Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The day after the Shabbat, pt iii

In this next entry in this series, I present what the Karaites say. I've already explained in part one why I disagree with this interpretation, based on what seems to be the deliberately established context of Shabbat as day forbidden in labor; and in part two how even if one goes against Chazal's interpretation, one should then maintain consistency in "Shabbat" as weeks, in which case it should mean the day after the last day of Pesach, after the "week" of the seven day Yom Tov, rather than the Saturday which falls in the middle of Pesach, as the Karaites say.

But still, the Karaite position is part of the conversation, and so I present it here, from the pen of the Karaite scholar, Aharon ben Yosef. You can see some of this argumentation as well in Ibn Ezra, as I might present in the next segment.

From the morrow of the 'Shabbat': All 'morrow' which is construct is with heh patach. {Namely, ha as the definite article on the subsequent word. Besides locally a few times, we have in Bemidbar 33:3 מִמָּחֳרַת הַפֶּסַח, and in Yehoshua 5:11 מִמָּחֳרַת הַפֶּסַח, and in I Shmuel 20:27 מִמָּחֳרַת הַחֹדֶשׁ הַשֵּׁנִי}.

The Shabbat, with the heh as definite article, and this is the Shabbat of Creation. {Namely Saturday. It seems he is trying to darshen the heh hayediah to refer to a known Shabbat, perhaps the one mentioned in the previous segment, which is strange given that he gave an explanation immediately above, based on the construct form. Unless he is just laying out the Karaite position, unrelated.}

And the one {=Rav Saadia Gaon} who pleads that the entire year is full of Saturdays {such that if it meant Saturday, why assume the one in the midst of Pesach; such that it cannot mean that} is messing up. For indeed, the morrow of the Shabbat is within the seven days of Matza {during Pesach, based on preceding context}. And so we shall {need?} not seek which Shabbat it is, in the statement:
טו וּסְפַרְתֶּם לָכֶם, מִמָּחֳרַת הַשַּׁבָּת, מִיּוֹם הֲבִיאֲכֶם, אֶת-עֹמֶר הַתְּנוּפָה: שֶׁבַע שַׁבָּתוֹת, תְּמִימֹת תִּהְיֶינָה.15 And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the day of rest, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the waving; seven weeks shall there be complete;

If so, the Scripture has explained to you when the omer is brought and on what day it is waved of the seven days of Matzah. And behold, it has preempted and mentioned the Shabbat {I believe he refers here to pasuk 11, the day of the waving of the omer, rather than pasuk 3, the mention of Shabbat Bereishit}. And Rabbenu Yosef the seer said well that the Shabbat is known in response, just as within the sea on dry land (Shemot 14) {where one need not specify that the sea was the Reed Sea}. And that which he pleads, one can return his plea back upon him: which Yom Tov, the first one of the last one? They said {only} after Yom Tov! And behold, the One Whose Name Shall Be Blessed did not mention regarding Pesach neither Shabbat nor Shabbaton {though it uses this by Succot, Yom Kippur, Rosh HaShanah, in the same perek, but not explicitly by Pesach}. And so to what will one apply the definiteness of the heh of hashabbat? {Though it seems that he might have undermined that above...}

And behold, it does mention {local to the perek} Shabbaton by Rosh HaShannah and Succah, and Shabbat and Yom Kippur. And {in response} behold, it only mentions Shabbaton by Rosh HaShannah and Succah, and Shabbat and Yom Kippur! {This seems to me a weak defense, for these are moadim, and on what basic will he logically distinguish them, rather than noting that the particular word was not used, though it was used extensively for moadim in this very perek?!} And according to their words, it would have been fitting for there to be a mention of "Shabbaton" by the days of Pesach.

And the one who said regarding the Pesach of Yehoshua {in sefer Yehoshua perek 5}, which there is not a proof from it, for it just happened to fall out like that -- {to interject, the Karaites bring this as proof, because the pesukim in Yehoshua read:
י וַיַּחֲנוּ בְנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל, בַּגִּלְגָּל; וַיַּעֲשׂוּ אֶת-הַפֶּסַח בְּאַרְבָּעָה עָשָׂר יוֹם לַחֹדֶשׁ, בָּעֶרֶב--בְּעַרְבוֹת יְרִיחוֹ.10 And the children of Israel encamped in Gilgal; and they kept the passover on the fourteenth day of the month at even in the plains of Jericho.
יא וַיֹּאכְלוּ מֵעֲבוּר הָאָרֶץ, מִמָּחֳרַת הַפֶּסַח--מַצּוֹת וְקָלוּי: בְּעֶצֶם, הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה.11 And they did eat of the produce of the land on the morrow after the passover, unleavened cakes and parched corn, in the selfsame day.
יב וַיִּשְׁבֹּת הַמָּן מִמָּחֳרָת, בְּאָכְלָם מֵעֲבוּר הָאָרֶץ, וְלֹא-הָיָה עוֹד לִבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל, מָן; וַיֹּאכְלוּ, מִתְּבוּאַת אֶרֶץ כְּנַעַן, בַּשָּׁנָה, הַהִיא. {ס}12 And the manna ceased on the morrow, after they had eaten of the produce of the land; neither had the children of Israel manna any more; but they did eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year. {S}
and they calculate that the night of {=after} the 14th was Yehoshua's Pesach offering was Motza'ei Shabbat, and that they ate of the produce of the land the next day, which was the day of the 15th of Nissan, a Sunday. And some Perushim say that this was mere happenstance on this year. See, though, how Rav Shamshon Refael Hirsch tries to use this.}

If so, what is the purpose in the Scripture mentioning it, if there is not something to be derived from it.
{Perhaps one can answer that the purpose was to highlight the time the miracle of the manna ended and the time reliance upon the produce of the land began, rather than clarifying a point in the Torah which was already clear to them.}
And according to their {=the Rabbis} position, Yehoshua alav hashalom acted not in accordance with the law; they also {in pushing it off in a dochak way} say there {are two Pesachs,} the Pesach of Israel {on the 14th} and the Pesach of Hashem {on the 15th; or maybe the reverse? see Vayikra 23:5}. Meanwhile, the only thing called Pesach is the sheep which was slaughtered {which is on the night of the 15th, such that the morrow of that day is the day of the 15th}.

And the truth aids and is not aided {in need of support?}.
{See what I argued in a previous post about how this language indeed seems deliberate echoing, such that Shabbat locally should equal Pesach elsewhere, in which case, it should refer to the end of the holiday of Pesach, the whole first day of holy convocation associated with the Pesach offering; in possible argument against this, see the distinction between making the Pesach [offering] and making the seven-day Chag HaMatzot.}

Next up, bli neder, Rav Shamshon Refael Hirsch, Ibn Ezra, and Shadal.

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