ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous dafRosh Hashanah 17
ROSH HASHANAH 17 & 18 (8, 9 Av) - these Dafim have been dedicated by Rabbi
Eli Turkel of Ra'anana, Israel, to the memory of his father, Reb Yisrael
Shimon ben Shlomo ha'Levi Turkel (Yarhzeit: 10 Av).
1. When Chanah said "Hashem Meimis u'Mechayeh, *Morid She'ol va'Ya'al*" -
she was referring to the Beinonim, whom Hashem sends down to Gehinom and
then, almost immediately, takes out.
2. According to Beis Hillel, when David said "Ahavti Ki Yishma Hashem es
Koli Tachanunai" - he was referring to the (better) Beinonim (as we shall
soon see), whom Hashem tips to the scale of merit, to stop them from going
down to Gehinom.
1. ... 'Posh'ei Yisrael be'Gufan' - means Jews who do not lay Tefilin
(according to Rabeinu Chananel, even just once).
2. ... 'Posh'ei Umos ha'Olam be'Gufan' - gentiles who are guilty of
(b) The epitome of those who sinned and who caused others to sin, too - is
Yerav'am ben Nevat.
- ... Minim - are people who twist the words of Torah (such as the Tzedokim, who rejected the oral Torah).
- ... Mesoros - are people who hand Jewish money over to non-Jews.
- ... Apikorsim - who despise Talmidei-Chachamim.
(c) This entire category of people - go down to Gehinom, and remain there
(d) Besides those who deny the Torah and Techi'as ha'Meisim - this category
also comprises people who keep separate from the community (even though they
may well not have actually sinned) and community-leaders who use their
position to bully the people and cast fear into their hearts.
(a) When the Gemara says that this group of people are so severely punished
because 'Pashtu Yedeihem bi'Z'vul' - it means to say that, through their
sins, they caused the Beis-Hamikdash (also known as 'Z'vul' - Hashem's
dwelling) to be destroyed.
(b) Rav Yitzchak bar Avin describes their faces as being as black as the
base of a pot. Rava is more specific - according to him, it refers to the
wealthy men of his town, Mechuza (who were extremely over-indulgent - the
sin which caused the ten tribes to go into exile).
(a) The Pasuk in Zecharyah writes "ve'Heveisi es ha'Shelishis ba'Eish ... ".
We reconcile this with Beis Hillel, who maintain that Hashem tips the scales
of the Beinonim to spare them the anguish of Gehinom - by differentiating
between Beinonim whose sins include 'Posh'ei Yisrael be'Gufan' (who go down
to Gehinom but immediately come up again).
(b) Posh'ei Yisrael be'Gufan who are Beinonim are released from Gehinom
immediately; whereas those who are Resha'im burn there for twelve months.
(c) Rava interprets the Pasuk in Tehilim ...
1. ... "Ahavti, Ki Yishma Hashem, es Koli Tachanunai" - to mean that it is
only when Hashem listens to our Tefilos that we can truly declare that we
are loved by Him.
(d) We learn from the Pasuk "Lachein Yere'uhu Anashim Lo Yir'eh Kol Chachmei
Leiv" - that a community leader who causes the people to be afraid of him,
will not have a son who is a Talmid-Chacham.
2. ... "Dalosi ve'Li Yehoshi'a" - even though we are poor in Mitzvos, we are
worthy of being saved (because of our resilience - we always do Teshuvah and
(a) According to Beis Hillel, Hashem tips the scales in favor of the
Benonim. He does this, either by raising the scales of merit, or by pushing
down the scales of demerit, or by removing the first sin from the scale of
(b) This does not mean that, according to Tana de'Bei Rebbi Yishmael (the
author of the third reason), that sin is immediately obliterated - in fact,
Hashem puts the sin aside, and, if there are more sins than Mitzvos, He
makes sure that it is re-placed).
(c) Rava learns from the Pasuk "Nosei Avon ve'Over al Pesha" - that Hashem
forgives the sins of those who overlook the transgressions of others.
(a) Rav Papa was embarrassed to see his colleague Rav Huna B'rei de'Rav
Yehoshua up and about - because he had all but pronounced him dead, when,
but a short time earlier, he had called the Chevra Kadisha to arrange his
(b) Rav Huna B'rei de'Rav Yehoshua reassured him however, that he had not
been mistaken - by informing him that the Heavenly court had indeed
sentenced him to death, but that, at the last moment, he received a
reprieve, based on his tendency to overlook the transgressions of others. So
they decided to treat him in the same way.
(c) The literal meaning of 'Alyah ve'Kotz Bah' - is a fat-tail from a sheep,
with a thorn in it.
(d) The 'strings' to which Rebbi Acha bar Chanina was referring is - the
stipulation that he humbles himself before Hashem ('Meisim Atzmo
(a) We resolve the apparent contradiction in all the following Pesukim in
the same way:
1. Tzadik Hashem be'Chol Derachav, ve'Chasid be'Chol Ma'asav";
(b) "*va'Ya'avor Hashem* al Panav va'Yikra" - Chazal Darshan from
"va'Ya'avor" (an expression that is used to describe a Chazan - 'Yoreid
Lifnei ha'Teivah') to mean that Hashem (Kevayachol) put on a Talis and went
before the Amud like a Sheli'ach Tzibur, to show Moshe His thirteen
2. "u'Lecha Hashem ha'Chesed, Ki Ata Teshalem ke'Ish ke'Ma'aseihu";
3. "ve'Rav Chesed ve'Emes"; - Initially, when Hashem judges, He judges the
world righteously (according to what they deserved); but later, when He sees
that they will not survive, He judges them leniently, beyond the letter of
(c) He then told Moshe - that whenever Yisrael sin, they should do before
Him this order (say before Him the thirteen attributes of Hashem), and He
will forgive them. (The Sh'lah points out that Hashem did not say '*say*
before Me', but *'do* before Me ... ', insinuating that the main thing is to
emulate Hashem in these traits, and not just say them).
(a) The Name 'Hashem' appears twice in the thirteen attributes - because the
first one refers to *before* we have sinned, to say that Hashem is kindly
disposed towards us *before* we have sinned (in spite of our potential to
sin - and in spite of our intentions to do so), and the second one, to
*after* we have sinned, to say that, even then, He remains kindly disposed
towards us (provided we do Teshuvah).
(b) The words "Hinei Anochi Kores B'ris" immediately following the thirteen
Attributes of Hashem - signify that Hashem made a covenant with them, that
whenever we recite them, Hashem will forgive us our sins.
(a) Rebbi Yochanan learns from the Pasuk in Yeshayah "Hashmein Leiv ha'Am
ha'Zeh ... *ve'Shav ve'Rafa Lo"* - that Teshuvah has the power to tear up
the evil decree. We know that the Navi is referring to *after* the decree
has been sealed - because of the words "ve'Rafa Lo", and it is only a decree
that has been sealed that requires a cure.
(b) The Beraisa which emphatically states that even if someone who did not
do Teshuvah between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kipur brings numerous offerings,
he will not be forgiven (i.e. Hashem's decree will not be altered) - refers
to an individual, whereas Rebbi Yochanan is referring to a community.
(c) And the Beraisa which describes how, on the one hand, if the people were
wicked on Rosh Hashanah, but did Teshuvah after the final decree has been
sealed, then Hashem will direct all of the little rain that He decreed they
would receive, just where it is needed; on the other hand, if they were
righteous on Rosh Hashanah, but retracted from their righteousness after the
decree had been sealed, then He will direct the bountiful rain to fall in
the wrong season and in places where it is not needed - speaks where Hashem
has another alternative; where when He does not, then He will tear up the
evil decree of a community, if they do Teshuvah.
(a) The significance of the back to front 'Nunin' in the Pasuk in Tehilim
(which describes how the sailors implore Hashem to save them from the
tempestuous sea, and how their prayers are answered) serve as brackets - to
say that He will only save them before the final decree has been sealed, but
(b) The Beraisa compares these 'Nunin' to 'Achin' and 'Rakin' - which always
come to exclude something (i.e. to limit the issue under discussion).
(c) Rebbi Yochanan (who holds that *communal* prayers are effective even
*after* the decree has been sealed) explains this Pasuk - by differentiating
between a single community (comprising a collection of individuals) and many
individuals who Daven individually, but all at the same time (such as may
sailors at sea in many boats). The latter are not called a community.
(a) Bluris the convert asked Raban Gamliel how he would reconcile the Pasuk
in Eikev "Asher *Lo Yisa* Fanim" with the Pasuk in Naso "*Yisa* Hashem Panav
Eilecha". Rebbi Yossi ha'Kohen answered that the *first* Pasuk speaks about
sins between man and man, and the *second*, about sins between man and
(b) Rebbi Akiva answered - that the first Pasuk speaks *after* the final
decree has been sealed, and the second, *before*.
(c) Rebbi Yochanan establishes this Beraisa too, by an individual.