מוזגים כוס ראשון. המצּות מכוסות.
וַיְהִי עֶרֶב וַיְהִי בֹקֶר יוֹם הַשִּׁשִּׁי. וַיְכֻלּוּ הַשָּׁמַיִם וְהָאָרֶץ וְכָל-צְבָאָם. וַיְכַל אֱלֹהִים בַּיּוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי מְלַאכְתּוֹ אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה וַיִּשְׁבֹּת בַּיּוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי מִכָּל מְלַאכְתּוֹ אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה. וַיְבָרֵךְ אֱלֹהִים אֶת יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי וַיְקַדֵּשׁ אוֹתוֹ כִּי בוֹ שָׁבַת מִכָּל-מְלַאכְתּוֹ אֲשֶׁר בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים לַעֲשׂוֹת.
סַבְרִי מָרָנָן וְרַבָּנָן וְרַבּוֹתַי. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר בָּחַר בָּנוּ מִכָּל-עָם וְרוֹמְמָנוּ מִכָּל-לָשׁוֹן וְקִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו. וַתִּתֶּן לָנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּאַהֲבָה (לשבת: שַׁבָּתוֹת לִמְנוּחָה וּ) מוֹעֲדִים לְשִׂמְחָה, חַגִּים וּזְמַנִּים לְשָׂשוֹן, (לשבת: אֶת יוֹם הַשַׁבָּת הַזֶּה וְ) אֶת יוֹם חַג הַמַּצּוֹת הַזֶּה זְמַן חֵרוּתֵנוּ, (לשבת: בְּאַהֲבָה) מִקְרָא קֹדֶשׁ זֵכֶר לִיצִיאַת מִצְרָיִם. כִּי בָנוּ בָחַרְתָּ וְאוֹתָנוּ קִדַּשְׁתָּ מִכָּל הָעַמִּים, (לשבת: וְשַׁבָּת) וּמוֹעֲדֵי קָדְשֶׁךָ (לשבת: בְּאַהֲבָה וּבְרָצוֹן) בְּשִׂמְחָה וּבְשָׂשוֹן הִנְחַלְתָּנוּ.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', מְקַדֵּשׁ (לשבת: הַשַׁבָּת וְ) יִשְׂרָאֵל וְהַזְּמַנִּים.
בּמוצאי שבת מוסיפים:
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא מְאוֹרֵי הָאֵשׁ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם הַמַּבְדִיל בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְחֹל, בֵּין אוֹר לְחשֶׁךְ, בֵּין יִשְׂרָאֵל לָעַמִּים, בֵּין יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי לְשֵׁשֶׁת יְמֵי הַמַּעֲשֶׂה. בֵּין קְדֻשַּׁת שַׁבָּת לִקְדֻשַּׁת יוֹם טוֹב הִבְדַּלְתָּ, וְאֶת-יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי מִשֵּׁשֶׁת יְמֵי הַמַּעֲשֶׂה קִדַּשְׁתָּ. הִבְדַּלְתָּ וְקִדַּשְׁתָּ אֶת-עַמְּךָ יִשְׂרָאֵל בִּקְדֻשָּׁתֶךָ.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', הַמַּבְדִיל בֵּין קֹדֶשׁ לְקֹדֶשׁ.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, שֶׁהֶחֱיָנוּ וְקִיְּמָנוּ וְהִגִּיעָנוּ לַזְּמַן הַזֶּה.
שותה בהסיבת שמאל ואינו מברך ברכה אחרונה.
We pour the first cup. The matsot are uncovered
On Shabbat, begin here:
And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. And the heaven and the earth were finished, and all their host. And on the seventh day God finished His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it; because He rested on it from all of His work which God created in doing (Genesis 1:31-2:3).
On weekdays, begin here:
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who creates the fruit of the vine.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who has chosen us from all peoples and has raised us above all tongues and has sanctified us with His commandments. And You have given us, Lord our God, [Sabbaths for rest], appointed times for happiness, holidays and special times for joy, [this Sabbath day, and] this Festival of Matsot, our season of freedom [in love] a holy convocation in memory of the Exodus from Egypt. For You have chosen us and sanctified us above all peoples. In Your gracious love, You granted us Your [holy Sabbath, and] special times for happiness and joy.
Blessed are You, O Lord, who sanctifies [the Sabbath,] Israel, and the appointed times.
On Saturday night add the following two paragraphs:
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who creates the light of the fire. Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who distinguishes between the holy and the profane, between light and darkness, between Israel and the nations, between the seventh day and the six working days. You have distinguished between the holiness of the Sabbath and the holiness of the Festival, and You have sanctified the seventh day above the six working days. You have distinguished and sanctified Your people Israel with Your holiness.
Blessed are You, O Lord, who distinguishes between the holy and the holy.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who has granted us life and sustenance and permitted us to reach this season.
Drink while reclining to the left and do not recite a blessing after drinking.
לוקח מן הכרפס פחות מכזית - כדי שלא יתחייב בברכה אחרונה - טובל במי מלח, מברך "בורא פרי האדמה", ומכווין לפטור בברכה גם את המרור. אוכל בלא הסבה.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הָאֲדָמָה.
Take from the greens less than a kazayit - so that you will not need to say the blessing after eating it; dip it into the salt water; say the blessing "who creates the fruit of the earth;" and have in mind that this blessing will also be for the bitter herbs. Eat without reclining.
Blessed are you, Lord our God, King of the universe, who creates the fruit of the earth.
מגלה את המצות, מגביה את הקערה ואומר בקול רם:
הָא לַחְמָא עַנְיָא דִּי אֲכָלוּ אַבְהָתָנָא בְאַרְעָא דְמִצְרָיִם. כָּל דִכְפִין יֵיתֵי וְיֵיכֹל, כָּל דִצְרִיךְ יֵיתֵי וְיִפְסַח. הָשַּׁתָּא הָכָא, לְשָׁנָה הַבָּאָה בְּאַרְעָא דְיִשְׂרָאֵל. הָשַּׁתָּא עַבְדֵי, לְשָׁנָה הַבָּאָה בְּנֵי חוֹרִין.
The Recitation [of the exodus story]
The leader uncovers the matsot, raises the Seder plate, and says out loud:
This is the bread of destitution that our ancestors ate in the land of Egypt. Anyone who is famished should come and eat, anyone who is in need should come and partake of the Pesach sacrifice. Now we are here, next year we will be in the land of Israel; this year we are slaves, next year we will be free people.
(1) Ha lachma anya: At the beginning of the Maggid, we open the story of the Exodus with a statement in which we call matzah the bread of affliction (or possibly the bread of poverty) which our ancestors ate while they were still in Egypt. Later in the Haggadah, we explain matzah differently: we say that our ancestors ate matzah when they left Egypt; the dough did not have time to rise because they left Egypt hastily. The two explanations seem to contradict one another. In his commentary, Rabbi David Abudraham wonders why we begin the Haggadah by referring to matzah as “the bread…which our ancestors ate in Egypt.” The Torah explains that matzah was baked when our ancestors left Egypt: “For they baked unleavened cakes of dough …when they went forth from Egypt…because they were thrust out of Egypt. If matzah was the bread baked as they left Egypt, how can we say that it is also the bread our ancestors ate while they were still slaves? There is no contradiction here since the Torah also tells us that matzah was part of the meal at the original Passover sacrifice while the Israelites were still in Egypt: “They shall eat (the Passover offering) with matzah and with maror.”
Why did the Israelites eat matzah before they left Egypt? It was a portent of what was to come for the Israelites. It was a sign that they would leave Egypt in such haste that they would not have time to bake bread or for their dough to rise. Abudraham offers this explanation later when commenting on the passage in the Haggadah, “This matzah, for what reason?”
But there are other reasons that we eat matzah as well. The poor eat matzah because it takes time to digest and they will not be hungry as often. Also, it is easy to prepare so those who are hungry will not have to wait long for it to be baked when they return home to eat dinner.
We begin the Seder with this statement, ha lachma anya, so that the needy who come to our home Passover will not take offense at the type of food that we are serving them. They might assume that the reason we are serving matzah is because this is the common fare of the needy. As a result they might take offense and refuse to come to our homes. We, therefore, begin by explaining that this is the type of food our ancestors ate in Egypt and that we are following their example on this night. By explaining it in this way they will understand that we are not eating such food because we are being miserly toward the needy. Just the opposite; having referred to the matzah as the bread of poverty, we continue, “All who are hungry come and eat!” That is, even if you have enough to eat the week of Passover, if you are hungry right now (because you have been fasting in anticipation of the Seder), come and eat. “All who are needy,” - those who do not have enough provisions for the whole week of Passover “Come and celebrate Passover,” with us all the days of the holiday.
The following statements in this opening passage are all interconnected.
Now we are here; next year in the land of Israel. One might wonder, since we are eating matzah just as our ancestors did on the eve of Passover, why don’t we also offer an offering on Passover? This question is answered in this statement: “Now we are here; next year in the land of Israel.” That is, we cannot offer a sacrifice because we are here in the Diaspora. Sacrifices can only be offered in the Temple in Jerusalem. Next year may we be in the land of Israel where we can offer sacrifices on each of festivals!
Now we are slaves; next year may we be free! But the previous state suggests yet another question. Why don’t we just rebuild the Temple so we can offer sacrifices again? To this question, the Haggadah says, “Now we are slaves; next year may we be free!” That is, because we are slaves living in this bitter exile, we are not free to rebuild the holy Temple. With God’s help, next year may we be free in the land of Israel so that neither Satan nor misfortune can prevent us from rebuilding the Temple.
מסיר את הקערה מעל השולחן. מוזגין כוס שני. הבן שואל:
מַה נִּשְׁתַּנָּה הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה מִכָּל הַלֵּילוֹת? שֶׁבְּכָל הַלֵּילוֹת אָנוּ אוֹכְלִין חָמֵץ וּמַצָּה, הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה - כֻּלּוֹ מַצָּה.שֶׁבְּכָל הַלֵּילוֹת אָנוּ אוֹכְלִין שְׁאָר יְרָקוֹת - הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה (כֻּלּוֹ) מָרוֹר. שֶׁבְּכָל הַלֵּילוֹת אֵין אָנוּ מַטְבִּילִין אֲפִילוּ פַּעַם אֶחָת - הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה שְׁתֵּי פְעָמִים. שֶׁבְּכָל הַלֵּילוֹת אָנוּ אוֹכְלִין בֵּין יוֹשְׁבִין וּבֵין מְסֻבִּין - הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה כֻּלָּנוּ מְסֻבִּין.
He removes the plate from the table. We pour a second cup of wine. The son then asks:
What differentiates this night from all [other] nights? On all [other] nights we eat chamets and matsa; this night, only matsa? On all [other] nights we eat other vegetables; tonight marror. On all [other] nights, we don't dip [our food], even one time; tonight [we dip it] twice. On [all] other nights, we eat either sitting or reclining; tonight we all recline.
(1) Mah Nishtana: What is the significance of each of the four questions?
1. On all other nights we do not even dip once, on this night we dip twice – It is the practice of the rich to dip vegetables in some type of liquid at the beginning of their meal; if we wanted to make this meal different we only needed to dip once to show that we are like the rich. So why is it necessary for us to dip twice?
2. On all other nights we eat leavened and unleavened bread, on this night entirely unleavened bread – On other nights we can eat whatever we wish, whether it is hametz, leavened or matzah, unleavened bread; we may eat one or both of them. Why only this night do we eat only matzah. It would have been appropriate to eat both of them on this night; the matzah would have been a reminder of the haste with which we left Egypt. SO why on this night do we eat ONLY matzah?
3. At other times we eat any vegetables we want; why on this night bitter herbs? Usually we only eat bitter herbs as a medicinal substance for healing. Why on a night associated with great miracles are we required to eat bitter herbs? It should have been the other way around – at other times we eat bitter herbs but tonight when we celebrate a miracle we don’t have a reason to eat bitter herbs that reminds us of our bitterness.
4. On all other nights we eat and drink either leaning or sitting; on this night all of us lean. On other nights people are permitted to eat either leaning or sitting, each however he sees fit. Why is it an obligation for all of us to lean when we drink wine and eat matzah?
There is also a distinction in the type of language which is used in the second and the fourth questions. While the two questions contain contrasts, in the second question we use the conjunctive (“u”), which in this case means “or,” “hametz or matzah” while the fourth question is written using the expression bein…u’vein, (either …or), ‘either sitting or leaning.’ What is the significance of this distinction? How is the custom of eating matzah different from the practice of reclining? And why are these two questions written differently from one another?
The reason for the difference in language has to do with the object of the question. The focus of the second question is on the food (and not on the one who does the eating) while the focus of the fourth question is the one who performs the act (and not the act). On a regular evening, people will eat leavened or unleavened bread with their meal, whichever they are served. Therefore we say, “chametz or matzah.” Tonight, however, they are only served (kulo) only matzah.
Leaning (at a meal) is different. Normally people will sit for part of the meal and lean for part of the meal. The question, therefore, is formulated differently. Bein u’vein implies both X and Y, while “u” implies either/or – either one or the other. We ask why on other nights can a person both lean and sit, while on this night he is obligated specifically to lean when he drinks wine and eats matzah. Leavened and unleavened bread, on the other hand, tend not to be present at the same meal since one will usually serve one or the other and not both. Tonight, however, is different since we only serve unleavened bread.
There is an interesting reason why we say kulanu misubin, “all of us lean,” in the fourth question. At first glance the word kulanu, all of us, would appear to be superfluous. The root word kulo appears in both the second and fourth questions. Unlike the second question, however, in which we say that we eat entirely kulo matzah, we don’t really need to point out that all of us kulanu lean on this night. In the fourth question the word kulanu is an allusion to the story of the Exodus. When the tenth plague struck Egypt, the Egyptians were terrified. They pressed the Israelites to leave Egypt because they thought their lives were endangered: The Egyptians were urgent upon the people to send them out in haste, for they said: “Kulanu metim, all of us are dead!” Just as they thought they were all doomed to die, so all of us recline at the Seder because all of us were redeemed from slavery.
מחזיר את הקערה אל השולחן. המצות תִהיינה מגלות בִשעת אמירת ההגדה.
עֲבָדִים הָיִינוּ לְפַרְעֹה בְּמִצְרָיִם, וַיּוֹצִיאֵנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מִשָּׁם בְּיָד חֲזָקָה וּבִזְרֹעַ נְטוּיָה. וְאִלּוּ לֹא הוֹצִיא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא אֶת אֲבוֹתֵינוּ מִמִּצְרָיִם, הֲרֵי אָנוּ וּבָנֵינוּ וּבְנֵי בָנֵינוּ מְשֻׁעְבָּדִים הָיִינוּ לְפַרְעֹה בְּמִצְרָיִם. וַאֲפִילוּ כֻּלָּנוּ חֲכָמִים כֻּלָּנוּ נְבוֹנִים כֻּלָּנוּ זְקֵנִים כֻּלָּנוּ יוֹדְעִים אֶת הַתּוֹרָה מִצְוָה עָלֵינוּ לְסַפֵּר בִּיצִיאַת מִצְרָיִם. וְכָל הַמַּרְבֶּה לְסַפֵּר בִּיצִיאַת מִצְרַיִם הֲרֵי זֶה מְשֻׁבָּח.
He puts the plate back on the table. The matsot should be uncovered during the saying of the Haggadah.
We were slaves to Pharaoh in the land of Egypt. And the Lord, our God, took us out from there with a strong hand and an outstretched forearm. And if the Holy One, blessed be He, had not taken our ancestors from Egypt, behold we and our children and our children's children would [all] be enslaved to Pharaoh in Egypt. And even if we were all sages, all discerning, all elders, all knowledgeable about the Torah, it is a commandment upon us to tell the story of the exodus from Egypt. And anyone who adds [and spends extra time] in telling the story of the exodus from Egypt, behold he is praiseworthy.
(1) Avadim Hayeenu, We were slaves: The two halves of the opening statement in this passage are taken from two different biblical verses; the first half of this statement is taken from Deuteronomy 6:21 – “And you shall say to your child, ‘We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt…’” This verse concludes“…And the Lord took us out from Egypt with a mighty hand.” However the Maggid did not use the second part of this statement. Instead the second half of the passage, Avadim Hayeenu is taken from a different verse Deuteronomy 5:15 – “And you shall remember that you were a servant in the land of Egypt, and the Lord brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.” The reason the Maggid uses a different verse for the second part of this passage is because this passage provides an answer to each of the four questions.
We begin with Deuteronomy 6:12 to fulfill the dictum that in telling the story of the Exodus, one begins with disgrace (and ends with exaltation.) Deuteronomy 5:15 contains not only a statement of exaltation but it also answers the four questions in the way it is worded.
Adonai took you out, (1) your God, from there (2), with a mighty hand (3), and an outstretched arm (4)
1. V’yotzee’acha adonai – “Adonai took you out.” This statement explains why we dip twice during the Seder. The two dippings represent the two blessings which God bestowed upon Israel in Egypt: first, they were redeemed from slavery to freedom, and second that it was God Himself who redeemed them. These two blessing are alluded to by these words: V’yotzee’aynu “He took us out” and adonai “Adonai.”
2. Elohaynu misham – “Our God from there.” This is an allusion to the matzah. When the Israelites were slaves in Egypt they were not much better than the Egyptians; like them they worshipped false gods. When they were about to leave Egypt, they renewed their faith in one God and repented of their former ways. We find reference to this in the verse: “Draw out and take your lambs according to your families.” The sages interpret this to mean draw yourselves away from idolatry and bring obligatory lambs. It is known that chametz is a symbol for the evil of idolatry while matzah is a symbol of the aspect of holiness. Therefore when the Israelites ate matzah, they affirmed that their God, Elohaynu, never ceased to be their God and that they were rejecting idolatry, symbolized by chametz. That is why we eat only matzah on Passover – it is an affirmation of acceptance of God and rejection of idolatry.
3. B’yad chazakah – “With a mighty hand.” This expression is a reference to the tenth plague since it is the mightiest of all the plagues. Through it Israel escaped from Egypt. Regarding this plague the Torah says, “There was no house in which there weren’t dead,” As a result, there was bitterness and sorrow in every Egyptian household. We eat bitter herbs as a reminder of the bitterness we caused the Egyptians through the hand of God. Later in the Haggadah a different explanation is given for the bitter herbs, and both are correct.
4. U’v’zroah netuyah – “And an outstretched arm.” Because God took us out of Egypt with “an upraised hand,” without fear or anxiety, we lean at the Seder as a sign of our leisureliness and comfort.
(2) We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt: The Maggid should have said, “Our fathers were slaves to Pharaoh and He took us out.” Why do we say that ‘WE were slaves?’ The Maggid qualifies this statement by saying: If He had not taken us out, then we, our children and our children’s children (would still be subjugated in Egypt). The mention of three generations is meant to be a hazakah, a presumption. If Israel had remained enslaved for four hundred years they would have gained the presumed status of slaves. That is why God moved up the time of redemption from the original prediction of four hundred years, and took them out of Egypt sooner. Had they remained in Egypt, they would have been subjugated for all time. After three generations the Israelites would have sunk into the fiftieth degree of idolatry and impurity and never would have been able to escape from this impurity.
That is why we say ‘we would have been subjugated’ and not “we would have been slaves,” even though the second expression is closer to the language of the Torah. It is possible for a person to be a slave but to serve his master freely. To be subjugated is to serve one’s master against one’s will.
(3) Even if we were all wise, all of us were knowledgeable: This is a reference to knowledge of the world and not necessarily knowledge of the Torah. It is the way of people of knowledge and discernment to inquire into the ways of the world and to analyze the events happening about them. Even a simple Jew knows matters dealt with in the Torah as well as the story of the Exodus of Egypt. What the Maggid is saying here is whether we are knowledgeable in matters of the world or in the ways of Torah we would still be obligated to tell the story of the Exodus at great length.
(4) Another way of understanding this passage is: even if we are familiar with the written as well as the oral Torah, we are still obligated to tell the story of the Exodus of Egypt at length.
Even sages and people of great knowledge must tell the story. A person should not think that one is only obligated to tell the story of the Exodus to young children or to women because they are not familiar with the story of the Exodus. Even if a group of Torah scholars are together, and there are no women or children present they should not presume that they are not obligated to tell the story of the Exodus. The colleague should not say to him, “Who doesn’t know all this?” Therefore we say, ‘even if we are all sages and discerning, and even if everyone in our circle is great in the performance of commandments, we are still obligated to tell the story of the Exodus.’ Such a group can reveal the deepest secrets of Torah and not just tell the story in a general way. That is why we say, “One who tells the story of the Exodus at length is praiseworthy.” The Haggadah goes on to give examples of scholars who did not skimp in the telling of the story of the Exodus - the sages at B’nai Brak and Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah.
מַעֲשֶׂה בְּרַבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר וְרַבִּי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ וְרַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר בֶּן-עֲזַרְיָה וְרַבִּי עֲקִיבָא וְרַבִּי טַרְפוֹן שֶׁהָיוּ מְסֻבִּין בִּבְנֵי-בְרַק וְהָיוּ מְסַפְּרִים בִּיצִיאַת מִצְרַיִם כָּל-אוֹתוֹ הַלַּיְלָה, עַד שֶׁבָּאוּ תַלְמִידֵיהֶם וְאָמְרוּ לָהֶם רַבּוֹתֵינוּ הִגִּיעַ זְמַן קְרִיאַת שְׁמַע שֶׁל שַׁחֲרִית.
אָמַר רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר בֶּן-עֲזַרְיָה הֲרֵי אֲנִי כְּבֶן שִׁבְעִים שָׁנָה וְלֹא זָכִיתִי שֶׁתֵּאָמֵר יְצִיאַת מִצְרַיִם בַּלֵּילוֹת עַד שֶׁדְּרָשָׁהּ בֶּן זוֹמָא, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר, לְמַעַן תִּזְכֹּר אֶת יוֹם צֵאתְךָ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם כֹּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ. יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ הַיָּמִים. כֹּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ הַלֵּילוֹת. וַחֲכָמִים אוֹמְרִים יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה. כֹּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ לְהָבִיא לִימוֹת הַמָּשִׁיחַ:
It happened once [on Pesach] that Rabbi Eliezer, Rabbi Yehoshua, Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah, Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Tarfon were reclining in Bnei Brak and were telling the story of the exodus from Egypt that whole night, until their students came and said to them, "The time of [reciting] the morning Shema has arrived."
Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah said, "Behold I am like a man of seventy years and I have not merited [to understand why] the exodus from Egypt should be said at night until Ben Zoma explicated it, as it is stated (Deuteronomy 16:3), 'In order that you remember the day of your going out from the land of Egypt all the days of your life;' 'the days of your life' [indicates that the remembrance be invoked during] the days, 'all the days of your life' [indicates that the remembrance be invoked also during] the nights." But the Sages say, "'the days of your life' [indicates that the remembrance be invoked in] this world, 'all the days of your life' [indicates that the remembrance be invoked also in] the next world."
(1) Ma’aseh B’Rebbe Eliezer: This entire gathering was made up of great sages (without women or children present) from whom no sublime meanings of the Torah were kept. We know that there could not have been women or children present because the Haggadah tells us that sages stayed up all night and drank four cups of wine, something the women or children were unable to do. Even though they knew the story of the Exodus quite well, they were obligated to stay up all night reviewing and discussing the story. While the sages connected the repetition of questions and answers in the Torah regarding the Exodus with the four children, the general lesson we learn from this repetition is that it is impossible to repeat the story of the Exodus without learning something new and different from one another. A person should not only repeat that which he already knew based on his own but should learn new lessons and insights from others. The Haggadah goes on to give an example of this in the incident of Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah.
(1) Rabbi Elazar Ben Azariah amar, Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah said: This is similar to a teaching regarding the sage, Rabbi Abun, who is said to have learned more in his brief 28 years than a seasoned scholar of 100 years learned in a life time. Similarly, Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah was a young man of only eighteen but had already attained the wisdom of a seventy year old. Because he had so much wisdom, he was worthy of being chosen to be the Nasi, the head of the Sanhedrin. Still Rabbi Elazar was unable to learn the teaching that one should mention the Exodus at night on his own until the teaching of ben Zoma was promulgated. Once this teaching was present in the communal discourse, Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah was able to teach the ruling regarding the recitation of the Exodus at night. In other words it is not that ben Zoma taught this ruling; in point of fact Rabbi Elazar did. The Haggadah says, “Until ben Zoma interpreted the verse...” It does not say, “And ben Zoma interpreted the verse…” This suggests that once the idea was suggested, Rabbi Elazar was able to figure out the law in this case.
What was it that ben Zoma taught? Even though the word yamim generally refers to both day and night, as we see in Genesis, “And it was morning and it was evening one day,” generally we distinguish one from the other, as in “And he called the light day, and the darkness night” Therefore, ben Zoma felt it was necessary to find another scriptural reference which would make it clear that we must mention the Exodus both in the day time and at night: he interprets “All the days” – “the days” refers to the day time and “all” as a reference to the nights. The Sages and Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah also disagreed about the interpretation of the word hayecha, “your life,” in the phrase “all the days of your life.” Rabbi Elazar understands the expression “your life” as a reference to this world, while the sages who were of the opinion that one does not have to mention the Exodus at night, understood the word Hayecha, “your life,” as a reference to the time of the Messiah.
בָּרוּךְ הַמָּקוֹם, בָּרוּךְ הוּא, בָּרוּךְ שֶׁנָּתַן תּוֹרָה לְעַמּוֹ יִשְׂרָאֵל, בָּרוּךְ הוּא. כְּנֶגֶד אַרְבָּעָה בָנִים דִּבְּרָה תוֹרָה: אֶחָד חָכָם, וְאֶחָד רָשָׁע, וְאֶחָד תָּם, וְאֶחָד שֶׁאֵינוֹ יוֹדֵעַ לִשְׁאוֹל.
חָכָם מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מָה הָעֵדוֹת וְהַחֻקִּים וְהַמִּשְׁפָּטִים אֲשֶׁר צִוָּה ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ אֶתְכֶם. וְאַף אַתָּה אֱמוֹר לוֹ כְּהִלְכוֹת הַפֶּסַח: אֵין מַפְטִירִין אַחַר הַפֶּסַח אֲפִיקוֹמָן:
רָשָׁע מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מָה הָעֲבוֹדָה הַזּאֹת לָכֶם. לָכֶם - וְלֹא לוֹ. וּלְפִי שֶׁהוֹצִיא אֶת עַצְמוֹ מִן הַכְּלָל כָּפַר בְּעִקָּר. וְאַף אַתָּה הַקְהֵה אֶת שִׁנָּיו וֶאֱמוֹר לוֹ: "בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה ה' לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרָיִם". לִי וְלֹא-לוֹ. אִלּוּ הָיָה שָׁם, לֹא הָיָה נִגְאָל:
תָּם מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מַה זּאֹת? וְאָמַרְתָּ אֵלָיו "בְּחוֹזֶק יָד הוֹצִיאָנוּ ה' מִמִּצְרַיִם מִבֵּית עֲבָדִים".
וְשֶׁאֵינוֹ יוֹדֵעַ לִשְׁאוֹל - אַתְּ פְּתַח לוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר, וְהִגַּדְתָּ לְבִנְךָ בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא לֵאמֹר, בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה ה' לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרָיִם.
Blessed is the Place [of all], Blessed is He; Blessed is the One who Gave the Torah to His people Israel, Blessed is He. Corresponding to four sons did the Torah speak; one [who is] wise, one [who is] evil, one who is innocent and one who doesn't know to ask.
What does the wise [son] say? "What are these testimonies, statutes and judgments that the Lord our God commanded you?" And accordingly you will say to him, as per the laws of the Pesach sacrifice, "We may not eat an afikoman [a dessert or other foods eaten after the meal] after [we are finished eating] the Pesach sacrifice. (Mishnah Pesachim 10:8)"
What does the evil [son] say? "What is this worship to you?" 'To you' and not 'to him.' And since he excluded himself from the collective, he denied a principle [of the Jewish faith]. And accordingly, you will blunt his teeth and say to him, "'For the sake of this, did the Lord do [this] for me in my going out of Egypt' (Exodus 13:8)." 'For me' and not 'for him.' If he had been there, he would not have been saved.
What does the innocent [son] say? "What is this?" And you will say to him, "'With the strength of [His] hand did the Lord take us out from Egypt, from the house of slaves' (Exodus 13:14).'"
And [regarding] the one who doesn't know to ask, you will open [the conversation] for him. As it is stated (Exodus 13:8), "And you will speak to your your son on that day saying, for the sake of this, did the Lord do [this] for me in my going out of Egypt."
(1) Baruch HaMakom, Blessed is the Omnipresent: Why is the word Baruch repeated four times in this introductory passage? And why is God referred to here as HaMakom, literally, “the Place?” In commenting on the verse: The Lord came from Sinai; And rose from Seir to them; He shined forth from Mount Paran…” He sages ask why it was necessary for God to go forth from Mount Seir which was the dwelling place of Edom , or Paran which was the home of the Ishmaelites? We learn that originally God went to the other nations and offered them the Torah before He offered it to Israel. He offered the Torah to Edom but they asked “What is written in it?” When they heard that it contained a prohibition against murder, they said: “How can we accept the Torah? This was the strength of our father, Esau, of whom it is written, “And the hands were the hands of Esau,” and of whom it was written, “By the sword you shall live!” God then went to the children of Ishmael and offered the Torah to them. They asked: “What is written in it?” God said to them, “You shall not steal!” They said: “Master of the Universe, our father was a thief; You blessed him by saying, ‘He shall be a wild ass of a man; his hand shall be in everything and every man shall be against him.’”
(God continued to offer it to others) until he came to Israel and they accepted it. It seems that God purposely mentioned ‘You shall not kill’ to the Edomites and ‘You shall not steal’ to the Ishmaelites because he knew that they would not accept the Torah on these conditions. God knew that they could not accept teachings that went against their way of life. He really did not want them to accept the Torah so he presented it to them in a way that would have to refuse it. Only then did he go to Israel and offer them the Torah.
That is why we say Baruch four times. We say it once to thank God that he did not give the Torah to the Edomites (Blessed is the Makom) and once because He did not give it to the Ishmaelites (Blessed is He). And we call God HaMakom, the place or the Omnipresent, because God created ‘a place’ that allowed the other nations to refuse the Torah so Israel could accept it (blessed is the one who gave the Torah to His People Israel.) Finally the fourth Baruch statement is thanksgiving that God did not give the Torah to the angels, but to human beings!
(1) Hacham mah hu omer? What does the wise child ask? In order to understand the wise child’s question and answer, we must first understand the three categories of laws in this passage: (edut) testimonies, (chukkim) statutes and (mishpatim) judgments. Testimonies (edut) are those practices which testify to the haste with which the redemption took place, such as the matzah which did not have time to rise because the Israelites left so quickly from Egypt. The Passover offering is one of the statutes (chukkim); the Torah says, “This is the statute of the pesach offering.” Judgment would apply to procedural rulings such as which part of the Passover meal should be consumed last. The wise child, then, asks about all the types of laws as well as the protocol which applies to them. In our time, when there is no Passover sacrifice and we eat the matzah first, we are left to wonder if it is still necessary to eat a little more matzah at the end of the meal as well. Similarly, in the time of the Temple, one might wonder if it is still necessary to eat a little bit of the Passover offering at the end of the meal since we have already consumed a whole meal and are no longer hungry. The mishpatim, the judgments, answer the question in each of these cases – we are still obligated to eat the matzah (in our time) and the pesach offering (in the time of the Temple).
But if this is the meaning of the three terms, then the question in the Torah should have been phrased, “What are the judgments of these testimonies and statutes,” since the essence of the question was the procedural rulings for each of the statutes and testimonies. The wise child put the mishpatim last in order to show us that he understood that his question was about the final part of the Seder meal, either for the matzah (afikomen) or the pesach offering. He then answers them in their proper order. So first we ask about the matzah since it is a reminder of the Passover offering. Since the pesach offering had to be eaten when the celebrant was no longer hungry, so too the last bits of matzah which we call the afikomen had to be eaten at the end of the meal when the celebrant was no longer hungry, we observe the same law for both of them – we have them at the end of the meal. The Mishnah tells us, “One may not add afikomen after the pesach offering,” it is called the afikomen which means Afiku minei metikah, “Bring out all types of sweets.” We do so that the taste of the final matzah/pesach will remain in our mouth all night. And then we continue to tell the story of the Exodus all night long.
(1) Rasha mah hu omer? What does the rebellious child ask? There are several questions raised by this passage. What did the rebellious child have in mind when he asked this question? What does the Haggadah mean when it says that one should ‘blunt his teeth?’ Also, this last expression is superfluous – it would have been enough if the Haggadah had said, “You should say to him, ‘It is because of this….’” Another difficulty in this passage is how the Haggadah answers the Rasha. The answer that we give is the same answer that is given to the fourth child, the one who does not know how to ask.
The Rasha is really asking about the pesach offering. Since one is required to eat this offering at the end of the meal when the person is no longer hungry, the Rasha wonders, “What is the purpose of this offering?” Most sacrifices are consumed as the main course of a meal, but not this one. Since there is no physical pleasure in eating the pesach offering, the Rasha wonders why we even bother eating it at all. The Rasha asks, “What is this offering/service to you?” Since he says “this offering” it must mean a very specific offering – the pesach offering! What is the point of this offering since you get no physical pleasure from it? In all the other sacrifices either the priests or the supplicant gets to enjoy the offering by consuming part of it.
The Torah answers the Rasha’s question by saying, “It is a pesach offering to the Lord;” that is, this offering is not for you but for God and therefore you are not supposed to enjoy it! The pesach offering is not to satisfy the body but to fulfill our obligation to God.
How does one answer the Rasha? One does so by acknowledging that he is disassociating himself from the community through his words. One then answers him by being as caustic and sarcastic as he is. Even though this verse doesn’t really refer to him, we use it to answer him so that we treat him as if he knows nothing. We interpret the verse as a reference to him and thereby ‘blunt his teeth’ to aggravate him. In affect we say to him, “Since you wanted to know about why you can’t enjoy the offering, instead of offering it for God’s sake, we want you to know that God did all this for me and not for you – had you been in Egypt, you wouldn’t have been redeemed.”
(1) Tam mah hu omer? What does the simple child ask? We began by saying there are two reasons we eat matzah on Passover: first because it was the food of slaves since it takes a while to digest; and second, because our ancestors did not have time to allow the dough to rise when they left Egypt in great haste. When the simple child sees the matzah, he is immediately impressed with the fact that it is different than leavened bread. The word mah, what, has another meaning: it can imply “small”, or “lowly.” When the simple child, then, says: “look how small and insignificant this is!” He is asking: “Why is this matzah so important when you could make leavened bread that is so much better than it?” To this, one answers that the reason for the matzah is not because of its importance but because God took us out of Egypt with a mighty hand; that is, God forced their hand and they made us leave Egypt very quickly so that even our bread didn’t have time to be baked! Therefore the matzah is a reminder of both our time as slaves and the pressure of the Egyptians to get us to leave Egypt quickly, and therefore it is a symbol that should humble us.
(1) Sh’ayno yodeah lishol: The one who doesn’t know to ask:The passage that follows the “child who does not know how to ask” talks about the time when “matzah and maror are placed before you.” This is surprising since it should have said, at a time when “pesach, matzah and maror are placed before you.” This statement, however, was written after the destruction of the Temple so there was no longer a Pesach offering. But even if it is from the period when the Temple was still in existence, one could argue that since they would tell the story of the Exodus first, they would only put out the matzah and maror since the Pesach offering would get cold and it was not consumed until the end of the meal.
Why does the Haggadah say, aht p’tach lo, “You shall open for him”? The language here should have been the same as the Bible, hagayd lo… “you shall tell him” or it should have been the same language used to offer the answer to the wise son, emor lo, “You shall say to him.”
Another question: the biblical verse says, ba’avur lo, “It is because of this….” Since we are talking about matzah and maror, the verse should have used the plural pronoun, ba’avur elu, “it is because of these.”
And yet another question: the verse goes on to say, “It is because of this that the Lord did for me when I went forth from Egypt.” The Torah should have specified what it is that God did for Israel when they left Egypt rather than just alluding to it.
Since each of the four children is supposed to ask and only the fourth child doesn’t do so, we provoke him by speaking acting in a strange fashion. That is why the Haggadah says Aht p’tach lo, “You open it for him.” Since he does not ask questions by himself you must get him to open up and ask questions. Give him the space to ask questions. From the way you speak to him he will know about what to ask questions. When you say to him “Because of this,” he will respond, “Why did you say ‘This’ since there is both matzah and maror on the table? Which one are you talking about – the matzah or the maror?”And when you say to him, “Which the Lord did for me,” he will respond by saying, “what exactly did God do for you?” That is why the biblical verse is written in this fashion – to encourage the fourth child to ask questions! He must ask questions so that we can answer questions in telling the story of the Exodus to him. Our answer to the fourth child is not specific but more general: “It is because of this whole night and all the miracles and wonders which God performed for me that I am celebrating this holiday and recalling the story of the Exodus. The generic nature of the answer is purposeful: we are not referring to anything in particular when we answer this child but to the whole evening and the larger events which it celebrates: “It’s because of all of this that God did for me.” In other words we give a simple generic answer rather than one that focuses on the details.
The passage that follows the one about the child who doesn’t know how to ask, then, really focuses on helping him understand why we do it at this particular time and not on Rosh Chodesh or even the day before the Passover. By telling him “it is because of this” he will come to understand that we celebrate this occasion at that time when the matzah and maror are placed on the table. We are explaining to him what it is that makes this moment special and auspicious for telling the story of the Exodus. In this way one is able to open our discussion of the uniqueness of this evening – with unique symbols that prod our interest and curiosity. In a sense, we point out the symbols and the specialness of the night so that this child will become interested and curious. Lest he think that we do this whenever these symbols are placed before us, we also say “On that day” so he will understand that it is on that special day and not on other occasions such as Rosh Chodesh…
יָכוֹל מֵראשׁ חֹדֶשׁ? תַּלְמוּד לוֹמַר בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא. אִי בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא יָכוֹל מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם? תַּלְמוּד לוֹמַר בַּעֲבוּר זֶה - בַּעֲבוּר זֶה לֹא אָמַרְתִּי, אֶלָּא בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁיֵּשׁ מַצָּה וּמָרוֹר מֻנָּחִים לְפָנֶיךָ.
It could be from Rosh Chodesh [that one would have to observe Pesach. However] we learn [otherwise, since] it is stated, "on that day." If it is [written] "on that day," it could be from while it is still day [before the night of the fifteenth of Nissan. However] we learn [otherwise, since] it is stated, "for the sake of this." I didn't say 'for the sake of this' except [that it be observed] when [this] matsa and maror are resting in front of you [meaning, on the night of the fifteenth].
מִתְּחִלָּה עוֹבְדֵי עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה הָיוּ אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, וְעַכְשָׁיו קֵרְבָנוּ הַמָּקוֹם לַעֲבדָתוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיֹאמֶר יְהוֹשֻעַ אֶל-כָּל-הָעָם, כֹּה אָמַר ה' אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל: בְּעֵבֶר הַנָּהָר יָשְׁבוּ אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם מֵעוֹלָם, תֶּרַח אֲבִי אַבְרָהָם וַאֲבִי נָחוֹר, וַיַּעַבְדוּ אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים.
וָאֶקַּח אֶת-אֲבִיכֶם אֶת-אַבְרָהָם מֵעֵבֶר הַנָּהָר וָאוֹלֵךְ אוֹתוֹ בְּכָל-אֶרֶץ כְּנָעַן, וָאַרְבֶּה אֶת-זַרְעוֹ וָאֶתֵּן לוֹ אֶת-יִצְחָק, וָאֶתֵּן לְיִצְחָק אֶת-יַעֲקֹב וְאֶת-עֵשָׂו. וָאֶתֵּן לְעֵשָׂו אֶת-הַר שֵּׂעִיר לָרֶשֶׁת אתוֹ, וְיַעֲקֹב וּבָנָיו יָרְדוּ מִצְרָיִם.
בָּרוּךְ שׁוֹמֵר הַבְטָחָתוֹ לְיִשְׂרָאֵל, בָּרוּךְ הוּא. שֶׁהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא חִשַּׁב אֶת-הַקֵּץ, לַעֲשׂוֹת כְּמוֹ שֶּׁאָמַר לְאַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ בִּבְרִית בֵּין הַבְּתָרִים, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיֹּאמֶר לְאַבְרָם, יָדֹעַ תֵּדַע כִּי-גֵר יִהְיֶה זַרְעֲךָ בְּאֶרֶץ לֹא לָהֶם, וַעֲבָדוּם וְעִנּוּ אֹתָם אַרְבַּע מֵאוֹת שָׁנָה. וְגַם אֶת-הַגּוֹי אֲשֶׁר יַעֲבֹדוּ דָּן אָנֹכִי וְאַחֲרֵי-כֵן יֵצְאוּ בִּרְכֻשׁ גָּדוֹל.
מכסה המצה ומגביה את הכוס בידו, ואומר:
וְהִיא שֶׁעָמְדָה לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ וְלָנוּ. שֶׁלֹּא אֶחָד בִּלְבָד עָמַד עָלֵינוּ לְכַלּוֹתֵנוּ, אֶלָּא שֶׁבְּכָל דּוֹר וָדוֹר עוֹמְדִים עָלֵינוּ לְכַלוֹתֵנוּ,וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא מַצִּילֵנוּ מִיָּדָם.
From the beginning, our ancestors were idol worshipers. And now, the Place [of all] has brought us close to His worship, as it is stated (Joshua 24:2-4), "Yehoshua said to the whole people, so said the Lord, God of Israel, 'over the river did your ancestors dwell from always, Terach the father of Avraham and the father of Nachor, and they worshiped other gods."
And I took your father, Avraham from over the river and I made him walk in all the land of Canaan and I increased his seed and I gave him Yitschak. And I gave to Yitschak, Ya'akov and Esav, and I gave to Esav, Mount Seir [in order that he] inherit it; and Yaakov and his sons went down to Egypt.'"
Blessed is the One who keeps his promise to Israel, blessed be He; since the Holy One, blessed be He, calculated the end [of the exile,] to do as He said to Avraham, our father, in the Covenant between the Pieces, as it is stated (Genesis 15:13-14), "And He said to Avram, 'you should surely know that your seed will be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and they will enslave them and afflict them four hundred years. And also that nation for which they shall toil will I judge, and afterwards they will will go out with much property.'"
He covers the matsa and lifts up the cup and says:
And it is this that has stood for our ancestors and for us, since it is not [only] one [person or nation] that has stood [against] us to destroy us, but rather in each generation, they stand [against] us to destroy us, but the Holy One, blessed be He, rescues us from their hand.
(1) Mitchilat ovdei avodah zarah, Originally our ancestors worshipped idols: The Haggadah states, “Originally, our ancestors worshipped idols but now God brought us close to His service.” The proof text for this statement, however, only proves the first part of the statement, “Originally, our ancestors worshipped idols,” and not the second half of the statement, “But now God brought us close to his service.” So why does the Haggadah bother to include the second half of the statement?
The proof text to this statement is also problematic. It states, “In olden times your forefather, Terach, the father of Abraham and the father of Nachor, lived beyond the Euphrates and worshiped other gods…” But if we are talking about worshiping other gods, then the verse should have mentioned Terach and Nachor and not Abraham.
Furthermore, why was it necessary to say “I brought your father, Abraham?” It wasn’t necessary to tell us that Abraham was our father. Finally the passage from the book of Joshua states, I took your father Abraham...and led him (b’chol) though the whole land of Canaan.” It would have been fine to say, “I led them to the land of Canaan.” The word b’chol, “through the whole,” was unnecessary.
The Talmud says that when we tell the story of the Exodus from Egypt we should begin with shame and end with exaltation. The sages disagree about what accounts for the “shame:” One says that it is slavery and the other says it is a reference to idolatry. When we say “we were slaves in Egypt,” we conclude the statement, “God took us out of there.” So, here, when we say make reference to the shame of slavery, we also make mention of worshipping the One God in the Temple. The point of this statement is that not only did Nachor and Terach worship idols, but that even Abraham originally worshipped idols long ago before he came to a belief in the true and eternal God.
(1) V’ekach et aveechem, An I took your father: That is, God took our father, Abraham, and his descendents as His own special portion and God set him apart from all others for true worship. That is why we refer to Abraham as “Your father.” By referring to Abraham in this way we are reminded that the actions of our ancestors are a sign for future generations. In future generations our ancestors in Egypt would reject idolatry and embrace the worship of God just as Abraham did. One could read this verse, “I will take your father just as I took Abraham.” God took Abraham from beyond the Euphrates, which was a place of idolatry and impurity, and brought him to the land of Canaan, which was a holy land. The statement, “through the whole land of Canaan” is a reference to the statement in Genesis, “Rise, walk through the land and walk through it, the length of it and the breadth of it,” in which God tells our forefather to walk throughout the land. By walking the length and width of the land Abraham took possession of the land for himself and his ancestors afterwards.
Continuing the interpretation of the proof text from the book of Joshua: “I will increase his seed,” this is a reference to Ishmael. The word, arbe, “I will increase” is written without the letter hay at the end of the word to teach us that Ishmael did not become God’s chosen seed. “I gave him Isaac,” Isaac would inherit Abraham’s name. “And I gave Jacob and Esau to Isaac;” even though both were Isaac’s sons, God gave Esau an inheritance outside the land of Canaan (Mount Seir) so that the land of Canaan would remain the sole inheritance of Jacob. It was still necessary, however, for Jacob and his descendents to be enslaved in Egypt so that they would fulfill God’s promise to Abraham, “Your seed shall be strangers …and the fourth generation shall return here. Therefore, the passage concludes, “And Jacob and his sons went down to Egypt.
(1) Baruch shomer havtachto, Blessed is the one who keeps His promise: There are several questions in the coming passages. First, why do we bless God “who keeps His promise.” Doesn’t this go without saying? Even regular decent people are expected to “keep their promises.” So why does the Haggadah make a point of praising God who keeps His promise?
Later on, the Haggadah goes on to say, “And it is that (promise) which God kept for our ancestors and for us.” Since God’s promise to Abraham was only for those people who were in Egypt, why do we continue to thank God as if He kept His promise for us as well? Finally, there are a number of questions on the next passage, “My father was a wandering Aramean.” Why does the Haggadah say that “Laban sought to destroy our forefather Jacob;” actually he only “considered” destroying Jacob. He didn’t act on his thoughts! Second, it seems strange that the Haggadah seems to downplay Pharaoh’s decree by saying that he only decreed against the males. Finally, the Hebrew verb would appear to be incorrect here. The text says oved avee instead of he’evid avee for the expression, “An Aramean tried to destroy.” The verb root OVD means “to destroy.” When written oved, it is an intransitive verb while he’evid (from the same root) is a transitive verb. He’evid would have been the proper verb for saying Aramean “tried to destroy,” while oved would mean “a destroyed Aramean.”
Rabbi David Abudraham amends the text so it says, “The Holy One calculated the end” (in the past tense) instead of the accepted text which says “The Holy One calculates the end” (in the present tense), since this passage refers to an event that happened in the time of the Exodus. But this does not solve the textual difficulties since we begin by saying that God keeps His promises, also in the present tense, suggesting that God’s acts refer not only to the distant past but the present as well. Once again we have an example of the rabbinic statement that “the actions of the ancestors are a sign for their children,” that is, that what happened to our ancestors long ago repeats itself in generation after generation. We see this in God’s promise to Abraham: He tells him that our ancestors will be strangers “in a land not theirs.” In does not mention Egypt because God’s promise applied not only to Egypt but to subsequent generations as well. We see this in the case of Laban – like the story of the Exodus, Jacob went forth from the house of Laban with great wealth just as Israel would when they left Egypt. Also Balaam, who was a descendent of Laban would eventually be punished for trying to harm the people of Israel. Similarly in time to come Israel will be redeemed and its enemies will be punished not only during the Exodus but in future generations as well. It is for this reason that we say Baruch “Blessed is the One” twice at the beginning of this passage. We thank God not only for keeping His promise in Egypt but in future generations as well. We then go on to say that it was exactly that promise which God kept not only for our ancestors but for us as well. Therefore this passage should be stated in the present tense since God continues to keep His promises from Jacob and Laban, from the Exodus from Egypt and onward.
יניח הכוס מידו ויגלה אֶת הַמצות.
צֵא וּלְמַד מַה בִּקֵּשׁ לָבָן הָאֲרַמִּי לַעֲשׂוֹת לְיַעֲקֹב אָבִינוּ: שֶׁפַּרְעֹה לֹא גָזַר אֶלָּא עַל הַזְּכָרִים, וְלָבָן בִּקֵּשׁ לַעֲקֹר אֶת-הַכֹּל. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: אֲרַמִּי אֹבֵד אָבִי, וַיֵּרֶד מִצְרַיְמָה וַיָּגָר שָׁם בִּמְתֵי מְעָט, וַיְהִי שָׁם לְגוֹי גָּדוֹל, עָצוּם וָרָב.
וַיֵּרֶד מִצְרַיְמָה - אָנוּס עַל פִּי הַדִּבּוּר. וַיָּגָר שָׁם. מְלַמֵּד שֶׁלֹא יָרַד יַעֲקֹב אָבִינוּ לְהִשְׁתַּקֵּעַ בְּמִצְרַיִם אֶלָּא לָגוּר שָׁם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֶל-פַּרְעֹה, לָגוּר בָּאָרֶץ בָּאנוּ, כִּי אֵין מִרְעֶה לַצֹּאן אֲשֶׁר לַעֲבָדֶיךָ, כִּי כָבֵד הָרָעָב בְּאֶרֶץ כְּנָעַן. וְעַתָּה יֵשְׁבוּ-נָא עֲבָדֶיךָ בְּאֶרֶץ גֹּשֶן.
בִּמְתֵי מְעָט. כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: בְּשִׁבְעִים נֶפֶשׁ יָרְדוּ אֲבוֹתֶיךָ מִצְרָיְמָה, וְעַתָּה שָׂמְךָ ה' אֱלֹהֶיךָ כְּכוֹכְבֵי הַשָּׁמַיִם לָרֹב.
וַיְהִי שָׁם לְגוֹי. מְלַמֵד שֶׁהָיוּ יִשְׂרָאֵל מְצֻיָּנִים שָׁם. גָּדוֹל עָצוּם - כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וּבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל פָּרוּ וַיִּשְׁרְצוּ וַיִּרְבּוּ וַיַּעַצְמוּ בִּמְאֹד מְאֹד, וַתִּמָּלֵא הָאָרֶץ אֹתָם.
וָרָב. כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: רְבָבָה כְּצֶמַח הַשָּׂדֶה נְתַתִּיךְ, וַתִּרְבִּי וַתִּגְדְּלִי וַתָּבֹאִי בַּעֲדִי עֲדָיִים, שָׁדַיִם נָכֹנוּ וּשְׂעָרֵךְ צִמֵּחַ, וְאַתְּ עֵרֹם וְעֶרְיָה. וָאֶעֱבֹר עָלַיִךְ וָאֶרְאֵךְ מִתְבּוֹסֶסֶת בְּדָמָיִךְ, וָאֹמַר לָךְ בְּדָמַיִךְ חֲיִי, וָאֹמַר לָךְ בְּדָמַיִךְ חֲיִי
וַיָּרֵעוּ אֹתָנוּ הַמִּצְרִים וַיְעַנּוּנוּ, וַיִתְּנוּ עָלֵינוּ עֲבֹדָה קָשָׁה. וַיָּרֵעוּ אֹתָנוּ הַמִּצְרִים - כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: הָבָה נִתְחַכְּמָה לוֹ פֶּן יִרְבֶּה, וְהָיָה כִּי תִקְרֶאנָה מִלְחָמָה וְנוֹסַף גַּם הוּא עַל שֹׂנְאֵינוּ וְנִלְחַם-בָּנוּ, וְעָלָה מִן-הָאָרֶץ.
וַיְעַנּוּנוּ. כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיָּשִׂימוּ עָלָיו שָׂרֵי מִסִּים לְמַעַן עַנֹּתוֹ בְּסִבְלֹתָם. וַיִּבֶן עָרֵי מִסְכְּנוֹת לְפַרְעֹה. אֶת-פִּתֹם וְאֶת-רַעַמְסֵס.
וַיִתְּנוּ עָלֵינוּ עֲבֹדָה קָשָׁה. כְּמָה שֶֹׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיַּעֲבִדוּ מִצְרַיִם אֶת-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּפָרֶךְ.
וַנִּצְעַק אֶל-ה' אֱלֹהֵי אֲבֹתֵינוּ, וַיִּשְׁמַע ה' אֶת-קֹלֵנוּ, וַיַּרְא אֶת-עָנְיֵנוּ וְאֶת עֲמָלֵנוּ וְאֶת לַחֲצֵנוּ.
וַנִּצְעַק אֶל-ה' אֱלֹהֵי אֲבֹתֵינוּ - כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיְהִי בַיָּמִים הָרַבִּים הָהֵם וַיָּמָת מֶלֶךְ מִצְרַיִם, וַיֵּאָנְחוּ בְנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל מִ-הָעֲבוֹדָה וַיִּזְעָקוּ, וַתַּעַל שַׁוְעָתָם אֶל-הָאֱלֹהִים מִן הָעֲבֹדָה.
וַיִּשְׁמַע ה' אֶת קלֵנוּ. כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיִּשְׁמַע אֱלֹהִים אֶת-נַאֲקָתָם, וַיִּזְכֹּר אֱלֹהִים אֶת-בְּרִיתוֹ אֶת-אַבְרָהָם, אֶת-יִצְחָק וְאֶת-יַעֲקֹב.
וַיַּרְא אֶת-עָנְיֵנוּ. זוֹ פְּרִישׁוּת דֶּרֶךְ אֶרֶץ, כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים אֶת בְּנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיֵּדַע אֱלֹהִים.
וְאֶת-עֲמָלֵנוּ. אֵלּוּ הַבָּנִים. כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: כָּל-הַבֵּן הַיִּלּוֹד הַיְאֹרָה תַּשְׁלִיכֻהוּ וְכָל-הַבַּת תְּחַיּוּן.
וְאֶת לַחָצֵנוּ. זֶו הַדְּחַק, כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְגַם-רָאִיתִי אֶת-הַלַּחַץ אֲשֶׁר מִצְרַיִם לֹחֲצִים אֹתָם.
וַיּוֹצִאֵנוּ ה' מִמִצְרַיִם בְּיָד חֲזָקָה, וּבִזְרֹעַ נְטוּיָה, וּבְמֹרָא גָּדֹל, וּבְאֹתוֹת וּבְמֹפְתִים.
וַיּוֹצִאֵנוּ ה' מִמִּצְרַיִם. לֹא עַל-יְדֵי מַלְאָךְ, וְלֹא עַל-יְדֵי שָׂרָף, וְלֹא עַל-יְדֵי שָׁלִיחַ, אֶלָּא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא בִּכְבוֹדוֹ וּבְעַצְמוֹ. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְעָבַרְתִּי בְאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם בַּלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה, וְהִכֵּיתִי כָּל-בְּכוֹר בְּאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם מֵאָדָם וְעַד בְּהֵמָה, וּבְכָל אֱלֹהֵי מִצְרַיִם אֶעֱשֶׂה שְׁפָטִים. אֲנִי ה'.
וְעָבַרְתִּי בְאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם בַּלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה - אֲנִי וְלֹא מַלְאָךְ;ְ וְהִכֵּיתִי כָל בְּכוֹר בְּאֶרֶץ-מִצְרַים. אֲנִי וְלֹא שָׂרָף; וּבְכָל-אֱלֹהֵי מִצְרַיִם אֶעֱשֶׂה שְׁפָטִים. אֲנִי וְלֹא הַשָּׁלִיחַ; אֲנִי ה'. אֲנִי הוּא וְלֹא אַחֵר.
בְּיָד חֲזָקָה. זוֹ הַדֶּבֶר, כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: הִנֵּה יַד-ה' הוֹיָה בְּמִקְנְךָ אֲשֶׁר בַּשָּׂדֶה, בַּסּוּסִים, בַּחֲמֹרִים, בַּגְּמַלִים, בַּבָּקָר וּבַצֹּאן, דֶּבֶר כָּבֵד מְאֹד.
וּבִזְרֹעַ נְטוּיָה. זוֹ הַחֶרֶב, כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְחַרְבּוֹ שְׁלוּפָה בְּיָדוֹ, נְטוּיָה עַל-יְרוּשָלָיִם.
וּבְמוֹרָא גָּדֹל. זוֹ גִּלּוּי שְׁכִינָה. כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר, אוֹ הֲנִסָּה אֱלֹהִים לָבוֹא לָקַחַת לוֹ גּוֹי מִקֶּרֶב גּוֹי בְּמַסֹּת בְּאֹתֹת וּבְמוֹפְתִים וּבְמִלְחָמָה וּבְיָד חֲזָקָה וּבִזְרוֹעַ נְטוּיָה וּבְמוֹרָאִים גְּדוֹלִים כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר-עָשָׂה לָכֶם ה' אֱלֹהֵיכֶם בְּמִצְרַיִם לְעֵינֶיךָ:.
וּבְאֹתוֹת. זֶה הַמַּטֶּה, כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְאֶת הַמַּטֶּה הַזֶּה תִּקַּח בְּיָדְךָ, אֲשֶׁר תַּעֲשֶׂה-בּוֹ אֶת הָאֹתוֹת.
וּבְמֹפְתִים. זֶה הַדָּם, כְּמָה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְנָתַתִּי מוֹפְתִים בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
He puts down the cup from his hand and uncovers the matsa.
Go out and learn what what Lavan the Aramean sought to do to Ya'akov, our father; since Pharaoh only decreed [the death sentence] on the males but Lavan sought to uproot the whole [people]. As it is stated (Deuteronomy 26:5), "An Aramean was destroying my father and he went down to Egypt, and he resided there with a small number and he became there a nation, great, powerful and numerous."
"And he went down to Egypt" - helpless on account of the word [in which God told Avraham that his descendants would have to go into exile]. "And he resided there" - [this] teaches that Ya'akov, our father, didn't go down to settle in Egypt, but rather [only] to reside there, as it is stated (Genesis 47:4), "And they said to Pharaoh, to reside in the land have we come, since there is not enough pasture for your servant's flocks, since the the famine is heavy in the land of Canaan, and now please grant that your servants should dwell in the land of Goshen."
"As a small number" - as it is stated (Deuteronomy 10:22), "With seventy souls did your ancestors come down to Egypt, and now the Lord your God has made you as numerous as the stars of the sky."
"And he became there a nation" - [this] teaches that Israel [became] distinguishable] there. "Great, powerful" - as it is stated (Exodus 1:7), "And the children of Israel multiplied and swarmed and grew numerous and strong, most exceedingly and the land became full of them."
"And numerous" - as it is stated (Ezekiel 16:7), "I have given you to be numerous as the vegetation of the field, and you increased and grew and became highly ornamented, your breasts were set and your hair grew, but you were naked and barren;" "And I passed over you and I saw you wallowing in your blood, and I said to you, you shall live in your blood, and I said to you, you shall live in your blood" (Ezekiel 16:6).
"And the Egyptians did bad to us and afflicted us and put upon us hard work" (Deuteronomy 26:6). "And the Egyptians did bad to us" - as it is stated (Exodus 1:10), "Let us be wise towards him, lest he multiply and it will be that when war is called, he too will join with our enemies and fight against us and go up from the land."
"And afflicted us" - as is is stated (Exodus 1:11); "And they placed upon him leaders over the work-tax in order to afflict them with their burdens, and they built storage cities, Pitom and Ra'amses."
"And put upon us hard work" - as it is stated (Exodus 1:11), "And they enslaved the children of Israel with breaking work."
"And we we yelled out to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our voice, and He saw our affliction, and our toil and our duress" (Deuteronomy 26:7).
"And we yelled out to the Lord, the God of our ancestors" - as it is stated (Exodus 1:23); "And it was in those great days that the king of Egypt died and the Children of Israel sighed from the work and yelled out, and their supplication went up to God from the work."
"And the Lord heard our voice" - as it is stated (Exodus 1:24); "And God heard their groans and God remembered his covenant with Avraham and with Yitschak and with Ya'akov."
"And He saw our affliction" - this [refers to] the separation from the way of the world, as it is stated (Exodus 1:25); "And God saw the Children of Israel and God knew."
"And our toil" - this [refers to the killing of the] sons, as it is stated (Exodus 1:24); "Every boy that is born, throw him into the Nile and every girl you shall keep alive."
"And our duress" - this [refers to] the pressure, as it is stated (Exodus 3:19); "And I also saw the duress that the Egyptians are applying on them."
"And the Lord took us out of Egypt with a strong hand and with an outstretched forearm and with great awe and with signs and with wonders" (Deuteronomy 26:8).
"And the Lord took us out of Egypt" - not though an angel and not through a seraph and not through a messenger, but [directly by] the Holy One, blessed be He, Himself, as it is stated (Exodus 12:12); "And I will pass through the land of Egypt on that night and I will smite every firstborn in the land of Egypt, from men to animals; and with all the gods of Egypt, I will make judgements, I am the Lord."
"And I will pass through the land of Egypt" - I and not an angel. "And I will smite every firstborn" - I and not a seraph. "And with all the gods of Egypt, I will make judgements" - I and not a messenger. "I am the Lord" - I am He and there is no other.
"With a strong hand" - this [refers to] the pestilence, as it is stated (Exodus 9:3); "Behold the hand of the Lord is upon your herds that are in the field, upon the horses, upon the donkeys, upon the camels, upon the cattle and upon the flocks, [there will be] a very heavy pestilence."
"And with an outstretched forearm" - this [refers to] the sword, as it is stated (I Chronicles 21:16); "And his sword was drawn in his hand, leaning over Jerusalem:
"And with great awe" - this [refers to the revelation of] the Divine Presence, as it is stated (Deuteronomy 4:34); Or did God try to take for Himself a nation from within a nation with enigmas, with signs and with wonders and with war and with a strong hand and with an outstretched forearm and with great and awesome acts, like all that the Lord, your God, did for you in Egypt in front of your eyes?"
"And with signs" - this [refers to] the staff, as it is stated (Exodus 4:17); "And this staff you shall take in your hand, that with it you will preform signs."
"And with wonders" - this [refers to] the blood, as it is stated (Joel 3:3); "And I will place my wonders in the skies and in the earth:
(1) Va’nitzak el adonai elohay avotainu, We cried out to the Lord the God of our ancestors: Why did the Maggid choose the verse, “It happened in the course of many days that the king of Egypt died; and the children of Israel groaned because of the servitude and cried…” This verse suggests that Israel’s groaning and crying was of a more general nature. They did not ask God to free them from the hard labor or to save them from the Egyptians. Rather they gave a groan and a sigh but did not give verbal expression to their suffering. Despite this, God knows what is in the hearts of human beings when their sighs rise up to Him. That is why the verse mentions their slavery twice (“They groaned from the slavery….their sigh rose up to God from the slavery.”) That is, it was not their words which motivated God to save them, but the sigh that resulted from their hard work and servitude.
(1) Va’yishma Adonai et kolaynu, And Adonai heard our voice: The proof text used in the Haggadah suggests that it was not just their prayer but God’s remembrance of His covenant that led Him to redeem the people. We have yet another verse later in Exodus which explicitly says this, “I heard the groaning of the people of Israel and I remembered My covenant.” So why doesn’t the Maggid use this verse as the proof text to make this point instead of the one quoted in the Haggadah? There are two reasons: first, because the verse that is quoted in the Haggadah appears first in the Torah; and second, because Exodus 2:24 explicitly mentions that this is the covenant of Abraham and Isaac.
(1) Va’yaar et onyay’nu, He saw our affliction: We already mentioned above that the reason for the constant work of the Israelites was to weaken them so that the men would not engage in procreation with their wives, and in this way it would cause a decrease in the population of the Israelites. The Haggadah now mentions that God saw this affliction and understood the reason for it. He therefore caused the opposite to take place – the more the Egyptians tried to decrease the population of the Israel through slavery, the more they increased in number.
(1) V’et AMALaynu, And our toil: How does the Haggadah conclude that the term AMALaynu, toil, must refer to children? The verb AMAL, to toil, is the similar to the expression used in the Book of Jonah: “Do you care more about a gourd for which you did not work (amal’ta) and which you did not grow…” Rashi explains the word amal’ta implies agricultural efforts, “‘for which you did not work;’ by planting, reaping, and harvesting, and watering.” Just as a farmer must toil to raise his crops, so a parent toils in raising his children. Here the word AMAL is used with regard to raising children: one must provide for them and work hard to marry them off. The term banim in this explanation applies to both sons and daughters, as in the verse “You are children (banim) to the Lord your God.” God saw that the Israelite boys were being cast into the Nile River and that the Israelite girls were being kept alive so that they could be used for licentious activities. This is implied in the proof text which says, “Cast every boy in the river…and let every girl live,” for the purpose of sexual favors. God, who knows the secrets of human beings hearts saw this and knew what Pharaoh’s intentions were.
(1) V’et LACHATAZaynu, our oppression: the word lachatz has two meanings. Sometimes it is used for oppression as in the verse, “You shall not oppress the stranger.” And sometimes it is used in the sense of physically pressing someone one or pushing and hurrying them to complete or do something. The Maggid explains that the implication of the word is be found in the second meaning: the task masters pressed the Israelites and not the oppression of servitude.
(1) Va’yotzee’aynu adonai mi’mitzraim, And Adonai took us out of Egypt: The interpretation that Israel was not redeemed by “an angel,” or by “a fiery being (saraf)” or by “an emissary” is based on the fact that the proof text contains three expressions, “I passed through…I smote….I performed judgments.” These three expressions emphasize that it was God Himself who performed these deeds and not some other party. From these three terms the Maggid concludes that there were three types of intermediaries that could have been involved in the redemption of Israel but were not.
The Ritba explains the nature of these three spiritual intermediaries. Malachim, or angels, are the lowest of the three; they dress themselves in the bodily garments of the physical world. The sarafim, or fiery beings, are spiritually higher than the malachim; they are angels of fire who stand beneath the throne of glory and immerse themselves each day in the river of fire which goes forth from the throne. Shaliach, or emissary, refers to Metatron, whose job it is to guard over the people of Israel. Regarding this angelic being we read: “Behold I will send (sholayach) an angel before you to watch over you along the way.” The name Metatron comes from the Aramaic word matara, which means to guard. The Ramban interprets this name differently. Metatron means one who guides others along the way, as we learn in the Sifre: Metatron pointed the finger of God in the proper direction for Moses by showing him the way to the land of Israel.
The Maggid concludes that it was God Himself who carried out the plagues based on two scriptural verses. First, when Moses stood in the presence of Pharaoh, he said, “Thus said the Lord: Toward midnight I will go forth among the Egyptians and every first born shall die…” The second verse is, “I will pass through the Land of Egypt on that night, and I will slay all the first born…
This verse could have been phrased: I will pass through the Land of Egypt on that night and all the first born shall die, as it said in the other verse. But this would have implied that they died on their own and not through the intervention of God. By saying “I will slay all the first born,” it implies that they died through God’s intervention. “I , Myself smote them!!” Similarly God Himself passed though the land and made judgments on them. This is similar to the language of the Mechilta: “‘I will smite:’ I might understand this to mean through an angel or through an agent. But it says, “That the Lord smote all the first born” – not through an angel or though an agent.” This teaching could have been deduced from Exodus 12:29; however Exodus 12:12 concludes with the additional expression ani Adonai, I am the Lord strengthening this text. This phrase adds, ‘It was I and no other.’ This is what the sages taught regarding this phrase: I am the one who distinguishes between the seed of the first born and the seed of one who is not the first born – no one else can do this!!
Another interpretation: It is I and no other divine power, God forbid, as it is written, “For I am the One and there is no God but Me!”
Rashi writes on this verse: “‘I am Adonai:’ I , Myself and not by means of an agent.” He is implying that this final expression applies to all the other parts of the verse: ‘I passed through the land of Egypt – I, Myself! I will smite all the first born, I, Myself! I will execute judgments - I, Myself! “ Rashi suggests this is not a separate expression (as implied in the interpretations above) but part of the entire verse.
But this interpretation is problematic since this is not the way the Midrash expresses itself. It should have said: ‘I have passed through, I have slayed, I have executed judgment.’ I might have thought that these things were performed through an angel or an agent. Therefore the verse goes on to teach us ani Adonai, I, the Lord Myself! Rather the fact that this expression comes at the end of the verse implies that it teaches us something separate from the rest of the verse....
(1) B’yad hazakah – zeh hadever, with a mighty hand – this refers to pestilence: Rabbi Alshich explains yad hazakah is a reference to the plague of pestilence because it is the fifth plague. Concerning this plague, the Torah says: “Then the hand of the Lord will strike your livestock in the field…” Since each plague is described as the ‘finger of God,” then the fifth plague is the hand of God…” The second five plagues make up God’s ‘other hand.’ We find a proof for this in the following verse from the Torah: “You shall soon see what I will do to Pharaoh: he shall let them go because with a mighty hand (yad) he shall let them go and with a greater might (yad)he shall drive them from the land.” Why was it necessary to have repetitive language in this verse? It could have said: “With a mighty hand he sent them and drove them out of Egypt. This verse comes to teach us that the first five plagues represented the one hand of God and the other five plagues represented the second hand of God. And with the ‘two hands’ together the redemption was completed: one to send the people forth and the other to have them driven out of Egypt. With the first five plagues the people received permission to leave; and with the second ‘hand’ the Egyptians were motivated to actively seek Israel’s ouster from the land of Egypt.
With this explanation we can now understand the following verse: “Yet I know that the king of Egypt will let you go only because of a mighty hand. So I will stretch out My Hand…” This verse implies that the Egyptians would not let Israel leave as a result of a single ‘hand.’ God would have to send forth a second hand (that is, five more plagues as the verse says.) The verse then goes on to say, “I will smite Egypt with all my wonders…” It is for this reason that the Torah mentions the word hand in the fifth plague, unlike the first ones. The Maggid here appears to agree with the approach of Rabbis Akiva and Eliezer – that each plague is a ‘finger of God,’ and not with Rabbi Yose Hagelili who felt that the word ‘finger’ refers to all ten plagues.
(1) U’v’zroa nituyah, zo haherev, With an outstretched arm – this is the sword: This is a reference to the plague of the first born. The proof text which the Haggadah brings, “His drawn sword in His hand outstretched over Jerusalem,” is a reference to a plague in the time of King David; it is also the fifth of the five plagues (as we see this from the use of the word ‘hand’ in the verse.). The word zaroah, out stretched arm, is used here instead of the word yad in order to emphasize the power of this plague, and also so that we use a different word to refer to each set of five plagues. In these two passages, then, we find a reference to all ten plagues. The recitation of the plagues is connected with these passages and not just the latter passage which begins d’var acher, “another interpretation.”
(1) U’v’otot, this is the staff: Having mentioned all the plagues, we now go on to interpret this word as a reference to the three signs which God gave Moses to show the Israelites that he was truly God’s emissary: turning the staff into a serpent, causing his hand to become leprous when he removed it from his garment, and turning water from the Nile into blood. Even though the second two signs weren’t explicitly performed with the staff, still it was through the power of the staff in his hand that Moses was able to perform these wonders. The proof for this is the verse, “Take the staff in your hand…” The words “in your hand” are unnecessary here. It would have been enough for God to say “Take the staff…” The verse suggests that simply by having the staff “in his hand” gave him the power to perform the other wonders. Another way of understanding the reference to the staff is that it is only talking about those times when Moses actually used the staff (and not the other wonders) However Moses turned his staff into a serpent not once but twice – not only with the Israelites but in the presence of Pharaoh as well. But if we are only talking about one sign, why does the verse say otot, signs? Because there were several wonders that took place when Moses performed this act: first he turned it into a serpent, then he turned it back into a staff, and then he caused the staff to swallow all the other staves of the Egyptians!!!
(1) U’v’moftim, zeh hadam, And wonders – this is the blood: Even though this is one of the ten plagues to which we have already made reference, we now return to the beginning of the matter and mention this particular plague again so that we can make reference to the verse, “Blood, and fire and a pillar of smoke.” According to the Ritba, the water turned to blood which was like burning fire and which filled all Israel with smoke. It appears that all three substances were involved in this plague.
(2) Ani v’lo malach, I and not an angel: A gloss from the grandson of the author, David Masud Ovadiah. The Haggadah repeats this interpretation of the verse in a slightly different form: “I shall pass through the land of Egypt…I and not an angel (malach); I shall smite every first born…I and not a fiery being (saraf); I shall execute judgments…I and not the emissary (hashaliach).” Instead of simply saying shaliach, an emissary, it says hashaliach, the emissary, because the first letter of the three words, malach, saraf and hashaliach spell out the name of Moshe. This prefix on the word shaliach is surprising: either all three words should have had the same prefix or none of them should have used it. The prefix was added to point out as a comment on the tenth plague; unlike the other plagues in which Moses played an essential role in bringing them about, the final plague was completely the work of God and God alone. All three words also describe the role of Moses in the story of the Exodus. He is referred to as a malach, an angel: “And God sent an angel who brought us out of Egypt.” Moses was like the serarfim, the fiery beings in heaven because spent time with them when he was in heaven receiving the Torah, neither eating nor drinking for forty days and nights. And He as God’s shaliach, God’s emissary, sent by God to Pharaoh. Therefore, when the Maggid says, “…I and not an angel ….I and not a fiery being …I and not an emissary” – it is referring to Moses in all three cases.
This also fits with the final part of the verse: “I and not another (acher.)” The word acher, is singular even though it should have been plural, acherim, since we are talking about three types of messengers. Since all three refer to Moses, so the word acher, another, is a reference to Moses.
(1) Translators Note: Some considerations for style and terminolog
Throughout the next section of the Haggadah, the text offers an extended interpretation of Deuteronomy, 26:5-8. In each passage, a piece of these verses is quoted; the Haggadah then offers an interpretation of what it means often accompanied by a proof text taken in most cases from the opening chapters of Exodus although other sections of the Bible are quoted as well such as Song of Songs and Chronicles. The purpose of the proof text is twofold: sometimes it serves to support the unique interpretation of the Deuteronomy verses and sometimes it simply serves to expand our understanding of the verses from Deuteronomy by adding something we might not have otherwise noticed. Rabbi Eliyahu attempts to help us understand what the proof text adds to our understanding of the passage from Deuteronomy. He tries to discern what the Maggid, the compiler of the Haggadah, might have had in mind by juxtaposing verses from Deuteronomy with other parts of the Bible. The word Maggid, then, is used throughout this section to the author or the editor of the Haggadah.
(2) Tze u’limad, Come and Learn: This passage suggests that Laban was worse than Pharaoh. In the context of telling the Passover story, this seems quite strange. The Haggadah, however, instructs us to consider how Laban “sought to destroy” to our forefather, Jacob. Laban not only thought about hurting Jacob and his family. He set out with the intention of harming them and would have done so if God had not intervened and appeared to him in a dream warning him to leave Jacob alone. At first glance one might presume that Pharaoh was worse than Laban; Pharaoh, however, never had planned to annihilate the entire nation and was motivated out of fear that the Israelites might join Egypt’s enemies. Pharaoh wished to subjugate the nation, not destroy them. Laban, on the other hand, sought to destroy Jacob and his offspring completely.
This is implied by the words of the Torah, Arami oved avi, (“Laban sought to destroy my father”). The Torah uses the word oved, “destroy” rather than the word he’evid, “caused destruction;” transitive verb rather than the causative verb implies that his thoughts and plans were as destructive as if he actually succeeded. Also the word oved, which is present tense, implies that Laban and his descendents would continually try to destroy the children of Israel.
(3) [The author’s grandson adds the following: Tze u’limad is a proof text for the earlier statement in the Haggadah, that, “In every generation they have risen against us to destroy us.” In what way is Laban a proof that people would arise in every generation to destroy the Jewish people? Ramban and other commentators teach us that whatever happened to our ancestors as recorded in Genesis is a sign for their children, after them. The Ramban points to the each event in Genesis and shows how it later happened again to the people of Israel. In the case of Laban, we know that he set out to destroy Israel from his words in Genesis: “I had it in my power to do you harm…” proving that it was Laban’s intention to harm the entire family and that he pursued them to destroy all of them. However he goes on to say, “But the God of your father said to me last night, ‘beware of attempting anything with Jacob, good or bad.’” This incident is evidence that in every generation there will be those who rise up to do harm to the people of Israel were it not for the protecting presence of God]
Rabbi Isaiah Segal Horowitz, the author of the Sh’nei Luchot Habrit, offers the following comment on the statement of Rabbi Yosi HaGalili in the Haggadah. The verse, “Please, Lord send someone else as your agent, contains the word na, please, and the word yad, hand. When these two words are combined they spell Adonai. These letters can also be inverted so that the daleth-nun spell judged and the yud-aleph refer to are a reference to the two names of God – yud-hay-vav-hay and aleph-hay-yud-hay. The aleph-yud are also a reference to the beginning of Exodus 12, in which Israel is commanded about the Passover offering on the first day of the month (aleph) and they are told to set aside the lamb on the tenth day of the month (yud). What is the significance of these two names of God? First when Moses asks what God’s name was, he was told to say: “Eheyeh sent me” and later Moses says, YHVH, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, has appeared to me…”
The combination of these two names is explained by the Kabbalists by means of numerical calculations. In the book of Daniel we read, “Open Your eyes and see our desolation.” The word pikach, open, has the numerical value of 188, the same as the Tetragrammaton, the four letter name of God when it is calculated with a complete aleph, and the word aynecha, your eyes, has the same value as the Tetragrammaton when it is calculated with the complete yud, which is 161. Together these two names are known as the two eyes of God which look upon Israel and watch over them to save them from disaster. These two names are also referred to as the seven eyes of God which are designated for saving the righteous, as it says, “Seven times the righteous person falls and gets ups, while the righteous are tripped by one misfortune.” There are four ways to calculate the Tetragrammaton and three ways to calculate the name eheyeh.
This is the meaning of the verse, “But I will execute judgment on the nation they shall serve.” The name Adonai is made up of four letter: aleph-dalet-nun-yud. The letters dalet-nun which spell “judgment” refer to the Egyptians, and the other letters aleph-yud are a reference to the compassion of God for the Israelites. These letters are also the first and final letter of the word Anochi - “I.” And the remaining letters kaf-nun are a reference to the twenty wonders which God performed in Egypt and at the sea (the letter kaf is 20). The letter nun (50) is a reference to the fifty days until the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai. The Torah says that Acharei chain, “afterwards (chaf-nun spells chain, the Hebrew word for “afterwards”) they went forth with great wealth” –in other words after all the miracles in Egypt and at the sea and the events at Sinai the people were blessed with great treasures!! The great wealth was not what they took out of Egypt but what they received at Sinai. Why then does it say that they went forth (from Sinai) – didn’t the people go forth from Egypt? This is a reference to the statement in Exodus that when Moses went forth with the people to Sinai.
(1) Vayered Mitzrayaima, Jacob went down to Egypt: It is difficult to understand how Jacob could leave the Holy Land and go down to Egypt since it was a place of impurity and abominations. God says to our forefather: “Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt;” this implies that Jacob was fearful of going to Egypt. Because this was God’s desire, Jacob went to Egypt against his own will. The reason that God sent him to Egypt was to fulfill the prophecy which God made to Abraham in the Covenant of the Pieces: “Your offspring shall be strangers in a land not their own…” Since Jacob was distressed about leaving the land of Canaan and going into the Diaspora once again God said to him “Do not be afraid,” for I will make you a great nation there.
(2) Vayagor sham, And he dwelled there: This expression is superfluous; it would have been enough for the Torah to tell us that “Jacob went down to Egypt.” This Hebrew verb gur suggests only temporary residence rather than taking up permanent residence. It was never Jacob’s intention to remain in Egypt permanently or to be considered among the citizens of the land. And he only did this to fulfill God’s prophecy to Abraham, “You offspring shall be gerim/temporary residents (the same verb)…”
(1) B’mahtay miat, few in number: The Haggadah could have used an earlier verse in the Torah as a proof text for the statement that the Jews who went down to Egypt: “All the souls of the house of Jacob were seventy.” Instead it uses a verse which concludes: “And now He will make you like the stars in the heavens,” since this supports the very premise of the telling: even though Jacob’s family was small, God made them “as numerous as the stars in the sky.”
(1) Vayehi sham l’goy gadol, and there they became a mighty nation: The Haggadah comments: “Israel became distinctive (mitzuyanim) there.” This word implies that the Israelites were recognizable both in their bodies and in the clothing they wore. Anyone who saw them immediately knew that they were from the seed of Israel; not a single one of the Israelites wore Egyptian clothing, or cut his hair in the fashion of the Egyptians so that they could escape bondage by blending in with the Egyptians. The Ritba, Rabbi Yom Tov ben Avraham Ishbili , draws this teaching from the word goy, nation, which implies that Israel remained a distinctive nation. But if that is how we learn this teaching, then why is it necessary for the Torah to tell us that they were a goy gadol, “a mighty nation.” The word “nation” does not necessarily imply that they were “a mighty nation.” The verse goes on to explain the continuation of the verse by saying that they were gadol v’atzum, “both great and mighty.” The Pesikta explains the word mighty in the following fashion: Israel was considered great because Joseph had left instructions in the palace that they were to feed the family of Jacob according to the number of people and children. But when the Israelites increased at such a great rate they had to stop feeding them. Thus the word gadol implies that they were of high status and great importance. People of great importance are fed by royalty. The word gadol, then, implies importance and not quantity. And the next statement in the Haggadah is not a comment on gadol but on the word atzum – not on their status but on their quantitative number.
(2) Gadol v’atzum, Great and mighty: The Israelites did not all increase in the same way. The word atzum, mighty, is understood as many while gadol, great, implies importance. The proof text which suggests that Israel increased contains four different terms to describe the four different ways in which the Israelites increased, including “multiplied, swarmed, increased and became mighty.” While the tribe of Levi had a natural increase in population because it was not subjugated by the Egyptians, those who were enslaved and oppressed increased at an unnaturally fast and significant rate like certain species of animals. The word paru, they increased, is usually used for human beings. The Torah describes the increase of others with the word vayishritzu, they swarmed, from the word sheretz which refers to a crawling insect or creature. Some became many, vayirbu , which is a word associated with fish, and still others became mighty, v’ya’atzmu, a word used to describe the mighty increase of locust.
(1) V’rav, and many: There are several problems with our understanding of the proof text from Song of Songs. The sages commented on the proof text, b’aday adaim, they became fully adorned, rather read this as b’adarim adarim, flocks and flocks of sheep.” Why was it necessary for the Midrash to interpret this expression in this way rather than leaving it in its plain sense? Furthermore, this verse uses a strange word in conjunction with this expression: v’tavo’i b’aday adaim, literally “you came fully adorned,” when the word vatehi, and you shall be, would have been a better choice. The expression aday, is usually used to describe beautiful adornments such as clothes or jewelry, but here this verse goes on to say, “But you were completely naked.” So aday cannot mean adorned in the normal sense of the word. That is why the sages interpreted the word to be adarim, flocks, instead.
We can now begin to understand what this verse is speaking about. The verse from Deuteronomy contains the word v’rav while the proof text contains the word r’vava. While these words are connected (they both come from the same root word) r’vava implies an increase in number while the word v’rav implies a growth in strength. Both of these meanings are implied in the proof text, v’tarbee vatigdalee, “they grew mighty and greater.” According to the Midrash when the Israelite women gave birth they would go out and give birth in the field. God would then put a rock in the hand of each infant from which it would imbibe on milk and honey. From this we learn the Israelites became not only many but mighty, well beyond the normal dictates of nature. When the children were old enough they would enter the cities and join their families in flocks like sheep. Their great increase in number allowed them to reach the allotted number at which God promised to redeem them sooner than was originally anticipated.
According to the Midrash, Shadaim nachonu, “breasts well fashioned,” is a reference to Moses and Aaron. “Your breasts are like two doves” – these are Moses and Aaron because through them Israel nursed from the divine blessings above. Rabbi Moshe Alshich, the great Torah scholar, explained that because Moses and Aaron taught Torah to the people of Israel, they were compared to great towers, as in “My breasts are like towers:” these are scholars of Torah. Another reason the people were able to leave Egypt sooner is because of the severity of the oppression. The verse says, “Your hair grew long.” The word for hair, sai’ar, is similar to the word sa’ar as in sa’ar binafsho , troubled soul. Rashi interprets this word to mean bitterness of soul. It was the bitterness of their experience which caused God to redeem them sooner. The people of Israel had no commandments to their credit that would give them the merit of redemption; there needed to be some type of arousal from below. This is what the text means when it says they were naked and bare. God gave Israel two mitzvot – the blood of the pesach offering and the blood of circumcision – to bring about this arousal from below that would motivate God to redeem Israel.
(1) Vayarei’u otanu ha’mitzrim, The Egyptians dealt harshly with us: It seems strange that the Torah blames Egypt and not Pharaoh for the enslavement of Israel. Elsewhere we are told, “They built garrison cities for Pharaoh,” implying that it was through the advice of Pharaoh that the Israelites were enslaved. Prior to this verse we see that it was the Egyptians who actually came up with the plan to enslave Israel. Pharaoh told the Egyptians: “Behold, the Israelites are greater and mightier than us, ” and that he was afraid that they would increase and fight against the Egyptians. He then said to the Egyptians, “Let us deal wisely with them;” and asked them to come up with an appropriate plan to decrease the number of Israelites. The people then came up with the plan to subjugate the people of Israel by forcing them to build and through hard labor. Even though Pharaoh instigated the discussion, it was the Egyptians who actually came up with the plan.
This servitude was to be constant so that it depleted their strength and they would be unable to cohabit with their wives; in that way the Israelites would decrease in number. We also learn that Egyptians forced the Israelites to work day and night (for the same reason). The Torah suggests that it was the Egyptians who enslaved Israel. The Torah says, vayseemu otam saray missim, “They placed upon them task masters. ” and not vaysaym, “He placed upon them,” implying that it was the Egyptians and not just Pharaoh who subjugated the Israelites. The idea of enslaving the Israelites belonged to the entire Egyptian people.
(1) Vaya’anunu, and they oppressed us: The Egyptians not only made them work hard, each according to his or her ability. They also set a corvee upon the Israelites which increased daily. Anyone who did not do the allotted amount of work was severely punished. We learn this from the verse which says “They placed saray missim upon them,” literally, ‘officers of the corvee,’ whose job it was to measure the allotted amount. In this way they increased the oppression of the Israelites through the people who measured the daily corvee.
Connected with this explanation is a comment by Rashi. So why then is it ‘taxes’ instead of just ‘tax?’ Why does the text say saray missim, literally, ‘the officers of the taxes’ (plural) rather than saray mas, officers of the tax (singular)? We see elsewhere that in constructions such as this one in the Bible with two connected nouns, if one noun is plural, the second noun is also plural. Another reason for this is that there were many tasks involved in making the bricks: gathering water, shaping the bricks, preparing the plaster, digging for the mud, etc. Each of these tasks had a taskmaster of its own and each one was a tax or corvee; so we refer to the masters of the taxes.
(1) Vayitnu alaynu avodah kasha, they placed hard labor upon us: Besides the hard work which the people of Israel had to perform for Pharaoh, they were forced to perform hard work for the people of Egypt as well. The Egyptians treated the Israelites as their personal slaves. This is what the proof text teaches us: “The Egyptians subjugated the Israelites with hard labor.” Thus, the two phrases in the verse here refer to two types of enslavement: “They oppressed us, “refers to the hard work Pharaoh imposed on the people, and “they placed hard labor on us,” refers to the oppressive work which the Egyptians placed on the Israelites. Similarly we can interpret the verse, “They embittered their lives with hard work, with mortar and bricks,” as the work they performed for Pharaoh, and “With all sorts of tasks in the field,” as a reference to the work they performed for the Egyptian people. The work they performed for the people was also avodah farekh, oppressive work that was meant to break the bodies of the Israelites. Pharaoh did not stop his people from doing this for it was his desire to oppress the Israelites.
כשאומר דם ואש ותימרות עשן, עשר המכות ודצ"ך עד"ש באח"ב - ישפוך מן הכוס מעט יין:
דָּם וָאֵשׁ וְתִימְרוֹת עָשָׁן.
דָבָר אַחֵר: בְּיָד חֲזָקָה שְׁתַּיִם, וּבִזְרֹעַ נְטוּיָה שְׁתַּיִם, וּבְמֹרָא גָּדֹל - שְׁתַּיִם, וּבְאֹתוֹת - שְׁתַּיִם, וּבְמֹפְתִים - שְׁתַּיִם.
אֵלּוּ עֶשֶׂר מַכּוֹת שֶׁהֵבִיא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עַל-הַמִּצְרִים בְּמִצְרַיִם, וְאֵלוּ הֵן:
רַבִּי יְהוּדָה הָיָה נוֹתֵן בָּהֶם סִמָּנִים: דְּצַ"ךְ עַדַ"שׁ בְּאַחַ"ב.
רַבִּי יוֹסֵי הַגְּלִילִי אוֹמֵר: מִנַּיִן אַתָּה אוֹמֵר שֶׁלָּקוּ הַמִּצְרִים בְּמִצְרַיִם עֶשֶׂר מַכּוֹת וְעַל הַיָּם לָקוּ חֲמִשִּׁים מַכּוֹת? בְּמִצְרַיִם מַה הוּא אוֹמֵר? וַיֹּאמְרוּ הַחַרְטֻמִּם אֶל פַּרְעֹה: אֶצְבַּע אֱלֹהִים הִוא, וְעַל הַיָּם מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? וַיַּרְא יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶת-הַיָּד הַגְּדֹלָה אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה ה' בְּמִצְרַיִם, וַיִּירְאוּ הָעָם אֶת-ה', וַיַּאֲמִינוּ בַּיי וּבְמשֶׁה עַבְדוֹ. כַּמָה לָקוּ בְאֶצְבַּע? עֶשֶׂר מַכּוֹת. אֱמוֹר מֵעַתָּה: בְּמִצְרַים לָקוּ עֶשֶׂר מַכּוֹת וְעַל הַיָּם לָקוּ חֲמִשִּׁים מַכּוֹת.
רַבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֲר אוֹמֵר: מִנַּיִן שֶׁכָּל-מַכָּה וּמַכָּה שֶׁהֵבִיא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עַל הַמִּצְרִים בְּמִצְרַיִם הָיְתָה שֶׁל אַרְבַּע מַכּוֹת? שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: יְשַׁלַּח-בָּם חֲרוֹן אַפּוֹ, עֶבְרָה וָזַעַם וְצָרָה, מִשְׁלַחַת מַלְאֲכֵי רָעִים. עֶבְרָה - אַחַת, וָזַעַם - שְׁתַּיִם, וְצָרָה - שָׁלשׁ, מִשְׁלַחַת מַלְאֲכֵי רָעִים - אַרְבַּע. אֱמוֹר מֵעַתָּה: בְּמִצְרַיִם לָקוּ אַרְבָּעִים מַכּוֹת וְעַל הַיָּם לָקוּ מָאתַיִם מַכּוֹת.
רַבִּי עֲקִיבָא אוֹמֵר: מִנַּיִן שֶׁכָּל-מַכָּה וּמַכָּה שֶהֵבִיא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עַל הַמִּצְרִים בְּמִצְרַיִם הָיְתָה שֶׁל חָמֵשׁ מַכּוֹת? שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: יְִשַׁלַּח-בָּם חֲרוֹן אַפּוֹ, עֶבְרָה וָזַעַם וְצַרָה, מִשְׁלַחַת מַלְאֲכֵי רָעִים. חֲרוֹן אַפּוֹ- אַחַת, עֶבְרָה - שְׁתָּיִם, וָזַעַם - שָׁלוֹשׁ, וְצָרָה - אַרְבַּע, מִשְׁלַחַת מַלְאֲכֵי רָעִים - חָמֵשׁ. אֱמוֹר מֵעַתָּה: בְּמִצְרַיִם לָקוּ חֲמִשִּׁים מַכּות וְעַל הַיָּם לָקוּ חֲמִשִּׁים וּמָאתַיִם מַכּוֹת.
And when he says, "blood and fire and pillars of smoke" and the ten plagues and "detsakh," "adash" and "ba'achab," he should pour out a little wine from his cup.
"blood and fire and pillars of smoke."
Another [explanation]: "With a strong hand" [corresponds to] two [plagues]; "and with an outstretched forearm" [corresponds to] two [plagues]; "and with great awe" [corresponds to] two [plagues]; "and with signs" [corresponds to] two [plagues]; "and with wonders" [corresponds to] two [plagues].
These are [the] ten plagues that the Holy One, blessed be He, brought on the Egyptians in Egypt and they are:
[The] Mixture [of Wild Animals]
Slaying of [the] Firstborn
Rabbi Yehuda was accustomed to giving [the plagues] mnemonics: Detsakh [the Hebrew initials of the first three plagues], Adash [the Hebrew initials of the second three plagues], Beachav [the Hebrew initials of the last four plagues].
Rabbi Yose Hagelili says, "From where can you [derive] that the Egyptians were struck with ten plagues in Egypt and struck with fifty plagues at the Sea? In Egypt, what does it state? 'Then the magicians said unto Pharaoh: ‘This is the finger of God' (Exodus 8:15). And at the Sea, what does it state? 'And Israel saw the Lord's great hand that he used upon the Egyptians, and the people feared the Lord; and they believed in the Lord, and in Moshe, His servant' (Exodus 14:31). How many were they struck with with the finger? Ten plagues. You can say from here that in Egypt, they were struck with ten plagues and at the Sea, they were struck with fifty plagues."
Rabbi Eliezer says, "From where [can you derive] that every plague that the Holy One, blessed be He, brought upon the Egyptians in Egypt was [composed] of four plagues? As it is stated (Psalms 78:49): 'He sent upon them the fierceness of His anger, wrath, and fury, and trouble, a sending of messengers of evil.' 'Wrath' [corresponds to] one; 'and fury' [brings it to] two; 'and trouble' [brings it to] three; 'a sending of messengers of evil' [brings it to] four. You can say from here that in Egypt, they were struck with forty plagues and at the Sea, they were struck with two hundred plagues."
Rabbi Akiva says, says, "From where [can you derive] that every plague that the Holy One, blessed be He, brought upon the Egyptians in Egypt was [composed] of five plagues? As it is stated (Psalms 78:49): 'He sent upon them the fierceness of His anger, wrath, and fury, and trouble, a sending of messengers of evil.' 'The fierceness of His anger' [corresponds to] one; 'wrath' [brings it to] two; 'and fury' [brings it to] three; 'and trouble' [brings it to] four; 'a sending of messengers of evil' [brings it to] five. You can say from here that in Egypt, they were struck with fifty plagues and at the Sea, they were struck with two hundred and fifty plagues."
(1) Rabbi Yose HaGelili omer, Rabbi Yose the Galilean said: Why was it necessary for the Rabbi Yose to tell us “these were the ten plagues that God struck the Egyptians in Egypt?” Isn’t this obvious since the plagues are explicitly mentioned in the Torah? Rabbi Yose’s statement is especially problematic since he claims that there were fifty plagues at the sea while the Mishnah in Pirke Avot claims that there were only ten plagues in Egypt and ten at the sea. One is forced to conclude that Rabbi Yose does not agree with the statement in Pirke Avot!
Rabbi Yose and the Mishnah have different understandings of the plagues and the events at the sea. For Rabbi Yose, the plagues in Egypt were different from the plagues at the sea – that is why the number is different, while the Mishnah assumes that they were of a similar nature. Rabbi Eliezer and Rabbi Akiva, on the other hand, agree with the Mishnah, that the plagues were of a similar nature to one another. They believed, however, that each of the plagues had several aspects to them (fourfold or fivefold).
Since Rabbi Yose was the student of Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Akiva was the student of Rabbi Eliezer, it doesn’t make sense to suggest they were adding on to the opinion of Rabbi Yose. These statements came before Rabbi Yose’s statement. Rather, Rabbis Akiva and Eliezer were of the opinion that the word yad, hand, is used in many places to refer to the plagues in general and does not have any quantitative meaning for the number of plagues. The final part of each of their statements concerning the plagues at the sea, then, is not part of their original statements – they agreed with the Mishnah and were simply talking about the fourfold or fivefold nature of the plagues in Egypt. Rather, the Maggid, the author of the Haggadah, added this on to their statement to make them consistent with the statement of Rabbi Yose’s statement.
(1) Rabbi Eliezer and Rabbi Akiva: The analyses of these rabbis are equally good! Why do they disagree? Psalms 78:49 is taken from a chapter in which the Psalmist describes the plagues in Egypt. It describes the plagues and in the midst of the description, we find this verse which talks about the plagues more generally and not about any specific plague. We must conclude, therefore, that this verse applies to all the plagues and not to any one in particular. It suggests that each of the plagues had four or five different aspects to it. The two rabbis disagree about how one should read this verse. Rabbi Eliezer understands the first phrase from the verse, charon apo, “His fierce anger,” as an expression which refers to the other four expressions in the verse, while Rabbi Akiva understands this expression as one of five rather than a general statement followed by four statements. Rabbi Eliezer would point out that the first phrase is written in the possessive form, “HIS fierce anger,” while the others are not, suggesting that it is separate from the others. According to him, the verse should be read “He sent His fierce anger, that is – wrath, fury, trouble, and a band of emissaries of evil…” ‘The word ‘wrath’ is the first in the list of qualities of the plagues. Rabbi Akiva, on the other hand, is of the opinion that “His fierce anger” is but one of the list and is not meant to be read separately from the others. The presence of the pronoun here is not out of the ordinary and does not distinguish the first of this list from the others.
The Shelah offers another interpretation. Rabbi Eliezer’s statement is based on the verse: “Please make ( sh’lach na b’yad) someone else as your agent. The nun and the dalet, the first and last letters of this phrase, are multiples of 200. Rabbi Akiva’s opinion, on the other hand, is the basis of his explanation on this number plus the addition of the plague itself in each case. Rabbi Akiva’s explanation can also be explained in the following way: Even though the plagues are referred to as the “finger of God,” in the case of the fifth plague the word hand is used. The appearance of both of these words with regard to the plagues in Egypt would seem to be contradictory. The use of the word yad with regard to the plagues is a reference to the fact that each of the plagues also has five aspects to it. Rabbi Eliezer, on the other hand, would base his proof on the verse from Psalms so that each of the plagues has only four aspects to it.
(1) Davar acher, Another Interpretation: The Maggid saw that there were five expressions in this verse, three of which were made up of two words each, and the last two were plural (suggesting more than one), he concluded they made up ten plagues.
(1) Elu eser makot, These are the ten plagues which the Holy one brought upon the Egyptians who were in Egypt: The verse says “On the Egyptians” meaning to exclude the Israelites. None of the ten plagues affected the Israelites; these are the ten wonders which God performed for the Israelites in Egypt. The Haggadah then says “In Egypt” to exclude those plagues which God performed at the Red Sea. At the sea God struck Egypt with fifty plagues! This passage seems to agree with the opinion of Rabbi Yose, above. The Haggadah then goes on to list the plagues in an abbreviated form: d’tzach adash ba’achab in order to show how He struck the Egyptians and saved the Israelites. This is what Rabbi Samson said in the name of the Ari : Each time God struck the Egyptians, He healed Israel a little more. The abbreviation of the plagues was a mystical mantra – they are names which had the power to heal the people of Israel. By transposing the letter so that the three first letters make the word da’ab, the three middle letters make the word tzada, and the final letters make up the word chash’chab
כַּמָה מַעֲלוֹת טוֹבוֹת לַמָּקוֹם עָלֵינוּ!
אִלּוּ הוֹצִיאָנוּ מִמִצְרַיִם וְלֹא עָשָׂה בָהֶם שְׁפָטִים, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ עָשָׂה בָהֶם שְׁפָטִים, וְלֹא עָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ עָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם, וְלֹא הָרַג אֶת-בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ הָרַג אֶת-בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת-מָמוֹנָם, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת-מָמוֹנָם וְלֹא קָרַע לָנוּ אֶת-הַיָּם, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ קָרַע לָנוּ אֶת-הַיָּם וְלֹא הֶעֱבִירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ הֶעֱבִירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה וְלֹא שִׁקַּע צָרֵנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ שִׁקַּע צָרֵנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ וְלֹא סִפֵּק צָרְכֵּנוּ בַּמִדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ סִפֵּק צָרְכֵּנוּ בְּמִדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה וְלֹא הֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת-הַמָּן דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ הֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת-הַמָּן וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת-הַשַׁבָּת, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת-הַשַׁבָּת, וְלֹא קֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ קֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי, וְלא נַתַן לָנוּ אֶת-הַתּוֹרָה. דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ נַתַן לָנוּ אֶת-הַתּוֹרָה וְלֹא הִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל, דַּיֵּנוּ.
אִלּוּ הִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל וְלֹא בָנָה לָנוּ אֶת-בֵּית הַבְּחִירָה דַּיֵּנוּ.
עַל אַחַת, כַּמָה וְכַּמָה, טוֹבָה כְפוּלָה וּמְכֻפֶּלֶת לַמָּקוֹם עָלֵינוּ: שֶׁהוֹצִיאָנוּ מִמִּצְרַיִם, וְעָשָׂה בָהֶם שְׁפָטִים, וְעָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם, וְהָרַג אֶת-בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם, וְנָתַן לָנוּ אֶת-מָמוֹנָם, וְקָרַע לָנוּ אֶת-הַיָּם, וְהֶעֱבִירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה, וְשִׁקַּע צָרֵנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ, וְסִפֵּק צָרְכֵּנוּ בַּמִדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה, וְהֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת-הַמָּן, וְנָתַן לָנוּ אֶת-הַשַּׁבָּת, וְקֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי, וְנַתָן לָנוּ אֶת-הַתּוֹרָה, וְהִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל, וּבָנָה לָנוּ אֶת-בֵּית הַבְּחִירָה לְכַפֵּר עַל-כָּל-עֲוֹנוֹתֵינוּ.
How many degrees of good did the Place [of all bestow] upon us!
If He had taken us out of Egypt and not made judgements on them; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had made judgments on them and had not made [them] on their gods; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had made [them] on their gods and had not killed their firstborn; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had killed their firstborn and had not given us their money; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had given us their money and had not split the Sea for us; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had split the Sea for us and had not taken us through it on dry land; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had taken us through it on dry land and had not pushed down our enemies in [the Sea]; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had pushed down our enemies in [the Sea] and had not supplied our needs in the wilderness for forty years; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had supplied our needs in the wilderness for forty years and had not fed us the manna; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had fed us the manna and had not given us the Shabbat; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had given us the Shabbat and had not brought us close to Mount Sinai; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had brought us close to Mount Sinai and had not given us the Torah; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had given us the Torah and had not brought us into the land of Israel; [it would have been] enough for us.
If He had brought us into the land of Israel and had not built us the 'Chosen House' [the Temple; it would have been] enough for us.
How much more so is the good that is doubled and quadrupled that the Place [of all bestowed] upon us [enough for us]; since he took us out of Egypt, and made judgments with them, and made [them] with their gods, and killed their firstborn, and gave us their money, and split the Sea for us, and brought us through it on dry land, and pushed down our enemies in [the Sea], and supplied our needs in the wilderness for forty years, and fed us the manna, and gave us the Shabbat, and brought us close to Mount Sinai, and gave us the Torah, and brought us into the land of Israel and built us the 'Chosen House' [the Temple] to atone upon all of our sins.
(1) Had He given us the Sabbath but not brought us near Mount Sinai: By bringing the people close to Mount Sinai, the Israelites acquired a sense of holiness and came to understand that God wishes them to strive for holiness. By bringing us to Sinai, God also gave us the Torah through which we attained holiness and made us worthy of entering the Holy Land, the very land of which is holy. And by entering the Holy Land we were allowed to build the Holy Temple through which we could be purified from sin and continue to live continually in holiness. This explains the final verse of Dayyenu: Had He brought us to the land of Israel and not allowed us to build the Holy Temple…
(1) Had He taken us out of Egypt but not meted judgment upon them: The passage should have said, “If He had taken us out of Egypt but not judged them,” similar to the passage in the Torah, “I will judge the nation that they served.” But the language of Dayyenu is more appropriate. The language asah sh’fatim, to mete out judgment is used with regard to the carrying out of a punishment, and it is also used elsewhere in scripture specifically for executing judgment against the gods of other nations, as in, “I will mete out judgments (e’ehseh sh’fatim) to all the gods of Egypt.”
(1) Had He meted out judgment against them but not against their gods: What use was it to Israel that God meted out judgment to the gods of Egypt. After all, it was the Egyptians and not their gods who enslaved the Israelites! Yet one is dependent upon the other. God does not mete out judgment to a nation without passing judgment on its gods. Both acts were performed on behalf of the Israelites. Also, while they were in Egypt the Israelites began worshipping the gods of the Egyptians – by meting out judgment on the gods of Egypt the Israelites would come to understand that they were powerless, and there is no rock other than their God.
(1) Had He meted out judgment against their gods but not slayed their first born: The order of events in Dayyenu does not follow the order of Scripture. In scripture the death of the first born precedes the judgment of the gods of Egypt: “I smote their first born and I meted out judgment to all the gods of Egypt.” This is to teach us that God does not mete out judgment to a nation without first judging its gods. The verse however reflects the aspect of the judgment which the Israelites experienced first – the death of the first born.
(1) Had He slayed their first born but not given us their wealth: There are two verses regarding the plundering of the Egyptians: one before the tenth plague and one immediately after the tenth plague. How do we reconcile these two verses – did they collect the plunder before or after the final plague? The Israelites asked the Egyptians before the tenth plague, but they did not collect the booty until after the final plague. So, too, here the plundering of Egypt follows the mention of the tenth plague.
(1) Had He had given us their wealth but not split the sea: According to the Midrash, the Israelites actually plundered the Egyptians twice – once in Egypt and once at the shore of the Red Sea after the Egyptians drowned and all their jewelry and possessions washed up on the shore. Since the plundering in Egypt took place before the splitting of the sea it precedes it here. However the reference to taking their wealth is really a reference to both occasions.
(1) Had He split the sea but not led us through on dry land: Certainly having the sea split and not being able to cross over would have been pointless! The point of this statement, then, is that God not only allowed them to cross but He allowed them to cross on dry land without mud. Elsewhere, however, it never makes a point of saying that God allowed them to cross ‘on dry land.’ Rather it emphasizes that they entered into the sea between two walls of water, with a separate corridor for each tribe. The crossing of the sea was the really important point and not the fact that it was on dry ground.
(1) Had He led us through on dry land but not drowned our enemies within it: The author should have used the word tava, drowned, instead of the word shika since this is the word which is used in scripture: “ The pick of his officers are drowned in the Sea of Reeds.” The word shika, refers to the first part of drowning. That is, first they began to sink into the depths of the sea and then they began to drown.
(1) Had He drowned our enemies but not provided for our needs in the wilderness for forty years: Scripture enumerates all the needs of the Israelites in the wilderness: bread, water, clothing, and the clouds of glory which protected them from the harsh wind and sun. All their other needs which are not explicitly mentioned in scripture are included in the words “for forty years.” “The Lord your God was with you – you never lacked for anything.” God gave them not only physical food but spiritual food as well – the manna. Had He fed us manna but not given us the Sabbath: Manna is mentioned first even though the laws of the Sabbath were given before the people were given manna at Mara. The manna fell afterward in the wilderness of Sinai. The loaves of bread which they took out of Egypt had the same taste as manna – therefore it mentioned here prior to the Sabbath. Another reason the manna is mentioned first is that the people of Israel received a number of new laws regarding the Sabbath once they were given the manna. Also, it was through the manna that the people came to understand the importance and the holiness of the Sabbath. The manna did not fall on the seventh day, and the people received a double portion of manna on the sixth day to emphasize the holiness of the Sabbath.
רַבָּן גַּמְלִיאֵל הָיָה אוֹמֵר: כָּל שֶׁלֹּא אָמַר שְׁלשָׁה דְּבָרִים אֵלּוּ בַּפֶּסַח, לא יָצָא יְדֵי חוֹבָתוֹ, וְאֵלּוּ הֵן: פֶּסַח, מַצָּה, וּמָרוֹר.
פֶּסַח שֶׁהָיוּ אֲבוֹתֵינוּ אוֹכְלִים בִּזְמַן שֶׁבֵּית הַמִּקְדָּשׁ הָיָה קַיָּם, עַל שׁוּם מָה? עַל שׁוּם שֶׁפָּסַח הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עַל בָּתֵּי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ בְּמִצְרַיִם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח הוּא לַיי, אֲשֶׁר פָּסַח עַל בָּתֵּי בְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּמִצְרַיִם בְּנָגְפּוֹ אֶת-מִצְרַיִם, וְאֶת-בָּתֵּינוּ הִצִּיל? וַיִּקֹּד הָעָם וַיִּשְׁתַּחווּ.
אוחז המצה בידו ומראה אותה למסובין:
מַצָּה זוֹ שֶׁאָנוֹ אוֹכְלִים, עַל שׁוּם מַה? עַל שׁוּם שֶׁלֹּא הִסְפִּיק בְּצֵקָם שֶׁל אֲבוֹתֵינוּ לְהַחֲמִיץ עַד שֶׁנִּגְלָה עֲלֵיהֶם מֶלֶךְ מַלְכֵי הַמְּלָכִים, הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, וּגְאָלָם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיֹּאפוּ אֶת-הַבָּצֵק אֲשֶׁר הוֹצִיאוּ מִמִּצְרַיִם עֻגֹת מַצּוֹּת, כִּי לֹא חָמֵץ, כִּי גֹרְשׁוּ מִמִּצְרַיִם וְלֹא יָכְלוּ לְהִתְמַהְמֵהַּ, וְגַם צֵדָה לֹא עָשׂוּ לָהֶם.
אוחז המרור בידו ומראה אותו למסובין:
מָרוֹר זֶה שֶׁאָנוּ אוֹכְלִים, עַל שׁוּם מַה? עַל שׁוּם שֶׁמֵּרְרוּ הַמִּצְרִים אֶת-חַיֵּי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ בְּמִצְרַיִם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיְמָרְרוּ אֶת חַיֵּיהם בַּעֲבֹדָה קָשָה, בְּחֹמֶר וּבִלְבֵנִים וּבְכָל-עֲבֹדָה בַּשָּׂדֶה אֶת כָּל עֲבֹדָתָם אֲשֶׁר עָבְדוּ בָהֶם בְּפָרֶךְ.
בְּכָל-דּוֹר וָדוֹר חַיָּב אָדָם לִרְאוֹת אֶת-עַצְמוֹ כְּאִלּוּ הוּא יָצָא מִמִּצְרַיִם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְהִגַּדְתָּ לְבִנְךָ בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא לֵאמֹר, בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה ה' לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרַיִם. לֹא אֶת-אֲבוֹתֵינוּ בִּלְבָד גָּאַל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, אֶלָּא אַף אוֹתָנוּ גָּאַל עִמָּהֶם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְאוֹתָנוּ הוֹצִיא מִשָּׁם, לְמַעַן הָבִיא אוֹתָנוּ, לָתֶת לָנוּ אֶת-הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נִשָׁבַּע לַאֲבֹתֵינוּ.
Rabban Gamliel was accustomed to say, Anyone who has not said these three things on Pesach has not fulfilled his obligation, and these are them: the Pesach sacrifice, matsa and marror.
The Pesach [passover] sacrifice that our ancestors were accustomed to eating when the Temple existed, for the sake of what [was it]? For the sake [to commemorate] that the Holy One, blessed be He, passed over the homes of our ancestors in Egypt, as it is stated (Exodus 12:27); "And you shall say: 'It is the passover sacrifice to the Lord, for that He passed over the homes of the Children of Israel in Egypt, when He smote the Egyptians, and our homes he saved.’ And the people bowed the head and bowed."
He holds the matsa in his hand and shows it to the others there.
This matsa that we are eating, for the sake of what [is it]? For the sake [to commemorate] that our ancestors' dough was not yet able to rise, before the King of the kings of kings, the Holy One, blessed be He, revealed [Himself] to them and redeemed them, as it is stated (Exodus 12:39); "And they baked the dough which they brought out of Egypt into matsa cakes, since it did not rise; because they were expelled from Egypt, and could not tarry, neither had they made for themselves provisions."
He holds the marror in his hand and shows it to the others there.
This marror [bitter greens] that we are eating, for the sake of what [is it]? For the sake [to commemorate] that the Egyptians embittered the lives of our ancestors in Egypt, as it is stated (Exodus 1:14); "And they made their lives bitter with hard service, in mortar and in brick, and in all manner of service in the field; in all their service, wherein they made them serve with rigor."
In each and every generation, a person is obligated to see himself as if he left Egypt, as it is stated (Exodus 13:8); "For the sake of this, did the Lord do [this] for me in my going out of Egypt." Not only our ancestors did the Holy One, blessed be He, redeem, but rather also us [together] with them did he redeem, as it is stated (Deuteronomy 6:23); "And He took us out from there, in order to bring us in, to give us the land which He swore unto our fathers."
(1) Rabban Gamliel used to say: According to the Tosafot Yom Tov the basis of Rabban Gamliel’s statement is: “You shall say, ‘It is the Passover sacrifice to the Lord…” That is, we are commanded to recite the reason for the Passover commandments. Since we are explicitly told to recite the reason for the Passover sacrifice the same explanation is used for matzah and bitter herbs. Nowhere are we told what we are required to discuss when we recall the story of the Exodus from Egypt. Rabban Gamliel, therefore, tells us which details we are required to discuss. This is the essence of the telling of the Exodus. If one has not mentioned them, then one hasn’t fulfilled his obligation to tell the story of the Exodus. Anything else we discuss on Passover night falls under the statement, “One who expands on the story of the Exodus from Egypt is praiseworthy.”
(2) Pesach, matzah, and maror: Why are they included in this order? Shouldn’t the bitter herbs have been mentioned first since the people’s lives were made bitter before they consumed the unleavened bread and the Passover offering? Rabban Gamliel’s order follows scripture: “They shall consume the flesh on this night along with matzah and bitter herbs.” Also the first two are the essential foods we eat on this night since they point to the miraculous redemption of the Israelites more so than the bitter herbs. The matzah and the Passover offering are also obligatory unlike the bitter herbs. The bitter herb is simply a reminder of the bitterness of slavery.
(1) Pesach Sh’hayo avotaynu, The Pesach which our ancestors ate when the Temple was still standing: The verse prior to: “You shall say: It is a Passover offering for the Lord…” says, “And when your children ask you: What mean you by this rite.” The fact that the Torah doesn’t preface the answer to this question with, “And you shall say to your children,” or “And you shall say to them,” as in the case of the answers to the other children, suggests that one must ask this question and answer it even without the children’s questions. That is why we begin by asking “The Passover offering for what reason,” and then go on to say, “Because the Holy One passed over the houses of the Israelites…” The Maggid then quotes this verse as a proof text for this statement: “You shall say, ‘It is a Passover offering for Adonai who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt and struck down the Egyptians and spared our houses.’”
Note that in the proof text the article et appears before both statements - “struck down (et) the Egyptians” and “spared (et) our houses.” This word comes to teach us that a first born Egyptian in an Israelite house was still stricken during the tenth plague and conversely, an Israelite in an Egyptian house was spared! Even though we have already learned this from the verse, “So that no plague will destroy you when I strike the Land of Egypt,” it is added again here to teach us that we must inform the child of all these details in telling him the story of the Exodus.
There is a surprising explanation of this verse by the author of the Korban Pesach Commentary. He explains that we learn from the verse, “You shall say, It is a (pesach) Passover offering for Adonai who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt” that one should begin studying the laws of Passover thirty days before the festival. He deduces this in the following way: half the numerical value of the letter pay (80) is mem (40); half the numerical value of samech (60) is lamed (30) and half the numerical value of the letter chet (8) is dalet (4). When we combine the half value of each of these letters we have the word lamayd, learn! Another explanation: if we read the word pesach backwards it is an abbreviation for, chatzi samech potchin, One half of samech (that is, 30 days) we begin!
(1) Matzah zo sh’anu ochlim, This matzah which we eat, for what reason: The Haggadah says, “our ancestors’ dough did not have time to rise….before the King of Kings, the Holy One blessed be He revealed Himself to them and redeemed them.” When did this revelation take place and when did the Israelites go forth from Egypt? If God revealed Himself during the tenth plague, then why didn’t Israel leave immediately? God passed through the land of Egypt in the middle of the night but the Israelites did not leave until the next day. It would seem, then, that there should have been time for the bread to rise before they left. It would seem there was a delay between the time God revealed Himself and the time the Israelites were redeemed.
It would seem, then, that the reference to God’s revelation must have been in the morning when the Israelites were preparing to leave. The Israelites thought that they would have more time to prepare for the Exodus. They did not begin kneading their dough during the night. Rather they were busy plundering the homes of the Egyptians all night long! During the morning, however, they were told, “Go forth,” and the Israelites did so with no preparation. Before they could knead their dough, they were expelled from Egypt. The following verse suggests this interpretation: I, Myself, will go down with you to Egypt and I, Myself, will also bring you back.” Or it could be from the verse, “Or has any god ventured to go and take himself one nation from another…” This verse suggests that God took Israel out of Egypt when they were busy taking from the Egyptians; God revealed himself and redeemed the Israelites.
(1) Maror zeh sh’anu ochlim, The bitter herbs which we eat: We have already given another explanation for why we eat bitter herbs on Passover. Here the Maggid offers a simpler explanation based on the similarity of language. We eat bitter herbs for the bitterness of Israel in Egypt. They were made bitter by the hard work they performed for Pharaoh in public works and the hard labor they performed for the Egyptians in the field. The Egyptian people were far worse than Pharaoh for their labors were meant to break the bodies of the Israelites.
(1) B’chol dor vador, In every generation: It has always been difficult for me to explain what the Maggid had in mind in composing this passage. First, what proof is there in the verse that is quoted here: “You shall tell your child on that day, saying, ‘It is because of what the Lord did for me when I went out of Egypt.’” This verse addresses those who actually left Egypt and not future generations. Even more difficult is that the passage goes on to bring a second proof text when one should have been enough.
To answer this question we must go back and analyze who left Egypt and who were the people in the wilderness. There were three groups among the Israelites: Those who left Egypt but were condemned to die in the wilderness and those who left Egypt but were under the age of 20. The third group was made up of those who were born in the wilderness but were not among those who left Egypt.
One might conclude that those who were born in the wilderness, and certainly those who were born after them, were not obligated ‘to see themselves’ as the ones who left Egypt. This latter group was neither among those who actually left Egypt or those who entered the land. Therefore the Maggid states that every generation is obligated to see itself as if it went forth from Egypt. The proof text which the Maggid brings here is especially appropriate because of the verse which precedes it: “So when the Lord has brought you to the land of the Canaanites…and you perform this rite…”. The mention of the Passover rite in this passage is superfluous since we have already mentioned it above. From that verse we might conclude it applies to those who left Egypt and were allowed to enter the land as well. This verse comes to teach us that it applies even to those who did not leave Egypt but either entered the land after being born in the wilderness or those who were born after the sojourn in the wilderness.
Having concluded from the verse, “You shall tell your child on that day, saying, ‘It is because of what the Lord did for me when I went out of Egypt’” applies to those who didn’t go forth from Egypt, how can they say that God did these miracles for them when they weren’t even there? That is why we instruct them to see themselves as if they were among those who actually went forth from Egypt since God performed all these miracles for their sake. But how about those who would come later – whose parents or grandparents were not among those who left Egypt, and who were not even among those who entered the Land since they had already settled there. To them we say, “The Holy One did not redeem our ancestors alone but even we were redeemed with them…” For this statement we bring a separate proof text. “He brought us out from there so that He might take us to the Land which He had promised to our ancestors.” Just before this verse we say, “We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt and the Lord freed us from Egypt with a mighty hand.” Our proof text seems superfluous after this verse. It comes to teach us that that even our generation who were not among those who left Egypt or those who entered the Promised Land are obligated to see ourselves as the recipients of God’s redemption from Egypt.
There seems to be a contradiction in this passage. First we say that we must see ourselves “as if” we went forth from Egypt (implying that we didn’t really go forth from Egypt). And then we say “He brought us forth from there…” implying that we really did go forth from Egypt! Also why does the passage say “We, too, were redeemed with them?” The word eemahem, “with them” seems unnecessary!
The Mishnah, however only includes the first of the two proof texts: “You shall tell your child on that day, saying, It is because of what the Lord did for me when I went out of Egypt.” Rava felt the need to add the second verse: “He brought us out from there so that He might take us to the land which He had promised to our ancestors.” He added this verse because the first verse suggests that this obligation only applies to those who were brought forth from Egypt and not the people of later generations. Had the Israelites remained in Egypt even one more hour they would have be subjugated forever; therefore, by taking our ancestors out of Egypt just when he did, in a sense God made sure that we would not be slaves either. Therefore Rava felt it was important to emphasize that not only were ancestors redeemed but we were redeemed as well. This is similar to what we already said at the beginning of the Haggadah in the Avadim Hayeenu passage. The first, then, teaches us that we were really redeemed, and the second that the redemption applies as much to us as it did to our ancestors. The passage as it appears in the Haggadah is actually a product of the Amora’im , or those scholars who came after them, and not the original text by the Tana’im.
יאחז הכוס בידו ויכסה המצות ויאמר:
לְפִיכָךְ אֲנַחְנוּ חַיָּבִים לְהוֹדוֹת, לְהַלֵּל, לְשַׁבֵּחַ, לְפָאֵר, לְרוֹמֵם, לְהַדֵּר, לְבָרֵךְ, לְעַלֵּה וּלְקַלֵּס לְמִי שֶׁעָשָׂה לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ וְלָנוּ אֶת-כָּל-הַנִסִּים הָאֵלּוּ: הוֹצִיאָנוּ מֵעַבְדוּת לְחֵרוּת מִיָּגוֹן לְשִׂמְחָה, וּמֵאֵבֶל לְיוֹם טוֹב, וּמֵאֲפֵלָה לְאוֹר גָּדוֹל, וּמִשִּׁעְבּוּד לִגְאֻלָּה. וְנֹאמַר לְפָנָיו שִׁירָה חֲדָשָׁה: הַלְלוּיָהּ.
הַלְלוּיָהּ הַלְלוּ עַבְדֵי ה', הַלְלוּ אֶת-שֵׁם ה'. יְהִי שֵׁם ה' מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם. מִמִּזְרַח שֶׁמֶשׁ עַד מְבוֹאוֹ מְהֻלָּל שֵׁם ה'. רָם עַל-כָּל-גּוֹיִם ה', עַל הַשָּׁמַיִם כְּבוֹדוֹ.מִי כַּיי אֱלֹהֵינוּ הַמַּגְבִּיהִי לָשָׁבֶת, הַמַּשְׁפִּילִי לִרְאוֹת בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ? מְקִימִי מֵעָפָר דָּל, מֵאַשְׁפֹּת יָרִים אֶבְיוֹן, לְהוֹשִׁיבִי עִם-נְדִיבִים, עִם נְדִיבֵי עַמּוֹ. מוֹשִׁיבִי עֲקֶרֶת הַבַּיִת, אֵם הַבָּנִים שְׂמֵחָה. הַלְלוּיָהּ.
בְּצֵאת יִשְׂרָאֵל מִמִצְרַיִם, בֵּית יַעֲקֹב מֵעַם לֹעֵז, הָיְתָה יְהוּדָה לְקָדְשׁוֹ, יִשְׂרָאֵל מַמְשְׁלוֹתָיו. הַיָּם רָאָה וַיַּנֹס, הַיַּרְדֵּן יִסֹּב לְאָחוֹר. הֶהָרִים רָקְדוּ כְאֵילִים, גְּבַעוֹת כִּבְנֵי צֹאן. מַה לְּךָ הַיָּם כִּי תָנוּס, הַיַּרְדֵּן - תִּסֹּב לְאָחוֹר, הֶהָרִים - תִּרְקְדוּ כְאֵילִים, גְּבַעוֹת כִּבְנֵי-צֹאן. מִלְּפְנֵי אָדוֹן חוּלִי אָרֶץ, מִלְּפְנֵי אֱלוֹהַ יַעֲקֹב. הַהֹפְכִי הַצּוּר אֲגַם-מָיִם, חַלָּמִיש לְמַעְיְנוֹ-מָיִם.
He holds the cup in his hand and and he covers the matsa and says:
Therefore we are obligated to thank, praise, laud, glorify, exalt, lavish, bless, raise high, and acclaim He who made all these miracles for our ancestors and for us: He brought us out from slavery to freedom, from sorrow to joy, from mourning to [celebration of] a festival, from darkness to great light, and from servitude to redemption. And let us say a new song before Him, Halleluyah!
Halleluyah! Praise, servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord. May the Name of the Lord be blessed from now and forever. From the rising of the sun in the East to its setting, the name of the Lord is praised. Above all nations is the Lord, His honor is above the heavens. Who is like the Lord, our God, Who sits on high; Who looks down upon the heavens and the earth? He brings up the poor out of the dirt; from the refuse piles, He raises the destitute. To seat him with the nobles, with the nobles of his people. He seats a barren woman in a home, a happy mother of children. Halleluyah! (Psalms 113)
In Israel's going out from Egypt, the house of Ya'akov from a people of foreign speech. The Sea saw and fled, the Jordan turned to the rear. The mountains danced like rams, the hills like young sheep. What is happening to you, O Sea, that you are fleeing, O Jordan that you turn to the rear; O mountains that you dance like rams, O hills like young sheep? From before the Master, tremble O earth, from before the Lord of Ya'akov. He who turns the boulder into a pond of water, the flint into a spring of water. (Psalms 114)
(1) Lifeekach anachnu chayavim, Therefore we are obligated: Since we too ‘went out of Egypt,” all the miracles which God performed for them He performed for us as well. Therefore we are obligated to the One who performed these miracles for our ancestors and for us. We mention five expressions to describe our gratefulness. While they all appear the same, actually each one refers to a different aspect of the Exodus. God brought us out:
(2) • From slavery to freedom – It was said in Egypt that no slave had ever escaped from Egypt. Israel’s liberation than went against the very power of Egypt.
(3) • From subjugation to redemption – God redeemed the people from the difficult and harsh slavery and labor which the Egyptians placed upon them.
(4) • From despair to joy – The depression and groaning of the Egyptians was constant while they were slaves. God redeemed us from this despair and brought us to a state of joy.
(5) • From mourning to rejoicing – The Israelites were in a state of mourning because the Egyptians were killing their children. Also, according to the Mishnah, Pharaoh killed 150 children each day so that he could soak in their blood to cure his leprosy.
(6) • From darkness to a great light – The Israelites started worshipping the false gods of the Egyptians so they were in a state of darkness. God redeemed us not only by giving us freedom but by bringing us back to the true worship of one God.
(1) Halleluyah, halelu avdei Adonai, Halleluyah, Let the servants of Adonai praise the name of the Adonai: This passage illustrates the final of the five expressions, that God took us from darkness to light. The Israelites were slaves because they worshipped false gods just like the Egyptians. Therefore, we begin by saying, “Let the servants of Adonai praise the name of Adonai,” and to be “Servants of Adonai” emphasizing that we are no longer servants of the gods of Egypt. What does it mean to praise “the name of God?” There are three aspects to the name of God: how it is written, how it is pronounced and how it is vocalized. Each aspect of the four letter name of God teaches us something different about God. The written form of the name, yud-hay-vav-hay, is a reminder that God is present in the past, present and future. The root of this name is HYH, the verb to be: He was, He is, He will be. The name is pronounced Adonai which reminds us of God’s sovereignty and power, for God is the master of all. And its vocalization is based on the vowels with which the name of God is normally written: sh’va, cholom, kamatz. This is the same vocalization as he words mivorach, blessed, and l’olam, forever. These are two more qualities of God: God is full of blessing and God is eternal. Both of these words appear in the next verse of this psalm: “Blessed be the name of Adonai forever.”
This is also why the Borchu is phrased as it is: we say “Borchu et Adonai hamivorach,” and then we answer “Boruch Adonai hamivorach l’olam vo’ed.” The word baruch refers to the present, mivorach to the past, and l’olam va’ed to the future. This phrase then defines God’s written name – God is present in past, present, and future. This is also what King David, of blessed memory, meant in the opening words of Psalm 113. We say, “Praise the name of Adonai” – the written name of God in the present. “May the name of Adonai be blessed” – in the future since the vocalization of the name of God is the same as l’olam. And finally we say “From the rising of the sun until its setting the name of God is praised” - past tense. The rising of the sun is a reference to the creation of the world and the setting of the sun is a reference to the end of time. Therefore, we praise God with God’s very names in all its forms.
(2) High above the nations is Adonai, above the heavens. The word ram, high, refers to both parts of this verse. God is above the nations below on earth and above the heavenly powers who represent the different nations.
(3) Who is like Adonai, our God? This passage which uses the two names of God, Adonai and Elohaynu, emphasizes that only our God has the ability to perform two opposite acts at the same time, one of compassion and one of judgment. God judged Egypt by performing ten plagues but he performed ten compassionate acts by protecting Israel from the ten plagues.
(4) Who is enthroned on high yet deigns to look down upon the heavens and earth? God looks down on the arrogant of Egypt who subjugated the Israelites as well as the lowly of Israel who were pushed down to the dust.
The word “look” here, as in other places in the Bible, has a connotation of judging. Thus, in the story of the Tower of Babel, God says, “I will go down and see the city and the tower.” Similarly in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, God says, “I will go down and see if they have acted according to the outcry that has reached me.” ‘Heaven’ refers to the princes of the Egyptians and ‘earth’ refers to the Egyptians themselves. God looks down to judge both great and small of Egypt. But the phrase ‘God looks down’ means not only to judge but also to save. Thus, he looked down to redeem Israel from suffering.
(5) He raises the dejected from the dust: Israel was subjugated beneath the mud and bricks of Egypt, ‘the dust.’
(6) From the trash heap he lifted up the needy: God lifted them from the impure and filthy worship of false gods. The reason ashpot, trash, is plural is that it refers to the fact that there were many kinds of idolatry.
(7) He raised them up among the princes of the land, the princes of His people: Why the double language here? One refers to the two ways in which God lifted up the people of Israel. First he lifted them from the back-breaking working of making bricks – this is a reference to the tribe of Levi which never was subjugated to the Egyptians because they continued to devote themselves to God. ‘Princes of His people’ also refers to the Levites who also never worshipped false Gods. When the people worshipped the golden calf, the Levites remained the princes of God by not worshipping it.
(8) He transformed the barren woman into a glad mother of children. This is a reference to the fact that even though the Egyptians cast the Israelite children into the Nile, God caused them to give birth to many more children so they went from bereaved parents to the happy parents of more children.
(1) B’tzayt yisrael mimitzraim; When Israel went forth from Egypt: We have already written above regarding the expression, “From slavery to freedom,” that there were two aspects to the enslavement of Israel. First, no slave had ever escaped from Egypt and second, the people of Israel were not only physically enslaved but spiritually enslaved as well since they worshipped the gods of Egypt. This Psalm celebrated the fact that not only did God annul these two aspects of slavery but, in fact, Israel turned these two curses into perfection by defying them. “When Israel went forth from Egypt;” – even though no one had ever done this before. “The house of Jacob from a foreign nation;” – Israel went forth from the midst of another nation even though the Israelites had become idol worshippers just like the Egyptians. The Israelites are called the “House of Jacob” here because they did not obey the will of the Omnipresent (they were rebellious just as Jacob was). But now, miraculously, all had been turned into a good quality. How so? “Judah became His holy one,” – the rebellious Jacob was transformed into Judah. We are told that whoever denies idolatry is known as a Yehudi (Jew). This title comes from the word Yehudah (Judah). “Israel from his government,” – the people of Israel escaped from the government of Egypt, something that no one had ever done before.
Another interpretation of Psalm 114: The author of the Korban Pesach follows the interpretation of Rashi about the term “House of Jacob.” Rashi says that this expression refers to the Israelite women. The Egyptians corrupted the Israelites by physically dominating their women. We are also taught that God never performs miracles for those who act falsely. We should explain the passage this way: “When Israel went forth from Egypt; the house of Jacob from a corrupting nation,” – that is, the Egyptians tried to corrupt the Israelite women by claiming that the women offered sexual favors to the Egyptians. “Judah became their holy one,” the word kadesh has a connotation of prostitution in some places in the Bible, so that “Israel was under his domination (mamshilotav),” But if that was the case then the miracles at the sea would not have been possible. Certainly the people of Israel remained faithful to their ancestors.
Another interpretation: “When Israel went out of Egypt,” a corrupt land full of lustful people. One might think that the people of Israel, especially the women, were corrupted through sexual immorality “from a nation of corruption,” that is, a nation that sought to corrupt the people through sexual immorality. But now Scripture comes to contradict this contention. “Judah (hayita) was His holy one.” As it is written elsewhere, “Israel is holy unto the Lord.” Wherever we find someone resisting sexual temptation we find holiness. They are considered holy because they resisted temptation. Since the verb in this verse, hayita, is feminine “She,” it must be a reference to the house of Jacob, the Jewish women. “Israel was under His dominion,” that is, the men of Israel were also under the dominion of God and resisted temptation as well. Why do we refer to God’s dominion? Because without the help of God they could not have resisted temptation and would have given in to their evil inclination...
Another interpretation: “Judah (hayita) was His holy one.” We have already explained why the verb hayita is feminine. But why is the word mamshlotav, “his dominions” plural? This is a reference to the statement of the sages: among all the tribes there were kings and judges except from the tribe of Shimon, because Zimri who consorted with Kozbi came from the tribe of Shimon. What the verse means then is, Judah produced only one (sinner) – the word hayita refers to Shlomit Bat Dibri, the unworthy mother of the person who blasphemed God. “Israel came forth from His dominions.” The people of Israel produced many governments, judges and kings because there was only one unworthy person from the tribe of Judah – Shlomit bat Dibri – the only one the Torah saw fit to mention by name. The sea saw and fled – The sea saw the holiness of Israel and it stood back before them just as the Jordan river did. If the Red Sea stood back and split, how much more so did the Jordan do so when the Israelites entered the Promised Land? From the moment that the Red Sea split, the Jordan knew that it too would spit when the time came.
(2) The sea saw and it fled; the Jordan would turn back: What did the Red Sea see that caused it to split before the Israelites? It saw the casket of Joseph. Anyone who is able to resist sexual temptation is worthy of having a miracle performed on his behalf. Since Joseph resisted the temptation of the wife of Potiphar, the sea split. This is true for the living but it is even truer for the dead, for the righteous are “even more beloved in death than they are in life!” If the great sea split before the sarcophagus of Joseph how much more so would the Jordan River (which is smaller than the Red Sea) split even before it saw the sarcophagus! Why did the sea, ‘flee.’ The word for flee in the text is vayanos, and it fled: it is a play on the word neys, a miracle. Concerning the Jordan River the Psalmist uses the expression, yisov l’achor, ran backwards. Why the different expression in each of these cases? When God split the Red Sea, He caused it to flee to the right and to the left. Thus, God formed twelve isles for the twelve tribes to cross through the sea. In the case of the Jordan, which is a moving river, the back water was cut off from the moving water and as a result the water flowed backwards, as in the expression, “ran backwards.
The other verses in the psalm continue with this line of interpretation: The four distinctions in the opening verses of Psalm 114 express what it was that the ‘sea was able to see’ that caused it to flee and split. The word “see” in the verse refers to the events described above. First the sea witnessed the condition which God made at the time of creation that would cause the sea to split during the redemption of the Israelites. We are told, “At daybreak the sea returned at its l’aytano, normal state...” L’aytano means ‘at the time that was designated’ for it during the creation. During the creation God also decreed, “Let the waters below the sky be gathered into one place.” Later when Jacob returned to the land of Canaan, the Torah says, “For with my staff alone I crossed the Jordan…” These are both signs given to our ancestors for later generations. Jacob was able to cross the Jordan with just his staff because he caused the river to freeze with it and crossed over just as the Israelites did when the entered the land of Canaan. What did the sea see? It saw the staff in the hands of Moses, and it remembered the promise made at the time of creation and through a sign in the generation of Jacob. Therefore the “sea fled” and the Jordan “flowed back.”
The mountains danced like rams, the hills like lambs… What did the mountains see? The mountains saw how Moses struck the rock and water came forth from it. When they saw this they began to quake and dance in fear! And even before Moses struck the rock the Mountains knew that this had been decreed from the very beginning of the universe – one of the ten things which God decreed on the eve of the Sabbath on the last day of the creation was pi habe’er, the mouth of the well. Therefore the mountains knew they would be struck by Moses and they ‘danced about in terror’ when the time came. In this verse the mountains are compared to rams and the hills to lambs because in both cases one is larger than the other. The Psalmist now puts a question in the mouths of the sea, the Jordan, the mountains and the hills; each answers according to its experience: “Sea, why did you flee? Jordan, why did you retreat? Mountains, (why did you) dance like a ram? Hills (why did you) dance like lambs?” The sea fled “because of the master, who created the world.” The Jordan retreated because of the “God of Jacob” who was the first to freeze the Jordan River. The mountains answered, “He turned rock into pools of water.” And the hills answered, “(He turned) the flint into fountains of water.” Thus the mountains and hills each give a similar answer just in different words reflecting their relative size.
מגביהים את הכוס עד גאל ישראל.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר גְּאָלָנוּ וְגָאַל אֶת-אֲבוֹתֵינוּ מִמִּצְרַיִם, וְהִגִּיעָנוּ הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה לֶאֱכָל-בּוֹ מַצָּה וּמָרוֹר. כֵּן ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ יַגִּיעֵנוּ לְמוֹעֲדִים וְלִרְגָלִים אֲחֵרִים הַבָּאִים לִקְרָאתֵנוּ לְשָׁלוֹם, שְׂמֵחִים בְּבִנְיַן עִירֶךְ וְשָׂשִׂים בַּעֲבוֹדָתֶךָ. וְנֹאכַל שָׁם מִן הַזְּבָחִים וּמִן הַפְּסָחִים אֲשֶׁר יַגִּיעַ דָּמָם עַל קִיר מִזְבַּחֲךָ לְרָצון, וְנוֹדֶה לְךָ שִׁיר חָדָש עַל גְּאֻלָּתֵנוּ וְעַל פְּדוּת נַפְשֵׁנוּ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', גָּאַל יִשְׂרָאֵל.
שותים את הכוס בהסבת שמאל.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן.
We raise the cup until we reach "who redeemed Israel"
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who redeemed us and redeemed our ancestors from Egypt, and brought us on this night to eat matsa and marror; so too, Lord our God, and God of our ancestors, bring us to other appointed times and holidays that will come to greet us in peace, joyful in the building of your city and happy in your worship; that we should eat there from the offerings and from the Pesach sacrifices, the blood of which should reach the wall of your altar for favor, and we shall thank you with a new song upon our redemption and upon the restoration of our souls. Blessed are you, Lord, who redeemed Israel.
We say the blessing below and drink the cup while reclining to the left
Blessed are You, Lord our God, who creates the fruit of the vine.
(1) Praised are You Adonai who redeemed us and redeemed our ancestors: We speak of our redemption before we speak of our ancestors’ redemption. Before we can give thanks for others we must acknowledge our own personal gratitude. We see this same idea in the Yom Kippur confessional prayer: we confess our sins before we acknowledge our ancestors’ sins. We say, “However we have sinned as have our ancestors…” and we also say, “and they shall confess their sins and the sins of their ancestors.”
(2) And has enabled us (to reach) this night… Rabbi David Abudraham compares this expression to the blessing “…who has kept us in life and enabled us to reach this day.” But if that is so, why do we need to say it since we already thanked God for allowing us to reach this day. It seems to me that the essence of the blessing here is not that God allowed us to reach this day but that he allowed us to reach this night when we have an obligation to eat matzah and maror. Note that unlike the Shecheyanu, there is no lamed before the word night (halailah instead of lalailah) as there is for the word to this time (lazman hazeh). We are thanking God for enabling us on this night to eat the symbolic foods of Passover.
(3) Rejoice in the rebuilding of your city and be glad in your service: We place “rejoice” (simchah) before “gladden” (sason) similar to the verse: “Rejoice for Jerusalem and be glad for her…”
(4) That we may eat matzah and maror: we do not mention the Passover offering since we do not offer it in our time when we do not have a Temple.
(5) We shall eat of the holiday offerings and the Passover sacrifices: Why do we mention holiday offerings before the Passover offerings? The holiday offerings are mentioned first because the Passover offering is only consumed when we are not hungry, unlike the holiday offering which can be eaten to satisfy ones hunger. Also, the holiday offering applies to all of the holidays and the Passover sacrifice is limited to only one holiday, so it is mentioned last.
(6) We shall then give thanks to You (with) a new song: Elsewhere in scripture when we speak of a ‘new song’ we preface it with “sing” (shiru) a new song to the Lord. Why do we preface this expression here with the expression “a new song” with the word nodeh, we will give thanks? While there are places in scripture that we do find a connection between the word nodeh in connection with prayer , it would have been more appropriate to use the word shiru here. One possible answer is that the Maggid used two expressions of praise here to express the two different types of redemption mentioned in the next passage: “Our redemption and the liberation of our souls.” Regarding “Our redemption,” we “Give thanks,” since it is a reference to the past redemption from Egypt. When we speak of the “Liberation of our souls,” we are speaking of the future redemption of Israel. This is a reference to the exile of the Jewish people which is really an exile of the soul since we are unable to perform many of the commandments during this time of exile and some Jews have been forced to abandon their faith. We express our hope in the end of this exile with the words that we look forward to singing “a new song.” The word shir, song, is masculine; sometimes we find the word shirah, the feminine form of the word for song. Whenever scripture uses the masculine form of the word it is generally speaking about future redemptions.
Rabbi David Abudraham challenges this interpretation. If this is the meaning of the two expressions, then why does the passage end by returning to the Exodus from Egypt: “Praised are you, Adonai who redeemed Israel?” The closing passage should reflect the expression closest to it, so it should have spoken about the future redemption. Therefore, he suggests that we interpret the two expressions, “Our redemption” and “the liberation of our souls” the other way around! “Our redemption” should refer to future redemption and “liberation of our souls” should refer to the Exodus from Egypt. It seems to me, however, since both expressions deal with redemption, the concluding blessing is appropriate whichever way you choose to interpret the previous expressions. We see this in other cases, such as the wedding blessings and the blessings for Havdalah: the final blessing is a general summary of the previous statements. For instance in the special Havdalah that we recite between the Sabbath and festivals, we say, “Who separated and sanctified Your people Israel with your holiness.” This refers to the separation of Israel from the other nations. And yet we conclude, “Praised are You Adonai who separates holiness from holiness: rather than referring to the previous expression, it is a more general statement of Havdalah. Therefore I would return to the original interpretation; that, “The liberation of our souls” is a reference to future redemption.
There is a remaining problem: how can this passage say, “There we shall eat the offerings and the Passover sacrifices?” Didn’t the sages suggest in the Messianic era, we would be exempt from the performance of the commandments? And if that is so, why would we be eating offerings and other sacrifices? There are different opinions in this matter. In his commentary on the Machzor, Rabbi Abraham Elnakar, points out that the implications of the statement, “And there we will offer before you the obligatory sacrifices…” suggests that even when the temple is rebuilt there will still be sacrifices and that our obligations will be the same. The Ari also suggests this in his comment on the statement, “From where do we know that the idea of resurrection is found in the Torah? From the statement, ‘You shall set aside one tenth as a gift to Lord’ – to Aaron. But how can we speak of presenting the Terumah to Aaron since Aaron is no longer alive? In the future Aaron will be resurrected and then we will give it to him again…” The implication of this statement is that we will still be giving Terumah even after the final redemption and so the obligations of the mitzvot will still be in effect.
The author of the Emek Yehoshua argues that we will not be obligated to fulfill the commandments in the Messianic era. He bases this on the fact that the shrouds in which one buries the dead can be made of shatnez, a mixture of wool and linen. This must mean that the prohibition against shatnez won’t be in effect in the time of the resurrection of the dead. In this future world the evil inclination will be slaughter and therefore there won’t be a need for even the positive commandments. Also since there people will die and then be resurrected, they would not be obligated to fulfill the commandments since they would have become exempt at the moment of their deaths. But if this is the case than why does the Maggid say that we will eat the holiday and Passover sacrifices when the temple is built, implying that we will still have an obligation to offer the sacrifices even in the Messianic period? One might argue that initially one will have to bring atonement offering for those sins that were committed before the Messianic period but once offered, no sacrifices would be necessary – certainly not the holiday sacrifices and the daily sacrifices in the Temple.
We can reconcile this seeming contradiction in the following way. There are two periods in the Messianic period: the initial period of redemption and the final period when resurrection takes place. During the first period, Jews will still be obligated to fulfill the mitzvot. That is what the Maggid is speaking about. It is only in the later period of resurrection that we will no longer be obligated to observe the mitzvot. This later period is known as atid lavo, “the world to come.” In the world to come we will witness not only the death of death but the destruction of the yetzer hara, the evil inclination, so the performance of mitzvot will no longer be necessary. This is what the expression matir assurim, “God frees those who are bound up,” means. Actually it should be read matir essurim, “God will exempt us from the obligations (of the Torah).” Similarly, the pig is called chazir because God shall cause it to return (chozer) to the status of permissibility. Also it will be permissible to marry a Mamzer and the Natin in the world to come. All of the holidays will be banished except for Purim, and the only sacrifice that will continue to be offered in the Temple will be the Todah, the thanksgiving offering. In musaf, then, we are speaking about offering sacrifices in the period prior to the resurrection and the world to come.
נוטלים את הידים ומברכים:
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל נְטִילַת יָדַיִם.
We wash the hands and make the blessing.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and has commanded us on the washing of the hands.
יקח המצות בסדר שהניחן, הפרוסה בין שתי השלמות, יאחז שלשתן בידו ויברך "המוציא" בכוונה עַל העליונה, ו"על אכילת מַצָּה" בכוונה על הפרוסה. אחר כך יבצע כזית מן העליונה השלמה וכזית שני מן הפרוסה, ויטבלם במלח, ויאכל בהסה שני הזיתים:
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם הַמּוֹצִיא לֶחֶם מִן הָאָרֶץ.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל אֲכִילַת מַצָּה.
He takes out the matsa in the order that he placed them, the broken one between the two whole ones; he holds the three of them in his hand and blesses "ha-motsi" with the intention to take from the top one and "on eating matsa" with the intention of eating from the broken one. Afterwards, he breaks off a kazayit from the top whole one and a second kazayit from the broken one and he dips them into salt and eats both while reclining.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who brings forth bread from the ground.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and has commanded us on the eating of matsa.
כל אחד מהמסבִים לוקח כזית מרור, ּמטבִלו בַחרוסת, ּמנער החרוסת, מברך ואוכל בלי הסבה.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל אֲכִילַת מָרוֹר.
All present should take a kazayit of marror, dip into the haroset, shake off the haroset, make the blessing and eat without reclining.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and has commanded us on the eating of marror.
כל אחד מהמסבים לוקח כזית מן המצה השְלישית עם כזית מרור,כורכים יחד, אוכלים בהסבה ובלי ברכה. לפני אכלו אומר.
זֵכֶר לְמִקְדָּשׁ כְּהִלֵּל. כֵּן עָשָׂה הִלֵּל בִּזְמַן שֶׁבֵּית הַמִּקְדָּשׁ הָיָה קַיָּם:
הָיָה כּוֹרֵךְ מַצָּה וּמָרוֹר וְאוֹכֵל בְּיַחַד, לְקַיֵּם מַה שֶּׁנֶּאֱמַר: עַל מַצּוֹת וּמְרוׂרִים יֹאכְלֻהוּ.
All present should take a kazayit from the third whole matsa with a kazayit of marror, wrap them together and eat them while reclining and without saying a blessing. Before he eats it, he should say:
In memory of the Temple according to Hillel. This is what Hillel would do when the Temple existed:
He would wrap the matsa and marror and eat them together, in order to fulfill what is stated, (Exodus 12:15): "You should eat it upon matsot and marrorim."
אחר גמר הסעודה לוקח כל אחד מהמסבים כזית מהמצה שהייתה צפונה לאפיקומן ואוכל ממנה כזית בהסבה. וצריך לאוכלה קודם חצות הלילה.
לפני אכילת האפיקומן יאמר: זֵכֶר לְקָרְבָּן פֶּסַח הָנֶאֱכַל עַל הָשוֹׁבַע.
The Concealed [Matsa]
After the end of the meal, all those present take a kazayit from the matsa, that was concealed for the afikoman, and eat a kazayit from it while reclining.
Before eating the afikoman, he should say: "In memory of the Pesach sacrifice that was eaten upon being satiated."
מוזגים כוס שלישִי ומבָרכים בִרכַת המזון.
שִׁיר הַמַּעֲלוֹת, בְּשוּב ה' אֶת שִׁיבַת צִיּוֹן הָיִינוּ כְּחֹלְמִים. אָז יִמָּלֵא שְׂחוֹק פִּינוּ וּלְשׁוֹנֵנוּ רִנָּה. אָז יֹאמְרוּ בַגּוֹיִם: הִגְדִּיל ה' לַעֲשׂוֹת עִם אֵלֶּה. הִגְדִּיל ה' לַעֲשׂוֹת עִמָּנוּ, הָיִינוּ שְׂמֵחִים. שׁוּבָה ה' אֶת שְׁבִיתֵנוּ כַּאֲפִיקִים בַּנֶּגֶב. הַזֹּרְעִים בְּדִמְעָה, בְּרִנָּה יִקְצֹרוּ. הָלוֹךְ יֵלֵךְ וּבָכֹה נֹשֵׂא מֶשֶךְ הַזָּרַע, בֹּא יָבֹא בְרִנָּה נֹשֵׂא אֲלֻמֹּתָיו.
שלשה שֶאכלו כאחד חיבים לזמן והמזַמן פותח:
יְהִי שֵׁם ה' מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם.
בִּרְשׁוּת מָרָנָן וְרַבָּנָן וְרַבּוֹתַי, נְבָרֵךְ [אֱלֹהֵינוּ] שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלוֹ.
בָּרוּךְ [אֱלֹהֵינוּ] שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלוֹ וּבְטוּבוֹ חָיִינוּ
המזמן חוזר ואומר:
בָּרוּךְ [אֱלֹהֵינוּ] שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלוֹ וּבְטוּבוֹ חָיִינוּ
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, הַזָּן אֶת הָעוֹלָם כֻּלּוֹ בְּטוּבוֹ בְּחֵן בְּחֶסֶד וּבְרַחֲמִים, הוּא נוֹתֵן לֶחֶם לְכָל בָּשָׂר כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדוֹ. וּבְטוּבוֹ הַגָּדוֹל תָּמִיד לֹא חָסַר לָנוּ, וְאַל יֶחְסַר לָנוּ מָזוֹן לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. בַּעֲבוּר שְׁמוֹ הַגָּדוֹל, כִּי הוּא אֵל זָן וּמְפַרְנֵס לַכֹּל וּמֵטִיב לַכֹּל, וּמֵכִין מָזוֹן לְכָל בְּרִיּוֹתָיו אֲשֶׁר בָּרָא. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', הַזָּן אֶת הַכֹּל.
נוֹדֶה לְךָ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ עַל שֶׁהִנְחַלְתָּ לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ אֶרֶץ חֶמְדָה טוֹבָה וּרְחָבָה, וְעַל שֶׁהוֹצֵאתָנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם, וּפְדִיתָנוּ מִבֵּית עֲבָדִים, וְעַל בְּרִיתְךָ שֶׁחָתַמְתָּ בְּבְשָׂרֵנוּ, וְעַל תּוֹרָתְךָ שֶׁלִּמַּדְתָּנוּ, וְעַל חֻקֶּיךָ שֶׁהוֹדַעְתָּנוּ, וְעַל חַיִּים חֵן וָחֶסֶד שֶׁחוֹנַנְתָּנוּ, וְעַל אֲכִילַת מָזוֹן שָׁאַתָּה זָן וּמְפַרְנֵס אוֹתָנוּ תָּמִיד, בְּכָל יוֹם וּבְכָל עֵת וּבְכָל שָׁעָה:
וְעַל הַכּל ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ, אֲנַחְנוּ מוֹדִים לָךְ וּמְבָרְכִים אוֹתָךְ, יִתְבָּרַךְ שִׁמְךָ בְּפִי כָּל חַי תָּמִיד לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. כַּכָּתוּב: וְאָכַלְתָּ וְשָׂבַעְתָּ וּבֵרַכְתָּ אֶת ה' אֱלֹהֵיךָ עַל הָאָרֶץ הַטּוֹבָה אֲשֶּׁר נָתַן לָךְ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', עַל הָאָרֶץ וְעַל הַמָּזוֹן:
רַחֵם נָא ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ עַל יִשְׂרָאַל עַמֶּךָ וְעַל יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִירֶךָ וְעַל צִיּוֹן מִשְׁכַּן כְּבוֹדֶךָ וְעַל מַלְכוּת בֵּית דָּוִד מְשִׁיחֶךָ וְעַל הַבַּיִת הַגָּדוֹל וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ שֶׁנִּקְרָא שִׁמְךָ עָלָיו: אֱלֹהֵינוּ אָבִינוּ, רְעֵנוּ זוּנֵנוּ פַרְנְסֵנוּ וְכַלְכְּלֵנוּ וְהַרְוִיחֵנוּ, וְהַרְוַח לָנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מְהֵרָה מִכָּל צָרוֹתֵינוּ. וְנָא אַל תַּצְרִיכֵנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ, לֹא לִידֵי מַתְּנַת בָּשָׂר וָדָם וְלֹא לִידֵי הַלְוָאתָם, כִּי אִם לְיָדְךָ הַמְּלֵאָה הַפְּתוּחָה הַקְּדוֹשָׁה וְהָרְחָבָה, שֶׁלֹא נֵבוֹשׁ וְלֹא נִכָּלֵם לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד.
רְצֵה וְהַחֲלִיצֵנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּמִצְוֹתֶיךָ וּבְמִצְוַת יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי הַשַּׁבָּת הַגָּדול וְהַקָּדוֹשׂ הַזֶּה. כִּי יוֹם זֶה גָּדוֹל וְקָדוֹשׁ הוּא לְפָנֶיךָ לִשְׁבָּת בּוֹ וְלָנוּחַ בּוֹ בְּאַהֲבָה כְּמִצְוַת רְצוֹנֶךָ.וּבִרְצוֹנְךָ הָנִיחַ לָנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁלֹּא תְהֵא צָרָה וְיָגוֹן וַאֲנָחָה בְּיוֹם מְנוּחָתֵנוּ. וְהַרְאֵנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּנֶחָמַת צִיּוֹן עִירֶךָ וּבְבִנְיַן יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר קָדְשֶׁךָ כִּי אַתָּה הוּא בַּעַל הַיְשׁוּעוֹת וּבַעַל הַנֶּחָמוֹת.
אֱלֹהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, יַעֲלֶה וְיָבֹא וְיַגִּיעַ וְיֵרָאֶה וְיֵרָצֶה וְיִשָּׁמַע וְיִפָּקֵד וְיִזָּכֵר זִכְרוֹנֵנוּ וּפִקְדּוֹנֵנוּ, וְזִכְרוֹן אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, וְזִכְרוֹן מָשִׁיחַ בֶּן דָּוִד עַבְדֶּךָ, וְזִכְרוֹן יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר קָדְשֶׁךָ, וְזִכְרוֹן כָּל עַמְּךָ בֵּית יִשְׂרָאַל לְפָנֶיךָ, לִפְלֵיטָה לְטוֹבָה לְחֵן וּלְחֶסֶד וּלְרַחֲמִים, לְחַיִּים וּלְשָׁלוֹם בְּיוֹם חַג הַמַּצּוֹת הַזֶּה זָכְרֵנוּ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ בּוֹ לְטוֹבָה וּפָקְדֵנוּ בוֹ לִבְרָכָה וְהושִׁיעֵנוּ בוֹ לְחַיִּים. וּבִדְבַר יְשׁוּעָה וְרַחֲמִים חוּס וְחָנֵּנוּ וְרַחֵם עָלֵינוּ וְהוֹשִׁיעֵנוּ, כִּי אֵלֶיךָ עֵינֵינוּ, כִּי אֵל מֶלֶךְ חַנּוּן וְרַחוּם אָתָּה. וּבְנֵה יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר הַקֹּדֶשׁ בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵינוּ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', בּוֹנֶה בְרַחֲמָיו יְרוּשָׁלַיִם. אָמֵן.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, הָאֵל אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ אַדִירֵנוּ בּוֹרְאֵנוּ גּוֹאֲלֵנוּ יוֹצְרֵנוּ קְדוֹשֵׁנוּ קְדוֹשׁ יַעֲקֹב רוֹעֵנוּ רוֹעֵה יִשְׂרָאַל הַמֶּלֶךְ הַטּוֹב וְהַמֵּטִיב לַכּל שֶׁבְּכָל יוֹם וָיוֹם הוּא הֵטִיב, הוּא מֵטִיב, הוּא יֵיטִיב לָנוּ. הוּא גְמָלָנוּ הוּא גוֹמְלֵנוּ הוּא יִגְמְלֵנוּ לָעַד, לְחֵן וּלְחֶסֶד וּלְרַחֲמִים וּלְרֶוַח הַצָּלָה וְהַצְלָחָה, בְּרָכָה וִישׁוּעָה נֶחָמָה פַּרְנָסָה וְכַלְכָּלָה וְרַחֲמִים וְחַיִּים וְשָׁלוֹם וְכָל טוֹב, וּמִכָּל טוּב לְעוֹלָם עַל יְחַסְּרֵנוּ.
הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִמְלוֹךְ עָלֵינוּ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִתְבָּרַךְ בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁתַּבַּח לְדוֹר דּוֹרִים, וְיִתְפָּאַר בָּנוּ לָעַד וּלְנֵצַח נְצָחִים, וְיִתְהַדַּר בָּנוּ לָעַד וּלְעוֹלְמֵי עוֹלָמִים. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְפַרְנְסֵנוּ בְּכָבוֹד. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁבּוֹר עֻלֵּנוּ מֵעַל צַּוָּארֵנוּ, וְהוּא יוֹלִיכֵנוּ קוֹמְמִיּוּת לְאַרְצֵנוּ. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁלַח לָנוּ בְּרָכָה מְרֻבָּה בַּבַּיִת הַזֶּה, וְעַל שֻׁלְחָן זֶה שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ עָלָיו. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁלַח לָנוּ אֶת אֵלִיָּהוּ הַנָּבִיא זָכוּר לַטּוֹב, וִיבַשֶּׂר לָנוּ בְּשׂוֹרוֹת טוֹבוֹת יְשׁוּעוֹת וְנֶחָמוֹת. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת בַּעֲלִי / אִשְתִּי. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת [אָבִי מוֹרִי] בַּעַל הַבַּיִת הַזֶּה. וְאֶת [אִמִּי מוֹרָתִי] בַּעֲלַת הַבַּיִת הַזֶּה, אוֹתָם וְאֶת בֵּיתָם וְאֶת זַרְעָם וְאֶת כָּל אֲשֶׁר לָהֶם. אוֹתָנוּ וְאֶת כָּל אֲשֶׁר לָנוּ, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּרְכוּ אֲבוֹתֵינוּ אַבְרָהָם יִצְחָק וְיַעֲקֹב בַּכֹּל מִכֹּל כֹּל, כֵּן יְבָרֵךְ אוֹתָנוּ כֻּלָּנוּ יַחַד בִּבְרָכָה שְׁלֵמָה, וְנֹאמַר, אָמֵן. בַּמָּרוֹם יְלַמְּדוּ עֲלֵיהֶם וְעָלֵינוּ זְכוּת שֶׁתְּהֵא לְמִשְׁמֶרֶת שָׁלוֹם. וְנִשָּׂא בְרָכָה מֵאֵת ה', וּצְדָקָה מֵאלֹהֵי יִשְׁעֵנוּ, וְנִמְצָא חֵן וְשֵׂכֶל טוֹב בְּעֵינֵי אֱלֹהִים וְאָדָם. בשבת: הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יַנְחִילֵנוּ יוֹם שֶׁכֻּלּוֹ שַׁבָּת וּמְנוּחָה לְחַיֵּי הָעוֹלָמִים. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יַנְחִילֵנוּ יוֹם שֶׁכֻּלוֹ טוֹב.[יוֹם שֶׁכֻּלוֹ אָרוּךְ. יוֹם שֶׁצַּדִּיקִים יוֹשְׁבִים וְעַטְרוֹתֵיהֶם בְּרָאשֵׁיהֶם וְנֶהֱנִים מִזִּיו הַשְּׁכִינָה וִיהִי חֶלְקֵינוּ עִמָּהֶם]. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְזַכֵּנוּ לִימוֹת הַמָּשִׁיחַ וּלְחַיֵּי הָעוֹלָם הַבָּא. מִגְדּוֹל יְשׁוּעוֹת מַלְכּוֹ וְעֹשֶׂה חֶסֶד לִמְשִׁיחוֹ לְדָוִד וּלְזַרְעוֹ עַד עוֹלָם. עשֶׂה שָׁלוֹם בִּמְרוֹמָיו, הוּא יַעֲשֶׂה שָׁלוֹם עָלֵינוּ וְעַל כָּל יִשְׂרָאַל וְאִמְרוּ, אָמֵן. יִרְאוּ אֶת ה' קְדֹשָׁיו, כִּי אֵין מַחְסוֹר לִירֵאָיו. כְּפִירִים רָשׁוּ וְרָעֵבוּ, וְדֹרְשֵׁי ה' לֹא יַחְסְרוּ כָל טוֹב. הוֹדוּ לַיי כִּי טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. פּוֹתֵחַ אֶת יָדֶךָ, וּמַשְׂבִּיעַ לְכָל חַי רָצוֹן. בָּרוּךְ הַגֶּבֶר אֲשֶׁר יִבְטַח בַּיי, וְהָיָה ה' מִבְטַחוֹ. נַעַר הָיִיתִי גַם זָקַנְתִּי, וְלֹא רָאִיתִי צַדִּיק נֶעֱזָב, וְזַרְעוֹ מְבַקֶּשׁ לָחֶם.יי עֹז לְעַמּוֹ יִתֵּן, ה' יְבָרֵךְ אֶת עַמּוֹ בַשָּׁלוֹם.
We pour the third cup and recite the Grace over the Food
A Song of Ascents; When the Lord will bring back the captivity of Zion, we will be like dreamers. Then our mouth will be full of mirth and our tongue joyful melody; then they will say among the nations; "The Lord has done greatly with these." The Lord has done great things with us; we are happy. Lord, return our captivity like streams in the desert. Those that sow with tears will reap with joyful song. He who surely goes and cries, he carries the measure of seed, he will surely come in joyful song and carry his sheaves.(Psalms 126)
Three that ate together are obligated to introduce the blessing and the leader of the introduction opens as follows:
My masters, let us bless:
All those present answer:
May the Name of the Lord be blessed from now and forever. (Psalms 113:2)
The leader says:
With the permission of our gentlemen and our teachers and my masters, let us bless [our God] from whom we have eaten.
Those present answer:
Blessed is [our God] from whom we have eaten and from whose goodness we live.
The leader repeats and says:
Blessed is [our God] from whom we have eaten and from whose goodness we live.
They all say:
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who nourishes the entire world in His goodness, in grace, in kindness and in mercy; He gives bread to all flesh since His kindness is forever. And in His great goodness, we always have not lacked, and may we not lack nourishment forever and always, because of His great name. Since He is a Power that feeds and provides for all and does good to all and prepares nourishment for all of his creatures that he created. Blessed are You, Lord, who sustains all.
We thank you, Lord our God, that you have given as an inheritance to our ancestors a lovely, good and broad land, and that You took us out, Lord our God, from the land of Egypt and that You redeemed us from a house of slaves, and for Your covenant which You have sealed in our flesh, and for Your Torah that You have taught us, and for Your statutes which You have made known to us, and for life, grace and kindness that You have granted us and for the eating of nourishment that You feed and provide for us always, on all days, and at all times and in every hour.
And for everything, Lord our God, we thank You and bless You; may Your name be blessed by the mouth of all life, constantly forever and always, as it is written (Deuteronomy 8:10); "And you shall eat and you shall be satiated and you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land that He has given you." Blessed are You, Lord, for the land and for the nourishment.
Please have mercy, Lord our God, upon Israel, Your people; and upon Jerusalem, Your city; and upon Zion, the dwelling place of Your Glory; and upon the monarchy of the House of David, Your appointed one; and upon the great and holy house that Your name is called upon. Our God, our Father, tend us, sustain us, provide for us, relieve us and give us quick relief, Lord our God, from all of our troubles. And please do not make us needy, Lord our God, not for the gifts of flesh and blood, and not for their loans, but rather from Your full, open, holy and broad hand, so that we not be embarrassed and we not be ashamed forever and always.
On Shabbat, we add the following paragraph
May You be pleased to embolden us, Lord our God, in your commandments and in the command of the seventh day, of this great and holy Shabbat, since this day is great and holy before You, to cease work upon it and to rest upon it, with love, according to the commandment of Your will. And with Your will, allow us, Lord our God, that we should not have trouble, and grief and sighing on the day of our rest. And may You show us, Lord our God, the consolation of Zion, Your city; and the building of Jerusalem, Your holy city; since You are the Master of salvations and the Master of consolations.
God and God of our ancestors, may there ascend and come and reach and be seen and be acceptable and be heard and be recalled and be remembered - our remembrance and our recollection; and the remembrance of our ancestors; and the remembrance of the messiah, the son of David, Your servant; and the remembrance of Jerusalem, Your holy city; and the remembrance of all Your people, the house of Israel - in front of You, for survival, for good, for grace, and for kindness, and for mercy, for life and for peace on this day of the Festival of Matsot. Remember us, Lord our God, on it for good and recall us on it for survival and save us on it for life, and by the word of salvation and mercy, pity and grace us and have mercy on us and save us, since our eyes are upon You, since You are a graceful and merciful Power. And may You build Jerusalem, the holy city, quickly and in our days. Blessed are You, Lord, who builds Jerusalem in His mercy. Amen.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, the Power, our Father, our King, our Mighty One, our Creator, our Redeemer, our Shaper, our Holy One, the Holy One of Ya'akov, our Shepard, the Shepard of Israel, the good King, who does good to all, since on every single day He has done good, He does good, He will do good, to us; He has granted us, He grants us, He will grant us forever - in grace and in kindness, and in mercy, and in relief - rescue and success, blessing and salvation, consolation, provision and relief and mercy and life and peace and all good; and may we not lack any good ever.
May the Merciful One reign over us forever and always. May the Merciful One be blessed in the heavens and in the earth. May the Merciful One be praised for all generations, and exalted among us forever and ever, and glorified among us always and infinitely for all infinities. May the Merciful One sustain us honorably. May the Merciful One break our yolk from upon our necks and bring us upright to our land. May the Merciful One send us multiple blessing, to this home and upon this table upon which we have eaten. May the Merciful One send us Eliyahu the prophet - may he be remembered for good - and he shall announce to us tidings of good, of salvation and of consolation. May the Merciful One bless my husband/my wife. May the Merciful One bless [my father, my teacher,] the master of this home and [my mother, my teacher,] the mistress of this home, they and their home and their offspring and everything that is theirs. Us and all that is ours; as were blessed Avraham, Yitschak and Ya'akov, in everything, from everything, with everything, so too should He bless us, all of us together, with a complete blessing and we shall say, Amen. From above, may they advocate upon them and upon us merit, that should protect us in peace; and may we carry a blessing from the Lord and charity from the God of our salvation; and find grace and good understanding in the eyes of God and man. [On Shabbat, we say: May the Merciful One give us to inherit the day that will be completely Shabbat and rest in everlasting life.] May the Merciful One give us to inherit the day that will be all good. [The day that is all long, the day that the righteous will sit and their crowns will be on their heads and they will enjoy the radiance of the Divine presence and my our share be with them.] May the Merciful One give us merit for the times of the messiah and for life in the world to come. A tower of salvations is our King; may He do kindness with his messiah, with David and his offspring, forever (II Samuel 22:51). The One who makes peace above, may He make peace upon us and upon all of Israel; and say, Amen. Fear the Lord, His holy ones, since there is no lacking for those that fear Him. Young lions may go without and hunger, but those that seek the Lord will not lack any good thing (Psalms 34:10-11). Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever (Psalms 118:1). You open Your hand and satisfy the will of all living things (Psalms 146:16). Blessed is the man that trusts in the Lord and the Lord is his security (Jeremiah 17:7). I was a youth and I have also aged and I have not seen a righteous man forsaken and his offspring seeking bread (Psalms 37:25). The Lord will give courage to His people. The Lord will bless His people with peace (Psalms 29:11).
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן.
ושותים בהסיבה ואינו מברך ברכה אחרונה.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who creates the fruit of the vine.
We drink while reclining and do not say a blessing afterwards.
מוזגים כוס של אליהו ופותחים את הדלת:
שְׁפֹךְ חֲמָתְךָ אֶל-הַגּוֹיִם אֲשֶׁר לֹא יְדָעוּךָ וְעַל-מַמְלָכוֹת אֲשֶׁר בְּשִׁמְךָ לֹא קָרָאוּ. כִּי אָכַל אֶת-יַעֲקֹב וְאֶת-נָוֵהוּ הֵשַׁמּוּ. שְׁפָךְ-עֲלֵיהֶם זַעֲמֶךָ וַחֲרוֹן אַפְּךָ יַשִּׂיגֵם. תִּרְדֹף בְּאַף וְתַשְׁמִידֵם מִתַּחַת שְׁמֵי ה'.
We pour the cup of Eliyahu and open the door.
Pour your wrath upon the nations that did not know You and upon the kingdoms that did not call upon Your Name! Since they have consumed Ya'akov and laid waste his habitation (Psalms 79:6-7). Pour out Your fury upon them and the fierceness of Your anger shall reach them (Psalms 69:25)! You shall pursue them with anger and eradicate them from under the skies of the Lord (Lamentations 3:66).
לֹא לָנוּ, ה', לֹא לָנוּ, כִּי לְשִׁמְךָ תֵּן כָּבוֹד, עַל חַסְדְּךָ עַל אֲמִתֶּךָ. לָמָּה יֹאמְרוּ הַגּוֹיִם אַיֵּה נָא אֱלֹהֵיהֶם. וְאֱלֹהֵינוּ בַּשָּׁמַיִם, כֹּל אֲשֶׁר חָפֵץ עָשָׂה. עֲצַבֵּיהֶם כֶּסֶף וְזָהָב מַעֲשֵׂה יְדֵי אָדָם. פֶּה לָהֶם וְלֹא יְדַבֵּרוּ, עֵינַיִם לָהֶם וְלֹא יִרְאוּ. אָזְנָיִם לָהֶם וְלֹא יִשְׁמָעוּ, אַף לָהֶם וְלֹא יְרִיחוּן. יְדֵיהֶם וְלֹא יְמִישׁוּן, רַגְלֵיהֶם וְלֹא יְהַלֵּכוּ, לׁא יֶהְגּוּ בִּגְרוֹנָם. כְּמוֹהֶם יִהְיוּ עֹשֵׂיהֶם, כֹּל אֲשֶׁר בֹּטֵחַ בָּהֶם. יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּטַח בַּיי, עֶזְרָם וּמָגִנָּם הוּא. בֵּית אַהֲרֹן בִּטְחוּ בַיי, עֶזְרָם וּמָגִנָּם הוּא. יִרְאֵי ה' בִּטְחוּ בַיי, עֶזְרָם וּמָגִנָּם הוּא. יי זְכָרָנוּ יְבָרֵךְ. יְבָרֵךְ אֶת בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל, יְבָרֵךְ אֶת בֵּית אַהֲרֹן, יְבָרֵךְ יִרְאֵי ה', הַקְּטַנִים עִם הַגְּדֹלִים. יֹסֵף ה' עֲלֵיכֶם, עֲלֵיכֶם וְעַל בְּנֵיכֶם. בְּרוּכִים אַתֶּם לַיי, עֹשֵׂה שָׁמַיִם וָאָרֶץ. הַשָּׁמַיִם שָׁמַיִם לַיי וְהָאָרֶץ נָתַן לִבְנֵי אָדָם. לֹא הַמֵּתִים יְהַלְלוּ יָהּ וְלֹא כָּל יֹרְדֵי דוּמָה. וַאֲנַחְנוּ נְבָרֵךְ יָהּ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם. הַלְלוּיָהּ.
אָהַבְתִּי כִּי יִשְׁמַע ה' אֶת קוֹלִי תַּחֲנוּנָי. כִּי הִטָּה אָזְנוֹ לִי וּבְיָמַי אֶקְרָא. אֲפָפוּנִי חֶבְלֵי מָוֶת וּמְצָרֵי שְׁאוֹל מְצָאוּנִי, צָרָה וְיָגוֹן אֶמְצָא. וּבְשֵׁם ה' אֶקְרָא: אָנָּא ה' מַלְּטָה נַפְשִׁי. חַנוּן ה' וְצַדִּיק, וֵאֱלֹהֵינוּ מְרַחֵם. שֹׁמֵר פְּתָאִים ה', דַּלוֹתִי וְלִי יְהושִׁיעַ. שׁוּבִי נַפְשִׁי לִמְנוּחָיְכִי, כִּי ה' גָּמַל עָלָיְכִי. כִּי חִלַּצְתָּ נַפְשִׁי מִמָּוֶת, אֶת עֵינִי מִן דִּמְעָה, אֶת רַגְלִי מִדֶּחִי. אֶתְהַלֵךְ לִפְנֵי ה' בְּאַרְצוֹת הַחַיִּים. הֶאֱמַנְתִּי כִּי אֲדַבֵּר, אֲנִי עָנִיתִי מְאֹד. אֲנִי אָמַרְתִּי בְחָפְזִי כָּל הָאָדָם כּזֵֹב.
מָה אָשִׁיב לַיי כֹּל תַּגְמוּלוֹהִי עָלָי. כּוֹס יְשׁוּעוֹת אֶשָּׂא וּבְשֵׁם ה' אֶקְרָא. נְדָרַי לַיי אֲשַׁלֵּם נֶגְדָה נָּא לְכָל עַמּוֹ. יָקָר בְּעֵינֵי ה' הַמָּוְתָה לַחֲסִידָיו. אָנָּה ה' כִּי אֲנִי עַבְדֶּךָ, אֲנִי עַבְדְּךָ בֶּן אֲמָתֶךָ, פִּתַּחְתָּ לְמוֹסֵרָי. לְךָ אֶזְבַּח זֶבַח תּוֹדָה וּבְשֵׁם ה' אֶקְרָא. נְדָרַי לַיי אֲשַׁלֵּם נֶגְדָה נָּא לְכָל עַמּוֹ. בְּחַצְרוֹת בֵּית ה', בְּתוֹכֵכִי יְרוּשָלַיִם. הַלְלוּיָהּ.
הַלְלוּ אֶת ה' כָּל גּוֹיִם, שַׁבְּחוּהוּ כָּל הָאֻמִּים. כִּי גָבַר עָלֵינוּ חַסְדּוֹ, וֶאֱמֶת ה' לְעוֹלָם. הַלְלוּיָהּ. הוֹדוּ לַיי כִּי טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. יֹאמַר נָא יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. יֹאמְרוּ נָא בֵית אַהֲרֹן כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. יֹאמְרוּ נָא יִרְאֵי ה' כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ.
מִן הַמֵּצַר קָרָאתִי יָּהּ, עָנָנִי בַמֶּרְחַב יָהּ. ה' לִי, לֹא אִירָא - מַה יַּעֲשֶׂה לִי אָדָם, ה' לִי בְּעֹזְרָי וַאֲנִי אֶרְאֶה בְּשׂנְאָי. טוֹב לַחֲסוֹת בַּיי מִבְּטֹחַ בָּאָדָם. טוֹב לַחֲסוֹת בַּיי מִבְּטֹחַ בִּנְדִיבִים. כָּל גּוֹיִם סְבָבוּנִי, בְּשֵׁם ה' כִּי אֲמִילַם. סַבּוּנִי גַם סְבָבוּנִי, בְּשֵׁם ה' כִּי אֲמִילַם. סַבּוּנִי כִדְּבֹרִים, דֹּעֲכוּ כְּאֵשׁ קוֹצִים, בְּשֵׁם ה' כִּי אֲמִילַם. דָּחֹה דְּחִיתַנִי לִנְפֹּל, וַיי עֲזָרָנִי. עָזִּי וְזִמְרָת יָהּ וַיְהִי לִי לִישׁוּעָה. קוֹל רִנָּה וִישׁוּעָה בְּאָהֳלֵי צַדִּיקִים: יְמִין ה' עֹשָׂה חָיִל, יְמִין ה' רוֹמֵמָה, יְמִין ה' עֹשָׂה חָיִל. לֹא אָמוּת כִּי אֶחְיֶה, וַאֲסַפֵּר מַעֲשֵׂי יָהּ. יַסֹּר יִסְּרַנִי יָּהּ, וְלַמָּוֶת לֹא נְתָנָנִי. פִּתְחוּ לִי שַׁעֲרֵי צֶדֶק, אָבֹא בָם, אוֹדֶה יָהּ. זֶה הַשַּׁעַר לַיי, צַדִּיקִים יָבֹאוּ בוֹ.
אוֹדְךָ כִּי עֲנִיתָנִי וַתְּהִי לִי לִישׁוּעָה .אוֹדְךָ כִּי עֲנִיתָנִי וַתְּהִי לִי לִישׁוּעָה. אֶבֶן מָאֲסוּ הַבּוֹנִים הָיְתָה לְראשׁ פִּנָּה. אֶבֶן מָאֲסוּ הַבּוֹנִים הָיְתָה לְראשׁ פִּנָּה. מֵאֵת ה' הָיְתָה זֹּאת הִיא נִפְלָאת בְּעֵינֵינוּ. מֵאֵת ה' הָיְתָה זֹּאת הִיא נִפְלָאת בְּעֵינֵינוּ.
אָנָּא ה', הוֹשִיעָה נָּא. אָנָּא ה', הוֹשִיעָה נָּא. אָנָּא ה', הַצְלִיחָה נָא. אָנָּא ה', הַצְלִיחָה נָא.
בָּרוּךְ הַבָּא בְּשֵׁם ה', בֵּרַכְנוּכֶם מִבֵּית ה'. בָּרוּךְ הַבָּא בְּשֵׁם ה', בֵּרַכְנוּכֶם מִבֵּית ה'. אֵל ה' וַיָּאֶר לָנוּ. אִסְרוּ חַג בַּעֲבֹתִים עַד קַרְנוֹת הַמִּזְבֵּחַ. אֵל ה' וַיָּאֶר לָנוּ. אִסְרוּ חַג בַּעֲבֹתִים עַד קַרְנוֹת הַמִּזְבֵּחַ. אֵלִי אַתָּה וְאוֹדֶךָּ, אֱלֹהַי - אֲרוֹמְמֶךָּ. אֵלִי אַתָּה וְאוֹדֶךָּ, אֱלֹהַי - אֲרוֹמְמֶךָּ. הוֹדוּ לַיי כִּי טוֹב, כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. הוֹדוּ לַיי כִּי טוֹב, כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ.
יְהַלְלוּךָ ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ כָּל מַעֲשֶׂיךָ, וַחֲסִידֶיךָ צַדִּיקִים עוֹשֵׂי רְצוֹנֶךָ, וְכָל עַמְּךָ בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּרִנָה יוֹדוּ וִיבָרְכוּ, וִישַׁבְּחוּ וִיפָאֲרוּ, וִירוֹמְמוּ וְיַעֲרִיצוּ, וְיַקְדִּישׁוּ וְיַמְלִיכוּ אֶת שִׁמְךָ, מַלְכֵּנוּ. כִּי לְךָ טוֹב לְהוֹדותֹ וּלְשִׁמְךָ נָאֶה לְזַמֵּר, כִּי מֵעוֹלָם וְעַד עוֹלָם אַתָּה אֵל.
Not to us, not to us, but rather to Your name, give glory for your kindness and for your truth. Why should the nations say, "Say, where is their God?" But our God is in the heavens, all that He wanted, He has done. Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men's hands. They have a mouth but do not speak; they have eyes but do not see. They have ears but do not hear; they have a nose but do not smell. Hands, but they do not feel; feet, but do not walk; they do not make a peep from their throat. Like them will be their makers, all those that trust in them. Israel, trust in the Lord; their help and shield is He. House of Aharon, trust in the Lord; their help and shield is He. Those that fear the Lord, trust in the Lord; their help and shield is He. The Lord who remembers us, will bless; He will bless the House of Israel; He will bless the House of Aharon. He will bless those that fear the Lord, the small ones with the great ones. May the Lord bring increase to you, to you and to your children. Blessed are you to the Lord, the maker of the heavens and the earth. The heavens, are the Lord's heavens, but the earth He has given to the children of man. It is not the dead that will praise the Lord, and not those that go down to silence. But we will bless the Lord from now and forever. Halleluyah! (Psalms 115)
I have loved the Lord - since He hears my voice, my supplications. Since He inclined His ear to me - and in my days, I will call out. The pangs of death have encircled me and the straits of the Pit have found me and I found grief. And in the name of the Lord I called, "Please Lord, Spare my soul." Gracious is the Lord and righteous, and our God acts mercifully. The Lord watches over the silly; I was poor and He has saved me. Return, my soul to your tranquility, since the Lord has favored you. Since You have rescued my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling. I will walk before the Lord in the lands of the living. I have trusted, when I speak - I am very afflicted. I said in my haste, all men are hypocritical. (Psalms 116:1-11)
What can I give back to the Lord for all that He has favored me? A cup of salvations I will raise up and I will call out in the name of the Lord. My vows to the Lord I will pay, now in front of His entire people. Precious in the eyes of the Lord is the death of His pious ones. Please Lord, since I am Your servant, the son of Your maidservant; You have opened my chains. To You will I offer a thanksgiving offering and I will call out in the name of the Lord. My vows to the Lord I will pay, now in front of His entire people. In the courtyards of the house of the Lord, in your midst, Jerusalem. Halleluyah! (Psalms 116:12-19)
Praise the name of the Lord, all nations; extol Him all peoples. Since His kindness has overwhelmed us and the truth of the Lord is forever. Halleluyah! Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever. Let Israel now say, "Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever." Let the House of Aharon now say, "Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever." Let those that fear the Lord now say, "Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever." (Psalms 117-118:4)
From the strait I have called, Lord; He answered me from the wide space, the Lord. The Lord is for me, I will not fear, what will man do to me? The Lord is for me with my helpers, and I shall glare at those that hate me. It is better to take refuge with the Lord than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge with the Lord than to trust in nobles. All the nations surrounded me - in the name of the Lord, as I will chop them off. They surrounded me, they also encircled me - in the name of the Lord, as I will chop them off. They surrounded me like bees, they were extinguished like a fire of thorns - in the name of the Lord, as I will chop them off. You have surely pushed me to fall, but the Lord helped me. My boldness and song is the Lord, and He has become my salvation. The sound of happy song and salvation is in the tents of the righteous, the right hand of the Lord acts powerfully. I will not die but rather I will live and tell over the acts of the Lord. The Lord has surely chastised me, but He has not given me over to death. Open up for me the gates of righteousness; I will enter them, thank the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord, the righteous will enter it. (Psalms 118:5-20)
I will thank You, since You answered me and You have become my salvation. The stone that was left by the builders has become the main cornerstone. From the Lord was this, it is wondrous in our eyes. This is the day of the Lord, let us exult and rejoice upon it. (Psalms 118:21-24)
Please, Lord, save us now; please, Lord, give us success now! (Psalms 118:25)
Blessed be the one who comes in the name of the Lord, we have blessed you from the house of the Lord. God is the Lord, and He has illuminated us; tie up the festival offering with ropes until it reaches the corners of the altar. You are my Power and I will Thank You; my God and I will exalt You. Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever.(Psalms 118:26-29)
All of your works shall praise You, Lord our God, and your pious ones, the righteous ones who do Your will; and all of Your people, the House of Israel will thank and bless in joyful song: and extol and glorify, and exalt and acclaim, and sanctify and coronate Your name, our King. Since, You it is good to thank, and to Your name it is pleasant to sing, since from always and forever are you the Power.
הוֹדוּ לַיי כִּי טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. הוֹדוּ לֵאלהֵי הָאֱלהִים כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. הוֹדוּ לָאֲדֹנֵי הָאֲדֹנִים כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְעֹשֵׂה נִפְלָאוֹת גְדֹלוֹת לְבַדּוֹ כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְעֹשֵׂה הַשָּׁמַיִם בִּתְבוּנָה כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְרוֹקַע הָאָרֶץ עַל הַמָּיִם כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְעֹשֵׂה אוֹרִים גְּדֹלִים כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. אֶת הַשֶּׁמֶשׁ לְמֶמְשֶׁלֶת בַּיּוֹם כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. אֶת הַיָּרֵחַ וְכוֹכָבִים לְמֶמְשְׁלוֹת בַּלַּיְלָה כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְמַכֵּה מִצְרַיִם בִּבְכוֹרֵיהֶם כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וַיוֹצֵא יִשְׂרָאֵל מִתּוֹכָם כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. בְּיָד חֲזָקָה וּבִזְרוֹעַ נְטוּיָה כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ.לְגֹזֵר יַם סוּף לִגְזָרִים כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וְהֶֶעֱבִיר יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּתוֹכוֹ כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וְנִעֵר פַּרְעֹה וְחֵילוֹ בְיַם סוּף כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְמוֹלִיךְ עַמּוֹ בַּמִּדְבָּר כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְמַכֵּה מְלָכִים גְּדֹלִים כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וַיַּהֲרֹג מְלָכִים אַדִּירִים כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. לְסִיחוֹן מֶלֶךְ הָאֱמֹרִי כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וּלְעוֹג מֶלֶךְ הַבָּשָׁן כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וָנָתַן אַרְצָם לְנַחֲלָה כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. נַחֲלָה לְיִשְׂרָאֵל עַבְדוּ כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. שֶׁבְּשִׁפְלֵנוּ זָכַר לָנוּ כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וַיִפְרְקֵנוּ מִצָּרֵינוּ כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. נֹתֵן לֶחֶם לְכָל בָּשָׂר כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. הוֹדוּ לְאֵל הַשָּׁמַיִם כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ.
נִשְׁמַת כָּל חַי תְּבַרֵךְ אֶת שִׁמְךָ, ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ, וְרוּחַ כָּל בָּשָׂר תְּפָאֵר וּתְרוֹמֵם זִכְרְךָ, מַלְכֵּנוּ, תָמִיד. מִן הָעוֹלָם וְעַד הָעוֹלָם אַתָּה אֵל, וּמִבַּלְעָדֶיךָ אֵין לָנוּ מֶלֶךְ גּוֹאֵל וּמוֹשִיעַ, פּוֹדֶה וּמַצִּיל וּמְפַרְנֵס וּמְרַחֵם בְּכָל עֵת צָרָה וְצוּקָה. אֵין לָנוּ מֶלֶךְ אֶלָּא אַתָּה. אֱלהֵי הָרִאשׁוֹנִים וְהָאַחֲרוֹנִים, אֱלוֹהַּ כָּל בְּרִיּוֹת, אֲדוׁן כָּל תּוֹלָדוֹת, הַמְּהֻלָּל בְּרֹב הַתִּשְׁבָּחוֹת, הַמְנַהֵג עוֹלָמוֹ בְּחֶסֶד וּבְרִיּוֹתָיו בְּרַחֲמִים. וַיי לֹא יָנוּם וְלא יִישָׁן - הַמְּעוֹרֵר יְשֵׁנִים וְהַמֵּקִיץ נִרְדָּמִים, וְהַמֵּשִׂיחַ אִלְּמִים וְהַמַּתִּיר אֲסוּרִים וְהַסּוֹמֵךְ נוֹפְלִים וְהַזּוֹקֵף כְּפוּפִים. לְךָ לְבַדְּךָ אֲנַחְנוּ מוֹדִים.
אִלּוּ פִינוּ מָלֵא שִׁירָה כַיָּם, וּלְשׁוֹנֵנוּ רִנָּה כֲּהַמוֹן גַּלָּיו, וְשִׂפְתוֹתֵינוּ שֶׁבַח כְּמֶרְחֲבֵי רָקִיעַ, וְעֵינֵינוּ מְאִירוֹת כַּשֶּׁמֶשׁ וְכַיָּרֵחַ, וְיָדֵינוּ פְרוּשׂות כְּנִשְׂרֵי שָׁמַיִם, וְרַגְלֵינוּ קַלּוֹת כָּאַיָּלוֹת - אֵין אֲנַחְנוּ מַסְפִּיקִים לְהוֹדוֹת לְךָ, ה' אֱלהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, וּלְבָרֵךְ אֶת שִׁמְךָ עַל אַחַת מֵאֶלֶף, אַלְפֵי אֲלָפִים וְרִבֵּי רְבָבוֹת פְּעָמִים הַטּוֹבוֹת שֶׁעָשִׂיתָ עִם אֲבוֹתֵינוּ וְעִמָּנוּ. מִמִּצְרַים גְּאַלְתָּנוּ, ה' אֱלהֵינוּ, וּמִבֵּית עֲבָדִים פְּדִיתָנוּ, בְּרָעָב זַנְתָּנוּ וּבְשָׂבָע כִּלְכַּלְתָּנוּ, מֵחֶרֶב הִצַּלְתָּנוּ וּמִדֶּבֶר מִלַּטְתָּנוּ, וּמֵחָלָיִם רָעִים וְנֶאֱמָנִים דִּלִּיתָנוּ.
עַד הֵנָּה עֲזָרוּנוּ רַחֲמֶיךָ וְלֹא עֲזָבוּנוּ חֲסָדֶיךָ, וְאַל תִּטְּשֵׁנוּ, ה' אֱלהֵינוּ, לָנֶצַח. עַל כֵּן אֵבָרִים שֶׁפִּלַּגְתָּ בָּנוּ וְרוּחַ וּנְשָׁמָה שֶׁנָּפַחְתָּ בְּאַפֵּינוּ וְלָשׁוֹן אֲשֶׁר שַׂמְתָּ בְּפִינוּ - הֵן הֵם יוֹדוּ וִיבָרְכוּ וִישַׁבְּחוּ וִיפָאֲרוּ וִירוֹמְמוּ וְיַעֲרִיצוּ וְיַקְדִּישׁוּ וְיַמְלִיכוּ אֶת שִׁמְךָ מַלְכֵּנוּ. כִּי כָל פֶּה לְךָ יוֹדֶה, וְכָל לָשׁוֹן לְךָ תִּשָּׁבַע, וְכָל בֶּרֶךְ לְךָ תִכְרַע, וְכָל קוֹמָה לְפָנֶיךָ תִשְׁתַּחֲוֶה, וְכָל לְבָבוֹת יִירָאוּךָ, וְכָל קֶרֶב וּכְלָיּוֹת יְזַמֵּרוּ לִשְמֶךָ. כַּדָּבָר שֶׁכָּתוּב, כָּל עַצְמֹתַי תֹּאמַרְנָה, ה' מִי כָמּוֹךָ מַצִּיל עָנִי מֵחָזָק מִמֶּנוּ וְעָנִי וְאֶבְיוֹן מִגּזְלוֹ. מִי יִדְמֶה לָּךְ וּמִי יִשְׁוֶה לָּךְ וּמִי יַעֲרֹךְ לָךְ הָאֵל הַגָּדוֹל, הַגִּבּוֹר וְהַנּוֹרָא, אֵל עֶלְיוֹן, קנֵה שָׁמַיִם וָאָרֶץ. נְהַלֶּלְךָ וּנְשַׁבֵּחֲךָ וּנְפָאֶרְךָ וּנְבָרֵךְ אֶת שֵׁם קָדְשֶׁךָ, כָּאָמוּר: לְדָוִד, בָּרְכִי נַפְשִׁי אֶת ה' וְכָל קְרָבַי אֶת שֵׁם קָדְשׁוֹ. הָאֵל בְּתַעֲצֻמוֹת עֻזֶּךָ, הַגָּדוֹל בִּכְבוֹד שְׁמֶךָ, הַגִּבּוֹר לָנֶצַח וְהַנּוֹרָא בְּנוֹרְאוֹתֶיךָ, הַמֶּלֶךְ הַיּוׁשֵׁב עַל כִּסֵּא רָם וְנִשִֹּא. שׁוֹכֵן עַד מָּרוֹם וְקָּדוֹשׁ שְׁמּוֹ. וְכָתוּב: רַנְּנוּ צַדִּיקִים בַּיי, לַיְשָׁרִים נָאוָה תְהִלָּה. בְּפִי יְשָׁרִים תִּתְהַלָּל, וּבְדִבְרֵי צַדִּיקִים תִּתְבָּרַךְ, וּבִלְשׁוֹן חֲסִידִים תִּתְרוֹמָם, וּבְקֶרֶב קְדושִׁים תִּתְקַדָּשׁ.
וּבְמַקְהֲלוֹת רִבְבוֹת עַמְּךָ בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּרִנָּה יִתְפָּאֵר שִׁמְךָ, מַלְכֵּנוּ, בְּכָל דּוֹר וָדוֹר, שֶׁכֵּן חוֹבַת כָּל הַיְצוּרִים לְפָנֶיךָ, ה' אֱלהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, לְהוֹדוֹת לְהַלֵּל לְשַׁבֵּחַ, לְפָאֵר לְרוֹמֵם לְהַדֵּר לְבָרֵךְ, לְעַלֵּה וּלְקַלֵּס עַל כָּל דִּבְרֵי שִׁירוֹת וְתִשְׁבְּחוֹת דּוִד בֶּן יִשַׁי עַבְדְּךָ מְשִׁיחֶךָ.
יִשְׁתַּבַּח שִׁמְךָ לעַד מַלְכֵּנוּ, הָאֵל הַמֶלֶךְ הַגָּדוֹל וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ, כִּי לְךָ נָאֶה, ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, שִׁיר וּשְׁבָחָה, הַלֵּל וְזִמְרָה, עֹז וּמֶמְשָׁלָה, נֶצַח, גְּדֻלָּה וּגְבוּרָה, תְּהִלָּה וְתִפְאֶרֶת, קְדֻשָּׁה וּמַלְכוּת, בְּרָכוֹת וְהוֹדָאוֹת מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֵל מֶלֶךְ גָּדוֹל בַּתִּשְׁבָּחוֹת, אֵל הַהוֹדָאוֹת, אֲדוֹן הַנִפְלָאוֹת, הַבּוֹחֵר בְּשִׁירֵי זִמְרָה, מֶלֶךְ אֵל חֵי הָעוֹלָמִים.
Thank the Lord, since He is good, since His kindness is forever. Thank the Power of powers since His kindness is forever. To the Master of masters, since His kindness is forever. To the One who alone does wondrously great deeds, since His kindness is forever. To the one who made the Heavens with discernment, since His kindness is forever. To the One who spread the earth over the waters, since His kindness is forever. To the One who made great lights, since His kindness is forever. The sun to rule in the day, since His kindness is forever. The moon and the stars to rule in the night, since His kindness is forever. To the One that smote Egypt through their firstborn, since His kindness is forever. And He took Israel out from among them, since His kindness is forever. With a strong hand and an outstretched forearm, since His kindness is forever. To the One who cut up the Reed Sea into strips, since His kindness is forever. And He made Israel to pass through it, since His kindness is forever. And He jolted Pharaoh and his troop in the Reed Sea, since His kindness is forever. To the One who led his people in the wilderness, since His kindness is forever. To the One who smote great kings, since His kindness is forever. And he killed mighty kings, since His kindness is forever. Sichon, king of the Amorite, since His kindness is forever. And Og, king of the Bashan, since His kindness is forever. And he gave their land as an inheritance, since His kindness is forever. An inheritance for Israel, His servant, since His kindness is forever. That in our lowliness, He remembered us, since His kindness is forever. And he delivered us from our adversaries, since His kindness is forever. He gives bread to all flesh, since His kindness is forever. Thank the Power of the heavens, since His kindness is forever. (Psalms 136)
The soul of every living being shall bless Your Name, Lord our God; the spirit of all flesh shall glorify and exalt Your remembrance always, our King. From the world and until the world, You are the Power, and other than You we have no king, redeemer, or savior, restorer, rescuer, provider, and merciful one in every time of distress and anguish; we have no king, besides You! God of the first ones and the last ones, God of all creatures, Master of all Generations, Who is praised through a multitude of praises, Who guides His world with kindness and His creatures with mercy. The Lord neither slumbers nor sleeps. He who rouses the sleepers and awakens the dozers; He who makes the mute speak, and frees the captives, and supports the falling, and straightens the bent. We thank You alone.
Were our mouth as full of song as the sea, and our tongue as full of joyous song as its multitude of waves, and our lips as full of praise as the breadth of the heavens, and our eyes as sparkling as the sun and the moon, and our hands as outspread as the eagles of the sky and our feet as swift as deers - we still could not thank You sufficiently, Lord our God and God of our ancestors, and to bless Your Name for one thousandth of the thousand of thousands of thousands, and myriad myriads, of goodnesses that You performed for our ancestors and for us. From Egypt, Lord our God, did you redeem us and from the house of slaves you restored us. In famine You nourished us, and in plenty you sustained us. From the sword you saved us, and from plague you spared us; and from severe and enduring diseases you delivered us.
Until now Your mercy has helped us, and Your kindness has not forsaken us; and do not abandon us, Lord our God, forever. Therefore, the limbs that You set within us and the spirit and soul that You breathed into our nostrils, and the tongue that You placed in our mouth - verily, they shall thank and bless and praise and glorify, and exalt and revere, and sanctify and coronate Your name, our King. For every mouth shall offer thanks to You; and every tongue shall swear allegiance to You; and every knee shall bend to You; and every upright one shall prostrate himself before You; all hearts shall fear You; and all innermost feelings and thoughts shall sing praises to Your name, as the matter is written (Psalms 35:10), "All my bones shall say, ‘Lord, who is like You? You save the poor man from one who is stronger than he, the poor and destitute from the one who would rob him.'" Who is similar to You and who is equal to You and who can be compared to You, O great, strong and awesome Power, O highest Power, Creator of the heavens and the earth. We shall praise and extol and glorify and bless Your holy name, as it is stated (Psalms 103:1), " [A Psalm] of David. Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, His holy name." The Power, in Your powerful boldness; the Great, in the glory of Your name; the Strong One forever; the King who sits on His high and elevated throne. He who dwells always; lofty and holy is His name. And as it is written (Psalms 33:10), "Sing joyfully to the Lord, righteous ones, praise is beautiful from the upright." By the mouth of the upright You shall be praised; By the lips of the righteous shall You be blessed; By the tongue of the devout shall You be exalted; And among the holy shall You be sanctified.
And in the assemblies of the myriads of Your people, the House of Israel, in joyous song will Your name be glorified, our King, in each and every generation; as it is the duty of all creatures, before You, Lord our God, and God of our ancestors, to thank, to praise, to extol, to glorify, to exalt, to lavish, to bless, to raise high and to acclaim - beyond the words of the songs and praises of David, the son of Yishai, Your servant, Your anointed one.
May Your name be praised forever, our King, the Power, the Great and holy King - in the heavens and in the earth. Since for You it is pleasant - O Lord our God and God of our ancestors - song and lauding, praise and hymn, boldness and dominion, triumph, greatness and strength, psalm and splendor, holiness and kingship, blessings and thanksgivings, from now and forever. Blessed are You Lord, Power, King exalted through laudings, Power of thanksgivings, Master of Wonders, who chooses the songs of hymn - King, Power of the life of the worlds.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן.
וְשׁותה בהסיבת שמאל.
בָּרוּך אַתָּה ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, עַל הַגֶּפֶן וְעַל פְּרִי הַגֶּפֶן, עַל תְּנוּבַת הַשָּׂדֶה וְעַל אֶרֶץ חֶמְדָּה טוֹבָה וּרְחָבָה שֶׁרָצִיתָ וְהִנְחַלְתָּ לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ לֶאֱכוֹל מִפִּרְיָהּ וְלִשְׂבֹּעַ מִטּוּבָהּ. רַחֶם נָא ה' אֱלֹהֵינוּ עַל יִשְׂרָאֵל עַמֶּךָ וְעַל יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִירֶךָ וְעַל צִיּוֹן מִשְׁכַּן כְּבוֹדֶךָ וְעַל מִזְבְּחֶךָ וְעַל הֵיכָלֶךָ וּבְנֵה יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר הַקֹּדֶשׁ בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵינוּ וְהַעֲלֵנוּ לְתוֹכָהּ וְשַׂמְּחֵנוּ בְּבִנְיָנָהּ וְנֹאכַל מִפִּרְיָהּ וְנִשְׂבַּע מִטּוּבָהּ וּנְבָרֶכְךָ עָלֶיהָ בִּקְדֻשָׁה וּבְטָהֳרָה [בשבת: וּרְצֵה וְהַחֲלִיצֵנוּ בְּיוֹם הַשַׁבָּת הַזֶּה] וְשַׂמְּחֵנוּ בְּיוֹם חַג הַמַּצּוֹת הַזֶּה, כִּי אַתָּה ה' טוֹב וּמֵטִיב לַכֹּל, וְנוֹדֶה לְּךָ עַל הָאָרֶץ וְעַל פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', עַל הַגֶּפֶן וְעַל פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן.
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who creates the fruit of the vine.
We drink while reclining to the left
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, for the vine and for the fruit of the vine; and for the bounty of the field; and for a desirable, good and broad land, which You wanted to give to our fathers, to eat from its fruit and to be satiated from its goodness. Please have mercy, Lord our God upon Israel Your people; and upon Jerusalem, Your city: and upon Zion, the dwelling place of Your glory; and upon Your altar; and upon Your sanctuary; and build Jerusalem Your holy city quickly in our days, and bring us up into it and gladden us in its building; and we shall eat from its fruit, and be satiated from its goodness, and bless You in holiness and purity. [On Shabbat: And may you be pleased to embolden us on this Shabbat day] and gladden us on this day of the Festival of Matsot. Since You, Lord, are good and do good to all, we thank You for the land and for the fruit of the vine.
Blessed are You, Lord, for the land and for the fruit of the vine
חֲסַל סִדּוּר פֶּסַח כְּהִלְכָתוֹ, כְּכָל מִשְׁפָּטוֹ וְחֻקָּתוֹ. כַּאֲשֶׁר זָכִינוּ לְסַדֵּר אוֹתוֹ כֵּן נִזְכֶּה לַעֲשׂוֹתוֹ. זָךְ שׁוֹכֵן מְעוֹנָה, קוֹמֵם קְהַל עֲדַת מִי מָנָה. בְּקָרוֹב נַהֵל נִטְעֵי כַנָּה פְּדוּיִם לְצִיּוֹן בְּרִנָּה.
Completed is the Seder of Pesach according to its law, according to all its judgement and statute. Just as we have merited to arrange it, so too, may we merit to do [its sacrifice]. Pure One who dwells in the habitation, raise up the congregation of the community, which whom can count. Bring close, lead the plantings of the sapling, redeemed, to Zion in joy.
בליל רִאשון אומרים:
וּבְכֵן וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
אָז רוֹב נִסִּים הִפְלֵאתָ בַּלַּיְלָה, בְּרֹאשׁ אַשְׁמוֹרֶת זֶה הַלַּיְלָה.
גֵר צֶדֶק נִצַּחְתּוֹ כְּנֶחֶלַק לוֹ לַיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
דַּנְתָּ מֶלֶךְ גְּרָר בַּחֲלוֹם הַלַּיְלָה, הִפְחַדְתָּ אֲרַמִּי בְּאֶמֶשׁ לַיְלָה.
וַיָּשַׂר יִשְׂרָאֵל לְמַלְאָךְ וַיּוּכַל לוֹ לַיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
זֶרַע בְּכוֹרֵי פַתְרוֹס מָחַצְתָּ בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה, חֵילָם לֹא מָצְאוּ בְּקוּמָם בַּלַּיְלָה, טִיסַת נְגִיד חֲרֹשֶׁת סִלִּיתָ בְּכוֹכְבֵי לַיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
יָעַץ מְחָרֵף לְנוֹפֵף אִוּוּי, הוֹבַשְׁתָּ פְגָרָיו בַּלַּיְלָה, כָּרַע בֵּל וּמַצָּבוֹ בְּאִישׁוֹן לַיְלָה, לְאִישׁ חֲמוּדוֹת נִגְלָה רָז חֲזוֹת לַיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
מִשְׁתַּכֵּר בִּכְלֵי קֹדֶשׁ נֶהֱרַג בּוֹ בַלַּיְלָה, נוֹשַׁע מִבּוֹר אֲרָיוֹת פּוֹתֵר בִּעֲתוּתֵי לַיְלָה, שִׂנְאָה נָטַר אֲגָגִי וְכָתַב סְפָרִים בַּלַּיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
עוֹרַרְתָּ נִצְחֲךָ עָלָיו בְּנֶדֶד שְׁנַת לַיְלָה. פּוּרָה תִדְרוֹךְ לְשׁוֹמֵר מַה מִּלַיְלָה, צָרַח כַּשּׁוֹמֵר וְשָׂח אָתָא בֹקֶר וְגַם לַיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
קָרֵב יוֹם אֲשֶׁר הוּא לֹא יוֹם וְלֹא לַיְלָה, רָם הוֹדַע כִּי לְךָ הַיּוֹם אַף לְךָ הַלַּיְלָה, שׁוֹמְרִים הַפְקֵד לְעִירְךָ כָּל הַיּוֹם וְכָל הַלַּיְלָה, תָּאִיר כְּאוֹר יוֹם חֶשְׁכַּת לַיְלָה, וַיְהִי בַּחֲצִי הַלַּיְלָה.
On the first night we say:
And so, it was in the middle of the night.
Then, most of the miracles did You wondrously do at night, at the first of the watches this night.
A righteous convert did you make victorious when it was divided for him at night [referring to Avraham in his war against the four kings - Genesis 14:15], and it was in the middle of the night.
You judged the king of Gerrar [Avimelekh] in a dream of the night; you frightened an Aramean [Lavan] in the dark of the night;
and Yisrael dominated an angel and was able to withstand Him at night [Genesis 32:25-30], and it was in the middle of the night.
You crushed the firstborn of Patros [Pharaoh, as per Ezekiel 30:14] in the middle of the night, their wealth they did not find when they got up at night; the attack of the leader Charoshet [Sisera] did you sweep away by the stars of the night [Judges 5:20], and it was in the middle of the night.
The blasphemer [Sancheriv whose servants blasphemed when trying to discourage the inhabitants of Jerusalem] counseled to wave off the desired ones, You made him wear his corpses on his head at night [II Kings 19:35]; Bel and his pedestal were bent in the pitch of night [in Nevuchadnezar's dream in Daniel 2]; to the man of delight [Daniel] was revealed the secret visions at night, and it was in the middle of the night.
The one who got drunk [Balshatsar] from the holy vessels was killed on that night [Daniel 5:30], the one saved from the pit of lions [Daniel] interpreted the scary visions of the night; hatred was preserved by the Agagite [Haman] and he wrote books at night, and it was in the middle of the night.
You aroused your victory upon him by disturbing the sleep of night [of Achashverosh], You will stomp the wine press for the one who guards from anything at night [Esav/Seir as per Isaiah 21:11]; He yelled like a guard and spoke, "the morning has come and also the night," and it was in the middle of the night.
Bring close the day which is not day and not night [referring to the end of days - Zechariah 14:7], High One, make known that Yours is the day and also Yours is the night, guards appoint for Your city all the day and all the night, illuminate like the light of the day, the darkness of the night, and it was in the middle of the night.
בְליל שני בחו"ל: וּבְכֵן וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
אֹמֶץ גְּבוּרוֹתֶיךָ הִפְלֵאתָ בַּפֶּסַח, בְּרֹאשׁ כָּל מוֹעֲדוֹת נִשֵּׂאתָ פֶּסַח. גִּלִיתָ לְאֶזְרָחִי חֲצוֹת לֵיל פֶּסַח, וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
דְּלָתָיו דָּפַקְתָּ כְּחֹם הַיּוֹם בַּפֶּסַח, הִסְעִיד נוֹצְצִים עֻגּוֹת מַצּוֹת בַּפֶּסַח, וְאֵל הַבָּקָר רָץ זֵכֶר לְשׁוֹר עֵרֶךְ פֶּסַח, וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
זוֹעֲמוּ סְדוֹמִים וְלוֹׁהֲטוּ בָּאֵשׁ בַּפֶּסַח, חֻלַּץ לוֹט מֵהֶם וּמַצּוֹת אָפָה בְּקֵץ פֶּסַח, טִאטֵאתָ אַדְמַת מוֹף וְנוֹף בְּעָבְרְךָ בַּפֶּסַח. וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
יָהּ רֹאשׁ כָּל הוֹן מָחַצְתָּ בְּלֵיל שִׁמּוּר פֶּסַח, כַּבִּיר, עַל בֵּן בְּכוֹר פָּסַחְתָּ בְּדַם פֶּסַח, לְבִלְתִּי תֵּת מַשְׁחִית לָבֹא בִּפְתָחַי בַּפֶּסַח, וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
מְסֻגֶּרֶת סֻגָּרָה בְּעִתּוֹתֵי פֶּסַח, נִשְׁמְדָה מִדְיָן בִּצְלִיל שְׂעוֹרֵי עֹמֶר פֶּסַח, שׂוֹרָפוּ מִשְׁמַנֵּי פּוּל וְלוּד בִּיקַד יְקוֹד פֶּסַח, וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
עוֹד הַיּוֹם בְּנֹב לַעֲמוֹׁד עַד גָּעָה עוֹנַת פֶּסַח, פַּס יַד כָּתְבָה לְקַעֲקֵעַ צוּל בַּפֶּסַח, צָפֹה הַצָּפִית עֲרוֹךְ הַשֻּׁלְחָן בַּפֶּסַח, וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
קָהָל כִּנְּסָה הֲדַּסָּה לְשַׁלֵּשׁ צוֹם בַּפֶּסַח, רֹאשׁ מִבֵּית רָשָׁע מָחַצְתָּ בְּעֵץ חֲמִשִּׁים בַּפֶּסַח, שְׁתֵּי אֵלֶּה רֶגַע תָּבִיא לְעוּצִית בַּפֶּסַח, תָּעֹז יָדְךָ תָּרוּם יְמִינְךָ כְּלֵיל הִתְקַדֵּשׁ חַג פֶּסַח, וַאֲמַרְתֶּם זֶבַח פֶּסַח.
On the second night, outside of Israel: And so "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice'"(Exodus 12:42).
The boldness of Your strong deeds did you wondrously show at Pesach; at the head of all the holidays did You raise Pesach; You revealed to the Ezrachite [Avraham], midnight of the night of Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice.'"
Upon his doors did You knock at the heat of the day on Pesach [Genesis 18:1]; he sustained shining ones [angels] with cakes of matsa on Pesach; and to the cattle he ran, in commemoration of the bull that was set up for Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice.'"
The Sodomites caused Him indignation and He set them on fire on Pesach; Lot was rescued from them and matsot did he bake at the end of Pesach; He swept the land of Mof and Nof [cities in Egypt] on Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice.'"
The head of every firstborn did You crush on the guarded night of Pesach; Powerful One, over the firstborn son did You pass over with the blood on Pesach; so as to not let the destroyer come into my gates on Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice.'"
The enclosed one [Jericho] was enclosed in the season of Pesach; Midian was destroyed with a portion of the omer-barley on Pesach [via Gideon as per Judges 7]; from the fat of Pul and Lud [Assyrian soldiers of Sancheriv] was burnt in pyres on Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice'"
Still today [Sancheriv will go no further than] to stand in Nov [Isaiah 10:32], until he cried at the time of Pesach; a palm of the hand wrote [Daniel 5:5] to rip up the deep one [ the Bayblonian one - Balshatsar] on Pesach; set up the watch, set the table [referring to Balshatsar, based on Psalms 21:5] on Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice'"
The congregation did Hadassah [Esther] bring in to triple a fast on Pesach; the head of the house of evil [Haman] did you crush on a tree of fifty [amot] on Pesach; these two [plagues as per Isaiah 47:9] will you bring in an instant to the Utsi [Esav] on Pesach; embolden Your hand, raise Your right hand, as on the night You were sanctified on the festival of Pesach. "And you shall say, 'it is the Pesach sacrifice'"
כִּי לוֹ נָאֶה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
אַדִּיר בִּמְלוּכָה, בָּחוּר כַּהֲלָכָה, גְּדוּדָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
דָּגוּל בִּמְלוּכָה, הָדוּר כַּהֲלָכָה, וָתִיקָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
זַכַּאי בִּמְלוּכָה, חָסִין כַּהֲלָכָה טַפְסְרָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
יָחִיד בִּמְלוּכָה, כַּבִּיר כַּהֲלָכָה לִמּוּדָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֶה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
מוֹשֵׁל בִּמְלוּכָה, נוֹרָא כַּהֲלָכָה סְבִיבָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
עָנָיו בִּמְלוּכָה, פּוֹדֶה כַּהֲלָכָה, צַדִּיקָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
קָּדּוֹשׁ בִּמְלוּכָה, רַחוּם כַּהֲלָכָה שִׁנְאַנָּיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
תַּקִיף בִּמְלוּכָה, תּוֹמֵךְ כַּהֲלָכָה תְּמִימָיו יֹאמְרוּ לוֹ: לְךָ וּלְךָ, לְךָ כִּי לְךָ, לְךָ אַף לְךָ, לְךָ ה' הַמַּמְלָכָה, כִּי לוֹ נָאֵה, כִּי לוֹ יָאֶה.
Since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited.
Mighty in rulership, properly chosen, his troops shall say to Him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Noted in rulership, properly splendid, His distinguished ones will say to him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Meritorious in rulership, properly robust, His scribes shall say to him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Unique in rulership, properly powerful, His wise ones say to Him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Reigning in rulership, properly awesome, those around Him say to Him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Humble in rulership, properly restoring, His righteous ones say to Him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Holy in rulership, properly merciful, His angels say to Him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
Dynamic in rulership, properly supportive, His innocent ones say to Him, "Yours and Yours, Yours since it is Yours, Yours and even Yours, Yours, Lord is the kingdom; since for Him it is pleasant, for Him it is suited."
אַדִּיר הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
בָּחוּר הוּא, גָּדוֹל הוּא, דָּגוּל הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
הָדוּר הוּא, וָתִיק הוּא, זַכַּאי הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
חָסִיד הוּא, טָהוֹר הוּא, יָחִיד הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
כַּבִּיר הוּא, לָמוּד הוּא, מֶלֶךְ הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
נוֹרָא הוּא, סַגִּיב הוּא, עִזּוּז הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
פּוֹדֶה הוּא, צַדִּיק הוּא, קָּדוֹשׁ הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
רַחוּם הוּא, שַׁדַּי הוּא, תַּקִּיף הוּא יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב. בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב. אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה, בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
Mighty is He, may He build His house soon. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
Chosen is He, great is He, noted is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
Splendid is He, distinguished is He, meritorious is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
Pious is He, pure is He, unique is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
Powerful is He, wise is He, A king is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
Awesome is He, exalted is He, heroic is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
A restorer is He, righteous is He, holy is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
Merciful is He, the Omnipotent is He, dynamic is He. Quickly, quickly, in our days, soon. God build, God build, build Your house soon.
ספירת העמר בחוץ לארץ, בליל שני של פסח:
בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹֹּתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר. הַיּוֹם יוֹם אֶחָד בָּעֹמֶר.
The counting of the omer outside of Israel on the second night of Pesach:
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and has commanded us on the counting of the omer. Today is the first day of the omer.
אֶחָד מִי יוֹדֵעַ? אֶחָד אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שְׁנַיִם מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שְׁנַיִם אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית. אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שְׁלֹשָׁה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שְׁלֹשָׁה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שְׁלֹשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
אַרְבַּע מִי יוֹדֵעַ? אַרְבַּע אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
חֲמִשָּׁה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? חֲמִשָּׁה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שִׁשָּׂה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שִׁשָּׂה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלֹשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שִׁבְעָה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שִׁבְעָה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שְׁמוֹנָה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שְׁמוֹנָה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שְׁמוֹנָה יְמֵי מִילָה, שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
תִּשְׁעָה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? תִּשְׁעָה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: תִּשְׁעָה יַרְחֵי לֵדָה, שְׁמוֹנָה יְמֵי מִילָה, שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלֹשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
עֲשָֹרָה מִי יוֹדֵעַ? עֲשָֹרָה אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: עֲשָׂרָה דִבְּרַיָא, תִּשְׁעָה יַרְחֵי לֵדָה, שְׁמוֹנָה יְמֵי מִילָה, שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ. עֲשָֹרָה אַחַד עָשָׂר מִי יוֹדֵעַ? אַחַד עָשָׂר אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: אַחַד עָשָׂר כּוֹכְבַיָּא, עֲשָׂרָה דִבְּרַיָא, תִּשְׁעָה יַרְחֵי לֵדָה, שְׁמוֹנָה יְמֵי מִילָה, שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר שִׁבְטַיָּא, אַחַד עָשָׂר כּוֹכְבַיָּא, עֲשָׂרָה דִבְּרַיָא, תִּשְׁעָה יַרְחֵי לֵדָה, שְׁמוֹנָה יְמֵי מִילָה, שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
שְׁלשָׁה עֶשָׂר מִי יוֹדֵעַ? שְׁלשָׁה עָשָׂר אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: שְׁלשָׁה עָשָׂר מִדַּיָּא. שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר שִׁבְטַיָּא, אַחַד עָשָׂר כּוֹכְבַיָּא, עֲשָׂרָה דִבְּרַיָא, תִּשְׁעָה יַרְחֵי לֵדָה, שְׁמוֹנָה יְמֵי מִילָה, שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא, שִׁשָּׁה סִדְרֵי מִשְׁנָה, חֲמִשָּׁה חוּמְשֵׁי תוֹרָה, אַרְבַּע אִמָּהוֹת, שְׁלשָׁה אָבוֹת, שְׁנֵי לֻחוֹת הַבְּרִית, אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.
Who knows one? I know one: One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows two? I know two: two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows three? I know three: three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows four? I know four: four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows five? I know five: five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows six? I know six: six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows seven? I know seven: seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows eight? I know eight: eight are the days of circumcision, seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows nine? I know nine: nine are the months of birth, eight are the days of circumcision, seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows ten? I know ten: ten are the statements, nine are the months of birth, eight are the days of circumcision, seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows eleven? I know eleven: eleven are the stars, ten are the statements, nine are the months of birth, eight are the days of circumcision, seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows twelve? I know twelve: twelve are the tribes, eleven are the stars, ten are the statements, nine are the months of birth, eight are the days of circumcision, seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth. Who knows thirteen? I know thirteen: thirteen are the characteristics, twelve are the tribes, eleven are the stars, ten are the statements, nine are the months of birth, eight are the days of circumcision, seven are the days of the week, six are the orders of the Mishnah, five are the books of the Torah, four are the mothers, three are the fathers, two are the tablets of the covenant, One is our God in the heavens and the earth.
חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא דְּזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי, חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא שׁוּנְרָא וְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא כַלְבָּא וְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא חוּטְרָא וְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא נוּרָא וְשָׂרַף לְחוּטְרָא, דְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא מַיָּא וְכָבָה לְנוּרָא, דְשָׂרַף לְחוּטְרָא, דְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא תוֹרָא וְשָׁתָה לְמַיָּא, דְּכָבָה לְנוּרָא, דְשָׂרַף לְחוּטְרָא, דְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא הַשׁוֹחֵט וְשָׁחַט לְתוֹרָא, דְשָׁתָה לְמַיָּא, דְכָבָה לְנוּרָא, דְשָׂרַף לְחוּטְרָא, דְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא מַלְאָךְ הַמָּוֶת וְשָׁחַט לְשׁוֹחֵט, דְּשָׁחַט לְתוֹרָא, דְשָׁתָה לְמַיָּא, דְכָבָה לְנוּרָא, דְשָׂרַף לְחוּטְרָא, דְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
וְאָתָא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא וְשָׁחַט לְמַלְאַךְ הַמָּוֶת, דְּשָׁחַט לְשׁוֹחֵט, דְּשָׁחַט לְתוֹרָא, דְשָׁתָה לְמַיָּא, דְּכָבָה לְנוּרָא, דְשָׂרַף לְחוּטְרָא, דְהִכָּה לְכַלְבָּא, דְנָשַׁךְ לְשׁוּנְרָא, דְאָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, דְזַבִּין אַבָּא בִּתְרֵי זוּזֵי. חַד גַּדְיָא, חַד גַּדְיָא.
One kid, one kid that my father bought for two zuz, one kid, one kid.
Then came a cat and ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came a dog and bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came a stick and hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came fire and burnt the stick, that hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came water and extinguished the fire, that burnt the stick, that hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came a bull and drank the water, that extinguished the fire, that burnt the stick, that hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came the schochet and slaughtered the bull, that drank the water, that extinguished the fire, that burnt the stick, that hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came the angel of death and slaughtered the schochet, who slaughtered the bull, that drank the water, that extinguished the fire, that burnt the stick, that hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.
Then came the Holy One, blessed be He and slaughtered the angel of death, who slaughtered the schochet, who slaughtered the bull, that drank the water, that extinguished the fire, that burnt the stick, that hit the dog, that bit the cat, that ate the kid, one kid, one kid.