מקור מים חיים - המלצות לימוד לשבועות

שאלנו אנשי תורה, רוח וספר מהו המקור עליו הם ממליצים ללימוד בליל שבועות (ובכל השנה). לפניכם חמישה מקורות מגוונים ומיוחדים, וקריאה קצרה בכל אחד מהם. הקריאה משמשת לקצה חוט להתחלת הלימוד ממנו אתם מוזמנים להמריא הלאה. חג שמח!

המלצתו של הרב אברהם סתיו:

דף נ"ד במסכת עירובין הוא דף שכולו שיר אהבה לתורה. התורה מתוארת בו כבת-לווייה של מי שהולך לבד בדרך, כרפואתו של החולה ומזונו של הרעב. לימוד התורה מתואר כמערכת יחסים עמוקה שיש בה קושי ותענוג, מסירות והתמסרות, ויחד עם זאת גם הבטחה שבסופו של דבר נוצר תאנה יאכל פריה.

הרב אברהם סתיו הוא ר"מ בישיבת מחניים.

אמר רבי יהושע בן לוי:

המהלך בדרך ואין עמו לוייה יעסוק בתורה שנאמר כי לוית חן הם.

חש בראשו יעסוק בתורה שנאמר כי לוית חן הם לראשך.

חש בגרונו יעסוק בתורה שנאמר וענקים לגרגרותיך.

חש במעיו יעסוק בתורה שנאמר רפאות תהי לשרך.

חש בעצמותיו יעסוק בתורה שנאמר ושקוי לעצמותיך.

חש בכל גופו יעסוק בתורה שנאמר ולכל בשרו מרפא.

אמר רב יהודה ברבי חייא בא וראה שלא כמדת הקדוש ברוך הוא מדת בשר ודם,

מדת בשר ודם אדם נותן סם לחבירו לזה יפה ולזה קשה

אבל הקדוש ברוך הוא אינו כן נתן תורה לישראל סם חיים לכל גופו

שנאמר ולכל בשרו מרפא

Having expounded the verse “For they are life to those who find them” as referring to the Torah, the Gemara cites another teaching related to this verse that praises the Torah. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: One who is walking along the way without a companion and is afraid should engage in Torah study, as it is stated with regard to the words of Torah: “For they shall be a graceful wreath [livyat ḥen] for your head, and chains about your neck” (Proverbs 1:9). The word livyat is understood here as a reference to levaya, accompaniment, so that the verse is interpreted to mean that Torah is a graceful accompaniment to one who is traveling. One who feels pain in his head should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “For they shall be a graceful wreath for your head.” One who feels pain in his throat should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “And chains about your neck.” One who feels pain in his intestines should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “It shall be health to your navel” (Proverbs 3:8). One who feels pain in his bones should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “And marrow to your bones” (Proverbs 3:8). One who feels pain in his entire body should engage in Torah study, as it is stated: “And health to all their flesh” (Proverbs 4:22). Rav Yehuda, son of Rabbi Ḥiyya, said: Come and see that the attribute of flesh and blood is unlike the attribute of the Holy One, Blessed be He. The attribute of flesh and blood is that when a person gives a drug to his fellow, it is good for this part of his body and it is harmful to that other part of his body. But the attribute of the Holy One, Blessed be He, is not so; He gave the Torah to the Jewish people, and it is a drug of life for one’s entire body, as it is stated: “And health to all their flesh.” The Gemara continues with praise for Torah study and knowledge. Rav Ami said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “For it is a pleasant thing if you keep them within you; let them be firmly attached together to your lips” (Proverbs 22:18)? When are words of Torah pleasant? When you keep them within you and know them. And when will you keep them within you? When they will be attached together to your lips, i.e., when you articulate them audibly and expound them. Rabbi Zeira said that this idea is derived from here: “A man has joy in the answer of his mouth; and a word in due season, how good it is” (Proverbs 15:23). When does a man have joy? When an answer related to Torah study is in his mouth. Another version: When does a man have joy in the answer of his mouth? When he experiences the fulfillment of: A word in due season, how good it is, i.e., when he knows when and how to address each issue. Rabbi Yitzḥak said that this idea is derived from here: “But the matter is very near to you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it” (Deuteronomy 30:14). When is it very near to you? When it is in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it, i.e., when you articulate your Torah study. Rava said that this idea is actually derived from here: “You have given him his heart’s desire, and have not withheld the request of his lips, Selah” (Psalms 21:3). When have You given him his heart’s desire? When You have not withheld the request of his lips, Selah, i.e., when he converses in words of Torah. Rava raised an internal contradiction in that very verse: In the beginning of the verse it is written: “You have given him his heart’s desire,” implying that it is enough for one to request in his heart, whereas in the end of the verse it is written: “And You have not withheld the request of his lips, Selah,” indicating that one must express his prayers verbally. Rava himself resolved the contradiction: If one is fortunate, “You have given him his heart’s desire,” even if he does not give verbal expression to his wants. But if he is not fortunate, at least “You have not withheld the request of his lips, Selah.” With regard to the end of this verse, a Sage of the school of Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov taught the following baraita: Wherever it states netzaḥ, Selah, or va’ed, the matter will never cease. Netzaḥ, as it is written: “For I will not contend forever; neither will I be eternally [lanetzaḥ] angry” (Isaiah 57:16), which demonstrates that netzaḥ bears a similar meaning to forever. Selah, as it is written: “As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of the Lord of Hosts, in the city of our God; may God establish it forever, Selah” (Psalms 48:9), which demonstrates that Selah means forever. Va’ed, as it is written: “The Lord shall reign forever and ever [va’ed]” (Exodus 15:18). In light of the previous discussion, the Gemara cites several expositions of verses proposed by Rabbi Eliezer, while first providing them with a mnemonic: Chains, cheeks, tablets, engraved. Rabbi Eliezer said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “And chains about your neck” (Proverbs 1:9)? If a person makes himself like a chain that hangs loosely on the neck, i.e., if a scholar is not pushy and disruptive to others, and he is also seen but not seen, i.e., just as a chain is covered by clothes and hair, so too, the scholar does not let himself be seen, his Torah study will endure. But if not, if he acts in a rude and arrogant manner, his Torah study will not endure. And Rabbi Eliezer also said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “His cheeks are like a bed of spices” (Song of Songs 5:13)? If a person makes himself humble like this garden bed upon which everyone treads, and like this spice with which everyone perfumes himself, i.e., which benefits not only the one who wears it, his Torah study will endure. But if not, his Torah study will not endure. And Rabbi Eliezer further said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “Tablets [luḥot] of stone” (Exodus 31:18)? If a person makes his cheeks [leḥayav] like this stone that does not wear away, his Torah study will endure. But if not, i.e., if he is not diligent in his studies, his Torah study will not endure. And, lastly, Rabbi Eliezer said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “And the tablets were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, engraved upon the tablets” (Exodus 32:16)? This teaches that had the first tablets, the subject of this verse, not been broken, the Torah would never have been forgotten from the Jewish people, as the Torah would have been engraved upon their hearts. Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov said: Had the tablets not been broken, no nation or tongue would ever have ruled over them, as it is stated: “Engraved”; do not read it engraved [ḥarut] but rather freedom [ḥeirut]. Similarly, Rav Mattana said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “The well that the princes dug out, that the nobles of the people delved, with the scepter, with their staves. And from the wilderness they went to Mattanah” (Numbers 21:18)? If a person makes himself humble like this wilderness, which is open to all and upon which everyone treads, his Torah study will endure and be given to him as a gift [mattana]. And if not, his Torah study will not endure. The Gemara relates that Rav Yosef had a grievance against Rava, son of Rav Yosef bar Ḥama, who is usually referred to in the Gemara simply as Rava, and as a result of the grievance the two would never meet. When the eve of Yom Kippur arrived, Rava said: I will go and appease him. He went and found Rav Yosef’s attendant mixing him a cup of wine. He said to the attendant: Give it to me, and I will mix it. He gave it to Rava, and Rava mixed it. Rav Yosef was blind and could not see his visitor, but when he tasted the wine he said: This mixture is similar to the mixture of Rava, son of Rav Yosef bar Ḥama, who would add extra water to the wine. Rava said to him: It is I. Rav Yosef said to him: Do not sit on your knees until you have explained these verses to me: What is the meaning of that which is written: “And from the wilderness to Mattanah; and from Mattanah to Nahaliel; and from Nahaliel to Bamoth; and from Bamoth to the valley in the field of Moab, to the top of Pisgah, which looks out toward the desert” (Numbers 21:19–20)? Rava said to him: If a person makes himself humble like this wilderness, which is open to all and upon which everyone treads, the Torah will be given to him as a gift [mattana]. And once it is given to him as a gift, he inherits it [neḥalo] and God [El] makes it His inheritance, as it is stated: “And from Mattanah to Nahaliel.” And once God has made it His inheritance, he rises to greatness, as it is stated: “And from Nahaliel to Bamoth,” which means heights. And if he becomes haughty, the Holy One, Blessed be He, lowers him, as it is stated: “And from Bamoth to the valley.” And if he repents, the Holy One, Blessed be He, raises him back up, as it is stated: “Every valley shall be exalted” (Isaiah 40:4). Rav Huna said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “Your flock found a dwelling in it; You, O God, prepare of Your goodness for the poor” (Psalms 68:11)? If a person makes himself like an animal that tramples its prey and eats it immediately, without being particular about its food, i.e., if a scholar immediately reviews what he has heard from his teacher; and some say, like an animal that soils and eats, i.e., if a scholar is not particular about maintaining his honor during his Torah study, just as an animal is not particular about the quality of its food, his Torah study will endure. And if not, his Torah study will not endure. And if he does so, the Holy One, Blessed be He, will Himself prepare him a feast, as it is stated: “You, O God, prepare of Your goodness for the poor,” indicating that God in His goodness will Himself prepare a feast for that pauper. Rabbi Ḥiyya bar Abba said that Rabbi Yoḥanan said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “He who guards the fig tree shall eat its fruit” (Proverbs 27:18)? Why were matters of Torah compared to a fig tree? Just as this fig tree, whenever a person searches it for figs to eat, he finds figs in it, as the figs on a tree do not ripen all at once, so that one can always find a recently ripened fig, so too, with matters of Torah. Whenever a person meditates upon them, he finds in them new meaning. Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “A loving hind and a graceful roe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times, and be you ravished always with her love” (Proverbs 5:19)? Why were matters of Torah compared to a hind? To tell you that just as with a hind, its womb is narrow and it is cherished by its mate each and every hour like the first hour, so too, matters of Torah are cherished by those who study them each and every hour like the first hour. “And a graceful roe” is expounded as follows: That the Torah bestows grace upon those who study it. “Let her breasts satisfy you at all times”; why were matters of Torah compared to a breast? Just as with a breast, whenever a baby searches it for milk to suckle, he finds milk in it, so too, with matters of Torah. Whenever a person meditates upon them, he finds new meaning in them. “And be you ravished always with her love”; your love for Torah should always distract you from worldly matters, as was the case with Rabbi Elazar ben Pedat. They said of him, of Rabbi Elazar, that he would sit and engage in Torah study in the lower marketplace of Tzippori, and his cloak was lying in the upper marketplace of Tzippori. His mind was so focused on Torah study that he would act in this unusual manner. In this regard, the Gemara relates that it was taught in a baraita that Rabbi Yitzḥak ben Elazar said: One time a person came to take this cloak for himself and found a serpent on it guarding it.

"שיר האהבה לתורה" שנמצא בסוגיה זו ממשיך עד העמוד הבא. לחצו על כותרת המקור כדי לקרוא את כולו במאגר. מוזמנים לפתוח בעזרת התפריט הנפתח את ביאור שטיינזלץ על התלמוד להבנת המקור באופן מלא.

המלצתה של הרבנית כרמית פיינטוך:

ממליצה ללמוד שני מדרשים שבהם משה מטפס ממקומו כאדם בארץ אל המרום, מקום המלאכים והאלוהים. ישנם כמה וכמה מדרשים שמציירים את הציור המסעיר הזה, את האפשרות הנועזת הזו של מפגש מרתק בין ארץ ושמיים. השניים אלה עוסקים בשאלה האם נכון לה לתורה להינתן, לרדת מן השמיים אל הארץ, לרדת מהמושלם המלאכי אל החלקיות האנושי? מעבר לתמונה יש פה בעצם שאלה על מהותה של התורה, לשם מה בדיוק היא ניתנה? המלאכים מתנגדים אבל בני האדם זוכים בה. למה בעצם?

הרבנית כרמית פיינטוך היא רבנית קהילת 'אילנא דחיי' ור"מית בבית המדרש לנשים במגדל עוז

וּמשֶׁה עָלָה אֶל הָאֱלֹהִים, הֲדָא הוּא דִכְתִיב (תהלים סח, יט): עָלִיתָ לַמָּרוֹם שָׁבִיתָ שֶׁבִי, מַהוּ עָלִיתָ, נִתְעֲלֵיתָ, נִתְגַּשַׁשְׁתָּ עִם הַמַּלְאָכִים שֶׁל מַעְלָה. דָּבָר אַחֵר, עָלִיתָ לַמָּרוֹם, שֶׁלֹא שָׁלְטָה בְּרִיָה מִלְּמַעְלָן כְּשֵׁם שֶׁשָּׁלַט משֶׁה. אָמַר רַבִּי בֶּרֶכְיָה הַלּוּחוֹת הָיוּ אָרְכָּן שִׁשָּׁה טְפָחִים, כִּבְיָכוֹל הָיוּ בְּיַד מִי שֶׁאָמַר וְהָיָה הָעוֹלָם שְׁנֵי טְפָחִים וּבְיָדוֹ שֶׁל משֶׁה שְׁנֵי טְפָחִים וּשְׁנֵי טְפָחִים הָיוּ מַפְרִישִׁין בֵּין יַד לְיַד. דָּבָר אַחֵר, עָלִיתָ לַמָּרוֹם שָׁבִיתָ שֶׁבִי, בְּנֹהַג שֶׁבָּעוֹלָם הַנִּכְנָס לִמְדִינָה נוֹטֵל דָּבָר שֶׁאֵין עֵין בְּנֵי הַמְדִינָה עָלָיו, וּמשֶׁה עָלָה לַמָּרוֹם וְנָטַל אֶת הַתּוֹרָה שֶׁהָיוּ הַכֹּל נוֹשְׂאִין עֵינֵיהֶם עָלֶיהָ, הֱוֵי: עָלִיתָ לַמָּרוֹם שָׁבִיתָ שֶׁבִי, יָכוֹל מִפְּנֵי שֶׁשָּׁבָה אוֹתָהּ נְטָלָהּ חִנָּם, תַּלְמוּד לוֹמַר (תהלים סח, יט): לָקַחְתָּ מַתָּנוֹת בָּאָדָם, בִּלְקִיחָה נִתְּנָה לוֹ. יָכוֹל יְהֵא חַיָּב לִתֵּן לוֹ דָּמִים, תַּלְמוּד לוֹמַר מַתָּנוֹת, בְּמַתָּנָה נִתְּנָה לוֹ. בְּאוֹתָהּ שָׁעָה בִּקְּשׁוּ מַלְאֲכֵי הַשָּׁרֵת לִפְגֹעַ בְּמשֶׁה, עָשָׂה בּוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא קְלַסְטֵירִין שֶׁל פָּנָיו שֶׁל משֶׁה דּוֹמֶה לְאַבְרָהָם, אָמַר לָהֶם הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא אִי אַתֶּם מִתְבַּיְשִׁין הֵימֶנּוּ לֹא זֶהוּ שֶׁיְּרַדְתֶּם אֶצְלוֹ וַאֲכַלְתֶּם בְּתוֹךְ בֵּיתוֹ, אָמַר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְמשֶׁה לֹא נִתְּנָה לְךָ תּוֹרָה אֶלָּא בִּזְכוּת אַבְרָהָם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: לָקַחְתָּ מַתָּנוֹת בָּאָדָם, וְאֵין אָדָם הָאָמוּר כָּאן אֶלָּא אַבְרָהָם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (יהושע יד, טו): הָאָדָם הַגָּדוֹל בָּעֲנָקִים, הֱוֵי: וּמשֶׁה עָלָה אֶל הָאֱלֹהִים.

ואמר רבי יהושע בן לוי בשעה שעלה משה למרום אמרו מלאכי השרת לפני הקדוש ברוך הוא רבונו של עולם מה לילוד אשה בינינו אמר להן לקבל תורה בא אמרו לפניו חמודה גנוזה שגנוזה לך תשע מאות ושבעים וארבעה דורות קודם שנברא העולם אתה מבקש ליתנה לבשר ודם מה אנוש כי תזכרנו ובן אדם כי תפקדנו ה׳ אדנינו מה אדיר שמך בכל הארץ אשר תנה הודך על השמים אמר לו הקדוש ברוך הוא למשה החזיר להן תשובה אמר לפניו רבונו של עולם מתיירא אני שמא ישרפוני בהבל שבפיהם אמר לו אחוז בכסא כבודי וחזור להן תשובה שנאמר מאחז פני כסא פרשז עליו עננו ואמר רבי נחום מלמד שפירש שדי מזיו שכינתו ועננו עליו אמר לפניו רבונו של עולם תורה שאתה נותן לי מה כתיב בה אנכי ה׳ אלהיך אשר הוצאתיך מארץ מצרים אמר להן למצרים ירדתם לפרעה השתעבדתם תורה למה תהא לכם שוב מה כתיב בה לא יהיה לך אלהים אחרים בין הגוים אתם שרויין שעובדין עבודת גלולים שוב מה כתיב בה זכור את יום השבת לקדשו כלום אתם עושים מלאכה שאתם צריכין שבות שוב מה כתיב בה לא תשא משא ומתן יש ביניכם שוב מה כתיב בה כבד את אביך ואת אמך אב ואם יש לכם שוב מה כתיב בה לא תרצח לא תנאף לא תגנב קנאה יש ביניכם יצר הרע יש ביניכם מיד הודו לו להקדוש ברוך הוא שנאמר ה׳ אדנינו מה אדיר שמך וגו׳ ואילו תנה הודך על השמים לא כתיב

מיד כל אחד ואחד נעשה לו אוהב ומסר לו דבר שנאמר עלית למרום שבית שבי לקחת מתנות באדם בשכר שקראוך אדם לקחת מתנות אף מלאך המות מסר לו דבר שנאמר ויתן את הקטרת ויכפר על העם ואומר ויעמד בין המתים ובין החיים וגו׳ אי לאו דאמר ליה מי הוה ידע:

who proceed wholeheartedly and with integrity, it is written: “The integrity of the upright will guide them” (Proverbs 11:3), whereas about those people who walk in deceit, it is written at the end of the same verse: “And the perverseness of the faithless will destroy them.” Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥamani said that Rabbi Yonatan said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “You have ravished my heart, my sister, my bride; you have ravished my heart with one of your eyes, with one bead of your necklace” (Song of Songs 4:9)? At first when you, the Jewish people, merely accepted the Torah upon yourselves it was with one of your eyes; however, when you actually perform the mitzvot it will be with both of your eyes. Ulla said with regard to the sin of the Golden Calf: Insolent is the bride who is promiscuous under her wedding canopy. Rav Mari, son of the daughter of Shmuel, said: What verse alludes to this? “While the king was still at his table my spikenard gave off its fragrance” (Song of Songs 1:12). Its pleasant odor dissipated, leaving only an offensive odor. Rav said: Nevertheless, it is apparent from the verse that the affection of the Holy One, Blessed be He, is still upon us, as it is written euphemistically as “gave off its fragrance,” and the verse did not write, it reeked. And the Sages taught: About those who are insulted and do not insult, who hear their shame and do not respond, who act out of love and are joyful in suffering, the verse says: “And they that love Him are as the sun going forth in its might” (Judges 5:31). With regard to the revelation at Sinai, Rabbi Yoḥanan said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “The Lord gives the word; the women that proclaim the tidings are a great host” (Psalms 68:12)? It means that each and every utterance that emerged from the mouth of the Almighty divided into seventy languages, a great host. And, similarly, the school of Rabbi Yishmael taught with regard to the verse: “Behold, is My word not like fire, declares the Lord, and like a hammer that shatters a rock?” (Jeremiah 23:29). Just as this hammer breaks a stone into several fragments, so too, each and every utterance that emerged from the mouth of the Holy One, Blessed be He, divided into seventy languages. The Gemara continues in praise of the Torah. Rav Ḥananel bar Pappa said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “Listen, for I will speak royal things, and my lips will open with upright statements” (Proverbs 8:6)? Why are matters of Torah likened to a king? To teach you that just as this king has the power to kill and to grant life, so too, matters of Torah have the power to kill and to grant life. And that is what Rava said: To those who are right-handed in their approach to Torah, and engage in its study with strength, good will, and sanctity, Torah is a drug of life, and to those who are left-handed in their approach to Torah, it is a drug of death. Alternatively, why are matters of Torah referred to as royal? Because to each and every utterance that emerged from the mouth of the Holy One, Blessed be He, two crowns are tied. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “My beloved is to me like a bundle of myrrh that lies between my breasts” (Song of Songs 1:13)? The Congregation of Israel said before the Holy One, Blessed be He: Master of the Universe, even though my beloved, God, causes me suffering and bitterness, He still lies between my breasts. And Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi interpreted the verse: “My beloved is to me like a cluster [eshkol] of henna [hakofer] in the vineyards of [karmei] Ein Gedi” (Song of Songs 1:14). He, Whom everything [shehakol] is His, forgives [mekhapper] me for the sin of the kid [gedi], i.e., the calf, that I collected [shekaramti] for myself. The Gemara explains: From where is it inferred that the word in this verse, karmei, is a term of gathering? Mar Zutra, son of Rav Naḥman, said that it is as we learned in a mishna: A launderer’s chair upon which one gathers [koremim] the garments. And Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: What is the meaning of that which is written: “His cheeks are as a bed of spices, as banks of sweet herbs, his lips are lilies dripping with flowing myrrh” (Song of Songs 5:13)? It is interpreted homiletically: From each and every utterance that emerged from His cheeks, i.e., the mouth of the Holy One, Blessed be He, the entire world was filled with fragrant spices. And since the world was already filled by the first utterance, where was there room for the spices of the second utterance to go? The Holy One, Blessed be He, brought forth wind from His treasuries and made the spices pass one at a time, leaving room for the consequences of the next utterance. As it is stated: “His lips are lilies [shoshanim] dripping with flowing myrrh.” Each and every utterance resulted in flowing myrrh. Do not read the word in the verse as shoshanim; rather, read it as sheshonim, meaning repeat. Each repeat utterance produced its own fragrance. And Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: From each and every utterance that emerged from the mouth of the Holy One, Blessed be He, the souls of the Jewish people left their bodies, as it is stated: “My soul departed when he spoke” (Song of Songs 5:6). And since their souls left their bodies from the first utterance, how did they receive the second utterance? Rather, God rained the dew upon them that, in the future, will revive the dead, and He revived them, as it is stated: “You, God, poured down a bountiful rain; when Your inheritance was weary You sustained it” (Psalms 68:10). And Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: With each and every utterance that emerged from the mouth of the Holy One, Blessed be He, the Jewish people retreated in fear twelve mil, and the ministering angels walked them back toward the mountain, as it is stated: “The hosts of angels will scatter [yidodun]” (Psalms 68:13). Do not read the word as yidodun, meaning scattered; rather, read it as yedadun, they walked them. And Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: When Moses ascended on High to receive the Torah, the ministering angels said before the Holy One, Blessed be He: Master of the Universe, what is one born of a woman doing here among us? The Holy One, Blessed be He, said to them: He came to receive the Torah. The angels said before Him: The Torah is a hidden treasure that was concealed by you 974 generations before the creation of the world, and you seek to give it to flesh and blood? As it is stated: “The word which He commanded to a thousand generations” (Psalms 105:8). Since the Torah, the word of God, was given to the twenty-sixth generation after Adam, the first man, the remaining 974 generations must have preceded the creation of the world. “What is man that You are mindful of him and the son of man that You think of him?” (Psalms 8:5). Rather, “God our Lord, how glorious is Your name in all the earth that Your majesty is placed above the heavens” (Psalms 8:2). The rightful place of God’s majesty, the Torah, is in the heavens. The Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: Provide them with an answer as to why the Torah should be given to the people. Moses said before Him: Master of the Universe, I am afraid lest they burn me with the breath of their mouths. God said to him: Grasp My throne of glory for strength and protection, and provide them with an answer. And from where is this derived? As it is stated: “He causes him to grasp the front of the throne, and spreads His cloud over it” (Job 26:9), and Rabbi Naḥum said: This verse teaches that God spread the radiance of His presence and His cloud over Moses. Moses said before Him: Master of the Universe, the Torah that You are giving me, what is written in it? God said to him: “I am the Lord your God Who brought you out of Egypt from the house of bondage” (Exodus 20:2). Moses said to the angels: Did you descend to Egypt? Were you enslaved to Pharaoh? Why should the Torah be yours? Again Moses asked: What else is written in it? God said to him: “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:3). Moses said to the angels: Do you dwell among the nations who worship

המלצתו של ד"ר שמואל פאוסט:

בעקבות מגילת רות הנקראת בחג השבועות, הפך החג למועד טבעי לעיסוק בסוגיית ההצטרפות לעם ישראל. ממליץ ללמוד את הסיפור במדרש בראשית רבה (ע, ה) על עקילס הגר, ולאורו לשוב וללמוד את הסיפור בבבלי במסכת שבת (לא ע"א) על שמאי, הלל והגר כדי ללמוד מהו בעיני חז"ל הדבר המטריד ביותר את המתגייר.

ד"ר שמואל פאוסט הוא ראש התכנית לתואר שני באגדה והוראתה

מכללת אפרתה.

וְנָתַן לִי לֶחֶם לֶאֱכֹל וּבֶגֶד לִלְבּשׁ (בראשית כח, כ),

עֲקִילַס הַגֵּר נִכְנַס אֵצֶל רַבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר אָמַר לוֹ הֲרֵי כָּל שִׁבְחוֹ שֶׁל גֵּר, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (דברים י, יח): וְאֹהֵב גֵּר לָתֶת לוֹ לֶחֶם וְשִׂמְלָה, אָמַר לוֹ וְכִי קַלָּה הִיא בְּעֵינֶיךָ, דָּבָר שֶׁנִּתְחַבֵּט עָלָיו אוֹתוֹ זָקֵן, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְנָתַן לִי לֶחֶם לֶאֱכֹל וּבֶגֶד לִלְבּשׁ, וּבָא זֶה וְהוֹשִׁיטוֹ לוֹ בְּקָנֶה. נִכְנַס אֵצֶל רַבִּי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ.

[נסח אחר: עקילס הגר בא ושאל את רבי אליעזר אמר לו הרי חבה שחבב הקדוש ברוך הוא את הגר, דכתיב: ואהב גר לתת לו לחם ושמלה, כמה טוסין אית לי כמה פוסיני אית לי אפלו על עבדי לא משגיחין, נזף ביה ואזיל לגבי רבי יהושע],

אָמְרוּ לוֹ תַּלְמִידָיו רַבִּי דָּבָר שֶׁנִתְחַבֵּט עָלָיו אוֹתוֹ זָקֵן אַתְּ מוֹשִׁיטוֹ לָזֶה בְּקָנֶה. [אזל לגבי רבי יהושע] הִתְחִיל מְפַיְסוֹ בִּדְבָרִים. לֶחֶם, זוֹ תּוֹרָה, דִּכְתִיב (משלי ט, ה): לְכוּ לַחֲמוּ בְלַחְמִי. שִׂמְלָה, זוֹ טַלִּית, זָכָה אָדָם לְתוֹרָה, זָכָה לְטַלִּית. וְלֹא עוֹד אֶלָּא שֶׁהֵן מַשִֹּׂיאִין אֶת בְּנוֹתֵיהֶם לַכְּהֻנָּה וְהָיוּ בְּנֵיהֶם כֹּהֲנִים גְּדוֹלִים וּמַעֲלִים עוֹלוֹת עַל גַּבֵּי הַמִּזְבֵּחַ. דָּבָר אַחֵר, לֶחֶם, זֶה הַפָּנִים. וְשִׂמְלָה, אֵלּוּ בִּגְדֵי כְּהֻנָּה. הֲרֵי בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ. אֲבָל בַּגְּבוּלִים, לֶחֶם, זוֹ חַלָּה. וְשִׂמְלָה, זוֹ רֵאשִׁית הַגֵּז. אָמְרוּ, אִלּוּלֵי אֲרִיכוּת פָּנִים שֶׁהֶאֱרִיךְ רַבִּי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ עִם עֲקִילַס הָיָה חוֹזֵר לְסוּרוֹ, וְקָרָא עָלָיו (משלי טז, לב): טוֹב אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם מִגִּבּוֹר.

תָּנוּ רַבָּנַן: מַעֲשֶׂה בְּגוֹי אֶחָד שֶׁבָּא לִפְנֵי שַׁמַּאי. אָמַר לוֹ: כַּמָּה תּוֹרוֹת יֵשׁ לָכֶם? אָמַר לוֹ: שְׁתַּיִם, תּוֹרָה שֶׁבִּכְתָב וְתוֹרָה שֶׁבְּעַל פֶּה. אָמַר לוֹ: שֶׁבִּכְתָב אֲנִי מַאֲמִינְךָ, וְשֶׁבְּעַל פֶּה — אֵינִי מַאֲמִינְךָ. גַּיְּירֵנִי עַל מְנָת שֶׁתְּלַמְּדֵנִי תּוֹרָה שֶׁבִּכְתָב. גָּעַר בּוֹ וְהוֹצִיאוֹ בִּנְזִיפָה. בָּא לִפְנֵי הִלֵּל, גַּיְירֵיהּ. יוֹמָא קַמָּא אֲמַר לֵיהּ: א״ב ג״ד. לִמְחַר אֲפֵיךְ לֵיהּ. אֲמַר לֵיהּ: וְהָא אֶתְמוֹל לָא אֲמַרְתְּ לִי הָכִי! אֲמַר לֵיהּ: לָאו עֲלַי דִּידִי קָא סָמְכַתְּ? דְּעַל פֶּה נָמֵי סְמוֹךְ עֲלַי.
The Sages taught: There was an incident involving one gentile who came before Shammai. The gentile said to Shammai: How many Torahs do you have? He said to him: Two, the Written Torah and the Oral Torah. The gentile said to him: With regard to the Written Torah, I believe you, but with regard to the Oral Torah, I do not believe you. Convert me on condition that you will teach me only the Written Torah. Shammai scolded him and cast him out with reprimand. The same gentile came before Hillel, who converted him and began teaching him Torah. On the first day, he showed him the letters of the alphabet and said to him: Alef, bet, gimmel, dalet. The next day he reversed the order of the letters and told him that an alef is a tav and so on. The convert said to him: But yesterday you did not tell me that. Hillel said to him: You see that it is impossible to learn what is written without relying on an oral tradition. Didn’t you rely on me? Therefore, you should also rely on me with regard to the matter of the Oral Torah, and accept the interpretations that it contains.

בעקבות סיפור זה אודות הגר ממשיך רצף הסיפורים על גרים הבאים לפני הלל ושמאי. לחצו על כותרת המקור לקריאת המקור כולו, ועל הטקסט עצמו לפתיחת ביאור שטיינזלץ.

המלצתו של הרב מישאל ציון:

המדרש בשיר השירים מתאר את המתכון הנכון ללימוד התורה: קשירת מקורות אלה באלה כחריזת חרוזים בשרשרת. מעשה של יופי ואסתטיקה, המביא לאש המלפפת סביב הלומדים, והדברים שמחים כנתינתם בסיני. וכך הוא לימוד התורה בספריא, המאפשר חריזת מקורות זה לזה ושיתוף חברים ושוב התורה בדור שלנו שמחה כנתינתה בסיני.

הרב מישאל ציון הוא מנהל תוכנית מנדל למנהיגות בתרבות יהודית

צַוָּארֵךְ בַּחֲרוּזִים, אֵלּוּ שִׁבְעִים סַנְהֶדְּרִין, שֶׁהָיוּ חוֹרְזִים אַחֲרֵיהֶם בְּלוּנְיָא שֶׁל מַרְגָּלִיּוֹת. דָּבָר אַחֵר, נָאווּ לְחָיַיִךְ בַּתֹּרִים, אֵלּוּ סוֹפְרִים, וּמַשְׁנִים, מְלַמְּדֵי תִּינוֹקוֹת בֶּאֱמוּנָה. צַוָּארֵךְ בַּחֲרוּזִים, אֵלּוּ הַתִּינוֹקוֹת. דָּבָר אַחֵר, נָאווּ לְחָיַיִךְ בַּתֹּרִים, אֵלּוּ הָרַבָּנִין. צַוָּארֵךְ בַּחֲרוּזִים, אֵלּוּ הַתַּלְמִידִים שֶׁחוֹזְרִין צַוְּארֵיהֶם לִשְׁמֹעַ דִּבְרֵי תוֹרָה מִפִּיהֶם, כְּאָדָם שֶׁלֹא שָׁמַע דִּבְרֵי תוֹרָה מִיָּמָיו. דָּבָר אַחֵר, נָאווּ לְחָיַיִךְ בַּתֹּרִים, בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁמְיַלְּלִין הַהֲלָכָה אֵלּוּ עִם אֵלּוּ, כְּגוֹן רַבִּי אַבָּא בַּר מִימִי וַחֲבֵרָיו. צַוָּארֵךְ בַּחֲרוּזִים, בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁהָיוּ חוֹרְזִים בְּדִבְרֵי תוֹרָה, וּמִדִּבְרֵי תוֹרָה לִנְבִיאִים, וּמִנְּבִיאִים לִכְתוּבִים, וְהָאֵשׁ מִתְלַהֶטֶת סְבִיבוֹתֵיהֶם וְהָיוּ הַדְּבָרִים שְׂמֵחִים כִּנְתִינָתָן מִסִּינַי.

המלצתו של דורון שפר:

אורחות צדיקים- שער הענווה. עבודת המידות היא האתגר הגדול שלנו, והיא היסוד והבסיס לאיכות חיינו לקבלת התורה ולעבודת השם.

דורון שפר הוא כדורסלן עבר, מרצה ומעביר סדנאות בארץ ובעולם.

שער השני - שער הענווה
Chapter Two: ON MODESTY
הענוה היא מידה טובה, והיא היפוך הגאווה. ומי שיש בו המידה הזאת, כבר השיב נפשו מכמה מיני רעות. ומי שהגיע אל מעלה זאת הנכבדת – עושה מצוה ומקבל שכר לפי גודל ענוותנותו. כי הענווה שורש העבודה, ומעשה קטן של העניו מתקבל לפני השם ברוך הוא אלף ידות יותר ממעשה גדול של הגאווה. וכן אמרו רבותינו (מנחות קי א): אחד המרבה ואחד הממעיט, ובלבד שיכוון לבו לשמים. אבל מעשה של הגאווה אינו מתקבל לפני השם ברוך הוא, כי היא תועבת נפשו, שנאמר (משלי טז ה): "תועבת יי כל גבה לב". ובעבור זה צועק ואינו נענה, שנאמר (ישעיהו א טו): "גם כי תרבו תפילה, אינני שמע"; ועושים מצוות וטורפים אותם בפניו, שנאמר (שם א יב): "מי בקש זאת מידכם רמס חצרי", ונאמר (ירמיהו ז כא): "עלותיכם ספו על זבחיכם, ואכלו בשר".
Modesty is indeed a good quality and is the opposite of arrogance. And he who possesses this quality has already turned away his soul from all sorts of evils, and he who has reached this honored lofty degree performs a precept and receives his reward according to the greatness of his humility. For Modesty is the root of Service to God, and a small deed done with Modesty is received by God, Blessed be He, a thousand times more readily than a great deed performed with arrogance. And thus did our Sages say: "The one who sacrifices much and the one who sacrifices little have the same merit, provided that the heart is directed to heaven" (Berakoth 5b Menahoth, 110:a). But a work done with arrogance is not welcomed by God, Blessed be He, for it is an abomination to His Spirit, as it is said: "Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord" (Proverbs 16:5). "And because of this he cries and is not answered, as it is said: "Yea, when ye make many prayers I will not hear" (Isaiah 1:15). And a man of arrogance may perform the precepts and they tear them to pieces before his eyes, as it is said: "Oh, that there were even one among you that would shut the doors (of the Temple so that the arrogant would not presume to serve Me!)" (Mal. 1:10). And when an arrogant person brings a sacrifice it is not received, as it is said: "Who hath required this at your hands, to trample My courts?" (Is. 1:12). And, it is said: "Add your burnt offerings unto your sacrifices and eat ye flesh" (Jer. 7:21). (That is to say. "Don't offer your burnt offerings to Me; I do not want them.")

המלצתו של שר התרבות והספורט, חילי טרופר:

מדרש קצר זה מדייק בעיניי את הסיפור של רגישות חברתית וערבות הדדית.

הדרישה המוסרית שנראה את מי שבמצוקה, שנבין כי גם אם אנו מצויים באור, עלינו להיזהר מלהסתנוור ובשל כך לא להבחין במי שבחשיכה.

בדיוק כמו בעולם הפיסיקלי, מי שמצוי בחדר מואר אינו רואה למי שמצוי בחושך מכיוון שהוא מסונוור. ואילו מי שמצוי בחשיכה רואה היטב את מי שנמצא באור, כך גם בחיים האנושיים.

במילים מדודות ובמשפט קצר המדרש מבהיר כי כולנו מתפזרים בין אור לחושך, והצו המוסרי העמוק הוא להבחין זה בזה, ומתוך כך להושיט יד ולפתוח לב זה אל זה.​​​​​​​

וַיֶּחֱרַד יִצְחָק חֲרָדָה גְּדֹלָה. מַה כְּתִיב לְמַעְלָה מִן הָעִנְיָן? וַיְהִי אַךְ יָצֹא יָצָא יַעֲקֹב מֵאֵת פְּנֵי יִצְחָק. זֶה יָצָא וְזֶה נִכְנַס. הֵיאַךְ הָיָה הַדָּבָר הַזֶּה? אֶלָּא מִי שֶׁנָּתוּן בָּאוֹרָה אֵינוֹ רוֹאֶה לְמִי שֶׁנָּתוּן בַּחֲשֵׁכָה, אֲבָל מִי שֶׁהוּא נָתוּן בַּחֲשֵׁכָה רוֹאֶה לְמִי שֶׁנָּתוּן בָּאוֹרָה. עֵשָׂו בָּא מִן הַשּׁוּק וְלֹא רָאָה לְיַעֲקֹב, שֶׁהָיָה לִפְנִים מִן הַבָּיִת. אֲבָל יַעֲקֹב רָאָה אוֹתוֹ מִבִּפְנִים וְנִטְמַן אֲחוֹרֵי הַדֶּלֶת. כֵּיוָן שֶׁנִּכְנַס עֵשָׂו יָצָא יַעֲקֹב, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיְהִי אַךְ יָצֹא יָצָא יַעֲקֹב וְעֵשָׂו אָחִיו בָּא מִצֵּידוֹ.

(1) And Isaac trembled very exceedingly (Gen. 27:33). What is written before this? Jacob was yet scarce gone out from the presence of Isaac, his father (ibid., v. 30). This indicates that as one withdrew, the other entered. How could this happen? A person standing in a lighted area is unable to see a person standing in a dark place, while a person standing in a dark place can see one standing in a lighted area. Thus Esau, who came from the marketplace, was unable to see Jacob, who was inside the house, but Jacob could see him as he hid behind the door. As soon as Esau entered the room, Jacob slipped out, as it is said: And Jacob was yet scarce gone out … that Esau, his brother, came in from his hunting (ibid.).