Torah Reading for Tazria-Metzora

Parshat Tazria-Metzora
Shabbat, 1 Iyar, 5783
22 April, 2023
Select a portion:
Haftarah: (Isaiah 66:1-24; Isaiah 66:23)
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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Isaiah Chapter 66

1So says the Lord, "The heavens are My throne, and the earth is My footstool; which is the house that you will build for Me, and which is the place of My rest?   אכֹּה אָמַ֣ר יְהֹוָ֔ה הַשָּׁמַ֣יִם כִּסְאִ֔י וְהָאָ֖רֶץ הֲדֹ֣ם רַגְלָ֑י אֵי־זֶ֥ה בַ֙יִת֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר תִּבְנוּ־לִ֔י וְאֵי־זֶ֥ה מָק֖וֹם מְנֽוּחָתִֽי:
The heavens are My throne: I do not need your Temple.  
which is the house: that is fitting for My Shechinah.  
2And all these My hand made, and all these have become," says the Lord. "But to this one will I look, to one poor and of crushed spirit, who hastens to do My bidding.   בוְאֶת־כָּל־אֵ֙לֶּה֙ יָדִ֣י עָשָׂ֔תָה וַיִּֽהְי֥וּ כָל־אֵ֖לֶּה נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה וְאֶל־זֶ֣ה אַבִּ֔יט אֶל־עָנִי֙ וּנְכֵה־ר֔וּחַ וְחָרֵ֖ד עַל־דְּבָרִֽי:
And all these: The heavens and the earth, and for this reason I confined My Shechinah among you when you obeyed Me, for so is My wont, to look at one poor and of crushed spirit, who hastens to do My bidding. But now, I have no desire for you, for whoever slaughters an ox, has smitten its owner and robbed him of it. Therefore, whoever slaughters a lamb seems to Me as one who beheads a dog, and whoever offers up a meal offering is before Me like swine blood, and מַזְכִּיר, he who burns incense. Comp. (Lev. 5:12) “its memorial part (אַזְכָּרָתָהּ).” Also (ibid. 24:7), “and it shall be for the bread as a memorial (לְאַזְכָּרָה).”  
3Whoever slaughters an ox has slain a man; he who slaughters a lamb is as though he beheads a dog; he who offers up a meal-offering is [like] swine blood; he who burns frankincense brings a gift of violence; they, too, chose their ways, and their soul desired their abominations.   גשׁוֹחֵ֨ט הַשּׁ֜וֹר מַכֵּה־אִ֗ישׁ זוֹבֵ֚חַ הַשֶּׂה֙ ע֣וֹרֵֽף כֶּ֔לֶב מַֽעֲלֵ֚ה מִנְחָה֙ דַּם־חֲזִ֔יר מַזְכִּ֥יר לְבֹנָ֖ה מְבָ֣רֵֽךְ אָ֑וֶן גַּם־הֵ֗מָּה בָּֽחֲרוּ֙ בְּדַרְכֵיהֶ֔ם וּבְשִׁקּֽוּצֵיהֶ֖ם נַפְשָׁ֥ם חָפֵֽצָה:
brings a gift of violence: Heb. מְבָרֵ, blesses Me with a gift of violence, brings a gift of violence. This is its explanation, and the expression of בְּרָכָה applies to a gift that is for a reception. Comp. (Gen. 33:11) “Please take my gift (בִּרְכָתִי).” Also (supra 36: 16), “Make peace (בְרָכָה) with me and come out to me.”  
they, too, chose their ways: They desire these evil ways, and I, too, will choose and desire their mockeries. Now if you ask the meaning of גַּם, too, so is the style of the Hebrew language to say twice גַּם one next to the other. Comp. (Deut. 32:25) “Both a young man and a virgin (גַּם בָּחוּר גַּם בְּתוּלָה) ” ; (I Kings 3:26) “neither mine nor yours (גַּם לִי גַּם לָ) ” ; (Ecc. 9:1) “neither love nor hate גַּם שִׂנְאָה) (גַּם אַהֲבָה ” ; (Num. 18:3) “and neither they nor you shall die הֵם גַּם אַתֶּם) (גַּם.” Here, too, both they chose and I will choose.  
4I, too, will choose their mockeries, and their fears I will bring to them, since I called and no one answered, I spoke and they did not hearken, and they did what was evil in My eyes, and what I did not wish they chose.   דגַּם־אֲנִ֞י אֶבְחַ֣ר בְּתַֽעֲלֻֽלֵיהֶ֗ם וּמְגֽוּרֹתָם֙ אָבִ֣יא לָהֶ֔ם יַ֚עַן קָרָ֙אתִי֙ וְאֵ֣ין עוֹנֶ֔ה דִּבַּ֖רְתִּי וְלֹ֣א שָׁמֵ֑עוּ וַיַּֽעֲשׂ֚וּ הָרַע֙ בְּעֵינַ֔י וּבַֽאֲשֶׁ֥ר לֹֽא־חָפַ֖צְתִּי בָּחָֽרוּ:
their mockeries: Heb. בְּתַעֲלוּלֵיהֶם, to mock them, an expression like (ibid. 22:29) “For you mocked (הִתְעַלַּלְתְּ) me.”  
and their fears: What they fear.  
since I called: Hearken and return to Me.  
and no one answered: saying, “I heard.”  
5Hearken to the word of the Lord, who quake at His word, "Your brethren who hate you, who cast you out, said, "For the sake of my name, the Lord shall be glorified," but we will see your joy, and they shall be ashamed.   השִׁמְעוּ֙ דְּבַר־יְהֹוָ֔ה הַֽחֲרֵדִ֖ים אֶל־דְּבָר֑וֹ אָֽמְרוּ֩ אֲחֵיכֶ֨ם שֹֽׂנְאֵיכֶ֜ם מְנַדֵּיכֶ֗ם לְמַ֚עַן שְׁמִי֙ יִכְבַּ֣ד יְהֹוָ֔ה וְנִרְאֶ֥ה בְשִׂמְחַתְכֶ֖ם וְהֵ֥ם יֵבֹֽשׁוּ:
who quake at His word: The righteous who hasten with quaking to draw near to His words.  
Your brethren… said: The transgressors of Israel mentioned above. Another explanation:  
Your brethren… who cast you out, said: Who said to you (Lam. 4:15), “Turn away, unclean one.”  
who hate you, who cast you out: Who say (supra 65:5), “Keep to yourself, do not come near me.” [Because of the confusion, we quote other readings. Some manuscripts, as well as K’li Paz, read:]  
Your brethren… said: The transgressors of Israel mentioned above.  
who hate you, who cast you out: who say (supra 65:5), “Keep to yourself, do not come near me.” Another explanation:  
Your brethren… said: The children of Esau.  
who cast you out: Who said to you (Lam. 4:15), “Turn away, unclean one.”  
For the sake of my name, the Lord shall be glorified: With our greatness, the Holy One, blessed be He, is glorified, for we are closer to Him than you are.  
but we will see your joy: The prophet says, But it is not so as their words, for “we will see your joy, and they shall be ashamed.” Why? For sound a sound of their stirring has come before the Holy One, blessed be He, from what they did in His city, and a sound emanates from His Temple and accuses those who destroyed it, and then the voice of the Lord, recompensing His enemies.  
6There is a sound of stirring from the city, a sound from the Temple, the voice of the Lord, recompensing His enemies.   וק֚וֹל שָׁאוֹן֙ מֵעִ֔יר ק֖וֹל מֵֽהֵיכָ֑ל ק֣וֹל יְהֹוָ֔ה מְשַׁלֵּ֥ם גְּמ֖וּל לְאֹֽיְבָֽיו:
7When she has not yet travailed, she has given birth; when the pang has not yet come to her, she has been delivered of a male child.   זבְּטֶ֥רֶם תָּחִ֖יל יָלָ֑דָה בְּטֶ֨רֶם יָב֥וֹא חֵ֛בֶל לָ֖הּ וְהִמְלִ֥יטָה זָכָֽר:
When she has not yet travailed: When Zion has not yet travailed with birth pangs, she has borne her children; that is to say that her children will gather into her midst, which was desolate and bereft of them, and it is as though she bore them now without birth pangs, for all the nations will bring them into her midst.  
she has been delivered of a male child: Heb. וְהִמְלִיטָה. Any emerging of an embedded thing is called הַמְלָטָה. And הַמְלָטָה is esmoucer, or eschamocier in O.F., to allow to escape.  
8Who heard [anything] like this? Who saw [anything] like these? Is a land born in one day? Is a nation born at once, that Zion both experienced birth pangs and bore her children?   חמִֽי־שָׁמַ֣ע כָּזֹ֗את מִ֚י רָאָה֙ כָּאֵ֔לֶּה הֲי֚וּחַל אֶ֙רֶץ֙ בְּי֣וֹם אֶחָ֔ד אִם־יִוָּ֥לֵֽד גּ֖וֹי פַּ֣עַם אֶחָ֑ת כִּי־חָ֛לָה גַּם־יָֽלְדָ֥ה צִיּ֖וֹן אֶת־בָּנֶֽיהָ:
Is a land born in one day?: Can a pain come to a woman in confinement to bear a land full of sons in one day?  
9"Will I bring to the birth stool and not cause to give birth?" says the Lord. "Am I not He who causes to give birth, now should I shut the womb?" says your God.   טהַֽאֲנִ֥י אַשְׁבִּ֛יר וְלֹ֥א אוֹלִ֖יד יֹאמַ֣ר יְהֹוָ֑ה אִם־אֲנִ֧י הַמּוֹלִ֛יד וְעָצַ֖רְתִּי אָמַ֥ר אֱלֹהָֽיִךְ:
Will I bring to the birth stool and not cause to give birth: Will I bring a woman to the birth stool and not open her womb to bring out her fetus? That is to say, Shall I commence a thing and not be able to complete it? Am I not the One Who causes every woman in confinement to give birth, and now will I shut the womb? This is a question.  
10Rejoice with Jerusalem and exult in her all those who love her: rejoice with her a rejoicing, all who mourn over her.   ישִׂמְח֧וּ אֶת־יְרֽוּשָׁלִַ֛ם וְגִ֥ילוּ בָ֖הּ כָּל־אֹֽהֲבֶ֑יהָ שִׂ֚ישׂוּ אִתָּהּ֙ מָשׂ֔וֹשׂ כָּל־הַמִּֽתְאַבְּלִ֖ים עָלֶֽיהָ:
11In order that you suck and become sated from the breast of her consolations in order that you drink deeply and delight from her approaching glory.   יאלְמַ֚עַן תִּֽינְקוּ֙ וּשְׂבַעְתֶּ֔ם מִשֹּׁ֖ד תַּנְחֻמֶ֑יהָ לְמַ֧עַן תָּמֹ֛צּוּ וְהִתְעַנַּגְתֶּ֖ם מִזִּ֥יז כְּבוֹדָֽהּ:
from the breast: Heb. מִשֹּׁד, an expression of breasts (שָׁדַיִם).  
you drink deeply: Heb. תָּמֹצּוּ, sucer in French, to suck.  
from her approaching glory: Heb. מִזִּיז. From the great glory that is moving and coming nearer to her. זִיז means esmoviment in O.F., movement.  
12For so says the Lord, "Behold, I will extend peace to you like a river, and like a flooding stream the wealth of the nations, and you shall suck thereof; on the side you shall be borne, and on knees you shall be dandled.   יבכִּֽי־כֹ֣ה | אָמַ֣ר יְהֹוָ֗ה הִנְנִ֣י נֹטֶֽה־אֵ֠לֶיהָ כְּנָהָ֨ר שָׁל֜וֹם וּכְנַ֧חַל שׁוֹטֵ֛ף כְּב֥וֹד גּוֹיִ֖ם וִֽינַקְתֶּ֑ם עַל־צַד֙ תִּנָּשֵׂ֔אוּ וְעַל־בִּרְכַּ֖יִם תְּשָֽׁעֳשָֽׁעוּ:
and like a flooding stream: I extend to her the wealth of the nations.  
on the side: On the sides of your nurses, [in Aramaic,] גִּסְסִין.  
you shall be dandled: You shall be dandled as they dandle an infant. Esbanier in O.F.  
13Like a man whose mother consoles him, so will I console you, and in Jerusalem, you shall be consoled.   יגכְּאִ֕ישׁ אֲשֶׁ֥ר אִמּ֖וֹ תְּנַֽחֲמֶ֑נּוּ כֵּ֚ן אָֽנֹכִי֙ אֲנַ֣חֶמְכֶ֔ם וּבִירֽוּשָׁלִַ֖ם תְּנֻחָֽמוּ:
14And you shall see, and your heart shall rejoice, and your bones shall bloom like grass, and the hand of the Lord shall be known to His servants, and He shall be wroth with His enemies.   ידוּרְאִיתֶם֙ וְשָׂ֣שׂ לִבְּכֶ֔ם וְעַצְמֽוֹתֵיכֶ֖ם כַּדֶּ֣שֶׁא תִפְרַ֑חְנָה וְנֽוֹדְעָ֚ה יַד־יְהֹוָה֙ אֶת־עֲבָדָ֔יו וְזָעַ֖ם אֶת־אֹֽיְבָֽיו:
and the hand of the Lord shall be known: When He wreaks His vengeance and His awesome acts, His servants shall know the strength of the might of His hand.  
15For behold, the Lord shall come with fire, and like a tempest, His chariots, to render His anger with fury, and His rebuke with flames of fire.   טוכִּֽי־הִנֵּ֚ה יְהֹוָה֙ בָּאֵ֣שׁ יָב֔וֹא וְכַסּוּפָ֖ה מַרְכְּבֹתָ֑יו לְהָשִׁ֚יב בְּחֵמָה֙ אַפּ֔וֹ וְגַֽעֲרָת֖וֹ בְּלַֽהֲבֵי־אֵֽשׁ:
shall come with fire: With the fury of fire He shall come upon the wicked.  
to render: Heb. לְהָשִׁיב, [lit. to return] to His adversaries with fury His anger.  
16For with fire, will the Lord contend, and with His sword with all flesh, and those slain by the Lord shall be many.   טזכִּ֚י בָאֵשׁ֙ יְהֹוָ֣ה נִשְׁפָּ֔ט וּבְחַרְבּ֖וֹ אֶת־כָּל־בָּשָׂ֑ר וְרַבּ֖וּ חַלְלֵ֥י יְהֹוָֽה:
For with fire: of Gehinnom will the Lord contend with His adversaries, and since He is the plaintiff and the judge, the expression of contending is appropriate for Him, for He, too, presents His claim to find their iniquity and their transgression. Comp. (Ezekiel 38:22) “And I will contend with him (וְנִשְׁפַּטְתִּי) ” ; (Jer. 2:35) “Behold, I contend with you.” It is an expression of debate. Derajjsner in O.F. [And its simple meaning is: For with the fire of the Lord and with His sword, all flesh shall be judged. Similarly, there are many inverted verses in Scriptures.]  
17"Those who prepare themselves and purify themselves to the gardens, [one] after another in the middle, those who eat the flesh of the swine and the detestable thing and the rodent, shall perish together," says the Lord.   יזהַמִּתְקַדְּשִׁ֨ים וְהַמִּֽטַּהֲרִ֜ים אֶל־הַגַּנּ֗וֹת אַחַ֚ר אַחַת֙ (כתיב אַחַד֙) בַּתָּ֔וֶךְ אֹֽכְלֵי֙ בְּשַׂ֣ר הַֽחֲזִ֔יר וְהַשֶּׁ֖קֶץ וְהָֽעַכְבָּ֑ר יַחְדָּ֥ו יָסֻ֖פוּ נְאֻם־יְהֹוָֽה:
Those who prepare themselves: Heb. הַמִּתְקַדְּשִׁים. Those who prepare themselves, “Let you and me go on such-and-such a day to worship such-and-such an idol.”  
to the gardens: where they plant vegetables, and there they would erect idols.  
[one] after one: As Jonathan renders: a company after a company. They prepare themselves and purify themselves to worship, one company after its fellow has completed its worship.  
in the middle: In the middle of the garden. Such was their custom to erect it.  
18And I-their deeds and their thoughts have come to gather all the nations and the tongues, and they shall come and they shall see My glory.   יחוְאָֽנֹכִ֗י מַֽעֲשֵׂיהֶם֙ וּמַחְשְׁבֹ֣תֵיהֶ֔ם בָּאָ֕ה לְקַבֵּ֥ץ אֶת־כָּל־הַגּוֹיִ֖ם וְהַלְּשֹׁנ֑וֹת וּבָ֖אוּ וְרָא֥וּ אֶת־כְּבוֹדִֽי:
And I - their deeds and their thoughts have come etc.: And I What am I to do? Their deeds and their thoughts have come to Me. And that forces Me to gather all the heathens (nations [Mss. and K’li Paz]), and to let them know that their deeds are vanity and the thoughts they are thinking, “For the sake of my name, the Lord shall be glorified,” let them understand that it is false. And where is the gathering? It is the gathering that Zechariah prophesied (14:2): “And I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem.”  
and they shall see My glory: When I wage war with them with the plague of the following description (ibid. 14: 12): “Their flesh shall disintegrate… and their eyes… and their tongue.”  
19And I will place a sign upon them, and I will send from them refugees to the nations, Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, who draw the bow, to Tubal and Javan, the distant islands, who did not hear of My fame and did not see My glory, and they shall recount My glory among the nations.   יטוְשַׂמְתִּ֨י בָהֶ֜ם א֗וֹת וְשִׁלַּחְתִּ֣י מֵהֶ֣ם | פְּ֠לֵיטִים אֶל־הַגּוֹיִ֞ם תַּרְשִׁ֨ישׁ פּ֥וּל וְל֛וּד מֹ֥שְׁכֵי קֶ֖שֶׁת תֻּבַ֣ל וְיָוָ֑ן הָֽאִיִּ֣ים הָֽרְחֹקִ֗ים אֲשֶׁ֨ר לֹֽא־שָֽׁמְע֚וּ אֶת־שִׁמְעִי֙ וְלֹֽא־רָא֣וּ אֶת־כְּבוֹדִ֔י וְהִגִּ֥ידוּ אֶת־כְּבוֹדִ֖י בַּגּוֹיִֽם:
And I will place a sign upon them etc.: Refugees will survive the war, and I will allow them to remain in order to go to report to the distant islands My glory that they saw in the war, and also upon those refugees I will place one of the signs with which their colleagues were punished, in order to let the distant ones know that with this plague, those who gathered about Jerusalem were smitten.  
20And they shall bring all your brethren from all the nations as a tribute to the Lord, with horses and with chariots, and with covered wagons and with mules and with joyous songs upon My holy mount, Jerusalem," says the Lord, "as the children of Israel bring the offering in a pure vessel to the house of the Lord.   כוְהֵבִ֣יאוּ אֶת־כָּל־אֲחֵיכֶ֣ם מִכָּל־הַגּוֹיִ֣ם | מִנְחָ֣ה לַֽיהֹוָ֡ה בַּסּוּסִ֡ים וּ֠בָרֶכֶב וּבַצַּבִּ֨ים וּבַפְּרָדִ֜ים וּבַכִּרְכָּר֗וֹת עַ֣ל הַ֥ר קָדְשִׁ֛י יְרֽוּשָׁלִַ֖ם אָמַ֣ר יְהֹוָ֑ה כַּֽאֲשֶׁ֣ר יָבִיאוּ֩ בְנֵ֨י יִשְׂרָאֵ֧ל אֶת־הַמִּנְחָ֛ה בִּכְלִ֥י טָה֖וֹר בֵּ֥ית יְהֹוָֽה:
and with covered wagons: Heb. וּבַצַּבִּים. These are wagons equipped with partitions and a tent. Comp. (Num. 7: 3) “Six covered wagons (עֶגְלוֹתצָב).”  
and with joyous songs: Heb. וּבַכִּרְכָּרוֹת. With a song of players and dancers. Comp. (II Sam. 6: 14) “And David danced (מְכַרְכֵּר) ,” treper in O.F. [Menahem (p. 109) explains it as an expression meaning a lamb. Comp. (supra 16:1) “Send lambs (כַּר) of the ruler of the land.”]  
as… bring: an offering in a pure vessel for acceptance, so will they bring your brethren as an acceptable offering.  
21And from them too will I take for priests and for Levites," says the Lord.   כאוְגַם־מֵהֶ֥ם אֶקַּ֛ח לַכֹּֽהֲנִ֥ים לַֽלְוִיִּ֖ם אָמַ֥ר יְהֹוָֽה:
And from them too: From the peoples bringing them and from those brought, I will take priests and Levites, for they are now assimilated among the heathens (nations [Mss. and K’li Paz]) under coercion, and before Me the priests and the Levites among them are revealed, and I will select them from among them, and they shall minister before Me, said the Lord. Now where did He say it? (Deut. 29:28) “The hidden things are for the Lord our God.” In this manner it is explained in the Aggadah of Psalms (87:6).  
22"For, as the new heavens and the new earth that I am making, stand before Me," says the Lord, "so shall your seed and your name stand.   כבכִּ֣י כַֽאֲשֶׁ֣ר הַשָּׁמַ֣יִם הַֽ֠חֳדָשִׁים וְהָאָ֨רֶץ הַֽחֲדָשָׁ֜ה אֲשֶׁ֨ר אֲנִ֥י עֹשֶׂ֛ה עֹֽמְדִ֥ים לְפָנַ֖י נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה כֵּ֛ן יַֽעֲמֹ֥ד זַרְעֲכֶ֖ם וְשִׁמְכֶֽם:
23And it shall be from new moon to new moon and from Sabbath to Sabbath, that all flesh shall come to prostrate themselves before Me," says the Lord.   כגוְהָיָ֗ה מִֽדֵּי־חֹ֙דֶשׁ֙ בְּחָדְשׁ֔וֹ וּמִדֵּ֥י שַׁבָּ֖ת בְּשַׁבַּתּ֑וֹ יָב֧וֹא כָל־בָּשָֹ֛ר לְהִשְׁתַּֽחֲו‍ֹ֥ת לְפָנַ֖י אָמַ֥ר יְהֹוָֽה:
24"And they shall go out and see the corpses of the people who rebelled against Me, for their worm shall not die, and their fire shall not be quenched, and they shall be an abhorring for all flesh."   כדוְיָצְאוּ֨ וְרָא֔וּ בְּפִגְרֵי֙ הָֽאֲנָשִׁ֔ים הַפֹּֽשְׁעִ֖ים בִּ֑י כִּ֣י תֽוֹלַעְתָּ֞ם לֹ֣א תָמ֗וּת וְאִשָּׁם֙ לֹ֣א תִכְבֶּ֔ה וְהָי֥וּ דֵֽרָא֖וֹן לְכָל־בָּשָֽׂר:
their worm: The worm that consumes their flesh.  
and their fire: in Gehinnom.  
and abhorring: Heb. דֵרָאוֹן, an expression of contempt. Jonathan, however, renders it as two words: enough (דֵּי) seeing (רְאִיָה), until the righteous say about them, We have seen enough.  

Isaiah Chapter 66

23And it shall be from new moon to new moon and from Sabbath to Sabbath, that all flesh shall come to prostrate themselves before Me," says the Lord.   כגוְהָיָ֗ה מִֽדֵּי־חֹ֙דֶשׁ֙ בְּחָדְשׁ֔וֹ וּמִדֵּ֥י שַׁבָּ֖ת בְּשַׁבַּתּ֑וֹ יָב֧וֹא כָל־בָּשָֹ֛ר לְהִשְׁתַּֽחֲו‍ֹ֥ת לְפָנַ֖י אָמַ֥ר יְהֹוָֽה:
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