Book 4: Numbers


Chapter 16 - Text Notes

1 Rashi generally follows the plain, rather than the Midrashic interpretation. Here, however, Rashi informs us that his comments will follow R' Tanchuma, since his exposition fits so beautifully into the plain meaning of the text. (M.) Indeed, there is no satisfactory interpretation for {Hebrew Ref} aside from Tanchuma's, as quoted by Rashi. (D.D.)

2 Ramban disagrees. His interpretation is "Korach took thought." He conceptualized his attack against Moshe and the kehunah. According to Rashi, as well, the reference is to Korach's thought. His thoughts took him to a different side, away from the community. This teaches that Korach's pernicious behavior was not impulsive, but was methodically planned in advance. (D.D.)

3 The Kohanim service the entire community. Thus, Korach's denial of their validity separated him from everyone.(G.A.)

4 Iyov, 15:12. The thought in your heart denying G-d's justice, separates you from other people.

5 Tanchuma, 2.

6 The essence of a person is the mind, which cannot be "taken" physically, but may be "taken" figuratively when submitting to another's persuasion. (G.A.)

7 20:25.

8 Hosheiah, 14:3.

9 Scripture does not generally mention a person's ancestry, but our passage traces Korach's illustrious lineage in order to emphasize his wickedness in departing from their ways. Why does it omit the most illustrious of all, the patriarch Yaakov? (G.A.)

10 Bereishis, 49:6.

11 As Yaakov was, in fact, Korach's ancestor, what is gained from omitting this in Scripture? The antecedents mentioned here represent the sources of Korach's evil activities. Some imperfection in them evolved into his wickedness. Yaakov prayed that he be spared from serving as a source for Korach's actions, and his prayer was answered. (G.A.)

12 But Yaakov is mentioned as a source for Korach's good deeds. (G.A.)

13 Upon which the Levites stood and chanted during the Temple services.

14 Divrei Hayamim 1, 6:23.

15 Tanchuma, 4.

16 The singular usage, {Hebrew Ref} , "Korach took..," rather than the plural, {Hebrew Ref} , "Korach, Dasan and Aviram took ...," indicates that Korach was the prime mover who took Dasan and Aviram. (G.A.) Also, the Levites and the Israelite firstborn claimed that they should replace the kohanim. Since Dasan and Aviram belonged to neither group, why did they join the rebellion? Because Korach drew them. (M.)

17 Tanchuma, 4. Cf Rashi to 3:38.

18 Amram, Yitzhar, Chevron, Uziel. (Shemos, 6:18)

19 Tanchuma, 1. Korach did not contest Moshe's choice of Elitzafan as the leader, because this would have exposed his selfish motive. (G.A.) Nor did he attempt to depose Moshe himself as the monarch, as the people would certainly have supported Moshe, who had led them out of Egypt. (S.C.) He preferred to object to the kehunah, so that the Levites and the firstborn, who were to replace the kohanim, would join him in the rebellion. Once Moshe's authority was successfully challenged, he could then proceed with his real objective of ousting Elitzafan in his own favor. "I'll oppose him" refers to the attack on the kehunah "I'll nullify everything he said" refers to the final step of ousting Elitzafan. (M.)

20 Like Dasan and Aviram, who were drawn to their neighbor Korach. (M.)

21 1:16. "Those summoned" there refers to the tribal leaders, indicating that our "those summoned," too, refers to the leaders, Elitzur, and others like him---the rest of the group of two hundred fifty, also men of great distinction. (M.)

22 From the proximity of our chapter to the preceding chapter (15:3--41) of tzitzis. (M. from Tanchuma) Korach had them dress in techeiles, rather than simply debate with Moshe, in order to create a spectacle which would attract everyone's attention. (G.A.)

23 That a thread of techeiles be twisted around the tzitzis (15:38). Aside from the techeiles, however, the tzitzis obligation itself was not under question. (M.)

24 Korach thought that such a garment did not require techeiles. Tanchuma also relates that they asked Moshe whether a house filled with Torah scrolls requires a mezuzah on its doorpost, and scoffed when he answered in the affirmative. Korach thought that such a house does not require a mezuzah. Although Korach did not question Moshe's role as the king, he attacked his position as the supervisor over the people's fulfillment of the mitzvos and as the teacher of Torah. The purpose of the techeiles fringe is to remind the wearer to perform the mitzvos ---"when you see it, you will remember all of G-d's commandments and do them" (15:39). Korach argued that a garment made of techeiles serves as a reminder in itself, and no additional fringe is necessary. The people were compared to the garment, Moshe to the fringe. They were capable of remembering the mitzvos themselves, and Moshe's supervision was unnecessary. The mezuzah's purpose is to establish the study of Torah among the people---"you shall teach them (the words of Torah) to your sons, discuss them, etc., and inscribe them on the doorposts of your home and in your gateways." (Devorim, 6:9) Korach contended that in a house filled with Torah scrolls, the Torah is already established, and no mezuzah is needed. The people were all Torah scrolls, and Moshe's Torah lessons were not needed. Or, the Torah scroll argument was directed against Moshe as the teacher of Torah, and the tzitzis argument against Aharon, who represented the people in performing the services at the Mishkon. They could perform the services themselves, and did not need Aharon's representation. (G.A.)

25 Tanchuma, 2. Unlike "the son of Levi," which refers to Levi's son Kehos (above), "the sons of Reuvein" is not a literal reference to Eliav and Peles. They were not his sons (see Bereishis, 46:9). The meaning, rather, is "of the tribe of Reuvein," and the reference is to Dasan, Aviram, and On. (D.D.)

26 Their holiness in itself would not justify the complaint, "Why do you raise yourselves above the congregation"? Perhaps their leaders are holier. But as they all heard the Word, why do you raise yourselves above them by claiming that G-d wishes to communicate only with you? (G.A.)

27 Tanchuma, 4.

28 Korach seems to have attacked Moshe's position as well as Aharon's "why do you raise yourselves..."? Yet, in his reply, Moshe mentions only the kehunah (v. 10). Because Moshe had taken the monarchy, Korach attacked the addition of the kehunah for his brother. (G.A.)

29 Moshe's monarchy, however, was not an issue in itself. Every nation needs a king, and Moshe was certainly no less qualified than another. But the kehunah, they argued, was superfluous. (Ibid.)

30 Tanchuma, 4.

31 Moshe and Aharon also fell to their faces during the altercation with the spies [14:5]. (S.C.) There, they fell before the people to implore them not to return to Egypt. (Ramban, there) Here, Moshe's hands were weakened.

32 "Now ... G-d will work with a man two or three times" (Iyov, 33:29), "... but for the fourth, I will not release him" (Amos, 1:3). (G.A.)

33 Rashi to Devorim, 1:1, however, follows another opinion which places Korach's dispute in Chatzeros, before the episode of the spies. (M. See G.A. there.)

34 Shemos, 32:11.

35 11:2.

36 14:13.

37 Tanchuma, 5.

38 Figuratively, by the heat of the dispute. (M.) Or, literally. In all likelihood, someone drank a cup of wine during his meal, disqualifying him from appearing in the Divine Presence. (G.A.)

39 Moshe always refrained from wine, in constant expectation of Divine visitation, Aharon refrained in order to qualify for performing the sacrificial services, and the drunkenness of Korach's evil followers was of no concern to Moshe. Why did he delay? So that they might repent. (G.A.)

40 Tanchuma, 5.

41 This is from, "the Levites shall be mine" (8:14). (M.) Korach did not directly attack the Levites, but since they served with the kohanim as a single unit, his challenge to the kohanim implied at attack on them as well. (G.A.)

42 This is from, "Aharon was separated, and consecrated as the holy of holies" (Divrei Hayamim 1, 23:13.) (M.)

43 G-d will bring the holy one close to Him, as is evident from Targum. But {Hebrew Ref} is not interpreted as "he (the holy one chosen by G-d) will bring an offering to Him (G-d)." The appropriate phrase would then be {Hebrew Ref} , "he will bring an offering to Him." (G.A.)

44 Bereishis, 1:5.

45 Divrei Hayamim 1, 23:13, Tanchuma, 5.

46 Why did Moshe instruct them to perform a service which would consume them? It was not his choice. He merely acquiesced to their desire to serve as Kohonim Gedolim. (G.A.)

47 Vayikra, 10:1,2.

48 Tanchuma, 5.

49 By sinning, they were responsible, themselves, for the destruction of their souls.

50 17:3.

51 Korach is not listed among the deadly sinners. (S.C.)

52 Tehillim, 99:6.

53 The Levites were organized into "watches," or family groups, each of which served at the Temple during a given week. (Rambam, Klei Hamikdash, 3:9.)

54 "...the king's seer, with the word of G-d." (Divrei Hayamim 1,25:5)

55 At the simple level, this refers to Aharon. Here, it is homiletically applied to the individuals in Korach's group who would repent and be spared.

56 Tanchuma, 5.

57 Rashi here differs from his earlier interpretation of Korach's criticism of Moshe, {Hebrew Ref} (above, v.3). There, he interprets "you have taken too much for yourselves." This infers that the only impropriety, was taking more than the proper amount. This interpretation does not apply in our passage, where Moshe accuses Korach of disputing G-d. Here, any amount is inappropriate. Rashi, therefore, changes the interpretation to "this is immense for you." (G.A.)

58 Our passage opens with Moshe speaking to Korach and then shifting to his exhortation of the sons of Levi. (G.A.)

59 Tanchuma, 6.

60 Not close to Him. This was already stated in verse 9. Our verse adds that He brought you close to the service. (M.)

61 Verse 9 stated that He separated you from the rest of the community. Perhaps this means merely that you are obligated to serve, whereas their service is optional. Our verse asserts that you were brought close, but they were disqualified. (G.A.)

62 The {Hebrew Ref} in {Hebrew Ref} is not part of the root of the word, but is a prefix meaning "because." (M.)

63 Rashi quotes the passage literally, "you, and your entire congregation who are gathered, against G-d." It is understood as "you, and your entire congregation who are gathered, are gathered against G-d." (L.H.)

64 Tanchuma, 6.

65 Moshe had already warned them, yet he approached them again. (G.A.)

66 Tanchuma, 10.

67 "We will not go up," rather than "we will not go." (G.A.)

68 Shemos, 3:17.

69 In the text, death in the wilderness is mentioned first (v. 13), then the failure to reach the land of milk and honey (v.14), yet Rashi reverses the order because death in the wilderness includes not reaching the land. Thus, it would be illogical to first mention the death, then add the failure to reach the land. The text, however, mentions the death decree first, because this was the indication that they would never reach the land. The sense of their complaint is, "you decreed death in the wilderness, so it is clear that you will never bring us to the land." (G.A.)

70 14:29.

71 Not "If you put our eyes out." Then we will have met, and going up to you would be irrelevant. (G.A.)

72 Not simply "if you put our eyes out we will not go up to you." Obviously, we would then be unable to go up. Rather, "even under the threat of putting our eyes out, we will not go up." (M.)

73 They really meant their own eyes. See Rashi to 12:12.

74 Tanchuma, 7. Although {Hebrew Ref} generally means "he was angry," here it means "he was distressed." See Bereishis, 45:5.

75 Ramban objects to this interpretation, contending that Moshe's request was directed only against Dasan and Aviram, because of their extremely offensive remarks, and they were not among the two hundred and fifty incense burners. Rashi's opinion is that the two hundred and fifty pretenders to the kehunah Gedolah acted on behalf of all of Korach's followers, just as the Kohein Gadol actually represents the people. Thus, Moshe requested that their incense-offering be rejected because of Dasan and Aviram, whom they represented. (G.A.) Or, after Moshe's overture to Dasan and Aviram was rejected, he returned his attention to Korach and his group, and asked G-d to refuse their offering.(M.)

76 The incense-offering was patently unacceptable, since the 250 were not kohanim, and there was no need to ask that it be denied. (G.A.)

77 The communal olah-sacrifice offered twice daily. Shemos, 29:38.

78 Tanchuma, 7.

79 Not "I did not take one donkey from them," but "I did not take a donkey from any one of them." (M.)

80 Shemos, 4:20.

81 Not because I had no need. Even when I needed one, I did not take theirs. (M.)

82 Tanchuma, ibid.

83 "they" does not refer to others, but to the congregation mentioned above in this passage. They were the ones with the firepans in v. 17. (M.)

84 But "each" does not include Korach himself, who is mentioned here separately with Aharon. (G.A.)

85 As Scripture does not explain how Korach enticed them, it must have been through his known method of operation-mockery. (G.A.)

86 How could he have congregated the people, who were not involved until now? By enticing them throughout the night. (M.)

87 Tanchuma, 7.

88 But G-d Himself cannot be seen. (G.A.)

89 But not "knower of souls" in our context. (M.) {Hebrew Ref} here means "thoughts"; as in Yechezkel 20:32. (G.A.)

90 Tanchuma, ibid.

91 One who has sinned. {Hebrew Ref} , lit. "will sin," is understood as "has sinned," since it refers to Korach, who already sinned. (M.)

92 Tanchuma, ibid.

93 Not literally "go up" to Korach. The intent here is the opposite. (G.A.)

94 From your place, which is around Korach's dwelling. (G.A.)

95 Tanchuma, 3.

96 {Hebrew Ref} , "and stood," seems redundant. It teaches that they blasphemed, like {Hebrew Ref} means "he stood disdainfully," at the incident of Golias. (M., from Tanchuma)

97 Shmuel 1, 17:16.

98 This is when a person reaches the age of majority, and is held accountable for his actions.

99 Cf. Rashi to Bereishis, 23:1.

100 Although our passage records the presence of the infants at the scene of the blasphemy, it does not say that they were punished. Rashi assumes that they were, because the flow of the narrative indicates that all those mentioned here were included later (v. 32) in the punishment. (M.) Indeed, if the infants were absolved from retribution because they were considered non-participants, Scripture would not mention them at all in the account of the crime. (G.A)

101 Tanchuma, 3. Why is this transgression different? Because dispute and gehinom were both brought into being on the second day of creation, indicating that the two are fundamently linked, and that one, therefore, leads inexorably to the next. The disputer suffers gehinom, quite aside from the matter of punishment for evil, by simple cause and effect, like a person who suffers a burn when touching a flame. Thus, the minors who appeared as part of Korach's group were also consumed by the gehinom pit which swallowed the entire company. (G.A.)

102 From "all" these deeds, even the ones Korach did not dispute directly. (G.A.)

103 Natural death would exonerate them, proving that they were justified in claiming that Moshe acted independently, and was not sent by G-d. (G.A.)

104 G-d recreates the universe daily, but Moshe asked for something new. (G.A.)

105 This is a new function, but not literally a new creation. "Nothing at all is new under the sun" [Koheles, 1:9]. (M. See Ramban)

106 {Hebrew Ref} , "and" the earth will open [its mouth], is not in addition to the new creation. It is the new creation itself. (M.)

107 V. 32.

108 Rashi adds this to balance with Verse 29, where Moshe said that if they die normally, G-d did not send him. Now he completes the equation by saying that if they are swallowed up, then he was instructed by G-d. (M.)

109 Sanhedrin, 110a., to explain the apparent redundancy, {Hebrew Ref} . (G.A.)

110 Not literally---there are no new creations. This refers, rather, to the location of the mouth of gehinom. If it was placed here during creation, fine, if not, place it here now. (G.A., from Sanhedrin)

111 But not from the cries of those who perished. This would not have frightened them into fleeing. (M.)

Chapter 17 - Text Notes

112 But not the fire on the altar. That fire was unrelated to the sanctity of the pans. (M.) Nor does it refer to the fire which consumed the men. That fire was intangible, and could not be removed. (G.A.)

113 There was no mitzvah to fulfill with the fire itself. Fling it away to clear the pans. (G.A.)

114 The 250 men, by using them to offer incense. (M.)

115 Rashi substitutes {Hebrew Ref} , "willful sinners," for Scripture's {Hebrew Ref} , generally "unintentional sinners." They willfully disputed the Holy One. (M.) At first, they merely followed their neighbor Korach. Then, they were merely {Hebrew Ref} . Later, they sinned willfuly, and became {Hebrew Ref} . (S.C.)

116 Against their souls. By their own sinful actions, they condemned their own souls. (G.A.)

117 Shemos, 27:2. But not the golden incense altar (Shemos, 30:3), although the firepans had been used for burning incense. They were made of copper, whereas the incense altar was made of pure gold. (G.A.) Also, the overlay was a symbol to remind the people not to repeat the transgressions of Korach and his followers. The copper altar stood in the Sanctuary courtyard, where it was visible to the people. But the incense altar was placed inside the tent of communion, where the people were not permitted. It could not serve as a reminder. (Imrei Shefer)

118 This is not a separate injunction against being like Korach, but an explanation of the first part of the passage. (M)

119 Not Korach literally, as he did not suffer tzora'as, but someone who, like him, disputes the kehunah. (M.) Or, the disputer will be stricken with tzora'as, which is compared to death (12:12), like Korach, who actually died. (G.A.)

120 Shemos, 4:6.

121 King of Yehudah, who was stricken with tzora'as when he tried to usurp the kehunah by offering incense. (Divrei Hayamim 2,26:19)

122 Tanchuma, 96:11.

123 How else could Moshe have known that incense is effective against the plague?

124 89a.

125 The angel, not Aharon, stood between the dead and the living, i.e., was prevented from continuing his killing. (G.A.)

126 V. 15.

127 According to this interpretation, it was by G-d's command that the incense was used, not by Moshe's knowledge of the secret. (G.A.)

128 The incense had the power to heal or destroy, depending on the manner it was offered. Here, it healed. When it was offered inproperly by Korach's followers and by Nadav and Avihu, it destroyed. Rashi's remark (16:6) that it contained deadly poison is not meant literally, but alludes to Moshe's prayer that none of the 250 sinners be spared because of their previous acts of merit. (D.D.)

129 This makes it necessary for Scripture to explain that one staff is enough for Levi. (G.A.)

130 Bereishis, 8:1.

131 Esther, 7:10.

132 "In the midst of their staffs" seems redundant. It teaches that it was precisely in the middle. (G.A.)

133 Tanchuma, Acharei Mos, 8.

134 Referring to the blossoms which appear before the fruit itself. Occasionally, however, {Hebrew Ref} precedes {Hebrew Ref} , as in Yeshayah, 27:6. (S.C.)

135 He matured so that he was recognized separately from his mother.

136 Yeshayah, 18:5.

137 When he tried to unsurp the kehunah, he was immediately stricken with tzora'as. (Divrei Hayamim 2, 26:19)

138 Ramban disagrees, contending that the miracle of the staff symbolized only the choice of the Levites, but not of Aharon. Rashi's opinion is that since Aharon's name was inscribed on the staff, the miracle indicated that he was chosen as well as his tribe. (G.A.)

139 Do not misinterpret {Hebrew Ref} as "you [Moshe] will end their complaint." Moshe was not involved in ending the complaint. (M.) The proper interpretation is "their complaint will end."

140 Where the {Hebrew Ref} is verbalized with a {Hebrew Ref} .

141 Or only one.

142 A single extra step will lead to death. Without their presence in the courtyard, however, the probability of entering the Tent was remote, and they would not have complained. This is derived from the repetition, {Hebrew Ref} , meaning, "anyone approaching [the courtyard], who comes close to the Mishkon..." (M.)

143 Not to a death which already occurred, but to die in the future. (M.)

Chapter 18 - Text Notes

144 The people complained to Moshe (17:27), who certainly asked G-d. In replying, G-d would not have ignored him and spoken to Aharon. (Minchas Yehudah)

145 Mechilta, 1:4.

146 Not Aharon's father, Amram, but his grandfather, Kehos. The children of Kehos were in charge of the Ark and the other sacred vessels. Our passage, which instructs that those vessels be protected (Rashi below), was obviously addressed to them. (M.)

147 Not in warning against approaching the kohanim, but in warning against approaching them during their service. (M.)

148 But not by actually assisting the kohanim in performing their Sanctuary services. Only the kohanim were authorized. (M.) Nor did the Levites serve the personal needs of the kohanim. They assisted only in Sanctuary affairs. (G.A., from v. 6)

149 Sifri, 18:6.

150 Like the rest of the parshah, our passage is addressed to the kohanim. (G.A.)

151 Verse 1 admonishes the kohanim to prevent the Levites from taking part in their services, the aim of our verse is to prevent the Israelites from taking part in their services. (M.)

152 Rashi here explains that the admonishment was directed at the Kohanim; but Zevachim 16a, states that our passage serves as a warning to the unauthorized persons themselves, against participating in the kehunah services. (M.) Still, the two interpretations may be reconciled. "No commoner may approach you" clearly warns the person himself, as stated by Zevachim. Rashi asserts that the kohanim were admonished to prevent the Israelites from violating that warning. (G.A.)

153 Sifri, 18:11.

154 V.4.

155 Sifri, 18:6. The "gift" was that they relieved the kohanim of the obligation to perform the administrative duties at the Sanctuary. (M.)

156 The interpretation is not that your service is a gift to G-d---it is an obligation to serve him. Rather, it is a gift to you. (G.A.)

157 It is yours absolutely, to everyone's exclusion. This is why the passage concludes, "and the commoner who approaches shall be killed." (Ramban)

158 "Behold" denotes zestful anticipation, indicating joy. Even "behold, I am bringing the flood waters on the earth to destroy all flesh" (Bereishis, 6:17) indicates a degree of joy, in destroying the wicked. (G.A. from Sifri. See his commentary.)

159 Shemos, 4:14. Aharon will rejoice when he sees Moshe.

160 Chulin, 133b, lists them.

161 Verse 19. Just as salt remains eternally fresh, so will the gifts be given to the kohanim eternally. (G.A.)

162 Sifri, 18:20.

163 You must take care not to defile them with ritual uncleanliness. But the kohanim are not obligated to guard terumah from unauthorized persons, as with the Sanctuary services above [vs. 1,4]. (M.)

164 Sifri, 18:20. Not "for annointing." Terumah is given from grain and wine, which cannot be used for annointing. (M.)

165 Not literally "from" the fire, which would indicate that the kohanim are to receive a portion of the parts burnt on the altar, for those parts are forbidden for human use. Rather, "after" the fire. The kohanim may partake of their gifts only after the fire has consumed the parts placed on the altar. (M.)

166 They, too, are categorized as "supremely sacred" [above, in our passage]. (G.A.)

167 Zevachim, 44b. From {Hebrew Ref} here and {Hebrew Ref} above, 5:8. Scripture there declares that when a robbery victim without heirs---i.e., a proselyte with no relatives---died before the stolen property was recovered, the property is given to the kohein.

168 The minchah- sin- and guilt-offerings, described as "supremely holy" in verse 9, and in Vayikra, 6:10.

169 As specified in Vayikra, 6:19.

170 The courtyard was entitled "the holy," the inner chamber of the Mishkon "the supremely holy" (Shemos, 26:33), yet our verse seems to refer to the courtyard as "the supremely holy." Evidently, the translation here is not "you shall eat it 'in' the supremely holy [place]," but "you shall eat it 'by the rules of' the supremely holy [sacrifices]"---in the courtyard. (Ramban) Or, the courtyard is referred to here as "the supremely holy" by comparison with the area outside, which was sanctified as the Israelite camping site, but was not as holy as the courtyard of the Mishkon. (G.A.)

171 Sifri, 18:22.

172 The breast, thigh, and four of the forty thanksgiving loaves were set aside for the kohein. (M., from Vayikra 7.)

173 The breast and thigh. (Ibid)

174 The breast, thigh, and foreleg. (Above, 6:19.)

175 The breast, thigh, loaves (Vayikra, 7), and foreleg (6:19). "Of all the wave-offerings" identifies them as the terumah gifts mentioned here. (M.)

176 Sifri, 18:25. By stating that the pure should eat, our passage implies a prohibition against those who are impure. (M.)

177 Ibid, 29.

178 The very first of all the gifts to be set aside, to be given to the kohein. Then, a tenth is set aside and given to the Levite, who, in turn, sets aside a tenth as his terumah gift for the kohein. The levite's terumah gift is not referred to as "the major terumah," but as "a tenth of a tenth." Our passage does not refer to this gift.

179 Which, like the firstborn, is {Hebrew Ref} , of minor sanctity, but not like the breast and thigh of the sin-offering, which is eaten only for one day and one night. The sin-offering, unlike the firstborn, is {Hebrew Ref} , supremely sanctified, and, therefore, cannot be compared. (M., from Sifri.)

180 Zevachim, 57:1.

181 I.e., the additional phrase, "it shall be yours." (G.A.)

182 Instead of comparing the firstborn ' bechor' sacrifice with the voluntary peace-offering, perhaps compare it with the thanksgiving 'todah'-offering, which, like the bechor, is of minor sanctity. And the todah is only eaten for a day and a night. The Torah, therefore, adds "it shall be yours," implying that the kohein may partake of the bechor for an additional day. (M.)

183 Zevachim, ibid. Rashi to Devorim, 15:20 cites another opinion, deriving this from a different source. (G.A.)

184 V. 8.

185 Our verse.

186 Sifri, 18:43.

187 Ibid.

188 Not only in the land, as mentioned above, but even in the spoils of war.

189 The exclusion from the spoils is compared to the exclusion from the inheritance, and, therefore, did not apply until they entered the land. Thus, the Levites shared in the spoils of the victory against the Midianites (31:30) later in the wilderness. (M.)

190 'They' refers to the Levites. 'Their' sins refers to the Israelites. (G.A.)

191 Verse 28 refers to the portion of the Levites as a tithe, while our verse calls it terumah, generally used to describe the kohein's gift. (M.)

192 The Levite must separate a portion of his tithe, and present it to the kohein as a terumah gift (V.26). Until he has done so, the tithe is entitled " terumah" because of the terumah gift it contains.

193 Sifri, 18:53.

194 Given by the levite to the kohein.

195 How is it considered like grain from the granary? It is prohibited, etc. (M.)

196 If eaten intentionally by an unauthorized person, from Vayikra, 22:9.

197 If eaten unintentionally, an additional fifth must be paid to the kohein, from Vayikra, 22:14.

198 The very first gift set aside from the crop.

199 It is taken directly from the granary. Terumah of the tithe, however, is taken after the tithe was removed from the granary and given to the levite. (G.A.)

200 Zechariah, 14:10.

201 Our verse extends from verse 29. 'As grain from the granary and fully ripened fruit from the cistern---so must you, too, set aside ... etc. (M.)

202 Verse 27 taught that the tithe terumah and the major terumah are subject to the same restrictions. Our verse adds that both gifts are from the donor's inheritance. (G.A.)

203 But not terumah of the tithe, already specified in verse 28. (M., from Sifri)

204 But if the kohein already received his major terumah from the land owner, no obligation rests on the Levite aside from the tithe terumah already mentioned in verse 28. (M.)

205 After threshing, when the land owner is obligated to set aside the kohein's terumah. Before threshing, however, no terumah obligation rests on the owner. If the Levite should then take his tithe, he is exempt from major terumah. (M.)

206 Shabbos, 127b.

207 Verse 24.

208 Even the remainder after the terumah was given.

209 The remaining part.

210 The remaining part.

211 Sifri, 18:70.

212 Where both the tithe and the eater are rendered ritually unclean. Terumah would be prohibited, but the tithe is permitted.

213 Ibid, 71.

214 The passage seems redundant---of course there is no sin for setting aside terumah. Obviously, the teaching here is in the inference; if you do not set aside, etc. This applies to Rashi's next comment as well. (M.)

215 Yevamos, 89b.

216 Bechoros, 26b.

Return to Main Search Form