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Mah Tovu: The Spirit of God

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Created June 26, 2018 · 687 Views נוצר 26 June, 2018 · 687 צפיות

  1. (א) וַיַּ֣רְא בִּלְעָ֗ם כִּ֣י ט֞וֹב בְּעֵינֵ֤י יְהוָה֙ לְבָרֵ֣ךְ אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל וְלֹא־הָלַ֥ךְ כְּפַֽעַם־בְּפַ֖עַם לִקְרַ֣את נְחָשִׁ֑ים וַיָּ֥שֶׁת אֶל־הַמִּדְבָּ֖ר פָּנָֽיו׃ (ב) וַיִּשָּׂ֨א בִלְעָ֜ם אֶת־עֵינָ֗יו וַיַּרְא֙ אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל שֹׁכֵ֖ן לִשְׁבָטָ֑יו וַתְּהִ֥י עָלָ֖יו ר֥וּחַ אֱלֹהִֽים׃ (ג) וַיִּשָּׂ֥א מְשָׁל֖וֹ וַיֹּאמַ֑ר נְאֻ֤ם בִּלְעָם֙ בְּנ֣וֹ בְעֹ֔ר וּנְאֻ֥ם הַגֶּ֖בֶר שְׁתֻ֥ם הָעָֽיִן׃ (ד) נְאֻ֕ם שֹׁמֵ֖עַ אִמְרֵי־אֵ֑ל אֲשֶׁ֨ר מַחֲזֵ֤ה שַׁדַּי֙ יֶֽחֱזֶ֔ה נֹפֵ֖ל וּגְל֥וּי עֵינָֽיִם׃ (ה) מַה־טֹּ֥בוּ אֹהָלֶ֖יךָ יַעֲקֹ֑ב מִשְׁכְּנֹתֶ֖יךָ יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ (ו) כִּנְחָלִ֣ים נִטָּ֔יוּ כְּגַנֹּ֖ת עֲלֵ֣י נָהָ֑ר כַּאֲהָלִים֙ נָטַ֣ע יְהוָ֔ה כַּאֲרָזִ֖ים עֲלֵי־מָֽיִם׃ (ז) יִֽזַּל־מַ֙יִם֙ מִדָּ֣לְיָ֔ו וְזַרְע֖וֹ בְּמַ֣יִם רַבִּ֑ים וְיָרֹ֤ם מֵֽאֲגַג֙ מַלְכּ֔וֹ וְתִנַּשֵּׂ֖א מַלְכֻתֽוֹ׃ (ח) אֵ֚ל מוֹצִיא֣וֹ מִמִּצְרַ֔יִם כְּתוֹעֲפֹ֥ת רְאֵ֖ם ל֑וֹ יֹאכַ֞ל גּוֹיִ֣ם צָרָ֗יו וְעַצְמֹתֵיהֶ֛ם יְגָרֵ֖ם וְחִצָּ֥יו יִמְחָֽץ׃ (ט) כָּרַ֨ע שָׁכַ֧ב כַּאֲרִ֛י וּכְלָבִ֖יא מִ֣י יְקִימֶ֑נּוּ מְבָרֲכֶ֣יךָ בָר֔וּךְ וְאֹרְרֶ֖יךָ אָרֽוּר׃ (י) וַיִּֽחַר־אַ֤ף בָּלָק֙ אֶל־בִּלְעָ֔ם וַיִּסְפֹּ֖ק אֶת־כַּפָּ֑יו וַיֹּ֨אמֶר בָּלָ֜ק אֶל־בִּלְעָ֗ם לָקֹ֤ב אֹֽיְבַי֙ קְרָאתִ֔יךָ וְהִנֵּה֙ בֵּרַ֣כְתָּ בָרֵ֔ךְ זֶ֖ה שָׁלֹ֥שׁ פְּעָמִֽים׃

    (1) Now Balaam, seeing that it pleased Adonai to bless Israel, did not, as on previous occasions, go in search of omens, but turned his face toward the wilderness. (2) As Balaam looked up and saw Israel encamped tribe by tribe, the spirit of God came upon him. (3) Taking up his theme, he said: Word of Balaam son of Beor, Word of the man whose eye is true, (4) Word of him who hears God’s speech, Who beholds visions from the Almighty, Prostrate, but with eyes unveiled: (5) How fair are your tents, O Jacob, Your dwellings, O Israel! (6) Like palm-groves that stretch out, Like gardens beside a river, Like aloes planted by Adonai, Like cedars beside the water; (7) Their boughs drip with moisture, Their roots have abundant water. Their king shall rise above Agag, Their kingdom shall be exalted. (8) God who freed them from Egypt Is for them like the horns of the wild ox. They shall devour enemy nations, Crush their bones, And smash their arrows. (9) They crouch, they lie down like a lion, Like the king of beasts; who dare rouse them? Blessed are they who bless you, Accursed they who curse you! (10) Enraged at Balaam, Balak struck his hands together. “I called you,” Balak said to Balaam, “to damn my enemies, and instead you have blessed them these three times!

  2. סנהדרין ק״ה ב:י״ז
    א"ר יוחנן מברכתו של אותו רשע אתה למד מה היה בלבו ביקש לומר שלא יהו להם בתי כנסיות ובתי מדרשות (במדבר כד, ה) מה טובו אהליך יעקב לא תשרה שכינה עליהם ומשכנותיך ישראל לא תהא מלכותן נמשכת כנחלים נטיו לא יהא להם זיתים וכרמים כגנות עלי נהר לא יהא ריחן נודף כאהלים נטע ה'

    Rabbi Yoḥanan says: From the blessing of that wicked person, Balaam, you can ascertain what was in his heart. God transformed the curses that he planned into blessings. He sought to say that they should not have synagogues and study halls, and he said instead: “How goodly are your tents, Jacob” (Numbers 24:5), a blessing on their synagogues. He sought to say that the Divine Presence [shekhina] will not rest upon them, and he said instead: “And your dwellings [mishkenot] Israel.” He sought to say that the kingdom of Israel would not continue, and he said instead that it would continue: “Like the winding brooks” (Numbers 24:6), which flow continuously. He sought to say that they would have no olive trees and vineyards, and he said instead: “Like gardens by the river’s side” (Numbers 24:6). He sought to say that their fragrance would not diffuse from their fulfillment of mitzvot, and he said instead: “Like aloes that the Lord has planted” (Numbers 24:6).

  3. Baal Shem Tov

    "Your tents" – your external appearance must be that of Jacob, a lower level, while "your dwelling places" – your interior – must be of the level of Israel.

  4. (ב) וַיִּשָּׂ֨א בִלְעָ֜ם אֶת־עֵינָ֗יו וַיַּרְא֙ אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל שֹׁכֵ֖ן לִשְׁבָטָ֑יו וַתְּהִ֥י עָלָ֖יו ר֥וּחַ אֱלֹהִֽים׃

    (2) As Balaam looked up and saw Israel encamped tribe by tribe, the spirit of God came upon him.

  5. (ג) ותהי עליו רוח אלהים. עָלָה בְלִבּוֹ שֶׁלֹּא יְקַלְּלֵם:
    (3) ותהי עליו רוח אלהים AND THE SPIRIT OF GOD WAS UPON HIM — Then he made up his mind not to curse them (i.e. he decided to comply with the will of God, רוח אלהים).
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