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Torah Reading for Beshalach

Torah Reading for Beshalach

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Parshat Beshalach
Shabbat, 11 Shevat, 5778
27 January, 2018
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Haftarah: (Judges 4:4 - 5:31)
Please note: These Haftarah texts follow Chabad custom. Other communities could possibly read more, less, or a different section of the Prophets altogether. Please consult with your rabbi.
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Judges Chapter 4

4Now Deborah was a woman prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth; she judged Israel at that time.   דוּדְבוֹרָה֙ אִשָּׁ֣ה נְבִיאָ֔ה אֵ֖שֶׁת לַפִּיד֑וֹת הִ֛יא שֹׁפְטָ֥ה אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל בָּעֵ֥ת הַהִֽיא:
the wife of Lappidoth: She prepared wicks for the Sanctuary.  
5And she sat under the palm tree of Deborah, between Ramah and Beth-el, in the mountain of Ephraim; and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.   הוְ֠הִיא יוֹשֶׁ֨בֶת תַּֽחַת־תֹּ֜מֶר דְּבוֹרָ֗ה בֵּ֧ין הָרָמָ֛ה וּבֵ֥ין בֵּֽית־אֵ֖ל בְּהַ֣ר אֶפְרָ֑יִם וַיַּעֲל֥וּ אֵלֶ֛יהָ בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל לַמִּשְׁפָּֽט:
under the palm tree: She had palm trees in Jericho.  
between Ramah and Beth-el, in the mountain of Ephraim: According to Targum Jonathan’s rendering, we can derive that this verse is not to be taken literally. These were not her places of lodging but rather she was a wealthy woman and from these places she earned a livelihood and dwelt in her city Ataroth. Hence:  
under the palm tree: She had palm trees in Jericho, vineyards in Ramah, olives in the plain of Beth-el where oil was abundant, and (עָפָר חִיוֵר) white earth in the mountain of Ephraim in Tur Malka. I say that this was sold to potters. Some interpret עפר חיור - A sown field like a grain field.  
6And she sent and called Barak the son of Abinoam out of Kedesh-naphtali. And she said to him, "Indeed the Lord, God of Israel, commanded, 'Go and draw toward Mount Tabor, and take with you ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun.   ווַתִּשְׁלַ֗ח וַתִּקְרָא֙ לְבָרָ֣ק בֶּן־אֲבִינֹ֔עַם מִקֶּ֖דֶשׁ נַפְתָּלִ֑י וַתֹּ֨אמֶר אֵלָ֜יו הֲלֹ֥א צִוָּ֣ה | יְהֹוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֗ל לֵ֚ךְ וּמָֽשַׁכְתָּ֙ בְּהַ֣ר תָּב֔וֹר וְלָקַחְתָּ֣ עִמְּךָ֗ עֲשֶֹ֚רֶת אֲלָפִים֙ אִ֔ישׁ מִבְּנֵ֥י נַפְתָּלִ֖י וּמִבְּנֵ֥י זְבֻלֽוּן:
“Indeed… commanded”: Through Moses (Deut. 20:17), “You shall totally destroy them.” So it is stated in the Mechilta.  
7And I shall draw to you, to the brook Kishon, Sisera, the chieftain of Jabin's army, with his chariots and his multitude; and I will give him into your hand.' "   זוּמָשַׁכְתִּ֨י אֵלֶ֜יךָ אֶל־נַ֣חַל קִישׁ֗וֹן אֶת־סִֽיסְרָא֙ שַׂר־צְבָ֣א יָבִ֔ין וְאֶת־רִכְבּ֖וֹ וְאֶת־הֲמוֹנ֑וֹ וּנְתַתִּ֖יהוּ בְּיָדֶֽךָ:
8And Barak said to her, "If you will go with me then I shall go, but if you will not go with me, I shall not go."   חוַיֹּ֚אמֶר אֵלֶ֙יהָ֙ בָּרָ֔ק אִם־תֵּלְכִ֥י עִמִּ֖י וְהָלָ֑כְתִּי וְאִם־לֹ֥א תֵלְכִ֛י עִמִּ֖י לֹ֥א אֵלֵֽךְ:
9And she said, "I shall surely go with you, but your glory will not be on the way which you go, for into the hand of a woman will the Lord deliver Sisera." And Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh.   טוַתֹּ֜אמֶר הָלֹ֧ךְ אֵלֵ֣ךְ עִמָּ֗ךְ אֶ֚פֶס כִּי֩ לֹ֨א תִֽהְיֶ֜ה תִּֽפְאַרְתְּךָ֗ עַל־הַדֶּ֙רֶךְ֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר אַתָּ֣ה הוֹלֵ֔ךְ כִּ֣י בְֽיַד־אִשָּׁ֔ה יִמְכֹּ֥ר יְהֹוָ֖ה אֶת־סִֽיסְרָ֑א וַתָּ֧קָם דְּבוֹרָ֛ה וַתֵּ֥לֶךְ עִם־בָּרָ֖ק קֵֽדְשָׁה:
10And Barak gathered Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh; and ten thousand men went up at his feet; and Deborah went up with him.   יוַיַּזְעֵ֨ק בָּרָ֜ק אֶת־זְבוּלֻ֚ן וְאֶת־נַפְתָּלִי֙ קֶ֔דְשָׁה וַיַּ֣עַל בְּרַגְלָ֔יו עֲשֶֹ֥רֶת אַלְפֵ֖י אִ֑ישׁ וַתַּ֥עַל עִמּ֖וֹ דְּבוֹרָֽה:
went up at his feet: (An expression meaning) with him.  
11Now Heber the Kenite had separated from the Kenites, of the children of Hobab the father-in-law of Moses; and he pitched his tent as far as Elon-bezaanannim, which is by Kedesh.   יאוְחֶ֚בֶר הַקֵּינִי֙ נִפְרָ֣ד מִקַּ֔יִן מִבְּנֵ֥י חֹבָ֖ב חֹתֵ֣ן משֶׁ֑ה וַיֵּ֣ט אָהֳל֔וֹ עַד־אֵל֥וֹן בְּצַעֲנַנִּ֖ים (כתיב בְּצַעֲנַּ֖יִם) אֲשֶׁ֥ר אֶת־קֶֽדֶשׁ:
Elon-bezaanannim: Targum Jonathan renders מֵישָׁר אַגְנַיָא the site of a plain (אֵלוֹן) of pits (בְּצָעִים), mariscusm in 0.F. This (i.e., בְּצָעִים) means אַגְנַיָא, being cavities similar to pits where water gathers, as in (Kiddushin 61a) “They are called pits (אגני) of the ground.”  
12And they told Sisera that Barak, the son of Abinoam, had gone up to Mount Tabor.   יבוַיַּגִּ֖דוּ לְסִֽיסְרָ֑א כִּ֥י עָלָ֛ה בָּרָ֥ק בֶּן־אֲבִינֹ֖עַם הַר־תָּבֽוֹר:
13And Sisera gathered all his chariots, nine hundred iron chariots, and all the people that were with him, from Harosheth-goiim, to the brook Kishon.   יגוַיַּזְעֵ֨ק סִֽיסְרָ֜א אֶת־כָּל־רִכְבּ֗וֹ תְּשַׁ֚ע מֵאוֹת֙ רֶ֣כֶב בַּרְזֶ֔ל וְאֶת־כָּל־הָעָ֖ם אֲשֶׁ֣ר אִתּ֑וֹ מֵחֲר֥שֶׁת הַגּוֹיִ֖ם אֶל־נַ֥חַל קִישֽׁוֹן:
from Harosheth-goiim, to the brook Kishon: He gathered them to go to the brook Kishon from Harosheth-goiim where he dwelt.  
14And Deborah said to Barak, "Rise, for this is the day which the Lord has given Sisera into your hand. Did not the Lord go out before you?" And Barak went down from Mount Tabor, with ten thousand men after him.   ידוַתֹּאמֶר֩ דְּבֹרָ֨ה אֶל־בָּרָ֜ק ק֗וּם כִּ֣י זֶ֚ה הַיּוֹם֙ אֲשֶׁר֩ נָתַ֨ן יְהֹוָ֚ה אֶת־סִֽיסְרָא֙ בְּיָדֶ֔ךָ הֲלֹ֥א יְהֹוָ֖ה יָצָ֣א לְפָנֶ֑יךָ וַיֵּ֚רֶד בָּרָק֙ מֵהַ֣ר תָּב֔וֹר וַעֲשֶֹ֧רֶת אֲלָפִ֛ים אִ֖ישׁ אַחֲרָֽיו:
15And the Lord confused Sisera and all the chariots and all of the camp with the edge of the sword before Barak; and Sisera alighted from his chariot, and fled on foot.   טווַיָּ֣הָם יְ֠הֹוָה אֶת־סִֽיסְרָ֨א וְאֶת־כָּל־הָרֶ֧כֶב וְאֶת־כָּל־הַֽמַּחֲנֶ֛ה לְפִי־חֶ֖רֶב לִפְנֵ֣י בָרָ֑ק וַיֵּ֧רֶד סִֽיסְרָ֛א מֵעַ֥ל הַמֶּרְכָּבָ֖ה וַיָּ֥נָס בְּרַגְלָֽיו:
16And Barak pursued the chariots and the camp, to Harosheth-goiim; and all of Sisera's camp fell by the edge of the sword, not even one was left.   טזוּבָרָ֗ק רָדַ֞ף אַחֲרֵ֚י הָרֶ֙כֶב֙ וְאַחֲרֵ֣י הַֽמַּחֲנֶ֔ה עַ֖ד חֲר֣שֶׁת הַגּוֹיִ֑ם וַיִּפֹּ֞ל כָּל־מַחֲנֵ֚ה סִֽיסְרָא֙ לְפִי־חֶ֔רֶב לֹ֥א נִשְׁאַ֖ר עַד־אֶחָֽד:
17And Sisera fled on foot to the tent of Jael, the wife of Heber the Kenite; for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite.   יזוְסִֽיסְרָא֙ נָ֣ס בְּרַגְלָ֔יו אֶל־אֹ֣הֶל יָעֵ֔ל אֵ֖שֶׁת חֶ֣בֶר הַקֵּינִ֑י כִּ֣י שָׁל֗וֹם בֵּ֚ין יָבִ֣ין מֶֽלֶך־חָצ֔וֹר וּבֵ֕ין בֵּ֖ית חֶ֥בֶר הַקֵּינִֽי:
18And Jael went out to meet Sisera and said to him, "Turn in, my lord, turn in to me; fear not." And he turned in to her into the tent, and she covered him with a garment.   יחוַתֵּצֵ֣א יָעֵל֘ לִקְרַ֣את סִֽיסְרָא֒ וַתֹּ֣אמֶר אֵלָ֗יו סוּרָ֧ה אֲדֹנִ֛י סוּרָ֥ה אֵלַ֖י אַל־תִּירָ֑א וַיָּ֚סַר אֵלֶ֙יהָ֙ הָאֹ֔הֱלָה וַתְּכַסֵּ֖הוּ בַּשְּׂמִיכָֽה:
with a garment: Targum Jonathan renders בְּגוּנְכָא which Rav Hai Gaon explains: a garment. Coate in O.F.  
19And he said to her, "Give me now a little water to drink, for I am thirsty;" and she opened the flask of milk and gave him to drink, and covered him.   יטוַיֹּ֧אמֶר אֵלֶ֛יהָ הַשְׁקִינִי־נָ֥א מְעַט־מַ֖יִם כִּ֣י צָמֵ֑אתִי וַתִּפְתַּ֞ח אֶת־נֹ֧אוד הֶחָלָ֛ב וַתַּשְׁקֵ֖הוּ וַתְּכַסֵּֽהוּ:
the flask of milk: She gave him milk because it slackens the body and causes drowsiness.  
20And he said to her, "Stand in the doorway of the tent; and it shall be, if any man comes and asks you and says, 'Is a man here?,' then you shall say, 'There is not.' "   כוַיֹּ֣אמֶר אֵלֶ֔יהָ עֲמֹ֖ד פֶּ֣תַח הָאֹ֑הֶל וְהָיָה֩ אִם־אִ֨ישׁ יָב֜וֹא וּשְׁאֵלֵ֗ךְ וְאָמַ֛ר הֲיֵֽשׁ־פֹּ֥ה אִ֖ישׁ וְאָמַ֥רְתְּ אָֽיִן:
Stand in the doorway of the tent: (עֲמֹד) is masc.) Hasten like a man. And some interpret עֲמֹד as (לַעֲמוֹד) “to stand”.  
21And Jael, the wife of Heber, took the tent-pin, and placed the hammer in her hand, and came to him stealthily, and thrust the pin into his temple, and it pierced through into the ground; and he was in a deep sleep and weary; and he died.   כאוַתִּקַּ֣ח יָעֵ֣ל אֵֽשֶׁת־חֶ֠בֶר אֶת־יְתַ֨ד הָאֹ֜הֶל וַתָּ֧שֶׂם אֶת־הַמַּקֶּ֣בֶת בְּיָדָ֗הּ וַתָּב֚וֹא אֵלָיו֙ בַּלָּ֔אט וַתִּתְקַ֚ע אֶת־הַיָּתֵד֙ בְּרַקָּת֔וֹ וַתִּצְנַ֖ח בָּאָ֑רֶץ וְהֽוּא־נִרְדָּ֥ם וַיָּ֖עַף וַיָּמֹֽת:
Tent pin: Chevilles in 0.F. A peg which is inserted into the ground together with the lower portion of a tent to stretch it out. הַמַּקֶּבֶת, Targum Jonathan renders ארזפתא, martel in Old French (a hammer). בַּלָּאט Targum Jonathan renders בְּרָז i.e., stealthily. וַתִּצְנַח בָּאָרֶץ Targum Jonathan renders וּנְעָצַת בְאַרְעָא : and it pierced through into the ground.  
22And behold, Barak pursued Sisera, and Jael came out to meet him, and she said to him, "Come and I will show you the man whom you seek," and he came to her, and behold, Sisera lay dead, and the pin was in his temple.   כבוְהִנֵּ֣ה בָרָק֘ רֹדֵ֣ף אֶת־סִֽיסְרָא֒ וַתֵּצֵ֚א יָעֵל֙ לִקְרָאת֔וֹ וַתֹּ֣אמֶר ל֔וֹ לֵ֣ךְ וְאַרְאֶ֔ךָּ אֶת־הָאִ֖ישׁ אֲשֶׁר־אַתָּ֣ה מְבַקֵּ֑שׁ וַיָּבֹ֣א אֵלֶ֔יהָ וְהִנֵּ֚ה סִֽיסְרָא֙ נֹפֵ֣ל מֵ֔ת וְהַיָּתֵ֖ד בְּרַקָּתֽוֹ:
in his temple: Targum Jonathan renders בְצִידְעֵיה (in his temple) tenplia in O.F. She had thrust it through his temple into the ground.  
23And God subdued on that day Jabin the king of Canaan, before the children of Israel.   כגוַיַּכְנַ֚ע אֱלֹהִים֙ בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא אֵ֖ת יָבִ֣ין מֶֽלֶךְ־כְּנָ֑עַן לִפְנֵ֖י בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
24And the hand of the children of Israel prevailed constantly harder against Jabin the king of Canaan, until they had destroyed Jabin, king of Canaan.   כדוַתֵּ֜לֶךְ יַ֚ד בְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵל֙ הָל֣וֹךְ וְקָשָׁ֔ה עַ֖ל יָבִ֣ין מֶֽלֶךְ־כְּנָ֑עַן עַ֚ד אֲשֶׁ֣ר הִכְרִ֔יתוּ אֵ֖ת יָבִ֥ין מֶֽלֶךְ־כְּנָֽעַן:

Judges Chapter 5

1Now Deborah and Barak the son of Abinoam sang on that day, saying.   אוַתָּ֣שַׁר דְּבוֹרָ֔ה וּבָרָ֖ק בֶּן־אֲבִינֹ֑עַם בַּיּ֥וֹם הַה֖וּא לֵאמֹֽר:
2"When breaches are made in Israel, when the people offer themselves willingly, bless the Lord.   בבִּפְרֹ֚עַ פְּרָעוֹת֙ בְּיִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל בְּהִתְנַדֵּ֖ב עָ֑ם בָּֽרְכ֖וּ יְהֹוָֽה:
When breaches are made in Israel, when the people offer themselves willingly: When breaches come upon Israel, for their enemies made breaches in them because they forsook their God and the masses feel motivated to repent, as of now it is proper to bless God (out of thankfulness) for the salvation He has wrought.  
3Hear, O kings, give ear, O princes; I, to the Lord I shall sing, I shall sing to the Lord, the God of Israel.   גשִׁמְע֣וּ מְלָכִ֔ים הַאֲזִ֖ינוּ רֹֽזְנִ֑ים אָֽנֹכִ֗י לַֽיהֹוָה֙ אָנֹכִ֣י אָשִׁ֔ירָה אֲזַמֵּ֕ר לַֽיהֹוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
אָנֹכִי אָנֹכִי: This word is repeated. I have heard an Aggadic interpretation: The Holy One did not rob (by withholding) the reward of Mount Tabor and Mount Carmel who arrived at the giving of the Torah, expecting it to be given upon them, and turned away in shame. The Holy One said to them, “I will pay you double fold. It was said at Sinai, (Ex. 20:2) ‘(אָנֹכִי) I am the Lord your God,’ at Tabor it will be said, ‘I… I…’ (אָנֹכִי אָנֹכִי). It was said at Sinai, ‘I am the Lord your God (ה׳ אֱלֹקֶי),’ at Carmel it will be said twice, (I Kings 18:39) ‘The Lord He is God, the Lord He is God (ה׳ הוּא הָאֱלֹקִים)’ in the days of Elijah.”  
4Lord, when You went forth out of Seir, when You marched out of the field of Edom, the earth trembled, the heavens also dripped; also the clouds dripped water.   דיְהֹוָ֗ה בְּצֵאתְךָ֚ מִשֵּׂעִיר֙ בְּצַעְדְּךָ֙ מִשְּׂדֵ֣ה אֱד֔וֹם אֶ֣רֶץ רָעָ֔שָׁה גַּם־שָׁמַ֖יִם נָטָ֑פוּ גַּם־עָבִ֖ים נָ֥טְפוּ מָֽיִם:
Lord, when You went forth out of Seir: This refers to the giving of the Torah as it says, “And He appeared to them from Seir” (Deut. 33:2). The relation here is that thus said Deborah: “The Torah is detrimental to forsake and rewarding to cling to it for amidst awe and might it was given. Therefore Israel was delivered into the hands of their adversaries because they forsook it, but when they decided to engage in it they were saved.” This can be derived from Targum Jonathan’s translation. נָטְפוּ - Dripped a life sustaining dew.  
5The mountains melted at the presence of the Lord, this (was at) Sinai, because of the presence of the Lord, the God of Israel.   ההָרִ֥ים נָזְל֖וּ מִפְּנֵ֣י יְהֹוָ֑ה זֶ֣ה סִינַ֔י מִפְּנֵ֕י יְהֹוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
The mountains melted: (Heb. נָזְלוּ) Like flowing water (נוֹזְלִים) they melted away.  
this (was at) Sinai: It is already stated what appeared there. (See Ex. 19:16 19, 20:15.) It was completely in smoke and amidst thunder, torches, and fire.  
because of the presence of the Lord: This is an abbreviated verse: This was at Sinai; that which occurred there was because God descended upon it.  
6In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael, caravans ceased, and travellers walked on crooked paths.   ובִּימֵ֞י שַׁמְגַּ֚ר בֶּן־עֲנָת֙ בִּימֵ֣י יָעֵ֔ל חָדְל֖וּ אֳרָח֑וֹת וְהֹלְכֵ֣י נְתִיב֔וֹת יֵלְכ֕וּ אֳרָח֖וֹת עֲקַלְקַלּֽוֹת:
In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael: (Since they are equated,) This teaches us that Jael also judged Israel in her days.  
caravans ceased: Israel was afraid to travel because of the enemy, hence they followed winding roads in secrecy.  
7The open cities ceased, in Israel they ceased, until I Deborah arose; I arose as a mother in Israel.   זחָדְל֧וּ פְרָז֛וֹן בְּיִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל חָדֵ֑לּוּ עַ֚ד שַׁקַּ֙מְתִּי֙ דְּבוֹרָ֔ה שַׁקַּ֥מְתִּי אֵ֖ם בְּיִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
The open cities ceased: Heb. פְרָזוֹן. Open cities (פְּרָזִי), without walls, ceased to be inhabited because of the enemies, and they gathered into the fortified cities.  
until I (Deborah) arose: Heb. שַׁקַּמְתִּי. Interpreted as שֶׁקַּמְתִּי as below (6:17) “שָׁאַתָּה מְדַבֵּר עִמִּי” (That you are speaking with me, understood as שֶׁאַתָּה.)  
8When they chose new gods, then there was war in the cities; was there seen a shield or a spear (when the) forty thousand (went against) Israel?   חיִבְחַר֙ אֱלֹהִ֣ים חֲדָשִׁ֔ים אָ֖ז לָחֶ֣ם שְׁעָרִ֑ים מָגֵ֚ן אִם־יֵֽרָאֶה֙ וָרֹ֔מַח בְּאַרְבָּעִ֥ים אֶ֖לֶף בְּיִשְׂרָאֵֽל:
When they chose new gods then there was war in the cities: When Israel chose new gods (cf. Deut. 32:17), they were then subject to war within their cities. However, look now when they were willing, will there be seen among Israel a shield or a spear to use in battle against the 40,000 generals the heathens brought upon them. The Almighty confused all of them in the battle with the stars, and the brook of Kishon raked them away.  
cities: (שְׁעָרִים is usually interpreted as gates, however, here it means cities,) as in (Deut. 17:2), “When it will be found among you, within one of your cities” (שְׁעָרֶי).  
9My heart is toward the lawgivers of Israel, that offered themselves willingly among the people, (saying,) 'Bless the Lord.'   טלִבִּי֙ לְחוֹקְקֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל הַמִּֽתְנַדְּבִ֖ים בָּעָ֑ם בָּרֲכ֖וּ יְהֹוָֽה:
My heart…: I, Deborah, (my heart) is out to the lawgivers of Israel; to love the wise men of Israel who volunteered to tell the people, “Bless the Lord and return to Him.”  
10The riders of white donkeys, those that sit in judgment, and those that walk on the path, tell of it.   ירֹכְבֵי֩ אֲתֹנ֨וֹת צְחֹר֜וֹת ישְׁבֵ֧י עַל־מִדִּ֛ין וְהֹלְכֵ֥י עַל־דֶּ֖רֶךְ שִֹֽיחוּ:
The riders of white donkeys: The merchants and nobles who may now ride on the precious white donkeys without fear or worry of the heathens, and those that sit in judgment (מִדִּין is an expression of דַיָּינִים, judges), who were afraid to practice justice publicly, and those that travel on foot, recite and tell of this salvation; (v. 11) that instead of the noise of your adversaries, the ambushers, bandits, and tax collectors who banded together to ambush at the water crossings, there the donkey riders and wayfarers will recite the righteous deeds of the Lord. What are His righteous deeds? Deeds of restoring open cities for Israel, for He granted tranquility to Israel to dwell in open cities and go about scattered, singly, without massing together as a group. Then… went down to the cities They now returned to their home cities whence they had fled to gather in the fortified cities.  
11Instead of the noise of adversaries, between the places of drawing water, there they will tell the righteous acts of the Lord, the righteous acts of restoring open cities in Israel. Then the people of the Lord went down to the cities.   יאמִקּ֣וֹל מְחַֽצְצִ֗ים בֵּ֚ין מַשְׁאַבִּ֔ים שָׁ֚ם יְתַנּוּ֙ צִדְק֣וֹת יְהֹוָ֔ה צִדְקֹ֥ת פִּרְזֹנ֖וֹ בְּיִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל אָ֛ז יָרְד֥וּ לַשְּׁעָרִ֖ים עַם־יְהֹוָֽה:
adversaries: Heb. מְחַצְצִים. Menachem (ben Seruk, a Hebrew Grammarian,) interprets, “those that wage war and array battles,” therefore he classifies this along with, (Prov. 30:27) “The locusts have no king, yet they march (חֹצֵץ) together;” an expression of “troops”. Another interpretation is מַשְׁאַבִּים מִקּוֹל מְחַצְצִים בֵּין, When you went to the river to draw water, you feared the sound of the pebbles smoothened by the river, Kiesels in German (cailloux in French is of Celtic origin), for their sound is heard when one passes over them, and you feared being detected by the heathens. However, now you do not have to worry about this. Therefore, it is incumbent upon you to give thanks to His name. מְחַצְצִים (is then) an expression of “pebbles smoothened by the river,” as in (Lam. 3:16) “and he broke with the stones (בֶחָצָץ) my teeth.”  
12Praise! Praise! Deborah. Praise! Praise! Utter a song. Arise Barak, and capture your captives, son of Abinoam.   יבעוּרִ֚י עוּרִי֙ דְּבוֹרָ֔ה ע֥וּרִי ע֖וּרִי דַּבְּרִי־שִׁ֑יר ק֥וּם בָּרָ֛ק וּֽשֲׁבֵ֥ה שֶׁבְיְךָ֖ בֶּן־אֲבִינֹֽעַם:
Praise! Praise! Deborah: (עוּרִי is) An expression of praise, as in its plain meaning: Become firm in your praise. But our Rabbis said, because she praised herself by saying (v. 7) “Until I Deborah arose,” the Divine spirit left her (therefore she had to arouse (עוֹרֵר) it).  
13Then ruled a remnant among the mighty of the nations; the Lord dominated the strong for me.   יגאָ֚ז יְרַ֣ד שָׂרִ֔יד לְאַדִּירִ֖ים עָ֑ם יְהֹוָ֕ה יְרַד־לִ֖י בַּגִּבּוֹרִֽים:
Then ruled a remnant among the mighty: יְרַד = ירדה meaning “ruled,” as in (Isaiah 45:1) “Who rules (לְרַד) nations before Him.” The remnants of Israel ruled over the mighty (אַדִּירֵי) gentiles.  
the Lord dominated the strong for me: He gave me dominion (יְרַד לִי) over the mighty of the gentiles.  
14Out of Ephraim, whose root was against Amalek; after you (will be) Benjamin with your abaters; out of Machir came down officers, and out of Zebulun they that handle the pen of the scribe.   ידמִנִּ֣י אֶפְרַ֗יִם שָׁרְשָׁם֙ בַּעֲמָלֵ֔ק אַחֲרֶ֥יךָ בִנְיָמִ֖ין בַּֽעֲמָמֶ֑יךָ מִנִּ֣י מָכִ֗יר יָֽרְדוּ֙ מְחֹ֣קְקִ֔ים וּמִ֨זְּבוּלֻ֔ן מֹשְׁכִ֖ים בְּשֵׁ֥בֶט סֹפֵֽר:
Out of Ephraim: From Ephraim issued the root (שׁוֹרֶשׁ, referring to Joshua the son of Nun (their prince), to subdue Amalek and weaken him by the sword (Ex. 17:13). This verse is connected to the previous one and explains: The Lord dominated the strong for me by establishing Joshua to subdue Amalek.  
after you: Will arise from the tribe of Benjamin, Saul the son of Kish who will stone him and slacken (עֲמָם) him like dying (עוֹמְמוֹת) embers. We can (also) interpret בַּעֲמָמֶי referring to the army of 200,000 soldiers with which Saul came upon them (I Sam. 15:4).  
Out of Machir came down officers: Outstanding officers who conquered the Amorites. This refers to those who captured sixty cities, the whole royal stretch conquered under Jair (of Menasseh See Deut. 3: 4, 14).  
15And the princes of Issachar were with Deborah, as was Issachar with Barak; into the valley they rushed forth with their feet. (But) among the divisions of Reuben, (there were) great resolves of heart.   טווְשָׂרַ֚י בְּיִשָּׂשׂכָר֙ עִם־דְּבֹרָ֔ה וְיִשָּׂשׂכָר֙ כֵּ֣ן בָּרָ֔ק בָּעֵ֖מֶק שֻׁלַּ֣ח בְּרַגְלָ֑יו בִּפְלַגּ֣וֹת רְאוּבֵ֔ן גְּדֹלִ֖ים חִקְקֵי־לֵֽב:
And the princes of Issachar: The princes of Issachar are the Sanhedrin who were occupied in Torah and “knew how to treat the times” (I Chron. 12:32). They are always (cooperating) with Deborah to teach Israel statutes and laws.  
And the princes of Issachar: Heb. שָׂרַי. The “yud” is inconsequential and does not serve any purpose, as the “yud” in (Ps. 8:8) “the cattle of the field (שָׂדַי)” ; (Jer. 22: 14) “Expand the windows (חַלּוֹנָי).”  
as was Issachar with Barak: (The princes) And the rest of the people of Issachar are faithful to Barak in all that he will instruct.  
into the valley they rushed forth with their feet: He sent them for all his errands; to gather the people and for all the needs of war.  
(But) among the divisions of Reuben: But in the divisions of Reuben’s heart were vast חִקְקֵי לֵב, (which Targum Jonathan renders) נִכְלֵי לִיבָּא i.e., shrewdness. And what was his shrewdness? He dwelt by the edges (מִשִׂפְתֵי) of the battle to hear who would win so that he should join with him.  
16Why do you sit between the borders, to hear the bleatings of the flocks? At the divisions of Reuben, (there are) great searchings of heart.   טזלָ֣מָּה יָשַׁ֗בְתָּ בֵּ֚ין הַֽמִּשְׁפְּתַ֔יִם לִשְׁמֹ֖עַ שְׁרִק֣וֹת עֲדָרִ֑ים לִפְלַגּ֣וֹת רְאוּבֵ֔ן גְּדוֹלִ֖ים חִקְרֵי־לֵֽב:
the bleatings of the flocks: To hear the sound of the flocks in battle; to whom is the sound of victory and to whom is the sound of defeat.  
17Gilead abides beyond the Jordan; and Dan, why does he gather into the ships? Asher dwelt at the shore of the seas, and by his breaches he abides.   יזגִּלְעָ֗ד בְּעֵ֚בֶר הַיַּרְדֵּן֙ שָׁכֵ֔ן וְדָ֕ן לָ֥מָּה יָג֖וּר אֳנִיּ֑וֹת אָשֵׁ֗ר יָשַׁב֙ לְח֣וֹף יַמִּ֔ים וְעַ֥ל מִפְרָצָ֖יו יִשְׁכּֽוֹן:
abides beyond the Jordan: And he did not come to the battle, and likewise Dan gathered his wealth into ships to be prepared to escape.  
and by his breaches: To watch the vulnerable parts of his land.  
18Zebulun is a people that jeopardized their lives to die, as did Naphtali, upon the high places of the field.   יחזְבֻל֗וּן עַ֣ם חֵרֵ֥ף נַפְשׁ֛וֹ לָמ֖וּת וְנַפְתָּלִ֑י עַ֖ל מְרוֹמֵ֥י שָׂדֶֽה:
Zebulun is a people that jeopardized…: He scorned himself and submitted himself to die in battle with Barak, and likewise Naphtali on the high places of the field, on Mount Tabor.  
19The kings came and fought; then fought the kings of Canaan in Taanach by the waters of Megiddo; they took no gain of money.   יטבָּ֚אוּ מְלָכִים֙ נִלְחָ֔מוּ אָ֚ז נִלְחֲמוּ֙ מַלְכֵ֣י כְנַ֔עַן בְּתַעְנַ֖ךְ עַל־מֵ֣י מְגִדּ֑וֹ בֶּ֥צַע כֶּ֖סֶף לֹ֥א לָקָֽחוּ:
in Taanach by the waters of Megiddo: Jonathan renders: In Taanach they dwelt and reached until the waters of Megiddo. The edge of the camp was in Taanach and it reached until the waters of Megiddo.  
they took no gain of money: Without payment they came to aid Sisera, they asked no reward.  
20From heaven they fought; the stars from their courses fought against Sisera.   כמִן־שָׁמַ֖יִם נִלְחָ֑מוּ הַכּֽוֹכָבִים֙ מִמְּסִלּוֹתָ֔ם נִלְחֲמ֖וּ עִם־סִיסְרָֽא:
From heaven they fought: (As they sought no gain,) likewise the Holy One sent against them His hosts who do not desire any reward.  
from their courses: The tip of the star being in heaven and its edge upon earth (see following verses). From here it was said: The thickness of the firmament is equivalent to the space between heaven and earth, since the star is inserted in the firmament like a bolt into a door (this refers to an old fashioned bolt which went through the thickness of the door), i.e., the size of its length equaling the thickness of the firmament. Thus from this verse, which attests that from their courses they fought, we derive that the thickness of the firmament is equal to the height between heaven and earth.  
21The brook Kishon swept them away, that ancient brook, the brook Kishon; tread down, O my soul, (their) strength.   כאנַ֚חַל קִישׁוֹן֙ גְּרָפָ֔ם נַ֥חַל קְדוּמִ֖ים נַ֣חַל קִישׁ֑וֹן תִּדְרְכִ֥י נַפְשִׁ֖י עֹֽז:
swept them away: Heb. גְּרָפָם. It swept them from the world like a rake (מַגְרֵפָה) that rakes ashes from an oven.  
that ancient brook: It became a guarantor to the sea concerning this from the days of Egypt as it is stated in Pesachim (118b).  
tread down, O my soul: By using my feet upon the strength (עוֹז) of the mighty of Canaan.  
22Then were pounded the heels of the horses by reason of the prancings, the prancings of their mighty ones.   כבאָ֥ז הָלְמ֖וּ עִקְּבֵי־ס֑וּס מִֽדַּהֲר֖וֹת דַּהֲר֥וֹת אַבִּירָֽיו:
were pounded the heels of the horses: The hoofs of their horses slipped off because the heat of the star would boil the mud and the nail would slip off, as one scalds the feet in boiling water and the hoofs would slip off. And since they slipped off, the feet were stricken (הָלְמוּ) (Mechilta Ex. 14:24).  
by reason of the prancings, the prancings of their mighty ones: They would cause their horses to prance in war as in (Nachum 3:2) “And a horse prancing” (דוֹהֵר). This is an expression of the prancing of a horse.  
23'Curse you Meroz,' said the messenger of the Lord, 'curse you bitterly (you) inhabitants thereof,' because they came not to the aid of the Lord, to the aid of the Lord against the mighty.   כגא֣וֹרוּ מֵר֗וֹז אָמַר֙ מַלְאַ֣ךְ יְהֹוָ֔ה אֹ֥רוּ אָר֖וֹר יֹשְׁבֶ֑יהָ כִּ֚י לֹֽא־בָ֙אוּ֙ לְעֶזְרַ֣ת יְהֹוָ֔ה לְעֶזְרַ֥ת יְהֹוָ֖ה בַּגִּבּוֹרִֽים:
“Curse you Meroz,”: Some say it was a star and some say he was a prominent person who was near the battle area and yet did not come.  
said the messenger of the Lord: Said Barak as an agent of the Holy One.  
the inhabitants thereof: Those that dwell within his four cubits. With (the blast of) four hundred horns, Barak excommunicated Meroz.  
to the aid of the Lord: Speaking as though it could be done, for he who aids Israel is as if he is aiding the Divine Presence.  
24Blessed above women shall Jael, the wife of Heber the Kenite, be; above women in the tent shall she be blessed.   כדתְּבֹרַךְ֙ מִנָּשִׁ֔ים יָעֵ֕ל אֵ֖שֶׁת חֶ֣בֶר הַקֵּינִ֑י מִנָּשִׁ֥ים בָּאֹ֖הֶל תְּבֹרָֽךְ:
above women in the tent: Heb. אֹהֶל. Referring to Sarah of whom it is said, (Gen. 18:9) “She is in the tent,” Rebecca of whom it is said, (ibid. 24:67) “And Isaac brought her into the tent,” and Rachel and Leah of whom it is said, (ibid 31:33) “And he went out of Leah’s tent and he entered Rachel’s tent”.  
above women in the tent shall she be blessed: (Referring to) Jael, because they bore and raised children, but if not Jael, this evil one (i.e., Sisera) would have come and destroyed them. So it states in Genesis Rabbah 48. Another interpretation is that Jael also dwelt in tents (above 4:18), therefore she was mentioned in the blessing of tents.  
25Water he requested, (but) milk she gave him: in a lordly bowl she brought him cream.   כהמַ֥יִם שָׁאַ֖ל חָלָ֣ב נָתָ֑נָה בְּסֵ֥פֶל אַדִּירִ֖ים הִקְרִ֥יבָה חֶמְאָֽה:
(but) milk she gave him: To test his state of consciousness, if he could discern between the taste of water and the taste of milk. So does Targum Jonathan paraphrase.  
in a lordly bowl: Heb. אַדִּירִים. In a vessel that one drinks water, since water is called “mighty” (or lordly i. e., אַדִּירִים), as it says, (Ex. 15:10) “In the mighty (אַדִּירִים) waters”.  
26She put forth her hand to the pin, and her right hand to strike the weary; she struck Sisera, pierced his head, and wounded and penetrated his temple.   כויָדָהּ֙ לַיָּתֵ֣ד תִּשְׁלַ֔חְנָה וִֽימִינָ֖הּ לְהַלְמ֣וּת עֲמֵלִ֑ים וְהָלְמָ֚ה סִֽיסְרָא֙ מָחֲקָ֣ה רֹאשׁ֔וֹ וּמָחֲצָ֥ה וְחָלְפָ֖ה רַקָּתֽוֹ:
to strike the weary: Heb. עֲמֵלִים. Referring to Sisera who was exhausted (עָמֵל) and tired.  
(she) pierced: Heb. מָחֲקָה. An expression of piercing (חִיקוּי).  
and (she) wounded: Heb. מָחֲצָה. An expression of wounding (מַחַץ).  
and penetrated: Heb. חָלְפָה means “she made pass through” referring to the pin which pierced his head) coming out on the other side.  
27At her feet he sank, fell, lay; at her feet he sank (and) fell; where he sank, there he fell down dead.   כזבֵּ֣ין רַגְלֶ֔יהָ כָּרַ֥ע נָפַ֖ל שָׁכָ֑ב בֵּ֚ין רַגְלֶ֙יהָ֙ כָּרַ֣ע נָפָ֔ל בַּאֲשֶׁ֣ר כָּרַ֔ע שָׁ֖ם נָפַ֥ל שָׁדֽוּד:
28Through the window the mother of Sisera looked forth, and peered through the window; why is his chariot late in coming? Why tarry the strides of his chariots?   כחבְּעַד֩ הַחַלּ֨וֹן נִשְׁקְפָ֧ה וַתְּיַבֵּ֛ב אֵ֥ם סִֽיסְרָ֖א בְּעַ֣ד הָֽאֶשְׁנָ֑ב מַדּ֗וּעַ בֹּשֵׁ֚שׁ רִכְבּוֹ֙ לָב֔וֹא מַדּ֣וּעַ אֶֽחֱר֔וּ פַּעֲמֵ֖י מַרְכְּבוֹתָֽיו:
and peered: Heb. וַתְּיַבֵּב. An expression of speaking, as in (Isa. 57:19) “The speech (נִיב) of the lips.” But our Rabbis explained (Rosh Hashanah 33b) מְיַבֵּב as an expression of wailing, as in (Num. 29:1), “Of wailing” (תְּרוּעָה) which is rendered יַבָּבָא. However, I say it is an expression of looking, as in, (Zach. 2:12) “The pupil (בָבַת) of his eye,” and so has Menachem classified it. הָאֶשְׁנָב, the window.  
29The wisest of her princesses answer her, she too returns answers to herself.   כטחַכְמ֥וֹת שָׂרוֹתֶ֖יהָ תַּעֲנֶ֑ינָּה אַף־הִ֕יא תָּשִׁ֥יב אֲמָרֶ֖יהָ לָֽהּ:
The wisest of her princesses answer her: Heb. חַכְמוֹת is interpreted as “the wise of her princesses” (an adjective in the constructive form), therefore the “Heth” is vocalized with a “patach” (“ah” sounding vowel). חָכְמוֹת as a noun is vocalized “hatof kamatz” (an “aw” sound), as in (Prov. 24:7) “Wisdom (חָכְמוֹת) to a fool is like a rare jewel.” However, this form is vocalized חַכְמוֹת and similarly, (Prov. 14:1) “The wise (חַכְמוֹת) of the women establish their house.”  
answer her: The dot in the (second) “nun” replaces the third “nun” (which would be needed to replace the word “her”). It thus means “they answer her.” The dot of a “nun” replaces the word “her” as in (Lev. 6:14) “Scalded he shall bring it,” (lit., her) (תְּבִיאֶנָּה).  
she too returns answers: (Of) Consolation to herself saying: Why am I wondering about my son’s delay? (Are they not, etc.)  
30'Are they not finding (and) dividing the spoils? A damsel, two damsels to every man; a spoil of dyed garments to Sisera, a spoil of dyed garments of embroidery; dyed garments of embroidery for the neck of the spoiler.'   להֲלֹ֨א יִמְצְא֜וּ יְחַלְּק֣וּ שָׁלָ֗ל רַ֚חַם רַחֲמָתַ֙יִם֙ לְרֹ֣אשׁ גֶּ֔בֶר שְׁלַ֚ל צְבָעִים֙ לְסִ֣יסְרָ֔א שְׁלַ֥ל צְבָעִ֖ים רִקְמָ֑ה צֶ֥בַע רִקְמָתַ֖יִם לְצַוְּארֵ֥י שָׁלָֽל:
Are they not finding (and) dividing the spoils?: And that is delaying them.  
two damsels to every man: They are ravishing the pretty women of Israel and every one of the men has two or three women in his bed.  
31So may perish all Your enemies, O Lord; but they that love Him (should be) as the sun when he goes forth in his might." And the land rested forty years.   לאכֵּ֠ן יֹאבְד֚וּ כָל־אוֹיְבֶ֙יךָ֙ יְהֹוָ֔ה וְאֹ֣הֲבָ֔יו כְּצֵ֥את הַשֶּׁ֖מֶשׁ בִּגְבֻרָת֑וֹ וַתִּשְׁקֹ֥ט הָאָ֖רֶץ אַרְבָּעִ֥ים שָׁנָֽה:
So may perish: Deborah said, “This is for her a vain consolation, for so may perish all your enemies, O Lord, as he was destroyed.”  
but they that love Him (should be) as the sun when he goes forth in his might: Which will occur in the coming future seven times seven the light of all the seven days of creation which is 343 times as much (as one day). This equals the sum of forty nine times seven. [Tanchuma].  
And the land rested: These are not Deborah’s words, but rather the words of the writer of this book.  
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