Shabbat Parashat Bamidbar| 5770
Bamidbar | 2 Sivan 5770 | 5/15/2010
Count the heads of all of the congregation of Bnei Yisrael, by their families and the household of their fathers by the number of names … all who go out to the army” (Bamidbar 1:2-3). An army usually cares that its soldiers have strong bodies. In contrast, the Torah is interested in something very different, the number of names – not anonymous numbers but people who are known by who they are and also, specifically, by their family and forebears.
After staying up all night on Shavout, we have someone who slept say the morning berachot on everyone’s behalf. Why is this necessary? What happens if we cannot find anyone?
[The gemara discusses the question whether it is conceivable that one who was always a tzaddik could turn into a heretic.] Abayei said: we have learned that one who is good does not become bad. Is it true that he cannot? Doesn’t the pasuk say: “When the tzaddik goes back from his ways and does iniquity”? That is talking about one who was a rasha originally. [Rava said that even one who had always been a tzaddik could become a rasha.]
A Jewish man and woman got married as refugees in a far-flung camp in the Soviet Union during WW II, and the marriage was recorded in Russian documents. After the war, the couple went to Poland and parted ways. The man immigrated to Israel, and the woman went to France....
This week in the Daf Hayomi, the Gemara (86) continues to deal with the issue of kidnapping. We too will continue to discuss the question we dealt with last week. The Torah defines kidnapping as gneiva. In Halacha, there is a distinction between gneiva and gzeila. Gzeila is defined as the use of force to overpower the owner and take his property. Gneiva is defined as taking from the owner without him seeing. According to this, gzeila would seem to be the more appropriate term for kidnapping, since for kidnapping, there is a direct confrontation with the owner, who is the person being kidnapped.
This week’s Hemdat Yamim is dedicated in loving memory of
R' Meir ben
A weekly divrei Torah leaflet: A Glimpse at the Parasha, Ask the Rabbi, From the writings of Harav Avraham Yitzchak Hakohen Kook, zt”l, Pninat Mishpat (Jewish Monetary Law).