CHAMISHOH MI YODEI'A - FIVE QUESTIONS ON THE WEEKLY SEDRAH - PARSHAS B'HAR 5771 - BS"D
1) Ch. 25, v. 3: "Sheish shonim tizra" - Six years you will sow - Rabbi Yaakov of Vienna comments that this is a great praise of the agricultural advantage in Eretz Yisroel, that one can plant continuously for six years and have abundant crops, without having to skip any years to allow the land to replenish its mineral content. The Kli Yokor says that it is the norm to skip every third year to allow the land to rebuild its depleted growing power. If so, what is the greatness of keeping shmitoh, with the medrash calling the observant farmers "giborei ko'ach?" Even a gentile farmer leaves the land fallow, and with even greater frequency!
2) Ch. 25, v. 3: "V'osafto es tvu'osoh" - And you will harvest HER grain - The female form "HER grain" refers back to what?
3) Ch. 25, v. 3: "Tvu'ossoh" - Its grain - The verse mentions "so'decho" and "karmecho." Does "tvu'ossoh" refer only to the produce of "sodcho," as the produce of a "kerem" is grapes or wine, and not "tv'uoh?"
4) Ch. 25, v. 30: "Ad m'los lo shonoh t'mimoh" - Until there is completed for him a full year - The word "lo" seems to be superfluous.
5) Ch. 25, v. 33: "Vaasher yigal min haLviim" - And when he will redeem from the Lviim - The intention of "yigal" is simply that he will purchase, so why doesn't the verse say "yikneh?"
The answer is obvious. Hashem requires the farmers to leave the land fallow in unison, with everyone observing shmitoh during the same year. A non-believer might be frightened, thinking that there will be no food available.
From the flow of the verse it would seem that it refers to the six years' produce. If so the word should be "tvu'osoN." We might say that it refers to the earth, mentioned in the previous verse. However, Rabbeinu Yoel says that the suffix letter Hei alludes to the five types of grain, wheat, barley, spelt, oats, and rye.
Imrei Noam says that it refers also to "kerem," as we find this expression even by a vineyard, "Usvuas kerem" (Dvorim 22).
The gemara Arochin 31a and the T.K. derive from this the following ruling: One can only redeem a property in a walled city within a year of selling it. What if Reuvein sold it to Shimon during Nison and Shimon then sold it to Levi during Tishrei? Do we say that Reuvein can only redeem it from Levi until the following Nison, or do we give Reuvein a full year from the sale to the present owner? The word "lo" of our verse tells us that he is limited to the time frame of the sale to the first purchaser, as "lo" refers to the person to whom he sold it, and not to a subsequent owner.
The Paa'nei'ach Rozo answers that the complete land of Eretz Yisroel in essence belongs to the tribes, save the Lviim. Hashem, so to say, has taken 42 cities from the other tribes and allotted them to the Lviim. The verse therefore stresses that when someone purchases a property from a Levite and in a sense is redeeming it, reclaiming it for his tribe, nevertheless, it is to be returned on the Yoveil year.
The Ibn Ezra says that since the previous verse uses the term "geuloh," it just carries on with the same term in our verse.
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