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Today's Daf Yomi

December 9, 2015 | כ״ז בכסלו תשע״ו

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Joanna Rom and Steven Goldberg in loving memory of Steve's mother Shirley "Nana" Goldberg (Sura Tema bat Chaim v'Hanka)

Sotah 44

More details about who is exempt from war.  Who is referred to as the soft-hearted that are exempt from war?  Which type of war are these exemptions for?  All wars?  Just optional wars?

מת תופס ארבע אמות לטומאה ותנא תונא חצר הקבר העומד בתוכה טהור והוא שיהו בה ארבע אמות דברי בית שמאי בית הלל אומרים ארבעה טפחים במה דברים אמורים שפתחה מלמעלה אבל פתחה מן הצד דברי הכל ארבע אמות

A corpse occupies four cubits with regard to impurity, as the Sages decreed that one becomes impure when he stands within four cubits of a corpse. This measure protects priests and others who are forbidden to contract ritual impurity imparted by a corpse, so that they do not inadvertently become impure. And the tanna of the mishna taught in another mishna as well (Oholot 15:8): With regard to a courtyard adjacent to a grave, one who stands within it is ritually pure, provided that there are four cubits by four cubits within it. A courtyard this size constitutes its own space, according to the statement of Beit Shammai. Beit Hillel say: A space of four handbreadths by four handbreadths is enough. In what case is this statement said? Four handbreadths suffice when the entrance to the courtyard is from above. In such a case there is no concern that one will cover the grave with his body, and thereby become ritually impure, when entering the courtyard. However, if its entrance is from the side, everyone agrees the courtyard must be at least four cubits by four cubits in size.

כלפי לייא אדרבה מן הצד מידריד ונפיק מלמעלה אי אפשר דלא מאהיל אלא במה דברים אמורים שפתחה מן הצד אבל פתחה מלמעלה ארבע אמות והני מילי חצר הקבר דמסיימא מחיצתה אבל מת בעלמא תפיס

The Gemara challenges the preceding resolution: In which direction [kelapei layya] is there a distinction between the positions of the entrance? On the contrary, if one enters from the side, he can slip away and exit without becoming impure. However, if one enters from above it is impossible that he will not overlie the grave over the course of climbing in and out of the courtyard. Rather, it should say: In what case is this statement of Beit Hillel, according to which four handbreadths by four handbreadths are enough, said? It is when the entrance is from the side. However, if the entrance is from above, then the courtyard must be at least four cubits by four cubits according to all opinions. The Gemara further qualifies: And this statement applies in a courtyard adjacent to a grave whose partitions are delineated, but if there is only a corpse lying about without any enclosures, it certainly occupies and affects a surrounding area of four cubits.

מי האיש אשר ארש אשה כו׳ תנו רבנן אשר ארס אחד המארס את הבתולה ואחד המארס את האלמנה ואחד שומרת יבם ואפילו חמשה אחין ומת אחד מהם במלחמה כולן חוזרין לא לקח ולא לקחה פרט לאלמנה לכהן גדול גרושה וחלוצה לכהן הדיוט ממזרת ונתינה לישראל בת ישראל לממזר ולנתין

§ The mishna teaches among the statements that were said before battle: “What man is there that has betrothed a wife and has not taken her? Let him go and return to his house” (Deuteronomy 20:7). The Sages taught: “That has betrothed” is referring to one who betroths a virgin, and to one who betroths a widow, and to one whose yevama is a widow awaiting her yavam, i.e., this man in the military ranks, to perform levirate marriage. And even if there are five brothers, and one of them dies in the war, they all return for the widow. In addition, the verse could have singled out one who has not taken a wife. When the verse specifies: “and has not taken her,” this excludes men in forbidden marriages: A widow who is betrothed to a High Priest; either a divorcée or a yevama who performed ḥalitza [ḥalutza], who is betrothed to a common priest; a mamzeret or a Gibeonite woman who is betrothed to an Israelite; or an Israelite woman who is betrothed to a mamzer or to a Gibeonite.

לימא דלא כרבי יוסי הגלילי דאי רבי יוסי הגלילי הא אמר הירא ורך הלבב זה המתיירא מעבירות שבידו

The Gemara asks: Shall we say that this opinion is not in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili? As, if it were in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, he says: When the verse singles out “fearful and fainthearted” (Deuteronomy 20:8), this is referring to one who is afraid because of sins that he has. According to this interpretation, one who marries a woman forbidden to him should return home from war because of his guilt, which seems to contradict the opinion mentioned above that such a man does not return from the ranks.

אפילו תימא רבי יוסי הגלילי כדרבה דאמר רבה לעולם אינו חייב עד שיבעול מה טעם לא יקח משום לא יחלל משום הכי אינו לוקה עד שיבעול

The Gemara answers: Even if you say that the ruling is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, such a man does not return, in accordance with the opinion of Rabba. As Rabba said: A man is never liable for a forbidden marriage until he engages in sexual intercourse with his wife. With regard to the forbidden marriages of a High Priest, the Torah states: “A widow, or a divorcée, or a profaned woman, or a harlot, these he shall not take…And he shall not profane his seed among his people” (Leviticus 21:14–15). What is the reason that “he shall not take” one of these women as a wife? It is due to: “He shall not profane his seed” by engaging in sexual intercourse. Due to that reason, he is not flogged until he engages in sexual intercourse with a woman who is forbidden to him. Therefore, even according to Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, one who merely betroths a forbidden wife might not return home from the ranks.

תנו רבנן אשר בנה אשר נטע אשר ארש לימדה תורה דרך ארץ שיבנה אדם בית ויטע כרם ואחר כך ישא אשה ואף שלמה אמר בחכמתו הכן בחוץ מלאכתך ועתדה בשדה לך אחר ובנית ביתך הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה בית ועתדה בשדה לך זה כרם אחר ובנית ביתך זו אשה

§ The Sages taught (Tosefta 7:20-21): The Torah states: “What man is there that has built” (Deuteronomy 20:5), and then “that has planted” (Deuteronomy 20:6), and finally “that has betrothed” (Deuteronomy 20:7). The Torah has taught a person the desired mode of behavior: A person should build a house, then plant a vineyard, and afterward marry a woman. And even King Solomon said in his wisdom: “Prepare your work outside, and make it fit for yourself in the field; and afterward build your house” (Proverbs 24:27). The Sages explained: “Prepare your work outside”; this is a house. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; this is a vineyard. “And afterward you shall build your house”; this is a wife.

דבר אחר הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה מקרא ועתדה בשדה לך זה משנה אחר ובנית ביתך זה גמרא דבר אחר הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה מקרא ומשנה ועתדה בשדה לך זה גמרא אחר ובנית ביתך אלו מעשים טובים רבי אליעזר בנו של רבי יוסי הגלילי אומר הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה מקרא ומשנה וגמרא ועתדה בשדה לך אלו מעשים טובים אחר ובנית ביתך דרוש וקבל שכר

Alternatively, this verse may be understood as relating to Torah study: “Prepare your work outside”; this is the study of Bible. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; this is the study of Mishna. “Afterward you shall build your house”; this is the study of Gemara, the analysis of and deliberation over the statements of the Sages. Alternatively: “Prepare your work outside”; this is the study of Bible and Mishna. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; this is the study of Gemara. “Afterward you shall build your house”; these are good deeds. Rabbi Eliezer, son of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, says: “Prepare your work outside”; this is the study of Bible, and Mishna, and Gemara. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; these are good deeds. “Afterward you shall build your house”; expound upon new understandings of Torah and receive reward, which is possible only after the initial steps.

ואלו שאינן חוזרין הבונה בית שער כו׳ תנא אם הוסיף בו דימוס אחד חוזר רבי אליעזר אומר אף הבונה בית לבנים בשרון לא היה חוזר תנא מפני שמחדשין אותו פעמים בשבוע

§ The mishna teaches: And these are the men who do not return from the ranks: One who builds a gateway, or an enclosed veranda, or a balcony…Rabbi Yehuda says: Even one who rebuilds a house as it stood originally would not return. A Sage taught (Tosefta 7:18): If one adds one additional row of stones [dimos] to the original structure, he returns from the ranks. That is enough to render it a new building. The mishna further teaches: Rabbi Eliezer says: Even one who builds a new brick house in the Sharon would not return. A Sage taught: This is because the owners renew it twice in a period of seven years, and it is therefore not considered a permanent structure.

ואלו שאין זזין ממקומן בנה בית חדש וחנכו וכו׳ תנו רבנן אשה חדשה אין לי אלא אשה חדשה אלמנה וגרושה מנין תלמוד לומר אשה מכל מקום אם כן מה תלמוד לומר אשה חדשה מי שחדשה לו יצא מחזיר גרושתו שאין חדשה לו

§ The mishna teaches: These are the men who do not even move from their places: One who built a house and dedicated it within the year; one who planted a vineyard and used its fruit for less than a year; one who marries his betrothed and one who marries his yevama, as it is stated: “When a man takes a new wife, he shall not go out with the army, neither shall he be charged with any business; he shall be free for his house one year, and shall cheer his wife whom he has taken” (Deuteronomy 24:5). With respect to a new husband’s exemption, the Sages taught a number of halakhot from this verse. From the term: “A new wife” I have derived only that a man returns only for a new virgin wife. From where do I derive that it applies to a widow or a divorcée? The verse states: “A wife,” in any case. If so, what is the meaning when the verse states: “A new wife?” It is referring to one who is new for him, excluding one who remarries his divorcée, who is not new to him.

תנו רבנן לא יצא בצבא יכול בצבא הוא דלא יצא אבל יספיק מים ומזון ויתקן הדרכים תלמוד לומר ולא יעבר עליו לכל דבר יכול שאני מרבה אף הבונה בית ולא חנכו נטע כרם ולא חללו ארס אשה ולא לקחה תלמוד לומר עליו עליו אי אתה מעביר אבל אתה מעביר על אחרים ומאחר דכתב לא יעבר לא יצא בצבא למה לי לעבור עליו בשני לאוין

The Sages taught with regard to the verse: “He shall not go out with the army” (Deuteronomy 24:5); one might have thought it is with the army that he does not go out, but he does go to supply water and food to the army and to repair the roads for them. Therefore, the verse states: “Neither shall he be charged with any business.” One might have thought that I include even one who has built a house and has not dedicated it, or one who has planted a vineyard and has not used its fruit, or one who has betrothed a woman and has not taken her as his wife? The verse states: “Neither shall he be charged with any business”; you do not charge him with any responsibilities, but you do charge others. The Gemara asks: And since the Torah states: “Neither shall he be charged with any business,” why do I need to be taught: “He shall not go out with the army”? The Gemara answers: The Torah adds this clause so that he will violate two prohibitions if he goes out to war: “He shall not go out with the army,” and: “Neither shall he be charged.”

מתני׳ ויספו השטרים לדבר אל העם וגו׳ רבי עקיבא אומר הירא ורך הלבב כמשמעו שאינו יכול לעמוד בקשרי המלחמה ולראות חרב שלופה רבי יוסי הגלילי אומר הירא ורך הלבב זהו המתיירא מן העבירות שבידו לפיכך תלתה לו התורה את כל אלו שיחזור בגללן

MISHNA: The mishna continues its discussion of the speech given before battle. “And the officers shall speak further to the people, and they shall say: What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? Let him go and return unto his house” (Deuteronomy 20:8). Rabbi Akiva says: “That is fearful and fainthearted” is to be understood as it indicates, that the man is unable to stand in the battle ranks and to see a drawn sword because it will terrify him. Rabbi Yosei HaGelili says: “That is fearful and fainthearted”; this is one who is afraid because of the sins that he has; he, too, returns. Therefore, the Torah provided him with all these additional reasons for exemption from the army so he can ascribe his leaving to one of them. In this way, the sinner may leave the ranks without having to publicly acknowledge that he is a sinner.

רבי יוסי אומר אלמנה לכהן גדול גרושה וחלוצה לכהן הדיוט ממזרת ונתינה לישראל בת ישראל לממזר ולנתין הרי הוא הירא ורך הלבב

Rabbi Yosei says: With regard to one who has betrothed a woman forbidden to him, including a widow betrothed to a High Priest; a divorcée or a yevama who performed ḥalitza [ḥalutza] betrothed to a common priest; a mamzeret or a Gibeonite woman betrothed to an Israelite; or a daughter of an Israelite betrothed to a mamzer or a Gibeonite; this man is he whom the verse calls “fearful and fainthearted.” He fears that his sin will jeopardize his safety in the war.

והיה ככלת השטרים לדבר אל העם ופקדו שרי צבאות בראש העם ובעקיבו של עם מעמידין זקיפין לפניהם ואחרים מאחוריהם וכשילין של ברזל בידיהן וכל המבקש לחזור הרשות בידו לקפח את שוקיו

The mishna continues its discussion. The verse states: “And it shall be, when the officers conclude speaking to the people, that captains of legions shall be appointed at the head of the people” (Deuteronomy 20:9). The mishna adds: As well as at the rear of the people. The officers station guards [zekifin] in front of them, and other guards behind them, and they have iron rods [kashilin] in their hands. And with regard to anyone who attempts to turn back and flee from the war, the guard has license to beat [lekape’aḥ] his legs

שתחילת ניסה נפילה שנאמר נס ישראל לפני פלשתים וגם מגפה גדולה היתה בעם ולהלן הוא אומר וינסו אנשי ישראל מפני פלשתים ויפלו חללים וגו׳

because the beginning of fleeing is a downfall on the battlefield, as it is stated: “Israel has fled before the Philistines, and there has been also a great slaughter among the people” (I Samuel 4:17), and likewise it says further on: “And the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down slain in Mount Gilboa” (I Samuel 31:1).

במה דברים אמורים במלחמות הרשות אבל במלחמות מצוה הכל יוצאין אפילו חתן מחדרו וכלה מחופתה אמר רבי יהודה במה דברים אמורים במלחמות מצוה אבל במלחמות חובה הכל יוצאין אפילו חתן מחדרו וכלה מחופתה

The mishna adds: In what case are all of these statements, with regard to the various exemptions from war, said? They are said with regard to elective wars. But in wars whose mandate is a mitzva, everyone goes, even a groom from his room and a bride from her wedding canopy. Rabbi Yehuda said: In what case are all of these statements, with regard to the various exemptions from war, said? They are said with regard to wars whose mandate is a mitzva. But in obligatory wars, everyone goes, even a groom from his room and a bride from her wedding canopy.

גמ׳ מאי איכא בין רבי יוסי לרבי יוסי הגלילי איכא בינייהו עבירה דרבנן

GEMARA: The Gemara asks: With regard to their understanding that the “fearful and fainthearted” is referring to one harboring sins, what difference is there between the opinion of Rabbi Yosei and the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili? The Gemara answers: There is a practical difference between them with regard to a sin which violates a prohibition by rabbinic law. According to Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, one who has violated a rabbinic law returns home, whereas Rabbi Yosei maintains that one returns home only if he has violated a Torah law, as in the case of a priest who has married a divorcée.

כמאן אזלא הא דתניא שח בין תפילה לתפילה עבירה היא בידו וחוזר עליה מעורכי המלחמה כמאן כרבי יוסי הגלילי

The Gemara asks: In accordance with whose opinion is that which is taught in a baraita: If one spoke between donning the phylactery of the arm and the phylactery of the head, he has a sin on his hands, and due to that sin he returns from the ranks of soldiers waging war. In accordance with whose opinion does this man return? It is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, who maintains that one returns even due to a minor transgression.

מאן תנא להא דתנו רבנן שמע קול קרנות והרתיע הגפת תריסין והרתיע צחצוח חרבות ומים שותתין לו על ברכיו חוזר כמאן לימא רבי עקיבא היא ולא רבי יוסי הגלילי בהא אפילו רבי יוסי הגלילי מודה משום דכתיב ולא ימס את לבב אחיו כלבבו

The Gemara asks: Who is the tanna who taught this halakha that the Sages taught in a baraita: If one heard the sound of trumpets and trembled; or he heard the knocking of shields and he trembled; or he heard the sharpening of swords, and urine was trickling down his knees in fear, he returns from the battlefront. In accordance with whose opinion is this? Shall we say that it is the opinion of Rabbi Akiva, who interprets “fearful and fainthearted” literally, and it is not the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili? The Gemara answers: In this case even Rabbi Yosei HaGelili would concede that he should return, because it is written: “What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? Let him go and return…lest his brethren’s heart melt as his heart” (Deuteronomy 20:8). Someone so clearly frightened invariably spreads his fear to those around him.

והיה ככלת השטרים כו׳ האי מפני שתחילת ניסה נפילה מפני שתחילת נפילה ניסה מבעי ליה אימא מפני שתחילת נפילה ניסה

§ The mishna teaches: “And it shall be, when the officers conclude speaking to the people, that captains of legions shall be appointed at the head of the people” (Deuteronomy 20:9), and that the guards have the license to beat the legs of anyone who attempts to turn back and flee from the war, because the beginning of fleeing is a downfall. The Gemara is puzzled by the language of the mishna: This phrase: Because the beginning of fleeing is a downfall, appears to be backward. The mishna should have said the opposite: Because the beginning of the downfall is the act of fleeing. The Gemara concedes: Indeed, say that the mishna means: Because the beginning of the downfall is the act of fleeing.

במה דברים אמורים במלחמות הרשות כו׳ אמר רבי יוחנן רשות דרבנן זו היא מצוה דרבי יהודה מצוה דרבנן זו היא חובה דרבי יהודה

The mishna teaches: In what case are these statements said? They are said with regard to elective wars, as opposed to obligatory wars or wars whose mandate is a mitzva. Rabbi Yoḥanan says concerning the various categories of war: The elective war referenced by the Rabbis is the same as a war whose mandate is a mitzva referenced by Rabbi Yehuda, and the war that is a mitzva mentioned by the Rabbis is the same as the obligatory war mentioned by Rabbi Yehuda. Therefore, Rabbi Yehuda is merely stating that the wars which the Rabbis call elective are to be seen as mandated by a mitzva.

אמר רבא מלחמות יהושע לכבש דברי הכל חובה מלחמות בית דוד לרווחה דברי הכל רשות כי פליגי למעוטי נכרים דלא ליתי עלייהו מר קרי לה מצוה ומר קרי רשות נפקא מינה לעוסק במצוה שפטור מן המצוה

Rava said: With respect to the wars that Joshua waged to conquer Eretz Yisrael, all agree that they were obligatory. With respect to the wars waged by the House of King David for the sake of territorial expansion, all agree that they were elective wars. When they disagree, it is with regard to preventative wars that are waged to reduce the gentiles so that they will not come and wage war against them. One Sage, Rabbi Yehuda, called this type of war a mitzva, and one Sage, the Rabbis, called it an elective war. There is a practical difference between these opinions with respect to the principle: One who is engaged in a mitzva is exempt from performing another mitzva. According to Rabbi Yehuda, one fighting in this kind of war is exempt from performing another mitzva.

הדרן עלך משוח מלחמה

 

מתני׳ עגלה ערופה בלשון הקודש שנאמר כי ימצא חלל באדמה ויצאו זקניך ושפטיך שלשה מבית דין הגדול שבירושלים היו יוצאין רבי יהודה אומר חמשה שנאמר זקניך שנים ושפטיך שנים ואין בית דין שקול מוסיפין עליהן עוד אחד

MISHNA: In certain cases of unsolved murder, the Torah prescribes a ritual performed with a heifer whose neck is broken. During the course of this ritual, the judges say a confession in the sacred tongue, Hebrew, as it is stated in the verse: “If one be found slain in the land which the Lord your God has given you to possess it, lying in the field, and it is not known who has smitten him; then your Elders and your judges shall come forth” (Deuteronomy 21:1–2). What is the procedure for this ritual? Three members of the High Court [Sanhedrin] that is in Jerusalem would go out to see the corpse. Rabbi Yehuda says: Five would go out, as it is stated: “Your Elders,” in the plural form, indicating at least two; and it is written: “And your judges,” in the plural form, indicating another two judges; and a court may not be comprised of an even number of judges because they need to be able to issue a majority ruling. Consequently, they add to them one more Elder.

נמצא טמון בגל או תלוי באילן או צף על פני המים לא היו עורפין שנאמר באדמה ולא טמון בגל נפל ולא תלוי באילן בשדה ולא צף על פני המים

If the corpse was found concealed in a pile of stones, or hanging on a tree, or floating on the surface of the water, then the judges would not break the neck of the heifer, as it is stated: “If one be found slain in the land” (Deuteronomy 21:1), and not concealed in a pile of stones; “lying” on the ground and not hanging on a tree; “in the field,” and not floating on the surface of the water.

נמצא סמוך לספר או לעיר שרובה נכרים או לעיר שאין בה בית דין לא היו עורפין אין מודדין אלא לעיר שיש בה בית דין

If a corpse was found close to the border of the country, or close to a city in which the majority of its inhabitants are gentiles, or close to a city that is without a rabbinical court of twenty-three judges, then the judges would not break the heifer’s neck. Additionally, the Elders measure the distance from the corpse only to a city that has a rabbinical court with twenty-three judges.

גמ׳ מאי קאמר אמר רבי אבהו הכי קאמר שנאמר וענו ואמרו ולהלן הוא אומר וענו הלוים ואמרו וגו׳ מה ענייה האמורה להלן בלשון הקודש אף כאן בלשון הקודש

GEMARA: The Gemara asks: What is the first sentence in the mishna saying? The mishna is attempting to prove that the verses read during the ritual of breaking a heifer’s neck are to be recited in Hebrew, yet the verse does not offer any proof of this. Rabbi Abbahu said that this is what the mishna is saying: The confession is recited in Hebrew, as it is stated with regard to the ritual of the heifer whose neck is broken: “And they shall speak and say” (Deuteronomy 21:7), and later it is stated with regard to the curses stated on Mount Ebal: “And the Levities shall speak and say” (Deuteronomy 27:14). Just as the word “speak” that is said later with regard to the Levites is referring to a speech that is recited in the sacred tongue, so too here the declaration is recited in the sacred tongue.

וסדר עגלה ערופה כיצד כי ימצא חלל באדמה ויצאו זקניך ושפטיך שלשה מבית דין הגדול שבירושלים היו יוצאין רבי יהודה אומר חמשה וכו׳

The mishna continues to answer the question of: And how is the ritual of the heifer whose neck is broken ordered? The mishna states: It is written in the Torah: “If one be found slain in the land which the Lord your God has given you to possess it, lying in the field, and it is not known who has smitten him; then your Elders and your judges shall come forth, and they shall measure unto the cities which are round about him that is slain” (Deuteronomy 21:1–2). Three members of the High Court that is in Jerusalem would go forth. Rabbi Yehuda says: Five.

תנו רבנן ויצאו זקניך ושפטיך זקניך שנים ושפטיך שנים ואין בית דין שקול מוסיפין עליהן עוד אחד הרי כאן חמשה דברי רבי יהודה רבי שמעון אומר זקניך שנים ואין בית דין שקול מוסיפין עליהן עוד אחד הרי כאן שלשה

The Sages taught: “And your Elders and judges shall come forth.” “Your Elders” indicates two; “and your judges” also indicates two; and a court may not be composed of an even number of judges, so they add to them one more judge. Therefore, there are five judges. This is the statement of Rabbi Yehuda. Rabbi Shimon says: “Your Elders” indicates two, and as a court may not consist of an even number of judges they add to them one more. Therefore, there are three.

ורבי שמעון נמי הא כתיב ושפטיך ההוא מיבעי ליה למיוחדין שבשופטיך ורבי יהודה מזקני זקניך נפקא

The Gemara asks: But according to Rabbi Shimon as well, isn’t it written: “And your judges”; why does he not agree that this indicates a need for two more judges? The Gemara answers: He requires that additional word “Elders” in order to teach that they must be the distinguished among your judges, i.e., judges from the Sanhedrin. And how does Rabbi Yehuda, who derives from the phrase “and your judges” that there is a need for two additional judges, know that they need to be from the Sanhedrin? He derives it from an extra letter. The verse could have simply stated: The Elders. Instead, it adds a letter and states: “Your Elders,” to teach that they must be the distinguished among the Elders of Israel.

ורבי שמעון אי כתב רחמנא זקני הוה אמינא אפילו זקני השוק כתב רחמנא זקניך ואי כתב רחמנא זקניך הוה אמינא אפילו סנהדרי קטנה כתב רחמנא ושפטיך למיוחדין שבשופטיך

And Rabbi Shimon could say: If the Merciful One had written in the Torah: The Elders, I would say that it includes even the Elders of the marketplace, meaning any honorable people. Therefore, the Merciful One writes in the Torah: “Your Elders,” to indicate specifically Torah Sages, who are revered by all. And if the Merciful One had written in the Torah only: “Your Elders,” I would say that it includes even Elders from a lesser Sanhedrin. Therefore, the Merciful One also writes: “And your judges,” to teach that they must be the distinguished among your judges, from the Great Sanhedrin.

ורבי יהודה גמר זקני זקני מזקני העדה מה להלן מיוחדין שבעדה אף כאן מיוחדין שבעדה

And what is the source of Rabbi Yehuda that the judges may not come from a lesser Sanhedrin? He derives this halakha from a verbal analogy between “Elders,” written here, and “Elders,” written with regard to the offering that the Sanhedrin brings when the nation has sinned as a result of a mistaken ruling. This offering is brought by “the Elders of the congregation” (Leviticus 4:15). Just as there, “the Elders of the congregation” are the distinguished among the congregation, from the Great Sanhedrin, so too, here the verse is referring to the distinguished among the congregation.

אי גמר לגמרה לכולה מילתא מהתם זקניך ושפטיך למה לי אלא ויו ושפטיך למנינא ורבי שמעון

The Gemara asks: If he derives this halakha from this verbal analogy, then he should derive the entire matter from there, including the requirement for five judges. If so, why do I need the phrase “your Elders and your judges”? Rather, it must be that Rabbi Yehuda does not derive the halakha from this verbal analogy. Instead, he understands that the phrase “your Elders” indicates two, and that “your judges” indicates that they must be the distinguished among your judges, and the letter vav in the phrase “and your judges [veshofetekha]” is to add two more to the count of the judges. And Rabbi Shimon does not accept this derivation

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Sotah 44

The William Davidson Talmud | Powered by Sefaria

Sotah 44

מת תופס ארבע אמות לטומאה ותנא תונא חצר הקבר העומד בתוכה טהור והוא שיהו בה ארבע אמות דברי בית שמאי בית הלל אומרים ארבעה טפחים במה דברים אמורים שפתחה מלמעלה אבל פתחה מן הצד דברי הכל ארבע אמות

A corpse occupies four cubits with regard to impurity, as the Sages decreed that one becomes impure when he stands within four cubits of a corpse. This measure protects priests and others who are forbidden to contract ritual impurity imparted by a corpse, so that they do not inadvertently become impure. And the tanna of the mishna taught in another mishna as well (Oholot 15:8): With regard to a courtyard adjacent to a grave, one who stands within it is ritually pure, provided that there are four cubits by four cubits within it. A courtyard this size constitutes its own space, according to the statement of Beit Shammai. Beit Hillel say: A space of four handbreadths by four handbreadths is enough. In what case is this statement said? Four handbreadths suffice when the entrance to the courtyard is from above. In such a case there is no concern that one will cover the grave with his body, and thereby become ritually impure, when entering the courtyard. However, if its entrance is from the side, everyone agrees the courtyard must be at least four cubits by four cubits in size.

כלפי לייא אדרבה מן הצד מידריד ונפיק מלמעלה אי אפשר דלא מאהיל אלא במה דברים אמורים שפתחה מן הצד אבל פתחה מלמעלה ארבע אמות והני מילי חצר הקבר דמסיימא מחיצתה אבל מת בעלמא תפיס

The Gemara challenges the preceding resolution: In which direction [kelapei layya] is there a distinction between the positions of the entrance? On the contrary, if one enters from the side, he can slip away and exit without becoming impure. However, if one enters from above it is impossible that he will not overlie the grave over the course of climbing in and out of the courtyard. Rather, it should say: In what case is this statement of Beit Hillel, according to which four handbreadths by four handbreadths are enough, said? It is when the entrance is from the side. However, if the entrance is from above, then the courtyard must be at least four cubits by four cubits according to all opinions. The Gemara further qualifies: And this statement applies in a courtyard adjacent to a grave whose partitions are delineated, but if there is only a corpse lying about without any enclosures, it certainly occupies and affects a surrounding area of four cubits.

מי האיש אשר ארש אשה כו׳ תנו רבנן אשר ארס אחד המארס את הבתולה ואחד המארס את האלמנה ואחד שומרת יבם ואפילו חמשה אחין ומת אחד מהם במלחמה כולן חוזרין לא לקח ולא לקחה פרט לאלמנה לכהן גדול גרושה וחלוצה לכהן הדיוט ממזרת ונתינה לישראל בת ישראל לממזר ולנתין

§ The mishna teaches among the statements that were said before battle: “What man is there that has betrothed a wife and has not taken her? Let him go and return to his house” (Deuteronomy 20:7). The Sages taught: “That has betrothed” is referring to one who betroths a virgin, and to one who betroths a widow, and to one whose yevama is a widow awaiting her yavam, i.e., this man in the military ranks, to perform levirate marriage. And even if there are five brothers, and one of them dies in the war, they all return for the widow. In addition, the verse could have singled out one who has not taken a wife. When the verse specifies: “and has not taken her,” this excludes men in forbidden marriages: A widow who is betrothed to a High Priest; either a divorcée or a yevama who performed ḥalitza [ḥalutza], who is betrothed to a common priest; a mamzeret or a Gibeonite woman who is betrothed to an Israelite; or an Israelite woman who is betrothed to a mamzer or to a Gibeonite.

לימא דלא כרבי יוסי הגלילי דאי רבי יוסי הגלילי הא אמר הירא ורך הלבב זה המתיירא מעבירות שבידו

The Gemara asks: Shall we say that this opinion is not in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili? As, if it were in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, he says: When the verse singles out “fearful and fainthearted” (Deuteronomy 20:8), this is referring to one who is afraid because of sins that he has. According to this interpretation, one who marries a woman forbidden to him should return home from war because of his guilt, which seems to contradict the opinion mentioned above that such a man does not return from the ranks.

אפילו תימא רבי יוסי הגלילי כדרבה דאמר רבה לעולם אינו חייב עד שיבעול מה טעם לא יקח משום לא יחלל משום הכי אינו לוקה עד שיבעול

The Gemara answers: Even if you say that the ruling is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, such a man does not return, in accordance with the opinion of Rabba. As Rabba said: A man is never liable for a forbidden marriage until he engages in sexual intercourse with his wife. With regard to the forbidden marriages of a High Priest, the Torah states: “A widow, or a divorcée, or a profaned woman, or a harlot, these he shall not take…And he shall not profane his seed among his people” (Leviticus 21:14–15). What is the reason that “he shall not take” one of these women as a wife? It is due to: “He shall not profane his seed” by engaging in sexual intercourse. Due to that reason, he is not flogged until he engages in sexual intercourse with a woman who is forbidden to him. Therefore, even according to Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, one who merely betroths a forbidden wife might not return home from the ranks.

תנו רבנן אשר בנה אשר נטע אשר ארש לימדה תורה דרך ארץ שיבנה אדם בית ויטע כרם ואחר כך ישא אשה ואף שלמה אמר בחכמתו הכן בחוץ מלאכתך ועתדה בשדה לך אחר ובנית ביתך הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה בית ועתדה בשדה לך זה כרם אחר ובנית ביתך זו אשה

§ The Sages taught (Tosefta 7:20-21): The Torah states: “What man is there that has built” (Deuteronomy 20:5), and then “that has planted” (Deuteronomy 20:6), and finally “that has betrothed” (Deuteronomy 20:7). The Torah has taught a person the desired mode of behavior: A person should build a house, then plant a vineyard, and afterward marry a woman. And even King Solomon said in his wisdom: “Prepare your work outside, and make it fit for yourself in the field; and afterward build your house” (Proverbs 24:27). The Sages explained: “Prepare your work outside”; this is a house. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; this is a vineyard. “And afterward you shall build your house”; this is a wife.

דבר אחר הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה מקרא ועתדה בשדה לך זה משנה אחר ובנית ביתך זה גמרא דבר אחר הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה מקרא ומשנה ועתדה בשדה לך זה גמרא אחר ובנית ביתך אלו מעשים טובים רבי אליעזר בנו של רבי יוסי הגלילי אומר הכן בחוץ מלאכתך זה מקרא ומשנה וגמרא ועתדה בשדה לך אלו מעשים טובים אחר ובנית ביתך דרוש וקבל שכר

Alternatively, this verse may be understood as relating to Torah study: “Prepare your work outside”; this is the study of Bible. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; this is the study of Mishna. “Afterward you shall build your house”; this is the study of Gemara, the analysis of and deliberation over the statements of the Sages. Alternatively: “Prepare your work outside”; this is the study of Bible and Mishna. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; this is the study of Gemara. “Afterward you shall build your house”; these are good deeds. Rabbi Eliezer, son of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, says: “Prepare your work outside”; this is the study of Bible, and Mishna, and Gemara. “And make it fit for yourself in the field”; these are good deeds. “Afterward you shall build your house”; expound upon new understandings of Torah and receive reward, which is possible only after the initial steps.

ואלו שאינן חוזרין הבונה בית שער כו׳ תנא אם הוסיף בו דימוס אחד חוזר רבי אליעזר אומר אף הבונה בית לבנים בשרון לא היה חוזר תנא מפני שמחדשין אותו פעמים בשבוע

§ The mishna teaches: And these are the men who do not return from the ranks: One who builds a gateway, or an enclosed veranda, or a balcony…Rabbi Yehuda says: Even one who rebuilds a house as it stood originally would not return. A Sage taught (Tosefta 7:18): If one adds one additional row of stones [dimos] to the original structure, he returns from the ranks. That is enough to render it a new building. The mishna further teaches: Rabbi Eliezer says: Even one who builds a new brick house in the Sharon would not return. A Sage taught: This is because the owners renew it twice in a period of seven years, and it is therefore not considered a permanent structure.

ואלו שאין זזין ממקומן בנה בית חדש וחנכו וכו׳ תנו רבנן אשה חדשה אין לי אלא אשה חדשה אלמנה וגרושה מנין תלמוד לומר אשה מכל מקום אם כן מה תלמוד לומר אשה חדשה מי שחדשה לו יצא מחזיר גרושתו שאין חדשה לו

§ The mishna teaches: These are the men who do not even move from their places: One who built a house and dedicated it within the year; one who planted a vineyard and used its fruit for less than a year; one who marries his betrothed and one who marries his yevama, as it is stated: “When a man takes a new wife, he shall not go out with the army, neither shall he be charged with any business; he shall be free for his house one year, and shall cheer his wife whom he has taken” (Deuteronomy 24:5). With respect to a new husband’s exemption, the Sages taught a number of halakhot from this verse. From the term: “A new wife” I have derived only that a man returns only for a new virgin wife. From where do I derive that it applies to a widow or a divorcée? The verse states: “A wife,” in any case. If so, what is the meaning when the verse states: “A new wife?” It is referring to one who is new for him, excluding one who remarries his divorcée, who is not new to him.

תנו רבנן לא יצא בצבא יכול בצבא הוא דלא יצא אבל יספיק מים ומזון ויתקן הדרכים תלמוד לומר ולא יעבר עליו לכל דבר יכול שאני מרבה אף הבונה בית ולא חנכו נטע כרם ולא חללו ארס אשה ולא לקחה תלמוד לומר עליו עליו אי אתה מעביר אבל אתה מעביר על אחרים ומאחר דכתב לא יעבר לא יצא בצבא למה לי לעבור עליו בשני לאוין

The Sages taught with regard to the verse: “He shall not go out with the army” (Deuteronomy 24:5); one might have thought it is with the army that he does not go out, but he does go to supply water and food to the army and to repair the roads for them. Therefore, the verse states: “Neither shall he be charged with any business.” One might have thought that I include even one who has built a house and has not dedicated it, or one who has planted a vineyard and has not used its fruit, or one who has betrothed a woman and has not taken her as his wife? The verse states: “Neither shall he be charged with any business”; you do not charge him with any responsibilities, but you do charge others. The Gemara asks: And since the Torah states: “Neither shall he be charged with any business,” why do I need to be taught: “He shall not go out with the army”? The Gemara answers: The Torah adds this clause so that he will violate two prohibitions if he goes out to war: “He shall not go out with the army,” and: “Neither shall he be charged.”

מתני׳ ויספו השטרים לדבר אל העם וגו׳ רבי עקיבא אומר הירא ורך הלבב כמשמעו שאינו יכול לעמוד בקשרי המלחמה ולראות חרב שלופה רבי יוסי הגלילי אומר הירא ורך הלבב זהו המתיירא מן העבירות שבידו לפיכך תלתה לו התורה את כל אלו שיחזור בגללן

MISHNA: The mishna continues its discussion of the speech given before battle. “And the officers shall speak further to the people, and they shall say: What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? Let him go and return unto his house” (Deuteronomy 20:8). Rabbi Akiva says: “That is fearful and fainthearted” is to be understood as it indicates, that the man is unable to stand in the battle ranks and to see a drawn sword because it will terrify him. Rabbi Yosei HaGelili says: “That is fearful and fainthearted”; this is one who is afraid because of the sins that he has; he, too, returns. Therefore, the Torah provided him with all these additional reasons for exemption from the army so he can ascribe his leaving to one of them. In this way, the sinner may leave the ranks without having to publicly acknowledge that he is a sinner.

רבי יוסי אומר אלמנה לכהן גדול גרושה וחלוצה לכהן הדיוט ממזרת ונתינה לישראל בת ישראל לממזר ולנתין הרי הוא הירא ורך הלבב

Rabbi Yosei says: With regard to one who has betrothed a woman forbidden to him, including a widow betrothed to a High Priest; a divorcée or a yevama who performed ḥalitza [ḥalutza] betrothed to a common priest; a mamzeret or a Gibeonite woman betrothed to an Israelite; or a daughter of an Israelite betrothed to a mamzer or a Gibeonite; this man is he whom the verse calls “fearful and fainthearted.” He fears that his sin will jeopardize his safety in the war.

והיה ככלת השטרים לדבר אל העם ופקדו שרי צבאות בראש העם ובעקיבו של עם מעמידין זקיפין לפניהם ואחרים מאחוריהם וכשילין של ברזל בידיהן וכל המבקש לחזור הרשות בידו לקפח את שוקיו

The mishna continues its discussion. The verse states: “And it shall be, when the officers conclude speaking to the people, that captains of legions shall be appointed at the head of the people” (Deuteronomy 20:9). The mishna adds: As well as at the rear of the people. The officers station guards [zekifin] in front of them, and other guards behind them, and they have iron rods [kashilin] in their hands. And with regard to anyone who attempts to turn back and flee from the war, the guard has license to beat [lekape’aḥ] his legs

שתחילת ניסה נפילה שנאמר נס ישראל לפני פלשתים וגם מגפה גדולה היתה בעם ולהלן הוא אומר וינסו אנשי ישראל מפני פלשתים ויפלו חללים וגו׳

because the beginning of fleeing is a downfall on the battlefield, as it is stated: “Israel has fled before the Philistines, and there has been also a great slaughter among the people” (I Samuel 4:17), and likewise it says further on: “And the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down slain in Mount Gilboa” (I Samuel 31:1).

במה דברים אמורים במלחמות הרשות אבל במלחמות מצוה הכל יוצאין אפילו חתן מחדרו וכלה מחופתה אמר רבי יהודה במה דברים אמורים במלחמות מצוה אבל במלחמות חובה הכל יוצאין אפילו חתן מחדרו וכלה מחופתה

The mishna adds: In what case are all of these statements, with regard to the various exemptions from war, said? They are said with regard to elective wars. But in wars whose mandate is a mitzva, everyone goes, even a groom from his room and a bride from her wedding canopy. Rabbi Yehuda said: In what case are all of these statements, with regard to the various exemptions from war, said? They are said with regard to wars whose mandate is a mitzva. But in obligatory wars, everyone goes, even a groom from his room and a bride from her wedding canopy.

גמ׳ מאי איכא בין רבי יוסי לרבי יוסי הגלילי איכא בינייהו עבירה דרבנן

GEMARA: The Gemara asks: With regard to their understanding that the “fearful and fainthearted” is referring to one harboring sins, what difference is there between the opinion of Rabbi Yosei and the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili? The Gemara answers: There is a practical difference between them with regard to a sin which violates a prohibition by rabbinic law. According to Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, one who has violated a rabbinic law returns home, whereas Rabbi Yosei maintains that one returns home only if he has violated a Torah law, as in the case of a priest who has married a divorcée.

כמאן אזלא הא דתניא שח בין תפילה לתפילה עבירה היא בידו וחוזר עליה מעורכי המלחמה כמאן כרבי יוסי הגלילי

The Gemara asks: In accordance with whose opinion is that which is taught in a baraita: If one spoke between donning the phylactery of the arm and the phylactery of the head, he has a sin on his hands, and due to that sin he returns from the ranks of soldiers waging war. In accordance with whose opinion does this man return? It is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, who maintains that one returns even due to a minor transgression.

מאן תנא להא דתנו רבנן שמע קול קרנות והרתיע הגפת תריסין והרתיע צחצוח חרבות ומים שותתין לו על ברכיו חוזר כמאן לימא רבי עקיבא היא ולא רבי יוסי הגלילי בהא אפילו רבי יוסי הגלילי מודה משום דכתיב ולא ימס את לבב אחיו כלבבו

The Gemara asks: Who is the tanna who taught this halakha that the Sages taught in a baraita: If one heard the sound of trumpets and trembled; or he heard the knocking of shields and he trembled; or he heard the sharpening of swords, and urine was trickling down his knees in fear, he returns from the battlefront. In accordance with whose opinion is this? Shall we say that it is the opinion of Rabbi Akiva, who interprets “fearful and fainthearted” literally, and it is not the opinion of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili? The Gemara answers: In this case even Rabbi Yosei HaGelili would concede that he should return, because it is written: “What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? Let him go and return…lest his brethren’s heart melt as his heart” (Deuteronomy 20:8). Someone so clearly frightened invariably spreads his fear to those around him.

והיה ככלת השטרים כו׳ האי מפני שתחילת ניסה נפילה מפני שתחילת נפילה ניסה מבעי ליה אימא מפני שתחילת נפילה ניסה

§ The mishna teaches: “And it shall be, when the officers conclude speaking to the people, that captains of legions shall be appointed at the head of the people” (Deuteronomy 20:9), and that the guards have the license to beat the legs of anyone who attempts to turn back and flee from the war, because the beginning of fleeing is a downfall. The Gemara is puzzled by the language of the mishna: This phrase: Because the beginning of fleeing is a downfall, appears to be backward. The mishna should have said the opposite: Because the beginning of the downfall is the act of fleeing. The Gemara concedes: Indeed, say that the mishna means: Because the beginning of the downfall is the act of fleeing.

במה דברים אמורים במלחמות הרשות כו׳ אמר רבי יוחנן רשות דרבנן זו היא מצוה דרבי יהודה מצוה דרבנן זו היא חובה דרבי יהודה

The mishna teaches: In what case are these statements said? They are said with regard to elective wars, as opposed to obligatory wars or wars whose mandate is a mitzva. Rabbi Yoḥanan says concerning the various categories of war: The elective war referenced by the Rabbis is the same as a war whose mandate is a mitzva referenced by Rabbi Yehuda, and the war that is a mitzva mentioned by the Rabbis is the same as the obligatory war mentioned by Rabbi Yehuda. Therefore, Rabbi Yehuda is merely stating that the wars which the Rabbis call elective are to be seen as mandated by a mitzva.

אמר רבא מלחמות יהושע לכבש דברי הכל חובה מלחמות בית דוד לרווחה דברי הכל רשות כי פליגי למעוטי נכרים דלא ליתי עלייהו מר קרי לה מצוה ומר קרי רשות נפקא מינה לעוסק במצוה שפטור מן המצוה

Rava said: With respect to the wars that Joshua waged to conquer Eretz Yisrael, all agree that they were obligatory. With respect to the wars waged by the House of King David for the sake of territorial expansion, all agree that they were elective wars. When they disagree, it is with regard to preventative wars that are waged to reduce the gentiles so that they will not come and wage war against them. One Sage, Rabbi Yehuda, called this type of war a mitzva, and one Sage, the Rabbis, called it an elective war. There is a practical difference between these opinions with respect to the principle: One who is engaged in a mitzva is exempt from performing another mitzva. According to Rabbi Yehuda, one fighting in this kind of war is exempt from performing another mitzva.

הדרן עלך משוח מלחמה

 

מתני׳ עגלה ערופה בלשון הקודש שנאמר כי ימצא חלל באדמה ויצאו זקניך ושפטיך שלשה מבית דין הגדול שבירושלים היו יוצאין רבי יהודה אומר חמשה שנאמר זקניך שנים ושפטיך שנים ואין בית דין שקול מוסיפין עליהן עוד אחד

MISHNA: In certain cases of unsolved murder, the Torah prescribes a ritual performed with a heifer whose neck is broken. During the course of this ritual, the judges say a confession in the sacred tongue, Hebrew, as it is stated in the verse: “If one be found slain in the land which the Lord your God has given you to possess it, lying in the field, and it is not known who has smitten him; then your Elders and your judges shall come forth” (Deuteronomy 21:1–2). What is the procedure for this ritual? Three members of the High Court [Sanhedrin] that is in Jerusalem would go out to see the corpse. Rabbi Yehuda says: Five would go out, as it is stated: “Your Elders,” in the plural form, indicating at least two; and it is written: “And your judges,” in the plural form, indicating another two judges; and a court may not be comprised of an even number of judges because they need to be able to issue a majority ruling. Consequently, they add to them one more Elder.

נמצא טמון בגל או תלוי באילן או צף על פני המים לא היו עורפין שנאמר באדמה ולא טמון בגל נפל ולא תלוי באילן בשדה ולא צף על פני המים

If the corpse was found concealed in a pile of stones, or hanging on a tree, or floating on the surface of the water, then the judges would not break the neck of the heifer, as it is stated: “If one be found slain in the land” (Deuteronomy 21:1), and not concealed in a pile of stones; “lying” on the ground and not hanging on a tree; “in the field,” and not floating on the surface of the water.

נמצא סמוך לספר או לעיר שרובה נכרים או לעיר שאין בה בית דין לא היו עורפין אין מודדין אלא לעיר שיש בה בית דין

If a corpse was found close to the border of the country, or close to a city in which the majority of its inhabitants are gentiles, or close to a city that is without a rabbinical court of twenty-three judges, then the judges would not break the heifer’s neck. Additionally, the Elders measure the distance from the corpse only to a city that has a rabbinical court with twenty-three judges.

גמ׳ מאי קאמר אמר רבי אבהו הכי קאמר שנאמר וענו ואמרו ולהלן הוא אומר וענו הלוים ואמרו וגו׳ מה ענייה האמורה להלן בלשון הקודש אף כאן בלשון הקודש

GEMARA: The Gemara asks: What is the first sentence in the mishna saying? The mishna is attempting to prove that the verses read during the ritual of breaking a heifer’s neck are to be recited in Hebrew, yet the verse does not offer any proof of this. Rabbi Abbahu said that this is what the mishna is saying: The confession is recited in Hebrew, as it is stated with regard to the ritual of the heifer whose neck is broken: “And they shall speak and say” (Deuteronomy 21:7), and later it is stated with regard to the curses stated on Mount Ebal: “And the Levities shall speak and say” (Deuteronomy 27:14). Just as the word “speak” that is said later with regard to the Levites is referring to a speech that is recited in the sacred tongue, so too here the declaration is recited in the sacred tongue.

וסדר עגלה ערופה כיצד כי ימצא חלל באדמה ויצאו זקניך ושפטיך שלשה מבית דין הגדול שבירושלים היו יוצאין רבי יהודה אומר חמשה וכו׳

The mishna continues to answer the question of: And how is the ritual of the heifer whose neck is broken ordered? The mishna states: It is written in the Torah: “If one be found slain in the land which the Lord your God has given you to possess it, lying in the field, and it is not known who has smitten him; then your Elders and your judges shall come forth, and they shall measure unto the cities which are round about him that is slain” (Deuteronomy 21:1–2). Three members of the High Court that is in Jerusalem would go forth. Rabbi Yehuda says: Five.

תנו רבנן ויצאו זקניך ושפטיך זקניך שנים ושפטיך שנים ואין בית דין שקול מוסיפין עליהן עוד אחד הרי כאן חמשה דברי רבי יהודה רבי שמעון אומר זקניך שנים ואין בית דין שקול מוסיפין עליהן עוד אחד הרי כאן שלשה

The Sages taught: “And your Elders and judges shall come forth.” “Your Elders” indicates two; “and your judges” also indicates two; and a court may not be composed of an even number of judges, so they add to them one more judge. Therefore, there are five judges. This is the statement of Rabbi Yehuda. Rabbi Shimon says: “Your Elders” indicates two, and as a court may not consist of an even number of judges they add to them one more. Therefore, there are three.

ורבי שמעון נמי הא כתיב ושפטיך ההוא מיבעי ליה למיוחדין שבשופטיך ורבי יהודה מזקני זקניך נפקא

The Gemara asks: But according to Rabbi Shimon as well, isn’t it written: “And your judges”; why does he not agree that this indicates a need for two more judges? The Gemara answers: He requires that additional word “Elders” in order to teach that they must be the distinguished among your judges, i.e., judges from the Sanhedrin. And how does Rabbi Yehuda, who derives from the phrase “and your judges” that there is a need for two additional judges, know that they need to be from the Sanhedrin? He derives it from an extra letter. The verse could have simply stated: The Elders. Instead, it adds a letter and states: “Your Elders,” to teach that they must be the distinguished among the Elders of Israel.

ורבי שמעון אי כתב רחמנא זקני הוה אמינא אפילו זקני השוק כתב רחמנא זקניך ואי כתב רחמנא זקניך הוה אמינא אפילו סנהדרי קטנה כתב רחמנא ושפטיך למיוחדין שבשופטיך

And Rabbi Shimon could say: If the Merciful One had written in the Torah: The Elders, I would say that it includes even the Elders of the marketplace, meaning any honorable people. Therefore, the Merciful One writes in the Torah: “Your Elders,” to indicate specifically Torah Sages, who are revered by all. And if the Merciful One had written in the Torah only: “Your Elders,” I would say that it includes even Elders from a lesser Sanhedrin. Therefore, the Merciful One also writes: “And your judges,” to teach that they must be the distinguished among your judges, from the Great Sanhedrin.

ורבי יהודה גמר זקני זקני מזקני העדה מה להלן מיוחדין שבעדה אף כאן מיוחדין שבעדה

And what is the source of Rabbi Yehuda that the judges may not come from a lesser Sanhedrin? He derives this halakha from a verbal analogy between “Elders,” written here, and “Elders,” written with regard to the offering that the Sanhedrin brings when the nation has sinned as a result of a mistaken ruling. This offering is brought by “the Elders of the congregation” (Leviticus 4:15). Just as there, “the Elders of the congregation” are the distinguished among the congregation, from the Great Sanhedrin, so too, here the verse is referring to the distinguished among the congregation.

אי גמר לגמרה לכולה מילתא מהתם זקניך ושפטיך למה לי אלא ויו ושפטיך למנינא ורבי שמעון

The Gemara asks: If he derives this halakha from this verbal analogy, then he should derive the entire matter from there, including the requirement for five judges. If so, why do I need the phrase “your Elders and your judges”? Rather, it must be that Rabbi Yehuda does not derive the halakha from this verbal analogy. Instead, he understands that the phrase “your Elders” indicates two, and that “your judges” indicates that they must be the distinguished among your judges, and the letter vav in the phrase “and your judges [veshofetekha]” is to add two more to the count of the judges. And Rabbi Shimon does not accept this derivation

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