לא שיעקר יעקב ממקומו אלא ישראל עיקר ויעקב טפל לו וכן הוא אומר אל תזכרו ראשנות וקדמניות אל תתבננו אל תזכרו ראשנות זה שעבוד מלכיות וקדמניות אל תתבננו זו יציאת מצרים
not that the name Jacob will be entirely uprooted from its place, but that the name Israel will be the primary name to which the name Jacob will be secondary, as the Torah continues to refer to him as Jacob after this event. And it also says that the ultimate redemption will overshadow the previous redemption in the verse: “Do not remember the former events, and do not ponder things of old” (Isaiah 43:18), and the Gemara explains: “Do not remember the former events,” that is the subjugation to the kingdoms, and “do not ponder things of old,” that is the exodus from Egypt, which occurred before the subjugation to the nations.
הנני עשה חדשה עתה תצמח תני רב יוסף זו מלחמת גוג ומגוג
With regard to the following verse: “Behold, I will do new things, now it will spring forth” (Isaiah 43:19), Rav Yosef taught a baraita: This refers to the future war of Gog and Magog, which will cause all earlier events to be forgotten.
משל למה הדבר דומה לאדם שהיה מהלך בדרך ופגע בו זאב וניצל ממנו והיה מספר והולך מעשה זאב פגע בו ארי וניצל ממנו והיה מספר והולך מעשה ארי פגע בו נחש וניצל ממנו שכח מעשה שניהם והיה מספר והולך מעשה נחש אף כך ישראל צרות אחרונות משכחות את הראשונות:
The Gemara cites a parable: To what is this comparable? To a person who was walking along the way and a wolf accosted him and he survived it, and he continued to relate the story of the wolf. A lion accosted him and he survived it, and he continued to relate the story of the lion. A snake accosted him and he survived it, he forgot both the lion and the wolf, and he continued to relate the story of the snake. Each encounter was more dangerous and each escape more miraculous than the last, so he would continue to relate the most recent story. So too with Israel; more recent troubles cause the earlier troubles to be forgotten.
אברם הוא אברהם
Having mentioned the changing of Jacob’s name, the Gemara addresses the changing of the names of Abraham and Sarah. What is the meaning of changing Abram’s name to Abraham? As it is stated: “Abram is Abraham” (I Chronicles 1:27).
בתחלה נעשה אב לארם ולבסוף נעשה אב לכל העולם כולו
The Gemara explains: Initially he became a father, a minister, and prominent person, only to Aram, so he was called Abram, father [av] of Aram, and ultimately with God’s blessing he became the father of the entire world, so he was called Abraham, father of the masses [av hamon], as it is stated: “I have made you the father of a multitude of nations” (Genesis 17:5).
שרי היא שרה
Similarly, what is the meaning of changing Sarai’s name to Sarah? The same concept applies to Sarai as to Abram: Sarai is Sarah.”
בתחלה נעשית שרי לאומתה ולבסוף נעשית שרה לכל העולם כולו:
The Gemara explains: Initially she was a princess only to her nation: My princess [Sarai], but ultimately she became Sarah, a general term indicating that she was princess for the entire world.
תני בר קפרא כל הקורא לאברהם אברם עובר בעשה שנאמר והיה שמך אברהם רבי אליעזר אומר עובר בלאו שנאמר ולא יקרא עוד [את] שמך אברם
Also, with regard to Abraham’s name, bar Kappara taught: Anyone who calls Abraham Abram transgresses a positive mitzva, as it is stated: “And your name will be Abraham” (Genesis 17:5). This is a positive mitzva to refer to him as Abraham. Rabbi Eliezer says: One who calls Abraham Abram transgresses a negative mitzva, as it is stated: “And your name shall no longer be called Abram, and your name will be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations” (Genesis 17:5).
אלא מעתה הקורא לשרה שרי הכי נמי
The Gemara asks: But if we consider these obligatory statements, then from here we must infer that one who calls Sarah Sarai also transgresses a positive or negative mitzva.
התם קודשא בריך הוא אמר לאברהם שרי אשתך לא תקרא את שמה שרי כי שרה שמה
The Gemara answers: There in the case of Sarah, it is not a general mitzva, rather the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Abraham alone: “And God said to Abraham, your wife Sarai, you shall not call her name Sarai; rather, Sarah is her name” (Genesis 17:15). In contrast, this is stated regarding Abraham in general terms: “Your name shall no longer be called Abram.”
אלא מעתה הקורא ליעקב יעקב הכי נמי
Again, the Gemara asks: But if that is so, one who calls Jacob Jacob, about whom it is written: “Your name shall no longer be Jacob, but Israel” (Genesis 32:29), also transgresses a mitzva.
שאני התם דהדר אהדריה קרא דכתיב ויאמר אלהים לישראל במראות הלילה ויאמר יעקב יעקב
The Gemara answers: It is different there, as the verse reverts back and God Himself refers to Jacob as Jacob, as it is written before his descent to Egypt: “And God said to Israel in the visions of the night, and said, Jacob, Jacob, and he said, ‘Here I am’” (Genesis 46:2).
מתיב רבי יוסי בר אבין ואיתימא רבי יוסי בר זבידא אתה הוא ה׳ האלהים אשר בחרת באברם
Rabbi Yosei bar Avin, and some say Rabbi Yosei bar Zevida, raised an objection to the statements of bar Kappara and Rabbi Eliezer based on what is said in the recounting of the history of the Jewish people: “You are the Lord, God, Who chose Abram and took him out of Ur Kasdim and made his name Abraham” (Nehemiah 9:7). Here the Bible refers to him as Abram.
אמר ליה התם נביא הוא דקא מסדר לשבחיה דרחמנא מאי דהוה מעיקרא:
The Gemara responds: There, the prophet is recounting God’s praises, including that which was the situation originally, before his name was changed to Abraham. Indeed, the verse continues: “You took him out of Ur Kasdim and made his name Abraham, and found his heart faithful before You and made a covenant with him to give him the land of Canaan…to give to his descendants, and You fulfilled Your words for You are righteous” (Nehemiah 9:7–8).
הדרן עלך מאימתי
May we return to thee : From what time.
מתני׳ היה קורא בתורה והגיע זמן המקרא אם כוון לבו יצא
MISHNA: The first question discussed in the mishna is the question of intent. One who was reading the sections of the Torah which comprise Shema, and the time for the recitation of the morning or evening Shema arrived, if he focused his heart, he fulfilled his obligation and need not repeat Shema in order to fulfill his obligation. This is true even if he failed to recite the requisite blessings (Rabbeinu Ḥananel).
בפרקים שואל מפני הכבוד ומשיב ובאמצע שואל מפני היראה ומשיב דברי רבי מאיר
Ab initio, one may not interrupt the recitation of Shema. The tanna’im, however, disagree over how strict one must be in this regard. They distinguish between interruptions between paragraphs and interruptions within each paragraph. At the breaks between paragraphs, one may greet an individual due to the respect that he is obligated to show him, and one may respond to another’s greeting due to respect. And in the middle of each paragraph one may greet an individual due to the fear that the individual may harm him if he fails do so (Me’iri) and one may respond to another’s greeting due to fear. This is the statement of Rabbi Meir.
רבי יהודה אומר באמצע שואל מפני היראה ומשיב מפני הכבוד ובפרקים שואל מפני הכבוד ומשיב שלום לכל אדם
Rabbi Yehuda says: There is a distinction between greeting someone and responding to his greeting. In the middle of each paragraph, one may greet another due to fear and respond due to respect. In the breaks between paragraphs, one may greet another due to respect and respond with a greeting to any person who greets him, whether or not he is obligated to show him respect.
אלו הן בין הפרקים בין ברכה ראשונה לשניה בין שניה לשמע בין שמע לוהיה אם שמוע בין והיה אם שמוע לויאמר בין ויאמר לאמת ויציב
As for what constitutes a paragraph, these are the breaks between the paragraphs: Between the first blessing and the second, between the second and Shema, between Shema and the second paragraph: If you indeed heed My commandments [VeHaya im Shamoa], between VeHaya im Shamoa and the third paragraph: And the Lord spoke [VaYomer] and between VaYomer and True and Firm [emet veyatziv], the blessing that follows Shema.
רבי יהודה אומר בין ויאמר לאמת ויציב לא יפסיק
The Rabbis held that each blessing and each paragraph of Shema constitutes its own entity, and treat interruptions between them as between the paragraphs. Rabbi Yehuda, however, says: Between VaYomer and emet veyatziv, which begins the blessing that follows Shema, one may not interrupt at all. According to Rabbi Yehuda, these must be recited consecutively.
אמר רבי יהושע בן קרחה למה קדמה פרשת שמע לוהיה אם שמוע כדי שיקבל עליו עול מלכות שמים תחלה ואחר כך מקבל עליו עול מצות והיה אם שמוע לויאמר שוהיה אם שמוע נוהג בין ביום ובין בלילה ויאמר אינו נוהג אלא ביום בלבד:
Since the paragraphs of Shema are not adjacent to one another in the Torah, and they are not recited in the order in which they appear, the mishna explains their placement. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa said: Why, in the mitzva of the recitation of Shema, did the portion of Shema precede that of VeHaya im Shamoa? This is so that one will first accept upon himself the yoke of the kingdom of Heaven, the awareness of God and God’s unity, and only then accept upon himself the yoke of the mitzvot, which appears in the paragraph of VeHaya im Shamoa. Why did VeHaya im Shamoa precede VaYomer? Because the paragraph of VeHaya im Shamoa is practiced both by day and by night, while VaYomer, which discusses the mitzva of ritual fringes, is only practiced during the day.
גמ׳ שמע מינה מצות צריכות כוונה
GEMARA: We learned in the mishna that one must focus his heart while reading the portion of Shema in the Torah in order to fulfill his obligation. From here, the Gemara seeks to conclude: Learn from this that mitzvot require intent, when one performs a mitzva, he must intend to fulfill his obligation. If he lacks that intention, he does not fulfill his obligation. With that statement, this Gemara hopes to resolve an issue that is raised several times throughout the Talmud.
מאי אם כוון לבו לקרות לקרות והא קא קרי
The Gemara rejects this conclusion: What is the meaning of: If one focused his heart? It means that one had the intention to read. The Gemara attacks this explanation: How can you say that it means that one must have intention to read? Isn’t he already reading? The case in the mishna refers to a person who is reading from the Torah. Therefore, focused his heart must refer to intention to perform a mitzva.
The Gemara rejects this: Perhaps the mishna speaks of one who is reading the Torah not for the purpose of reciting the words, but in order to emend mistakes in the text. Therefore, if he focused his heart and intended to read the words and not merely emend the text, he fulfills his obligation. He need not have the intention to fulfill his obligation.
תנו רבנן קריאת שמע ככתבה דברי רבי וחכמים אומרים בכל לשון
The Sages taught in a baraita that Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi and the Rabbis disagreed with regard to the language in which Shema must be recited. This dispute serves as an introduction to a broader analysis of the question of intent: Shema must be recited as it is written, in Hebrew, this is the statement of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi. And the Rabbis say: Shema may be recited in any language.
מאי טעמא דרבי אמר קרא והיו בהוייתן יהו
The Gemara seeks to clarify: What is the reason for Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi’s opinion? The Gemara answers: The source for his halakha lies in the emphasis on the word: “And these words, which I command you this day, will be upon your heart” (Deuteronomy 6:6). “Will be” means as they are, so shall they be; they should remain unchanged, in their original language.
ורבנן מאי טעמייהו אמר קרא שמע בכל לשון שאתה שומע
The Gemara seeks to clarify further: And what is the reason for the Rabbis’ opinion? The Gemara answers: The source upon which the Rabbis base their opinion is, as it is stated: “Hear, Israel” (Deuteronomy 6:4), which they understand to mean that Shema must be understood. Therefore, one may recite Shema in any language that you can hear and understand.
ולרבי נמי הא כתיב שמע ההוא מבעי ליה השמע לאזניך מה שאתה מוציא מפיך
The Gemara explains how Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi and the Rabbis each contend with the source cited by the other. And according to Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi, isn’t it also stated: “Hear, Israel”? How does he explain this verse? The Gemara responds: He requires this verse in order to derive a different halakha: Make your ears hear what your mouth utters, i.e., one must recite Shema audibly so he hears it while reciting it.
ורבנן סברי להו כמאן דאמר לא השמיע לאזנו יצא
And from where do the Rabbis derive that one must recite Shema audibly? The Rabbis do not accept the literal interpretation of the word Shema; rather, they hold in accordance with the one who said: One who recited Shema in a manner inaudible to his own ears, fulfilled his obligation.
ולרבנן נמי הא כתיב והיו ההוא מבעי להו שלא יקרא למפרע
The Gemara asks: And according to the Rabbis, isn’t it also written: “And they will be”? How do the Sages explain that emphasis in the verse? The Gemara answers: They, too, require this expression to derive that one may not recite Shema out of order. One may not begin reciting Shema from the end, but only in the order in which it is written.
ורבי שלא יקרא למפרע מנא ליה נפקא ליה מדברים הדברים ורבנן דברים הדברים לא דרשי
And from where does Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi derive the halakha that one may not recite Shema out of order? The Gemara answers: Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi derives it from an additional emphasis in the verse: “And the words [hadevarim], which I command you this day, will be upon your heart.” The verse could have conveyed the same idea had it written: Words [devarim], without the definite article. However, it says the words [hadevarim], employing the definite article, emphasizing that it must be recited in the specific order in which it is written. The Rabbis, however, do not derive anything from the fact that the words, with the definite article, was written in place of words, without the definite article.
למימרא דסבר רבי דכל התורה כולה בכל לשון נאמרה דאי סלקא דעתך בלשון הקודש נאמרה והיו דכתב רחמנא למה לי
The Gemara seeks to link this debate to another: Is that to say that Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi holds that the entire Torah, i.e., any portion of the Torah which must be read publicly (Tosafot), or if one studies or reads the Torah in general (Me’iri), may be recited in any language? As if it should enter your mind to say that the entire Torah may only be recited in the holy tongue and not in any other, then why do I need that which the Torah wrote: “And they will be”? Prohibiting recitation of Shema in a language other than Hebrew is superfluous, if indeed one is prohibited from reciting any portion of the Torah in a language other than Hebrew. Since the Torah saw the need to specifically require Shema to be recited in Hebrew, it must be because the rest of the Torah may be recited in any language.
איצטריך משום דכתיב שמע
The Gemara rejects this: This is not necessarily so, as the phrase: And they will be is necessary in this case because Shema, hear, is also written. Had it not been for the phrase: And they will be, I would have understood hear, to allow Shema to be recited in any language, in accordance with the opinion of the Rabbis. Therefore, and they will be, was necessary.
למימרא דסברי רבנן דכל התורה כולה בלשון הקודש נאמרה דאי סלקא דעתך בכל לשון נאמרה שמע דכתב רחמנא למה לי
The Gemara attempts to clarify: Is that to say that the Rabbis hold that the entire Torah may only be recited in the holy tongue and not in any other? As if it should enter your mind to say that the Torah may be recited in any language, then why do I require that which the Torah wrote: Shema, hear? One is permitted to recite the entire Torah in any language, rendering a specific requirement regarding Shema superfluous.
איצטריך משום דכתיב והיו:
The Gemara rejects this: Shema is necessary in any case, because and they will be, is also written. Had it not been for Shema, I would have understood this in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi, that one is prohibited from reciting Shema in any other language. Therefore, Shema, is necessary.
תנו רבנן והיו שלא יקרא למפרע הדברים על לבבך יכול תהא כל הפרשה צריכה כוונה תלמוד לומר האלה עד כאן צריכה כוונה מכאן ואילך אין צריכה כוונה דברי רבי אליעזר
The interpretation of these verses is the source of a fundamental dispute concerning the obligation to recite Shema and the required intent during its recitation. The Rabbis taught: From: And they will be, it is derived that one may not recite Shema out of order. From: These words…upon your heart, it is derived that they must be recited with intent. I might have thought that the entire paragraph requires intent? Therefore the verse teaches: These, to indicate that to this point, one must have intent, but from here on one need not have intent, and even if he recites the rest of Shema without intent he fulfills his obligation. This is the statement of Rabbi Eliezer.
אמר ליה רבי עקיבא הרי הוא אומר
Rabbi Akiva said to him: But the verse states: