דעד כאן לא קאמר ר' ישמעאל התם אלא דכי ממעט באכילה קא ממעט קצירה אבל הכא דכי קא ממעט באכילה קא מפשא קצירה ודאי שלש מייתינן:
as Rabbi Yishmael states only there, in the mishna, that three se’a of barley are reaped on Shabbat, as in that case when one limits the amount available for eating, he likewise limits the amount of reaping. But here, when one limits the amount of eating by bringing the two figs, he also increases the amount of reaping. Therefore is it certain that we bring the ill person the three figs attached by a single stem.
מתני׳ מצות העומר להביא מן הקרוב לא ביכר הקרוב לירושלים מביאין אותו מכל מקום מעשה שבא העומר מגגות צריפין ושתי הלחם מבקעת עין סוכר:
MISHNA: The mitzva of the omer is to bring the barley reaped for the meal offering from fields proximate to Jerusalem. If the barley did not ripen in the fields proximate to Jerusalem, one brings it from any place in Eretz Yisrael. There was an incident where the omer came from Gaggot Tzerifin and the wheat for the two loaves on Shavuot came from the valley of Ein Sokher.
גמ׳ מאי טעמא איבעית אימא משום כרמל
GEMARA: The Gemara asks: What is the reason that the barley reaped for the omer meal offering should ideally be brought from fields proximate to Jerusalem? The Gemara answers: If you wish, say that it is because the verse states: “And if you bring a meal offering of first fruits to the Lord, you shall bring for the meal offering of your first fruits grain in the ear parched with fire, even groats of the fresh ear [karmel]” (Leviticus 2:14). This indicates that the grain should be soft and fresh. Consequently it should be brought from close by, not from a place where it might become stale and hardened during a long journey.
ואיבעית אימא משום דאין מעבירין על המצות:
And if you wish, say instead that the reason is due to the principle that one does not postpone performance of the mitzvot. When presented with the opportunity to perform a mitzva, one should perform it immediately. Therefore, the barley for the mitzva of the omer meal offering in the Temple should be brought from the first crop encountered outside of Jerusalem.
מעשה שבא [העומר] מגגות צריפין: תנו רבנן כשצרו מלכי בית חשמונאי זה על זה והיה הורקנוס מבחוץ ואריסטובלוס מבפנים בכל יום ויום היו משלשלין להן דינרין בקופה ומעלין להן תמידין
§ The mishna teaches: There was an incident where the omer came from Gaggot Tzerifin and the two loaves on Shavuot came from the valley of Ein Sokher. The Sages taught a baraita that provides the background of this event: When the kings of the Hasmonean monarchy besieged each other in their civil war, Hyrcanus was outside of Jerusalem, besieging it, and Aristoblus was inside. On each and every day they would lower dinars in a box from inside the city, and those on the outside would send up animals for them to bring the daily offerings in the Temple.
היה שם זקן אחד שהיה מכיר בחכמת יוונית לעז להם בחכמת יוונית אמר להן כל זמן שעסוקין בעבודה אין נמסרין בידכם למחר שלשלו להן דינרין בקופה והעלו להן חזיר כיון שהגיע לחצי חומה נעץ צפרניו בחומה ונזדעזעה ארץ ישראל ארבע מאות פרסה על ארבע מאות פרסה
A certain elderly man was there, in Jerusalem, who was familiar with Greek wisdom. He communicated to those on the outside by using words understood only by those proficient in Greek wisdom. The elderly man said to them: As long as they are engaged with the Temple service, they will not be delivered into your hands. Upon hearing this, on the following day, when they lowered dinars in a box, they sent up a pig to them. Once the pig reached halfway up the wall, it inserted its hooves into the wall and Eretz Yisrael shuddered four hundred parasangs by four hundred parasangs.
באותה שעה אמרו ארור שיגדל חזיר וארור שילמד בנו חכמת יוונית ועל אותה שעה שנינו מעשה שבא עומר מגגות צריפין ושתי הלחם מבקעת עין סוכר
When the Sages saw this, they said at that time: Cursed is he who raises pigs, and cursed is he who teaches his son Greek wisdom. And it is with regard to that time of civil war, in which the land was destroyed, that we learned: An incident occurred in which the omer, the measure of barley brought as a communal offering on the sixteenth of Nisan, came from Gaggot Tzerifim, and the two loaves offered on Shavuot came from the valley of Ein Sokher. Since no fresh barley grain was found in the fields immediately surrounding Jerusalem, it had to be brought from these outlying areas.
כי מטא עומר לא הוו ידעי מהיכא אייתי עומר אכרזו אתא ההוא חרשא אותיב חדא ידא אאיגרא וחדא ידיה אצריפא אמר להו מרדכי מי איכא דוכתא דשמה גגות צריפין או צריפין גגות בדקו ואשכחוה
§ The Gemara relates another tradition with regard to that occasion when the omer came from Gaggot Tzerifin and the two loaves from the valley of Ein Sokher: When it came time to bring the omer meal offering, they did not know from where they could bring the omer grain, as all the surrounding fields were looted and ruined. The court publicly proclaimed their difficulty. A certain deaf-mute [ḥersha] came forward and stretched out one hand toward a roof, gag in Hebrew, and one hand toward a hut [atzerifa]. Mordekhai said to the Sages: Is there a place that is called Gaggot Tzerifin or Tzerifin Gaggot? They checked and found that there was such a place, and it contained fields of barley from which they were able to bring the omer meal offering.
כי בעי לאתוי שתי הלחם לא הוו ידעי מהיכא לאתויי אכרזו אתא ההוא גברא חרשא אותיב ידיה אעיניה וחדא ידא אסיכרא אמר להו מרדכי ומי איכא דוכתא דשמה עין סוכר או סוכר עין בדקו ואשכחו
A similar incident occurred when they needed to bring the two loaves, and they did not know from where to bring the grain. Again the court publicly proclaimed their difficulty, and a certain deaf-mute came forward and stretched out one hand toward his eye [a’eineih] and one hand toward a door latch [assikhera]. Mordekhai said to the Sages: And is there a place that is called: Ein Sokher, or Sokher Ayin? They checked and found that there was such a place, and it contained fields of wheat from which they were able to bring the two loaves.
הנהו שלש נשים דאייתו שלש קינין חדא אמרה לזיבתי וחדא אמרה לימתי וחדא אמרה לעונתי
The Gemara relates another story that demonstrates Mordekhai’s wisdom: Once, a certain three women brought three nests for their obligatory offerings of pairs of pigeons or doves (see Leviticus 15:29). One of them said: This offering is for my ziva; and one said: This if for my yamma; and the last one said: This is for my ona.
סבור מינה זיבתי זבה ממש לימתי לימתי ממש לעונתי לעונתה דכולהו חדא חטאת וחדא עולה
The Sages understood from the first woman’s statement: For my ziva, that she had experienced a discharge of uterine blood when not expecting her menstrual period, which would give her the status of an actual zava. From the second woman’s statement: For my yamma, they understood: My actual yamma, i.e., she was also a ziva, as yam can mean: Sea, or a flow of blood. From the third woman’s statement: For my ona, they came to the conclusion that she needed to bring a sacrifice for her time [ona] of completing her purification process from being a zava. Accordingly, they understood that all these women were obligated to bring one sin offering and one burnt offering.
אמר להו מרדכי שמא בזוב סיכנה שמא בים סיכנה שמא בעינה סיכנה דכולהו עולות נינהו בדוק ואשכח
Mordekhai said to the other Sages: Perhaps the first woman was endangered in the course of her menstrual flow [zov]. Similarly, perhaps the second woman was endangered at sea [yam]. Finally, perhaps the third woman was endangered through her eye [ayin], as ayin is phonetically similar to ona. According to these explanations, each woman sought to bring a voluntary offering to give thanks to God for being saved from danger. If so, the appropriate offering in each case is not a sin offering, as they are all burnt offerings. It was checked and they found that Mordekhai’s interpretation was in fact correct.