CHAMISHOH MI YODEI'A - FIVE QUESTIONS ON THE WEEKLY SEDRAH - PARSHAS BMIDBAR 5766 - BS"D
1) Ch. 1, v. 42: "Bnei Naftoli" - Why is the word "bnei" without a La'med
before it, contrary to the La'med prefix we find by all the other tribes?
2) Ch. 1, v. 53: "V'haL'viim yachanu soviv l'Mishkan ho'eidus" - The area
occupied by the L'viim is called "machaneh L'vioh." People who have certain
types of "tumoh" may not enter this area, and if they are already in it, they are
to be sent out (see Bmidbar 5:2). Included in this list is a "baal keri." If
so, how did the L'viim have marital relations with their wives?
3) Ch. 2, v. 20: "V'olov matteh Menasheh" - Why by the other tribes who were
mentioned after the "degel" head does it say "v'hachonim olov," and here the
word "v'hachonim" is skipped?"
4) Ch. 3, v. 39: "Kol p'ku'dei haL'viim ...... kol zochor mi'ben chodesh
vomaloh shnayin v'esrim o'lef" - The census of all the other tribes was from the
age of twenty years and older. The count of the L'viim was from the age of a
month and older. Yet the L'viim had the smallest population of all the tribes.
5) Ch. 4, v. 6: " V'somu badov" - Why is there a need to place the staves
into the rings of the Holy Ark before transporting it? How were they ever
allowed to be removed? Doesn't the Torah prohibit the removal of the staves in
Shmos 25:15 with the words "lo yosuru mi'menu"?
Answer to questions on parshios B'har-B'chukosai:
1) Ch. 25, v. 6,7: "Lochem l'ochloh l'cho .. , v'livhem't'cho" - Does this
not seem to indicate that you will eat before your animal, contrary to the rule
that one must first feed his animals (gemara Brochos 40a)?
1) This teaches us that one may not feed an animal food that is fit for
human consumption unless the person has had his fill and the left-overs might
spoil, as it says (Shmos 23:11), "v'yisrom tochal chayas haso'deh."
2) This rule only applies when one is eating his own food, not that which is
given by another. The produce of "shviis" is ownerless, so a person may eat
before offering his animals. This would explain why Rivkoh gave drink to
Eliezer before giving the camels (Breishis 24:19), as the water was not Eliezer's.
(Imrei Emes) Some say that drink need not be offered to animals first, only
food need be. This is indicated in the verse "v'hishkiso es ho'eidoh v'es
b'irom" (Bmidbar 20:8).
2) Ch. 25, v. 33: "Va'asher YIGAL" - This verse refers to a person BUYING a
field from a Levi. Why is the word YIGAL used, which means redemption,
rather than YIKNEH since there is no redemption taking place?
The Ntzi"v answers that the cities of the Lviim are actually pockets of
communities within the larger portions of the other tribes. There exists the
possibility that the purchaser of a field from a Levi will be of the same tribe as
the land surrounding the Levite city. Thus, upon purchasing the field from the
Levi, he is actually RECLAIMING it for his tribe, hence the use of the word
3) Ch. 26, v. 6: "V'nosati sholom b'artz'chem" - Rashi says that without the
blessing of peace all the other blessings are meaningless, as it says
(Yeshayohu 45:7), "Yotzeir ohr u'vorei choshech osseh sholom u'vorei es HAKOL." Upon
looking into the verse quoted, you will notice that the last words are not "es
HAKOL," but rather "u'vorei ra."
1) Rabbi Ovadioh of Bartenuroh says that Rashi's words are a take-off on the
verse and he is actually quoting the words of our daily "birkos krias shma."
2) The Sifsei Chachomim answers that Rashi means a derivative of the verse.
Since it contrasts ohr and choshech, likewise there is inherent a contrast of
"ra" and "hakol," that all (HAKOL) is dependent upon the "oseh sholom."
3) Others change the text in Rashi and have the verse appear accurately. The
proof that Rashi brings is as stated in the Sifsei Chachomim.
4) Ch. 26, v. 5: "Vaachaltem lach'm'chem losova" - Rashi (Toras Kohanim) says
that this is the blessing of eating a small bit and being fully satiated.
Since our verse tells us that Hashem responds to our fulfilling His mitzvos with
an abundance of physical needs, what need is there for the blessing of being
satiated with just a bit of food, since much food abounds?
The Chasam Sofer answers that the gemara Ksubos 104a relates that just before
Rabbi Yehudoh haNossi died he lifted his ten fingers skyward and pronounced,
"I have used my fingers for Torah only and in spite of my being very wealthy I
have not derived even a finger's worth of pleasure from this world." Tosfos
d.h. "lo" brings a medrash (Yerushalmi K'subos) that says that before a person
prays that Torah should fill him, he should pray that tasty food should not
fill him. The medrash brings our story with Rabbi Yehudoh Hanossi as an example
We thus derive that satiating oneself is contrary to allowing Torah to
permeate one's being. This is the blessing and advantage of being able to eat just a
bit and being satiated over having an abundance of food and eating large
5) Ch. 26, v. 11: "V'nosati mishkoni b'soch'chem v'lo sigal Nafshi es'chem" -
If Hashem is ready to place His holy dwelling place amongst us, is it not
obvious that His Will won't expel us?
1) In T'hilim 24:3 it says, "Mi yaa'leh v'har Hashem u'mi yokum bimkome
kodsho." We see from this that even if a person has merited to elevate himself to
reach the spiritual apex of "har Hashem" he may still fall, thus necessitating
the verse to end with "u'mi yokum bimkome kodsho - and who can MAINTAIN his
stance in Hashem's holy place." We find that the bnei Yisroel reached the level
of "naa'seh v'nushma" (Shmos 24:7) and yet they fell to the dismal level of
creating a golden calf. Therefore Hashem tells us that He will place His
dwelling place amongst us and not have His Will expel us, meaning that we have
Hashem's assurance that we will not fall from that high level. (Ponim Yofos)
2) The gemara Brochos 5a says that the purpose of suffering is to cleanse
the soul of the impurities it has amassed from sinning. Once the soul has been
cleansed Hashem's Holy Spirit can rest upon the person. Our verse is thus
telling us that once Hashem places His holy dwelling amongst us we will not sin and
there will be no need for Hashem's Will to expel (punish) us. (Tiferes
3) There is a fear that with wealth will come the abominable character trait
of haughtiness. Our verse tells us, however, that if the wealth comes as a
result of following Hashem's statutes, "Im b'chukosei teileichu," then no bad
results will come out of it. (Arvei Nachal in parshas Va'yeishev)
4) Hashem will place His holy dwelling place amongst us because of the vast
majority of bnei Yisroel who heed His word. His Will won't expel us in spite
of the very small minority of bnei Yisroel who do not heed His word. (N'tzi"v)
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