Bava Batra 122a:4בבא בתרא קכ״ב א
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122aקכ״ב א

תא שמע (במדבר כו, נו) בין רב למעט

The Gemara suggests: Come and hear a proof. The verse states: “According to the lot shall their inheritance be divided between the more and the fewer” (Numbers 26:56). Evidently, whether the tribe had many or few people, the tribe as a whole received a portion equal to that of every other tribe, and each individual within the tribe received a different amount of land than those in other tribes.

ועוד תניא עתידה ארץ ישראל שתתחלק לשלשה עשר שבטים שבתחלה לא נתחלקה אלא לשנים עשר שבטים ולא נתחלקה אלא בכסף שנאמר בין רב למעט אמר רבי יהודה סאה ביהודה שוה חמש סאין בגליל

And another proof can be seen from that which is taught in a baraita: Eretz Yisrael is destined to be divided among thirteen tribes during the messianic era, unlike the division in the time of Joshua. As, initially the land was divided only among twelve tribes, as the Torah does not allot a portion to the tribe of Levi. The baraita continues: And the land was divided only with money, such that each tribe that received a portion more valuable than average compensated another tribe that had received a portion less valuable than average, as it is stated: “Between the more and the fewer.” Rabbi Yehuda said: The area of land whose yield is a se’a of grain in Judea is so valuable that it is equal in value to the area necessary to produce five se’a of grain in the Galilee.

ולא נתחלקה אלא בגורל שנאמר (במדבר כו, נה) אך בגורל ולא נתחלקה אלא באורים ותומים שנאמר על פי הגורל

The baraita continues: And the land was divided only by a lottery, as it is stated: “Only by lot shall the land be divided” (Numbers 26:55). And the land was divided only with the Urim VeTummim, as it is stated: “By the pronouncement of the lot” (Numbers 26:56).

הא כיצד אלעזר מלובש אורים ותומים ויהושע וכל ישראל עומדים לפניו וקלפי של שבטים וקלפי של תחומין מונחין לפניו

The baraita asks: How can these texts be reconciled? One indicates that the land was divided by lottery and the other indicates that the land was divided with the Urim VeTummim. The baraita explains: Elazar the High Priest was dressed with the Urim VeTummim, and Joshua and all the Jewish people were standing before him, and a lottery receptacle containing the names of the tribes and another lottery receptacle containing the names of the boundaries of the twelve different regions of Eretz Yisrael were placed before him.

והיה מכוין ברוח הקדש ואומר זבולן עולה תחום עכו עולה עמו טרף בקלפי של שבטים ועלה בידו זבולן טרף בקלפי של תחומין ועלה בידו תחום עכו

And Elazar would ascertain the assignments of land with the Divine Spirit and say, in accordance with the notification of the Urim VeTummim: The name of the tribe Zebulun now emerges from the receptacle in the lottery, and the region whose boundary is Akko emerges with it from the other receptacle. After stating this, he would mix the lots in the receptacle of the tribes and the lot of Zebulun would emerge in his hand. He would then mix the lots in the receptacle of the boundaries, and the boundary of Akko would emerge in his hand.

וחוזר ומכוין ברוח הקדש ואומר נפתלי עולה ותחום גינוסר עולה עמו טרף בקלפי של שבטים ועלה בידו נפתלי טרף בקלפי של תחומין ועלה בידו תחום גינוסר וכן כל שבט ושבט

And Elazar would repeat the process and ascertain the assignments with the Divine Spirit and say: The name of the tribe Naftali now emerges, and the region whose boundary is Ginnosar emerges with it from the other receptacle. After stating this, he would mix the lots in the receptacle of the tribes and the lot of Naftali would emerge in his hand. He would then mix the lots in the receptacle of the boundaries, and the boundary of Ginnosar would emerge in his hand. And so he would proceed for each and every tribe.

ולא כחלוקה של עולם הזה חלוקה של עולם הבא העולם הזה אדם יש לו שדה לבן אין לו שדה פרדס שדה פרדס אין לו שדה לבן לעולם הבא אין לך כל אחד ואחד שאין לו בהר ובשפלה ובעמק שנאמר (יחזקאל מח, לא) שער ראובן אחד שער יהודה אחד שער לוי אחד הקדוש ברוך הוא מחלק להן בעצמו שנאמר (יחזקאל מח, כט) ואלה מחלקותם נאם ה'

The baraita continues: And unlike the division in this world, i.e., in the time of Joshua, will be the division of portions in the World-to-Come, i.e., in the messianic era. In this world, if a person has a field of grain, he does not have a field for an orchard; if he has a field for an orchard, he does not have a field of grain. This is so because each climate and variety of soil is suitable for a different type of produce. But in the World-to-Come, you do not have any person who does not have a portion in Eretz Yisrael in the mountain, and in the lowland, and in the valley, as it is stated: “The gate of Reuben, one; the gate of Judah, one; the gate of Levi, one” (Ezekiel 48:31), which is to say that everyone’s portion will be the same. And the Holy One, Blessed be He, will distribute it to them personally, as it is stated: “And these are their portions, says the Lord” (Ezekiel 48:29). This is the conclusion of the baraita.

קתני מיהת שבתחלה לא נתחלקה אלא לשנים עשר שבטים שמע מינה לשבטים איפלוג שמע מינה

The Gemara states its proof: In any event, the baraita teaches: As initially, the land was divided only among the twelve tribes. Conclude from the baraita that the land was divided according to the tribes, and not apportioned directly to each person. The Gemara affirms: Conclude from the baraita that this is the case.

אמר מר עתידה ארץ ישראל שתתחלק לשלשה עשר שבטים אידך למאן אמר רב חסדא לנשיא דכתיב (יחזקאל מח, יט) והעובד העיר יעבדוהו מכל שבטי ישראל אמר ליה רב פפא לאביי אימא רונגר בעלמא לא סלקא דעתך דכתיב (יחזקאל מח, כא) והנותר לנשיא מזה ומזה לתרומת הקדש ולאחוזת העיר

§ The Gemara returns to analyze the baraita just cited. The Master says above: Eretz Yisrael is destined to be divided among thirteen tribes. The Gemara asks: As to the other, thirteenth portion, for whom is it? Rav Ḥisda said: For the king, as it is written: “And they that serve the city, out of all the tribes of Israel, shall till it” (Ezekiel 48:19). The verse is understood as meaning that the nation will collectively allot a portion to the king, who serves the needs of the nation. Rav Pappa said to Abaye: Why is the verse interpreted in this way? Say that the verse speaks of mere wages [rongar], so that the king has rights to collect taxes, but not an actual portion of land. The Gemara answers: That possibility should not enter your mind, as it is written: “And the residue shall be for the prince, on the one side and on the other of the sacred offering and of the possession of the city” (Ezekiel 48:21). Based on this latter verse, the former verse speaks of a specific tract of land.

ולא נתחלקה אלא לכספים שנאמר בין רב למעט למאי אילימא לשופרא וסניא אטו בשופטני עסקינן אלא לקרובה ורחוקה

The baraita also states: And the land was divided only with money, as it is stated: “Between the more and the fewer.” With regard to what is this said? If we say it is with regard to beauty and ugliness, i.e., that those who receive inferior-quality land received monetary compensation from the others, is that to say we are dealing with fools [beshufetanei] who would agree to take inferior-quality land in exchange for more money? Rather, it is said with regard to the difference between land that is close to Jerusalem and land that is far from Jerusalem. Those whose property was close to Jerusalem compensated those whose property was farther away.

כתנאי רבי אליעזר אומר בכספים העלוה רבי יהושע אומר בקרקע העלוה

The Gemara notes: There is a dispute between tanna’im with regard to the manner by which this compensation was given: Rabbi Eliezer says: The tribes compensated each other with money. Rabbi Yehoshua says: The tribes compensated each other with land by giving extra land to those whose portions were in less advantageous locations.

ולא נתחלקה אלא בגורל שנאמר אך בגורל תנא אך בגורל יצאו יהושע וכלב למאי אילימא דלא שקול כלל השתא דלאו דידהו שקול דידהו מיבעיא אלא שלא נטלו בגורל אלא ע"פ ה' יהושע דכתיב (יהושע יט, נ) על פי ה' נתנו לו את העיר אשר שאל את תמנת סרח בהר אפרים

The baraita also states: And the land was divided only by a lottery, as it is stated: “Only by lot shall the land be divided” (Numbers 26:55). The Sages taught: In the phrase “only by lot,” the term “only” indicates that Joshua and Caleb are excluded from this proviso. The Gemara asks: With regard to what were they excluded? If we say that they did not take portions at all, now that it has already been taught that they took the portions of the spies (118b) that were not their own, is it necessary to teach that they took their own portions? It goes without saying that they did collect their portions. Rather, the exclusion teaches that they did not take portions by a lottery but according to explicit designation by the Lord. With regard to Joshua, this is as it is written: “According to the commandment of the Lord they gave him the city that he asked, even Timnath Serah in the hill-country of Ephraim” (Joshua 19:50).