תהלים קמט-משלי ג: התורה וספר תהלים - מעגל השירה
1א
הדף מאת: ניר אשכול / מכון שלום הרטמן
2ב
אי-אפשר להפריז בחשיבותו של ספר תהלים במסורת היהודית. מלבד דוד המלך שלו מיוחסים רוב המזמורים, מזמורים אחרים מיוחסים לאדם הראשון, לאברהם אבינו, למשה רבנו ועוד. מזמורים אחדים מוצבים כנגד איברי האדם, כנגד 12 השבטים וכדומה. בשיעור זה ננסה להתבונן במבט כולל על ספר תהלים דרך עיון באגדה ממסכת סוכה התוהה על מקומם של חמישה עשר מזמורי תהלים (פרקים קכ–קלד) הפותחים כולם במילים 'שיר המעלות' (למעט מזמור קכא הפותח בשינוי קל: 'שיר למעלות') - ולעמוד על הקשר שבין התורה וספר תהלים, כשני ביטויים משלימים הקשורים במושג השירה.
3ג
חמש עשרה מעלות
...אמרו, מי שלא ראה שמחת בית השואבה, לא ראה שמחה מימיו.
במוצאי יום טוב הראשון של חג ירדו לעזרת נשים ומתקנין שם תיקון גדול.
מנורות של זהב היו שם וארבעה ספלים של זהב בראשיהם וארבעה סולמות לכל אחד ואחד וארבעה ילדים מפירחי כהונה ובידיהם כדים של מאה ועשרים לוג שהן מטילין לכל ספל וספל מבלאי מכנסי כהנים ומהמייניהן מהן היו מפקיעין ובהן היו מדליקין ולא היה חצר בירושלים שאינה מאירה מאור בית השואבה. חסידים ואנשי מעשה היו מרקדין בפניהם באבוקות של אור שבידיהן ואומרים לפניהם דברי שירות ותושבחות והלוים בכנורות ובנבלים ובמצלתים ובחצוצרות ובכלי שיר בלא מספר על חמש עשרה מעלות היורדות מעזרת ישראל לעזרת נשים כנגד חמשה עשר שיר המעלות שבתהלים שעליהן לוים עומדין בכלי שיר ואומרים שירה...
The flute was for five or six days. This refers to the flute at the Bet Hashoevah [the place of the water-drawing] which does not override Shabbat or the festival day. They said: he who has not seen the Simchat Bet Hashoevah has never seen rejoicing in his life. At the conclusion of the first festival day of Sukkot they descended to the Women’s Court (Ezrat Nashim) and they would make there a great enactment. And golden candlesticks were there, and four golden bowls on the top of each of them and four ladders to each, and four youths drawn from the young priests, and in their hands there were jars of oil containing one hundred and twenty logs which they poured into the bowls. From the worn-out pants and belts of the priests they made wicks and with them they kindled the lamps. And there was not a courtyard in Jerusalem that was not illuminated by the light of the Bet Hashoevah. Men of piety and good deeds used to dance before them with lighted torches in their hands, and they would sing songs and praises. And Levites with innumerable harps, lyres, cymbals and trumpets and other musical instruments stood upon the fifteen steps leading down from the Court of the Israelites to the Court of the Women, corresponding to the fifteen songs of ascents in the Psalms, and it was on these [steps] that the Levites stood with their musical instruments and sang their songs. Two priests stood by the upper gate which leads down from the Court of the Israelites to the Court of the Women, with two trumpets in their hands. When the cock crowed they sounded a teki'ah [drawn-out blast], a teru'ah [staccato note] and again a teki'ah. When they reached the tenth step they sounded a teki'ah, a teru'ah and again a teki'ah. When they reached the Court [of the Women] they sounded a teki'ah, a teru'ah and again a teki'ah. They would sound their trumpets and proceed until they reached the gate which leads out to the east. When they reached the gate which leads out to the east, they turned their faces from east to west and said, “Our fathers who were in this place ‘their backs were toward the Temple of the Lord, and their faces toward the east, and they worshipped the sun toward the east’, but as for us, our eyes are turned to the Lord.” Rabbi Judah said: they used to repeat [the last words] and say “We are the Lord’s and our eyes are turned to the Lord.”
4 ד
זהו תרשים של בית המקדש. חמש עשרה המעלות הן הקשת הנמצאת במרכז התמונה בהן עולים בחמש עשרה מדרגות מעזרת הנשים לעזרת ישראל. על מדרגות אלו היו עומדים הלויים ושרים מזמורי תהלים.
בית המקדש
5ה
דיון
שאלות
המשנה מתארת את השמחה הגדולה שהייתה בזמן שאיבת המים לקיום מצוות ניסוך המים על גבי המזבח בימי החג ('החג' במשנה ובתלמוד הוא חג הסוכות).
מצוות ניסוך המים התקיימה בבית המקדש אך ורק בימי חג הסוכות, בשעת הקרבת קורבן התמיד, וזאת בנוסף לניסוך היין שהתקיים לאורך כל השנה בעת הקרבת הקורבנות.
תארו כיצד התקיימה, בעיני רוחכם, פעולת ניסוך המים. מה לדעתכם הטעם לקיום מצווה זו דווקא בתקופה זו בשנה?

השמחה כאן קשורה במים, באש, בריקוד, בקול ובשירה.
השירה מתבצעת על ידי הלווים העומדים על מדרגות הנמצאות בין עזרת הנשים לעזרת ישראל, חמש-עשרה מדרגות בסך הכול.

קראו שוב את תיאור המדרגות הללו במשנה, ונסו לעמוד על ניסוחים מיוחדים שתפסו את תשומת לבכם.
מהי התנועה העיקרית המתקיימת במרחב, גם במצוות ניסוך המים וגם בתיאור הלוויים?
נסו להציע רעיונות למשמעות העניין.
6ו
דיון
חמישה ספרי תהלים כנגד חמישה חומשי תורה
ראינו שהמשנה קושרת בין שמחת בית השואבה לחמישה עשר שירי המעלות שהלויים היו אומרים בעומדם על חמש-עשרה המדרגות (מעלות) שבין עזרת הנשים לעזרת ישראל.
חז"ל לא מסתפקים בקשר שבין המקדש לחמישה-עשר שירי המעלות, אלא רואים קשר בין ספר תהלים לתורה, ומשווים ביניהם כאשר גם התורה וגם ספר תהלים מחולקים לחמישה ספרים:
7ז
משה נתן להם חמשה חומשי תורה, וכנגדם נתן להם דוד ספר תהלים שיש בו חמשה ספרים...
8ח
דיון
מדוע לדעתכם מציב המדרש את חמשת חומשי התורה כנגד ספר תהלים? מהו לדעתכם הקשר בין הספרים?

ננסה לענות על שאלה זו דרך עיון באגדה הבאה:
9ט
חמישה עשר שירי המעלות - חלק ראשון
אמר לו רב חסדא לאחד החכמים שהיה מסדר אגדות לפניו:
האם שמעת, אותם חמשה עשר "שירי המעלות" כנגד מי אמרן דוד?
אמר לו, כך אמר ר' יוחנן: בשעה שכרה דוד את השיתין עלה התהום ורצה לשטוף את העולם, אמר דוד חמש עשרה שירי המעלות, והורידן.
הקשה לו רב חסדא, אם כך, לא חמש עשרה "מעלות" היו צריכים להקרא, אלא "יורדות"!
It was so bright that a woman would be able to sort wheat by the light of the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water. § The mishna continues: The pious and the men of action would dance before the people who attended the celebration. The Sages taught in the Tosefta that some of them would say in their song praising God: Happy is our youth, as we did not sin then, that did not embarrass our old age. These are the pious and the men of action, who spent all their lives engaged in Torah and mitzvot. And some would say: Happy is our old age, that atoned for our youth when we sinned. These are the penitents. Both these and those say: Happy is he who did not sin; and he who sinned should repent and God will absolve him. It is taught in the Tosefta: They said about Hillel the Elder that when he was rejoicing at the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water he said this: If I am here, everyone is here; and if I am not here, who is here? In other words, one must consider himself as the one upon whom it is incumbent to fulfill obligations, and he must not rely on others to do so. He would also say this: To the place that I love, there my feet take me, and therefore, I come to the Temple. And the Holy One, Blessed be He, says: If you come to My house, I will come to your house; if you do not come to My house, I will not come to your house, as it is stated: “In every place that I cause My name to be mentioned, I will come to you and bless you” (Exodus 20:20). The Gemara cites another statement of Hillel the Elder. Additionally, he saw one skull that was floating on the water and he said to it: Because you drowned others, they drowned you, and those that drowned you will be drowned. That is the way of the world; everyone is punished measure for measure. Apropos following one’s feet, Rabbi Yoḥanan said: The feet of a person are responsible for him; to the place where he is in demand, there they lead him. The Gemara relates with regard to these two Cushites who would stand before Solomon: “Elihoreph and Ahijah, the sons of Shisha” (I Kings 4:3), and they were scribes of Solomon. One day Solomon saw that the Angel of Death was sad. He said to him: Why are you sad? He said to him: They are asking me to take the lives of these two Cushites who are sitting here. Solomon handed them to the demons in his service, and sent them to the district of Luz, where the Angel of Death has no dominion. When they arrived at the district of Luz, they died. The following day, Solomon saw that the Angel of Death was happy. He said to him: Why are you happy? He replied: In the place that they asked me to take them, there you sent them. The Angel of Death was instructed to take their lives in the district of Luz. Since they resided in Solomon’s palace and never went to Luz, he was unable to complete his mission. That saddened him. Ultimately, Solomon dispatched them to Luz, enabling the angel to accomplish his mission. That pleased him. Immediately, Solomon began to speak and said: The feet of a person are responsible for him; to the place where he is in demand, there they lead him. § It is taught in a baraita: They said about Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel that when he would rejoice at the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water, he would take eight flaming torches and toss one and catch another, juggling them, and, though all were in the air at the same time, they would not touch each other. And when he would prostrate himself, he would insert his two thumbs into the ground, and bow, and kiss the floor of the courtyard and straighten, and there was not any other creature that could do that due to the extreme difficulty involved. And this was the form of bowing called kidda performed by the High Priest. The Gemara relates: Levi demonstrated a kidda before Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi and strained his thigh and came up lame. The Gemara asks: And is that what caused him to be lame? But didn’t Rabbi Elazar say: One should never speak impertinently toward God above; as a great person once spoke impertinently toward God above, and even though his prayers were answered, he was still punished and came up lame. And who was this great person? It was Levi. Apparently his condition was not caused by his bow. The Gemara answers: There is no contradiction. Both this and that caused him to come up lame; because he spoke impertinently toward God, he therefore was injured when exerting himself in demonstrating kidda. Apropos the rejoicing of Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel at the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water, the Gemara recounts: Levi would walk before Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi juggling with eight knives. Shmuel would juggle before King Shapur with eight glasses of wine without spilling. Abaye would juggle before Rabba with eight eggs. Some say he did so with four eggs. All these were cited. It is taught in a baraita that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Ḥananya said: When we would rejoice in the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water, we did not see sleep in our eyes the entire Festival. How so? In the first hour of the day, the daily morning offering was sacrificed and everyone came to watch. From there they proceeded to engage in prayer in the synagogue; from there, to watch the sacrifice of the additional offerings; from there, to the synagogue to recite the additional prayer. From there they would proceed to the study hall to study Torah; from there to the eating and drinking in the sukka; from there to the afternoon prayer. From there they would proceed to the daily afternoon offering in the Temple. From this point forward, they proceeded to the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water. The Gemara wonders: Is that so? But didn’t Rabbi Yoḥanan say: One who took an oath that I will not sleep three days, one flogs him immediately for taking an oath in vain, and he may sleep immediately because it is impossible to stay awake for three days uninterrupted. Rather, this is what Rabbi Yehoshua is saying: We did not experience the sense of actual sleep, because they would merely doze on each other’s shoulders. In any case, they were not actually awake for the entire week. § The mishna continues: The musicians would stand on the fifteen stairs that descend from the Israelites’ courtyard to the Women’s Courtyard, corresponding to the fifteen Songs of the Ascents in Psalms. Rav Ḥisda said to one of the Sages who was organizing aggada before him: Did you hear with regard to these fifteen Songs of Ascents in Psalms, corresponding to what did David say them? He said to him that this is what Rabbi Yoḥanan said: At the time that David dug the drainpipes in the foundation of the Temple, the waters of the depths rose and sought to inundate the world. Immediately, David recited the fifteen Songs of the Ascents and caused them to subside. Rav Ḥisda asked: If so, should they be called fifteen Songs of the Ascents? They should have been called Songs of the Descents. Rav Ḥisda continued and said to him: Since you reminded me of this matter, this is what was originally stated: At the time that David dug the drainpipes, the waters of the depths rose and sought to inundate the world. David said: Is there anyone who knows whether it is permitted to write the sacred name
10י
דיון
מה שואל רב חסדא את מסדר האגדות?
על פי תשובתו של מסדר האגדות, דוד המלך מבצע פעולה הקשורה לבניין בית המקדש. אמנם נאסר עליו לבנות את בית המקדש מפני שהיה מעורב בשפיכות דמים, אך הותר לו לבצע פעולות מקדימות. מה קרה כאשר דוד חפר את השיתין? הסבירו.
נסו לחשוב על בניין בית המקדש כעל נסיון לבנות זהות מלאה וחסונה. מה נדרש מהאדם כדי לבנות זהות כזאת ומה יכול לאיים על ניסיון זה.
מהי ה"תהום" המבקשת לשטוף את העולם? היכן מופיעה המילה "תהום" בפעם הראשונה במקרא? ומה היא מבטאת לדעתכם?
על פי המדרש, דוד אומר חמישה-עשר שירי מעלות ומוריד חזרה את התהום המאיימת להציף את העולם. מדוע רב חסדא אינו מקבל הסבר זה?
ובכל זאת, מדוע כך זכר מסדר האגדות ולאיזה מנגנון נפשי מתאימה הפעולה של "הורדת" התהום?
11יא
האגדה ממשיכה... חמישה עשר שירי המעלות - חלק שני
אמר לו מסדר האגדות, הואיל והזכרתני, כך נאמר:
בשעה שכרה דוד את השיתין עלה התהום ורצה לשטוף את העולם.
אמר דוד: מי יודע אם מותר לכתוב שם קדוש [ שמו של הקב"ה] על חרס ולזרוק אותו בתהום וינוח?
לא היה מי שיאמר לו דבר.
אמר דוד: כל מי שיודע לומר ואינו אומר לי יחנק בגרונו!
נשא אחיתופל קל וחומר מעצמו, ואמר: ומה לעשות שלום בין איש לאשתו אמרה תורה, שמי שנכתב בקדושה ימחה על המים [בדין סוטה כותבים את שמו של הקב"ה (כחלק מהפרשיה בתורה העוסקת בדין אשה סוטה) על קלף ומוחקים לתוך מי הסוטה], לעשות שלום לכל העולם כולו על אחת כמה וכמה!
אמר לדוד: מותר הדבר.
כתב דוד שם קדוש על חרס וזרק אותו לתהום, וירד התהום שש עשרה אלף אמות.
כאשר ראה דוד שירד ביותר, אמר: כמה שמורם התהום יותר, רטוב העולם יותר.
על כן אמר חמש עשרה המעלות והעלהו לתהום חמש עשרה אלף אמות, והעמידו שיהא התהום באלף אמות.
...
It was so bright that a woman would be able to sort wheat by the light of the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water. § The mishna continues: The pious and the men of action would dance before the people who attended the celebration. The Sages taught in the Tosefta that some of them would say in their song praising God: Happy is our youth, as we did not sin then, that did not embarrass our old age. These are the pious and the men of action, who spent all their lives engaged in Torah and mitzvot. And some would say: Happy is our old age, that atoned for our youth when we sinned. These are the penitents. Both these and those say: Happy is he who did not sin; and he who sinned should repent and God will absolve him. It is taught in the Tosefta: They said about Hillel the Elder that when he was rejoicing at the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water he said this: If I am here, everyone is here; and if I am not here, who is here? In other words, one must consider himself as the one upon whom it is incumbent to fulfill obligations, and he must not rely on others to do so. He would also say this: To the place that I love, there my feet take me, and therefore, I come to the Temple. And the Holy One, Blessed be He, says: If you come to My house, I will come to your house; if you do not come to My house, I will not come to your house, as it is stated: “In every place that I cause My name to be mentioned, I will come to you and bless you” (Exodus 20:20). The Gemara cites another statement of Hillel the Elder. Additionally, he saw one skull that was floating on the water and he said to it: Because you drowned others, they drowned you, and those that drowned you will be drowned. That is the way of the world; everyone is punished measure for measure. Apropos following one’s feet, Rabbi Yoḥanan said: The feet of a person are responsible for him; to the place where he is in demand, there they lead him. The Gemara relates with regard to these two Cushites who would stand before Solomon: “Elihoreph and Ahijah, the sons of Shisha” (I Kings 4:3), and they were scribes of Solomon. One day Solomon saw that the Angel of Death was sad. He said to him: Why are you sad? He said to him: They are asking me to take the lives of these two Cushites who are sitting here. Solomon handed them to the demons in his service, and sent them to the district of Luz, where the Angel of Death has no dominion. When they arrived at the district of Luz, they died. The following day, Solomon saw that the Angel of Death was happy. He said to him: Why are you happy? He replied: In the place that they asked me to take them, there you sent them. The Angel of Death was instructed to take their lives in the district of Luz. Since they resided in Solomon’s palace and never went to Luz, he was unable to complete his mission. That saddened him. Ultimately, Solomon dispatched them to Luz, enabling the angel to accomplish his mission. That pleased him. Immediately, Solomon began to speak and said: The feet of a person are responsible for him; to the place where he is in demand, there they lead him. § It is taught in a baraita: They said about Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel that when he would rejoice at the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water, he would take eight flaming torches and toss one and catch another, juggling them, and, though all were in the air at the same time, they would not touch each other. And when he would prostrate himself, he would insert his two thumbs into the ground, and bow, and kiss the floor of the courtyard and straighten, and there was not any other creature that could do that due to the extreme difficulty involved. And this was the form of bowing called kidda performed by the High Priest. The Gemara relates: Levi demonstrated a kidda before Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi and strained his thigh and came up lame. The Gemara asks: And is that what caused him to be lame? But didn’t Rabbi Elazar say: One should never speak impertinently toward God above; as a great person once spoke impertinently toward God above, and even though his prayers were answered, he was still punished and came up lame. And who was this great person? It was Levi. Apparently his condition was not caused by his bow. The Gemara answers: There is no contradiction. Both this and that caused him to come up lame; because he spoke impertinently toward God, he therefore was injured when exerting himself in demonstrating kidda. Apropos the rejoicing of Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel at the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water, the Gemara recounts: Levi would walk before Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi juggling with eight knives. Shmuel would juggle before King Shapur with eight glasses of wine without spilling. Abaye would juggle before Rabba with eight eggs. Some say he did so with four eggs. All these were cited. It is taught in a baraita that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Ḥananya said: When we would rejoice in the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water, we did not see sleep in our eyes the entire Festival. How so? In the first hour of the day, the daily morning offering was sacrificed and everyone came to watch. From there they proceeded to engage in prayer in the synagogue; from there, to watch the sacrifice of the additional offerings; from there, to the synagogue to recite the additional prayer. From there they would proceed to the study hall to study Torah; from there to the eating and drinking in the sukka; from there to the afternoon prayer. From there they would proceed to the daily afternoon offering in the Temple. From this point forward, they proceeded to the Celebration of the Place of the Drawing of the Water. The Gemara wonders: Is that so? But didn’t Rabbi Yoḥanan say: One who took an oath that I will not sleep three days, one flogs him immediately for taking an oath in vain, and he may sleep immediately because it is impossible to stay awake for three days uninterrupted. Rather, this is what Rabbi Yehoshua is saying: We did not experience the sense of actual sleep, because they would merely doze on each other’s shoulders. In any case, they were not actually awake for the entire week. § The mishna continues: The musicians would stand on the fifteen stairs that descend from the Israelites’ courtyard to the Women’s Courtyard, corresponding to the fifteen Songs of the Ascents in Psalms. Rav Ḥisda said to one of the Sages who was organizing aggada before him: Did you hear with regard to these fifteen Songs of Ascents in Psalms, corresponding to what did David say them? He said to him that this is what Rabbi Yoḥanan said: At the time that David dug the drainpipes in the foundation of the Temple, the waters of the depths rose and sought to inundate the world. Immediately, David recited the fifteen Songs of the Ascents and caused them to subside. Rav Ḥisda asked: If so, should they be called fifteen Songs of the Ascents? They should have been called Songs of the Descents. Rav Ḥisda continued and said to him: Since you reminded me of this matter, this is what was originally stated: At the time that David dug the drainpipes, the waters of the depths rose and sought to inundate the world. David said: Is there anyone who knows whether it is permitted to write the sacred name
12יב
דיון
מסדר האגדות נזכר בסיפור הנכון.
מה מבקש דוד לעשות כאשר התהום מאיימת לשטוף את העולם? מהי משמעות הדבר בעיניכם?
כיצד ייתכן שזריקת שם ה' לתהום הרחיקה אותו עד כדי כך שהעולם לא יכול להתקיים? מה זה אומר לדעתכם על התורה?
מה עושה דוד כדי לתקן את המצב?
האם העולם יכול להתקיים רק עם "שמו של הקב"ה" היינו, עם התורה? מה נדרש בנוסף לכך?
מהו, אם כן, לדעתכם הקשר בין התורה לבין ספר תהלים?
13יג
לסיכום: על היחס שבין התורה לשירה
14יד
ועתה כתבו לכם את השירה הזאת ולמדה את בני ישראל שימה בפיהם, למען תהיה לי השירה הזאת לעד בבני ישראל.
Now therefore write ye this song for you, and teach thou it the children of Israel; put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for Me against the children of Israel.
15טו
דיון
התורה עצמה נקראת בכמה מקומות 'שירה', למשל בפסוק זה. מתוך שלל הפרשנויות לפסוק, נעיין בדבריו של ר' יחיאל מיכל עפשטיין בהקדמה לחיבורו "ערוך השולחן":
16טז
הרב יחיאל מיכל הלוי אפשטין, ערוך השולחן, הקדמה
וכל מחלוקת התנאים והאמוראים והגאונים והפוסקים, באמת למבין דבר לאשורו, דברי אלקים חיים המה, ולכולם יש פנים בהלכה. ואדרבה, זו היא תפארת תורתנו הקדושה והטהורה, וכל התורה כולה נקראת שירה, ותפארת השיר היא כשהקולות משונים זה מזה, וזהו עיקר הנעימות.

מושגים
  • הרב יחיאל מיכל הלוי עפשטיין - (כ' בשבט תקפ"ט 1829 - כ"ב אדר ב' ה'תרס"ח 1908) רב, פוסק ומחבר הספר "ערוך השולחן" על ארבעת חלקי השולחן ערוך.
17יז
הרב אברהם יצחק הכהן קוק, מובא בתוך הרב צבי יהודה הכהן קוק, שיחות הרצי"ה, פרשת האזינו, סדרה א, הוצאת ספריית חוה
הרב קוק רואה זיקה הדוקה, אולי אפילו מקיימת, בין השירה והחוק:
כשם שיש חוקים בשירה כך יש שירה בחוקים.
18יח
דיון
שאלות
  • ערכו השוואה בין שירה לתורה/חוק ונסו לעמוד על הדומה והשונה ביניהם.
  • חשבו על סוגי חיבור בין תורה לשירה וכיצד יכול כל אחד מהם לתרום למשנהו.
  • ומכאן, עם סיום לימוד ספר תהלים, ניתן לשאול את הלומדים: עם איזו תובנה אתם יוצאים מהמפגש עם תהלים? במה הוא דומה לתורה ולשאר ספרי התנ"ך, ובמה שונה?
20 כ
21כא