Based on a ruling of a prophet the loaves of one thanks-offering were eaten, and based on a ruling of a prophet the loaves of the other thanks-offering were burned. The prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi, who lived at the time of Ezra and Nehemiah’s reconsecration of Jerusalem, instructed the people concerning how the ceremony should be conducted, without providing reasons for the procedures.
§ The mishna teaches: And with regard to any addition to the Temple that was not made with all these ceremonial procedures, one who enters there while ritually impure is not liable. It was stated that amora’im disagreed about the text of the mishna. Rav Huna says: We learned in the mishna: With all these, which means that all of these procedures are indispensable, and if even one is missing, the consecration does not take effect. Rav Naḥman says: We learned in the mishna: With one of all these; i.e., any one of these procedures suffices for the consecration to take effect.
The Gemara further clarifies this disagreement. Rav Huna says: We learned in the mishna: With all these. The Gemara explains: He maintains that the initial consecration of the Temple in the days of David and Solomon sanctified it for its time and sanctified it forever. Therefore, the site of the Temple retained its original sanctity even during the days of the Second Temple. And Ezra, who reconsecrated the area, did so merely as a commemoration of the initial consecration. Accordingly, even though there was no king or Urim VeTummim, the entire area was fully consecrated. By contrast, in order to consecrate an area that had not been part of the initial consecration, all of these procedures are necessary and none can be omitted.
Rav Naḥman says: We learned in the mishna: With one of all these. The Gemara explains: He maintains that the initial consecration of the Temple sanctified it for its time only, and did not sanctify it forever. And Ezra consecrated the Temple and its courtyards, even though there was no king or Urim VeTummim. Consequently, it follows that there is no need for all of these procedures in order for the consecration to take effect.
Rava raised an objection to Rav Naḥman: The mishna explicitly states: Any addition that was not made with all these procedures. Rav Naḥman said to him: Emend the mishna and teach it as stating: With one of all these procedures.
The Gemara cites a proof against the opinion of Rav Naḥman: Come and hear a baraita: Abba Shaul says: There were two ponds [bitzin] on the Mount of Olives [Har HaMishḥa], a lower pond and an upper pond. The lower pond was consecrated during the time of the First Temple with all the procedures mentioned in the mishna, and it has the sanctity of Jerusalem for all purposes. By contrast, the upper pond was not consecrated with all these procedures, but rather it was consecrated by those who returned from the exile in Babylonia, without a king and without the Urim VeTummim.
The baraita continues: With regard to the lower pond, whose consecration was complete, amei ha’aretz, uneducated people who were not scrupulous in their observance of the mitzvot relating to tithes and to ritual purity, would enter into there and would partake of offerings of lesser sanctity that may be eaten in all of Jerusalem there, but they would not partake of second tithe there because they conducted themselves stringently concerning this matter. And ḥaverim, who were meticulous in their observance of those mitzvot, would partake of both offerings of lesser sanctity and second tithe there.
The baraita continues: As for the upper pond, whose consecration was incomplete, amei ha’aretz would enter into there and partake of offerings of lesser sanctity there, but they would not partake of second tithe there. And ḥaverim would partake of neither offerings of lesser sanctity nor second tithe there. And for what reason did they not consecrate the upper pond? It was because additions can be made to the city of Jerusalem or to the Temple courtyards only by a special body comprising the king, a prophet, the Urim VeTummim, and the Sanhedrin of seventy-one, and with two thanks-offerings and with a special song.
The Gemara asks: But why did they consecrate the upper pond if they could not do so properly? This Gemara responds: Why did they consecrate it? Didn’t you say that they did not consecrate it? Rather, the question should be asked as follows: Given that they could not consecrate the upper pond, why did they bring it within the walls of the city? The Gemara answers: Because it was a weak point [turpa] of Jerusalem and it would have been easy to conquer the city from there, it became necessary to include it within the wall. This baraita seems to present explicit proof against the opinion of Rav Naḥman, who holds that there is no need for all of the procedures listed in the mishna in order for the consecration to be complete.
The Gemara rejects this proof: This is a dispute between tanna’im as to whether the initial consecration of Jerusalem and the Temple sanctified them only for their time or forever. Abba Shaul maintains that the initial consecration lapsed, and therefore the reconsecration required all of the procedures mentioned in the mishna. Where is this dispute taught? As it is taught in a mishna (Eduyyot 8:6): Rabbi Eliezer says: I heard that when they were building the Sanctuary in the Second Temple, they fashioned temporary curtains for the Sanctuary and temporary curtains for the courtyards to serve as partitions until the construction of the stone walls was completed. The difference was only that in the Sanctuary, the workers built the walls outside the curtains, without entering, and in the courtyards, the workers built the walls within the curtains.
The mishna continues: Rabbi Yehoshua says: I heard that one sacrifices offerings on the altar even if there is no Temple, and one partakes of offerings of the most sacred order in the Temple courtyard even if there are no curtains, and one partakes of offerings of lesser sanctity and second-tithe produce in Jerusalem even if there is no wall surrounding the city. This is due to the fact that the initial consecration sanctified the Temple and Jerusalem for their time and also sanctified them forever. The Gemara concludes: From the fact that Rabbi Yehoshua based his opinion on the principle that the initial consecration sanctified the Temple and Jerusalem forever, can one not learn by inference that Rabbi Eliezer maintains that it did not sanctify them forever? Apparently, this issue is the subject of a dispute between tanna’im.
Ravina said to Rav Ashi: From where do you draw this inference? Perhaps everyone maintains that the initial consecration sanctified the Temple and Jerusalem for their time and also sanctified them forever. And one Sage, Rabbi Eliezer, stated that tradition, which he heard from his teachers, and one Sage, Rabbi Yehoshua, stated that tradition, which he heard from his teachers, and there is no dispute between them. And if you would say: Why do I need curtains at all according to Rabbi Eliezer? The original sanctity remained when Jerusalem was not surrounded by walls, and similarly, the presence or absence of curtains is irrelevant to the sanctity of the Temple area. The Gemara answers: The curtains were established merely for seclusion, as it would have been unbecoming for the activity in this most sacred venue to be visible to all.
Rather, this matter is subject to a dispute between these tanna’im, as it is taught in a baraita with regard to the walled cities listed in the mishna in tractate Arakhin (32a): Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, said: Why did the Sages enumerate specifically these nine cities as cities that were walled since the days of Joshua, son of Nun? In fact, there were many more. The reason is that when the exiles ascended to Eretz Yisrael from Babylonia in the time of Ezra, they found these cities and consecrated them as walled cities; but the sanctity of the first walled cities, enumerated in the book of Joshua, was nullified when settlement in Eretz Yisrael was negated and the Jewish people were exiled. The Gemara comments: Apparently, Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, maintains: The initial consecration sanctified the Temple and Jerusalem for their time only and did not sanctify them forever.
And the Gemara raises a contradiction from a different baraita: Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yosei, says: Were these cities that are enumerated in tractate Arakhin the only walled cities? But isn’t it already stated: “Sixty cities, all the region of Argob, the kingdom of Og, king of Bashan, all these were cities fortified with high walls, gates and bars” (Deuteronomy 3:4–5), indicating that there were many walled cities in the time of Joshua? Rather, why then did the Sages enumerate specifically these cities? It is due to the fact that when the exiles ascended from Babylonia they found these and consecrated them as walled cities.
The Gemara asks: They consecrated them? If their sanctity remained, it should not have been necessary to consecrate them. Now, don’t we say later in the same baraita that it is not necessary to consecrate them? The Gemara clarifies: Rather, this is what the baraita means to say: When the exiles ascended from Babylonia they found these and enumerated them.
The baraita continues: And not only these, but in any city with regard to which you receive a tradition from your ancestors that it was surrounded by a wall from the days of Joshua, son of Nun, all these mitzvot with regard to walled cities are observed in it, due to the fact that the initial consecration sanctified the Temple and Jerusalem for their time and sanctified them forever. The Gemara comments: This is difficult, as there is a contradiction between one statement of Rabbi Yishmael bar Yosei and another statement of Rabbi Yishmael bar Yosei.
The Gemara answers: If you wish, say that there are two tanna’im who disagree with regard to the opinion of Rabbi Yishmael bar Yosei. Each transmitted Rabbi Yishmael’s opinion in a different manner. And if you wish, say instead that one of the traditions is mistaken, as one of the baraitot was stated by Rabbi Elazar bar Yosei, and not his brother, Rabbi Yishmael. As it is taught in a baraita: Rabbi Elazar bar Yosei says that the verse with regard to walled cities states: “Which has [lo] a wall” (Leviticus 25:30). The word lo is written with an alef, meaning no, and accordingly the verse would be stating to the contrary, that the city does not have a wall, but its vocalization is in the sense of its homonym, lo with a vav, meaning that it has a wall. This indicates that even if it does not presently have a wall but it had a wall previously, it retains its status as a walled city. It is Rabbi Elazar bar Yosei who maintains that the first consecration sanctified the Temple and Jerusalem forever.