in the same verse (Deut. 8:8):] “honey”-that is the honey of dates. — [Sifrei 26:2]   מראשית: ולא כל ראשית, שאין כל הפירות חייבין בבכורים אלא שבעת המינין בלבד. נאמר כאן ארץ, ונאמר להלן (לעיל ח, ח) ארץ חטה ושעורה וגו', מה להלן משבעת המינים שנשתבחה בהם ארץ ישראל, אף כאן שבח ארץ ישראל שהן שבעה מינין זית שמן זית אגורי ששמנו אגור בתוכו ודבש הוא דבש תמרים:
of the first [of all the fruit]: [What is the process of taking these fruits?] A man goes down into his field and sees a fig that has ripened. He winds a reed around it for a sign and declares:“This is the firstfruit (בִּכּוּרִים).” - [Mishnah Bikkurim 3:1]   מראשית: אדם יורד לתוך שדהו ורואה תאנה שבכרה כורך עליה גמי לסימן ואומר הרי זו בכורים:
3. And you shall come to the kohen who will be [serving] in those days, and say to him, "I declare this day to the Lord, your God, that I have come to the land which the Lord swore to our forefathers to give us."   ג. וּבָאתָ אֶל הַכֹּהֵן אֲשֶׁר יִהְיֶה בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם וְאָמַרְתָּ אֵלָיו הִגַּדְתִּי הַיּוֹם לַיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ כִּי בָאתִי אֶל הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נִשְׁבַּע יְהֹוָה לַאֲבֹתֵינוּ לָתֶת לָנוּ:
who will be [serving] in those days: You have only the kohen in your days, whatever he is [and although he may not be as wise or holy as those of previous generations, you are obliged to address him with the respect due to his office as an agent of God]. — [Sifrei 26:3]   אשר יהיה בימים ההם: אין לך אלא כהן שבימיך, כמו שהוא:
and say to him: that you are not ungrateful [for all that God has done for you].   ואמרת אליו: שאינך כפוי טובה:
I declare this day: [The expression,“this day,” teaches us that the one who brings the firstfruits must make this declaration] once a year, and not twice [even though he may return with more firstfruits later that same year]. — [Sifrei 26:3]   הגדתי היום: פעם אחת בשנה ולא שתי פעמים:
4. And the kohen will take the basket from your hand, laying it before the altar of the Lord, your God."   ד. וְלָקַח הַכֹּהֵן הַטֶּנֶא מִיָּדֶךָ וְהִנִּיחוֹ לִפְנֵי מִזְבַּח יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ:
And the kohen shall take the basket from your hand: in order to wave it. [How so?] The kohen places his hand under [the basket, beneath the level of] the owner’s hand [which is grasping the basket at the top, by its rim] (Sukk. 47b), and [in this position,] waves [the basket together with its owner].   ולקח הכהן הטנא מידך: להניף אותו. כהן מניח ידו תחת יד הבעלים ומניף:
5. And you shall call out and say before the Lord, your God, "An Aramean [sought to] destroy my forefather, and he went down to Egypt and sojourned there with a small number of people, and there, he became a great, mighty, and numerous nation.   ה. וְעָנִיתָ וְאָמַרְתָּ לִפְנֵי | יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ אֲרַמִּי אֹבֵד אָבִי וַיֵּרֶד מִצְרַיְמָה וַיָּגָר שָׁם בִּמְתֵי מְעָט וַיְהִי שָׁם לְגוֹי גָּדוֹל עָצוּם וָרָב:
And you shall call out: Heb. וְעָנִית [Usually meaning to “respond.” However, in this context, this word] denotes the raising of the voice. — [Sotah 32b]   וענית: לשון הרמת קול:
An Aramean [sought to] destroy my forefather: [The declarer] mentions [here] the kind deeds of the Omnipresent [by stating]:“An Aramean [sought to] destroy my forefather.” That is, Laban, when he pursued Jacob, sought to uproot [i.e., annihilate] all [the Jews], and since he intended to do so, the Omnipresent considered it as though he had actually done it (Sifrei 26:5), for [regarding] the pagan nations of the world, the Holy One, Blessed is He, considers the [mere] intention [of an evil deed] as [being equivalent to] the actual perpetration [of the deed itself]. — [Yerushalmi Pe’ah 1:1 at end]   ארמי אבד אבי: מזכיר חסדי המקום ארמי אובד אבי, לבן בקש לעקור את הכל, כשרדף אחר יעקב. ובשביל שחשב לעשות, חשב לו המקום כאלו עשה, שאומות העולם חושב להם הקב"ה מחשבה [רעה] כמעשה:
who then went down to Egypt: And [apart from Laban,] still others came upon us to annihilate us, for after this, Jacob went down to Egypt [“and the Egyptians treated us cruelly…”].   וירד מצרימה: ועוד אחרים באו עלינו לכלותנו, שאחרי זאת ירד יעקב למצרים:
with a small number of people: [Namely,] seventy persons. — [Sifrei 26: 5; see Gen. 46:27]   במתי מעט: בשבעים נפש:
6. And the Egyptians treated us cruelly and afflicted us, and they imposed hard labor upon us.   ו. וַיָּרֵעוּ אֹתָנוּ הַמִּצְרִים וַיְעַנּוּנוּ וַיִּתְּנוּ עָלֵינוּ עֲבֹדָה קָשָׁה:
7. So we cried out to the Lord, God of our fathers, and the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression.   ז. וַנִּצְעַק אֶל יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי אֲבֹתֵינוּ וַיִּשְׁמַע יְהֹוָה אֶת קֹלֵנוּ וַיַּרְא אֶת עָנְיֵנוּ וְאֶת עֲמָלֵנוּ וְאֶת לַחֲצֵנוּ:
8. And the Lord brought us out from Egypt with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm, with great awe, and with signs and wonders.   ח. וַיּוֹצִאֵנוּ יְהֹוָה מִמִּצְרַיִם בְּיָד חֲזָקָה וּבִזְרֹעַ נְטוּיָה וּבְמֹרָא גָּדֹל וּבְאֹתוֹת וּבְמֹפְתִים:
9. And He brought us to this place, and He gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey.   ט. וַיְבִאֵנוּ אֶל הַמָּקוֹם הַזֶּה וַיִּתֶּן לָנוּ אֶת הָאָרֶץ הַזֹּאת אֶרֶץ זָבַת חָלָב וּדְבָשׁ:
to this place: meaning the Temple. — [Sifrei 26:9] [The expression הַמָּקוֹם הַזֶה must refer specifically to the Temple and not to the Land of Israel in general, because the following clause:]   אל המקום הזה: זה בית המקדש:
and He gave us this land: [is to be understood] literally.   ויתן לנו את הארץ: כמשמעו:
10. And now, behold, I have brought the first of the fruit of the ground which you, O Lord, have given to me." Then, you shall lay it before the Lord, your God, and prostrate yourself before the Lord, your God.   י. וְעַתָּה הִנֵּה הֵבֵאתִי אֶת רֵאשִׁית פְּרִי הָאֲדָמָה אֲשֶׁר נָתַתָּה לִּי יְהֹוָה וְהִנַּחְתּוֹ לִפְנֵי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ וְהִשְׁתַּחֲוִיתָ לִפְנֵי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ:
Then, you shall lay: [The repetition of the expressions וְהִנִּיחוֹ (verse 4) and here, וְהִנַּחְתּוֹ] teaches us [that there were two procedures involving laying the hands on the basket and waving it, namely] that [the owner] takes [the basket] after the kohen has [completed] waving it; [the owner subsequently] grasps it in his hand during his declaration, and then repeats the waving procedure.   והנחתו: מגיד שנוטלו אחר הנחת הכהן ואוחזו בידו כשהוא קורא, וחוזר ומניף:
11. Then, you shall rejoice with all the good that the Lord, your God, has granted you and your household you, the Levite, and the stranger who is among you.   יא. וְשָׂמַחְתָּ בְכָל הַטּוֹב אֲשֶׁר נָתַן לְךָ יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ וּלְבֵיתֶךָ אַתָּה וְהַלֵּוִי וְהַגֵּר אֲשֶׁר בְּקִרְבֶּךָ:
And you shall rejoice with all the good: From here, [our Rabbis] said that the firstfruits declaration is recited only at the time of “rejoicing,” namely, from Shavuoth until Sukkoth, for [then] a person gathers in his grain, fruit, wine and oil [over which he rejoices]. However, from Sukkoth and onwards, he must bring [his firstfruits to the Temple], but he does not recite the declaration. - [Pes. 36b]   ושמחת בכל הטוב: מכאן אמרו אין קורין מקרא בכורים אלא בזמן שמחה מעצרת ועד החג, שאדם מלקט תבואתו ופירותיו ויינו ושמנו, אבל מהחג ואילך מביא ואינו קורא:
you, the Levite: [From here, we learn that] the Levite is also obligated in [the mitzvah of bringing] firstfruits if they planted [trees] within their [forty-eight] cities. [Outside of these cities, they had no land.]   אתה והלוי: אף הלוי חייב בבכורים אם נטעו בתוך עריהם:
and the stranger who is among you: [I.e., the proselyte.] He brings [his firstfruits], but he does not recite the declaration, since he cannot say “to our fathers” [in the introduction to the declaration (verse 3): “I have come to the land which the Lord swore to our forefathers to give us”]. — [Mishnah Bikkurim 1:4]   והגר אשר בקרבך: (שם מכות יט) מביא ואינו קורא, שאינו יכול לומר לאבותינו:
12. When you have finished tithing all the tithes of your produce in the third year, the year of the tithe, you shall give [them] to the Levite, the stranger, the orphan, and the widow, so that they can eat to satiety in your cities.   יב. כִּי תְכַלֶּה לַעְשֵׂר אֶת כָּל מַעְשַׂר תְּבוּאָתְךָ בַּשָּׁנָה הַשְּׁלִישִׁת שְׁנַת הַמַּעֲשֵׂר וְנָתַתָּה לַלֵּוִי לַגֵּר לַיָּתוֹם וְלָאַלְמָנָה וְאָכְלוּ בִשְׁעָרֶיךָ וְשָׂבֵעוּ:
When you have finished tithing all the tithes of your produce in the third year: When you have finished separating the tithes of the third year [of the seven-year shemittah cycle]. It fixes a time for the removal [of the tithes from the house] and for the [accompanying] confession [regarding their proper disposal] on the Eve of Passover [for the removal, and for the confession, in the afternoon of the last day of Passover] of the fourth year, as it is said,“At the end of (מִקֵּץ) three years, you shall take out [all the tithe of your crop] (Deut. 14:28), and later on, Scripture also uses this expression:”At the end of (מִקֵּץ) seven years“ (Deut. 31: 10), referring to the mitzvah of הַקְהֵל [assembling all the people in the Temple courtyard, to hear the king read the book of Deuteronomy]. Just as there, the mitzvah was to be performed on a Festival, here too [in the case of removing the tithes and reciting the confession, the mitzvah must be performed] on a Festival. But one could suggest that just as there [in the case of הַקְהֵל, the mitzvah was performed] on the Festival of Sukkoth, here too, [the mitzvah must be performed] on the Festival of Sukkoth. Therefore, Scripture states here: ”When have you finished taking all the tithes in the third year"- [this refers to] a festival on which all tithes have been completely taken: this is Passover [not Sukkoth], because many trees have their fruits picked after Sukkoth [but not after Passover]. Consequently, the separating of tithes of the third year’s produce will conclude on Passover of [the following year, namely] the fourth year. And anyone who has delayed [in distributing] his tithes is ordered by Scripture to remove [any remaining tithes] from the house [on Passover of the fourth year of the shemittah cycle]. — [Sifrei 26:12]   כי תכלה לעשר את כל מעשר תבואתך בשנה השלישית: כשתגמור להפריש מעשרות של שנה השלישית, קבע זמן הביעור והוידוי בערב הפסח של שנה הרביעית, שנאמר (דברים יד, כח) מקצה שלש שנים תוציא וגו'. נאמר כאן מקץ, ונאמר להלן (שם לא י) מקץ שבע שנים, לענין הקהל מה להלן רגל אף כאן רגל, אי מה להלן חג הסוכות אף כאן חג הסוכות, תלמוד לומר כי תכלה לעשר, מעשרות של שנה השלישית רגל שהמעשרות כלין בו, וזהו פסח, שהרבה אילנות יש שנלקטין אחר הסוכות, נמצאו מעשרות של שלישית כלין בפסח של רביעית, וכל מי ששהה מעשרותיו הצריכו הכתוב לבערו מן הבית:
the year of the tithe: [The third year of each shemittah cycle is called“the year of the tithe” because] it differs from its preceding two years insofar as it is a year in which only one of the tithes separated in the two preceding years is separated. During the first and second years of the shemittah cycle, the tithes separated are: a) מַעֲשֵׂר רִאשׁוֹן, “the first tithe,” as the verse says, “[Speak to the Levites, and say to them,] When you take from the children of Israel the tithe…” (Num. 18:26) [referring to“the first tithe,”] and b) מַעֲשֵׂר שֵׁנִי, “the second tithe,” as the verse says, “And you shall eat before the Lord, your God… the tithes of your grain, of your wine and of your oil…” (Deut. 14:23) [which is a reference to “the second tithe”]. Thus, we have two tithes [being separated during the first two years of the shemittah cycle]. Now Scripture comes and teaches us that in the third year, only one of these two tithes is separated. And which one is that? It is “the first tithe.” [“The second tithe is not separated during the third year.”] Instead of “the second tithe,” one must give “the tithe for the poor,” for it says here in our verse “you shall give [them] to the Levite” what belongs to him, namely “the first tithe” ; [then our verse continues:] “the stranger, the orphan, and the widow”-this is “the tithe for the poor.” - [Sifrei 26:12; R.H. 12b]   שנת המעשר: שנה שאין נוהג בה אלא מעשר אחד משני מעשרות שנהגו בשתי שנים שלפניה, ששנה ראשונה של שמיטה נוהג בה מעשר ראשון, כמו שנאמר (במדבר יח כו) כי תקחו מאת בני ישראל את המעשר, ומעשר שני, שנאמר (דברים יד כג) ואכלת לפני ה' אלהיך מעשר דגנך תירושך ויצהרך, הרי שני מעשרות, ובא ולמדך כאן בשנה השלישית שאין נוהג מאותן שני מעשרות אלא האחד ואיזה, זה מעשר ראשון. ותחת מעשר שני תן מעשר עני שנאמר כאן ונתת ללוי. את אשר לו הרי מעשר ראשון. לגר ליתום ולאלמנה זה מעשר עני:
so that they can eat to satiety: Give them enough to satisfy them. Based on this, [our Rabbis] stated: One may not give the poor in the granary less than one-half a kav of wheat [or one kav of barley. [A kav represents the volume of twenty-four eggs]. — [Sifrei 26:12, Pe’ah 8:5]   ואכלו בשעריך ושבעו: תן להם כדי שבען מכאן אמרו אין פוחתין לעני בגורן פחות מחצי קב חטים וכו':
13. Then you shall say before the Lord, your God, "I have removed the holy [portion] from the house, and I have also given it to the Levite, the stranger, the orphan, and the widow, according to all Your commandment that You commanded me; I have not transgressed Your commandments, nor have I forgotten [them].   יג. וְאָמַרְתָּ לִפְנֵי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בִּעַרְתִּי הַקֹּדֶשׁ מִן הַבַּיִת וְגַם נְתַתִּיו לַלֵּוִי וְלַגֵּר לַיָּתוֹם וְלָאַלְמָנָה כְּכָל מִצְוָתְךָ אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתָנִי לֹא עָבַרְתִּי מִמִּצְו‍ֹתֶיךָ וְלֹא שָׁכָחְתִּי:
Then you shall say before the Lord, your God: Confess [i.e., declare] that you have given your tithes [as required]. — [Sifrei 26:13]   ואמרת לפני ה' אלהיך: התודה שנתת מעשרותיך:
I have removed the holy [portions] from the house: This refers to: a) “the second tithe,” and b) נֶטַע רְבָעִי, the fruit yielded by a tree in its fourth year of growth [both of which are termed קֹדֶשׁ, holy (portions)], they must be brought up to Jerusalem and eaten there in purity. [Accordingly,] the verse here teaches us that if one has delayed bringing these tithes up to Jerusalem for two years, he must take them up now [in the third year].   בערתי הקדש מן הבית: זה מעשר שני ונטע רבעי, ולמדך שאם שהה מעשרותיו של שתי שנים ולא העלם לירושלים, שצריך להעלותם עכשיו:
and I have also given it to the Levite: This refers to “the first tithe.” - [ibid.] [The seemingly superfluous word “also”] comes to include terumah, [the part given to the kohen] and the firstfruits [which is are also given to the kohen. Since Kohanim stem from the tribe of Levi, they are referred to here as Levites]. — [Yerushalmi Ma’aser Sheni 5:5]   וגם נתתיו ללוי: זה מעשר ראשון. וגם לרבות תרומה ובכורים:
the stranger, the orphan and the widow: This refers to “the tithe for the poor.” - [Sifrei 26:13]   ולגר ליתום ולאלמנה: זה מעשר עני:
according to all Your commandment: I have given them [the tithes] in their proper sequence (ibid). I did not give terumah before the firstfruits; I did not give tithes before terumah; I did not give the second tithe before the first tithe. For terumah is termed רֵאשִׁית, “the first one,” because it is the first portion to be separated when the produce has become [matured] “grain,” and it is written [regarding the separation of tithes]: מְלֵאָתְךָ וְדִמְעֲךָ לֹא תְאַחֵר (Exod. 22:28), which means that one must not change the order [set out in Scripture for separating tithes]. - [Mechilta , Exod. 22:28]   ככל מצותך: נתתים כסדרן ולא הקדמתי תרומה לבכורים, ולא מעשר לתרומה ולא שני לראשון, שהתרומה קרויה ראשית, שהיא ראשונה משנעשה דגן, וכתיב (שמות כב כח) מלאתך ודמעך לא תאחר, לא תשנה את הסדר:
I have not transgressed Your commandments: I did not separate tithes from one species [of produce to fulfill the obligation of tithe-separation due] from another species [of produce], and I did not separate tithes from the new crop [of the year to fulfill the obligation of tithe-separation due] from the old crop. — [Sifrei, Ma’aser Sheni 5:11]   לא עברתי ממצותיך: לא הפרשתי ממין על שאינו מינו ומן החדש על הישן:
nor have I forgotten: to bless You [on the performance of the mitzvah] of separating tithes. — [ibid.]   ולא שכחתי: מלברך על הפרשת מעשרות:
14. I did not eat any of it [second tithe] while in my mourning, nor did I consume any of it while unclean; neither did I use any of it for the dead. I obeyed the Lord, my God; I did according to all that You commanded me.   יד. לֹא אָכַלְתִּי בְאֹנִי מִמֶּנּוּ וְלֹא בִעַרְתִּי מִמֶּנּוּ בְּטָמֵא וְלֹא נָתַתִּי מִמֶּנּוּ לְמֵת שָׁמַעְתִּי בְּקוֹל יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהָי עָשִׂיתִי כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתָנִי:
I did not eat any of it [second tithe] while in my mourning: From here [our Rabbis derive the ruling that the second tithe] is forbidden to [be eaten by] an אוֹנָן [close relative of a deceased on the day of death]. — [Sifrei 26:14]   לא אכלתי באני ממנו: מכאן שאסור לאונן:
nor did I consume any of it while unclean: Whether I was unclean and it was clean, or I was clean it was unclean. But where [in the Torah] is one warned against this? [The warning is alluded to in the verse: (Deut. 12:17),]“You shall not eat in your cities [the tithe…].” This refers to eating in a state of uncleanness, as it is said in reference to פְּסוּלֵי הַמֻּקְדָשִׁים, [animals dedicated as sacrifices, which subsequently became blemished and consequently unfit for that purpose (see Deut. 15: 21-22) the Torah says,] “You may eat it within your cities, the unclean and the clean person together…” (Deut. 15:22). This [the second tithe], however, you shall not eat in the manner of “eating in the cities,” mentioned elsewhere. - [Yev. 73b]   ולא בערתי ממנו בטמא: בין שאני טמא והוא טהור, בין שאני טהור והוא טמא. והיכן הוזהר על כך (לעיל יב יז) לא תוכל לאכול בשעריך, זו אכילת טומאה, כמו שנאמר בפסולי המקודשים (לעיל טו כב) בשעריך תאכלנו הטמא והטהור וגו', אבל זה לא תוכל לאכול דרך אכילת שעריך האמור במקום אחר:
neither have I used any of it for the dead: [using its value in money] to make for him a coffin or shrouds. — [Sifrei, Ma’aser Sheni 5:12]   ולא נתתי ממנו למת: לעשות לו ארון ותכריכין:
I obeyed the Lord, my God: [in that] I have brought [it] to the Temple. - [Sifrei , Ma’aser Sheni 5:12] [In fact, the second tithe was not brought to the Temple, but eaten in Jerusalem. If a person redeemed it, however, he was to bring the redempion money to Jerusalem and purchase food to be eaten in Jerusalem. Although all types of food could be purchased, it was customary to purchase animals and sacrifice them as peace offerings. In this respect, the tithe would be brought into the Temple (Malbim).]   שמעתי בקול ה' אלהי: הביאותיו לבית הבחירה:
I have done according to all that You have commanded me: I have myself rejoiced and caused others to rejoice through it. — [Sifrei, Ma’aser Sheni 5:12]   עשיתי ככל אשר צויתני: שמחתי ושימחתי בו:
15. Look down from Your holy dwelling, from the heavens, and bless Your people Israel, and the ground which You have given to us, as You swore to our forefathers a land flowing with milk and honey.   טו. הַשְׁקִיפָה מִמְּעוֹן קָדְשְׁךָ מִן הַשָּׁמַיִם וּבָרֵךְ אֶת עַמְּךָ אֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל וְאֵת הָאֲדָמָה אֲשֶׁר נָתַתָּה לָנוּ כַּאֲשֶׁר נִשְׁבַּעְתָּ לַאֲבֹתֵינוּ אֶרֶץ זָבַת חָלָב וּדְבָשׁ:
Look down from Your holy dwelling: We have fulfilled what You have decreed upon us. Now You do what is incumbent upon You to do (Sifrei , Ma’aser Sheni 5:13), for You said, “If you follow My statutes… then I shall give [you] your rains in their [proper] time….” (Lev. 26:3-4).   השקיפה ממעון קדשך: עשינו מה שגזרת עלינו, עשה אתה מה שעליך לעשות, שאמרת (ויקרא כו, ג) אם בחקתי תלכו ונתתי גשמיכם בעתם:
which You have given us, as You swore to our forefathers: to give to us, and You have [also] kept [the promise You made to our ancestors who left Egypt, that You would give us] “a land flowing with milk and honey.”   אשר נתתה לנו כאשר נשבעת לאבתינו: לתת לנו וקיימת ארץ זבת חלב ודבש:
16. This day, the Lord, your God, is commanding you to fulfill these statutes and ordinances, and you will observe and fulfill them with all your heart and with all your soul.   טז. הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ מְצַוְּךָ לַעֲשׂוֹת אֶת הַחֻקִּים הָאֵלֶּה וְאֶת הַמִּשְׁפָּטִים וְשָׁמַרְתָּ וְעָשִׂיתָ אוֹתָם בְּכָל לְבָבְךָ וּבְכָל נַפְשֶׁךָ:
This day, the Lord your God is commanding you: Every day, you shall regard the commandments as if they are brand new, as though you are just today being commanded regarding them!- [Tanchuma 1]   היום הזה ה' אלהיך מצוך: בכל יום יהיו בעיניך חדשים, כאלו בו ביום נצטוית עליהם:
You will observe and fulfill them: A heavenly voice is blessing you:“You have brought the firstfruits today- [so] will you merit to bring them next year!”   ושמרת ועשית אותם: בת קול מברכתו הבאת בכורים היום, תשנה לשנה הבאה:
17. You have selected the Lord this day, to be your God, and to walk in His ways, and to observe His statutes, His commandments and His ordinances, and to obey Him.   יז. אֶת יְהֹוָה הֶאֱמַרְתָּ הַיּוֹם לִהְיוֹת לְךָ לֵאלֹהִים וְלָלֶכֶת בִּדְרָכָיו וְלִשְׁמֹר חֻקָּיו וּמִצְו‍ֹתָיו וּמִשְׁפָּטָיו וְלִשְׁמֹעַ בְּקֹלוֹ:
You have selected… has selected you: Heb. הֶאֱמַרְתָּ… הֶאמִירְךָ. We do not find any equivalent expression in the Scriptures [which might give us a clue to the meaning of these words]. However, it appears to me that [the expression הֶאֱמִיר] denotes separation and distinction. [Thus, here, the meaning is as follows:] From all the pagan deities, you have set apart the Lord for yourself, to be your God, and He separated you to Him from all the peoples on earth to be His treasured people. [Notwithstanding,] I did find a similar expression [to הֶאֱמִיר], which denotes “glory,” as in the verse “[How long will] all workers of violence praise themselves (יִתְאַמְּרוּ)?” (Ps. 94:4).   האמרת: והאמירך (פסוק יח) אין להם עד מוכיח במקרא ולי נראה שהוא לשון הפרשה והבדלה הבדלתי לך מאלהי הנכר להיות לך לאלהים, והוא הפרישך אליו מעמי הארץ להיות לו לעם סגולה ומצאתי להם עד והוא לשון תפארת כמו יתאמרו כל פועלי און (תהלים צ"ד, ד):
18. And the Lord has selected you this day to be His treasured people, as He spoke to you, and so that you shall observe all His commandments,   יח. וַיהֹוָה הֶאֱמִירְךָ הַיּוֹם לִהְיוֹת לוֹ לְעַם סְגֻלָּה כַּאֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר לָךְ וְלִשְׁמֹר כָּל מִצְו‍ֹתָיו:
as He spoke to you: When He said]: “And [out of all the nations,] you shall be to Me a treasure” (Exod. 19:5). - [Mechilta 12:78]   כאשר דבר לך: והייתם לי סגולה (שמות יט, ה):
19. and to make you supreme, above all the nations that He made, [so that you will have] praise, a [distinguished] name and glory; and so that you will be a holy people to the Lord, your God, as He spoke.   יט. וּלְתִתְּךָ עֶלְיוֹן עַל כָּל הַגּוֹיִם אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה לִתְהִלָּה וּלְשֵׁם וּלְתִפְאָרֶת וְלִהְיֹתְךָ עַם קָדשׁ לַיהֹוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ כַּאֲשֶׁר דִּבֵּר:
And so that you will be a holy people… as He spoke: [When He said]:“And you shall be holy to Me” (Lev. 20:26). - [Mechilta 12:78]   ולהיתך עם קדוש וגו' כאשר דבר: והייתם לי קדושים (ויקרא כ, כו):
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