Friday, August 13, 2010

posts so far for parshat Shofetim

  1. Shoftim sources -- improved.
  2. More on Ibn Ezra and sheidim -- Considering an Ibn Ezra that might, once again, indicate disbelief in sheidim.
  3. "Or any of the host of the heavens, which I have not commanded": What is bothering Rashi? What did Hashem not commandRav Moshe Feinstein on how to interpret a Rashi (or a pasuk according to Rashi). And how Rashi might interpret that Rashi.
  1. Shofetim sources -- links to an online Mikraos Gedolos by perek and aliyah, as well as a slew of meforshim on the parsha and haftara.
  2. A fun story of bribery in Sefarad -- from the Meiri, and how it ties in to tzedek tzedek tirdof.
  3. Are all matzeivot forbidden, or just idolatrous ones? The dispute between Rashi and Ibn Ezra works out to one in dikduk, and how to understand asher.
  4. Why send back the betrothed man, if all is preordained? How different meforshim look at this issue of fate and fatality, and how Divine Providence works on the battlefield.
  5. What is the point of the Eglah Arufah? According to Rambam, to prompt an investigation. Ramban's objection to this, Abarbanel's defense, and finally, Shadal's take on all this.
2008In The Role of the Shoter and the Shofet, I explain Shadal's position that the shoteir is not an enforcement officer of bet din, with a rod to strike people.

In "How does לִשְׁבָטֶיךָ bind?" Shadal states that he (and Rashi) deviate from trup, and thus that it means a shofet and shoter from the tribe.

In Capital Punishment Based On Two Or Three Witnesses, and the False vs. Failed Witness, I address what three witnesses adds over two, and what the pasuk is trying to tell us here. Furthermore, how this interacts with the single eid zomem, rather than eidim zomemim.

If you want to learn through the parsha in Mikraot Gedolot, I broke apart an online one for Shoftim by perek and by aliyah in Shofetim Sources.

In Double Jeopardy, I discuss how the Sifrei derives from צֶדֶק צֶדֶק, תִּרְדֹּף--לְמַעַן תִּחְיֶה that a court should retry a case after a guilty verdict if subsequently evidence is found that clears the accused, but should not retry a case once the person has been found innocent if subsequently evidence is found that would convict him. I propose two derashot: either צֶדֶק means innocent - zakkai, and so multiple times we should run after finding his innocent; or צֶדֶק means justice, but we should run after it multiple times only לְמַעַן תִּחְיֶה, if we will save the accused life.

In "Was The Lubavitcher Rebbe a Navi Sheker?", I explain why if the Rebbe was actually stating as prophecy that he was mashiach or that mashiach would come in his generation, as some in Chabad claim, then he would be a navi sheker. I don't think that the Rebbe was a navi sheker.
On the other hand, here is evidence that the Rebbe did consider himself a navi.

Related, from 2004: The Rambam on how one establishes a navi shekerin Hebrew and in my translation.

Yiftach Bedoro keShmuel Bedoro -- A joke I heard in Rav Schachter's shiur.

Turning to the Right / Left - I analyze this famous derasha in the Sifrei, and then examine Rashi, Siftei Chachamim, and Ramban, to see how they understand it. Then, in A Conflicting View of יָמִין וּשְׂמֹאל, I consider the aternate version of this statement which is cited in Yerushalmi Horayot, which states that one should only follow them if they say that right is right and left is left, but not vice versa. I should really go back now and analyze all these sources again. I think I would have a very different take now.

to be continued...


Joe in Australia said...

On the other hand, here is evidence that the Rebbe did consider himself a navi.

That's impossible. He explicitly says that he's talking about his father in law (his predecessor as Lubavitcher Rebbe), and even says what he means by his FIL's prophecy: the last part of his FIL's catchphrase "Speedily repentence, speedy redemption".

joshwaxman said...

thanks. I was misled by "as is the case with the Previous Rebbe, and is continued in the next generation through his disciples". i still think that is what that parenthetical is supposed to mean (is it?), but i suppose it was added by the blogger.

Joe in Australia said...

It might well be a parenthetical comment. I frankly find it a bit opaque and I think there's some missing context. I only know about the "speedy repentance, speedy redemption" catchphrase through reading old Chabad publications from WW2, and I strongly suspect that most of the Rebbe's audience didn't recognise it.

You can find the old Chabad magazine (Hakria vehakedusha) on and it's a fascinating read. The Rebbe R' Yosef Yitzchok Schneerson ZYA thought that the war was going to continue until the Jews did teshuva, which would immediately be followed by the coming of Moshiach, and it is this which was described as prophecy by the magazine.

joshwaxman said...

thanks. quite fascinating. i'd try to check it out, but unfortunately, my Yiddish is not up to the task.



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