prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler of Kollel Iyun Hadaf
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
ROSH HASHANAH 21-25 - Dedicated in memory of Max (Meir Menachem ben Shlomo ha'Levi) Turkel, by his children Eddie and Lawrence and his wife Jean Turkel/Rafalowicz. Max was a warm and loving husband and father and is missed dearly by his family and friends. His Yahrzeit is 5 Teves.
(a) Our Mishnah describes how two witnesses once testified that they had seen the new moon in the morning in the east and on the following evening in the west. Rebbi Yochanan ben Nuri declared their testimony null and void. Why can the reason for this not be on account of the twenty-four hour period that the moon cannot be seen (as we learned in the first Perek)?
(b) Then what is the reason?
(c) What was the other occasion on which Raban Gamliel accepted the witnesses, and Rebbi Dosa ben Horkinas declared them to be liars?
(d) What problem did Rebbi Dosa have with that?
(a) What did Rebbi Yehoshua (who was the Av Beis-Din) say, that aggravated Raban Gamliel?
(b) What did he therefore order Rebbi Yehoshua to do?
(c) Rebbi Akiva consoled Rebbi Yehoshua with the Pasuk in Emor "Eileh Mo'adei Hash-m Asher Tikre'u Osom b'Moadam". What consolation lies in these words?
(d) How did Rebbi Dosa ben Horkinas (with whom Rebbi Yehoshua was agreeing) also console him, using the Pasuk in Mishpatim "va'Ya'al Moshe v'Aharon, Nadav va'Avihu v'Shiv'im mi'Ziknei Yisrael"?
(a) What did Raban Gamliel's do, when Rebbi Yehoshua arrived at Raban Gamliel's house on the day that he thought ought to have been Yom Kippur?
(b) What did he say to him?
(c) The Beraisa cites Raban Gamliel's reply, regarding the witnesses who claimed that they saw the new moon in the east in the morning ...) in the form of the principle 'Pe'amim she'Ba ba'Aruchah, u'Pe'amim she'Ba bi'Ketzarah' (as we already explained). What does this mean?
(d) The source for this lies in the Pasuk in Tehilim "Asah Yare'ach l'Moadim, Shemesh Yada Mevo'o". How does Rebbi Yochanan explain this Pasuk?
(a) Rebbi Chiya threw a clod of earth at the moon when he saw it on the morning of the thirtieth of Elul. Why did he do that?
(b) Rebbi sent Rebbi Chiya to Ein Itam to declare Rosh Chodesh there, because (assuming this to be a continuation of the previous episode, the people, who had seen the moon throughout the twenty-ninth, would begin talking if the month would subsequently be prolonged). Which other reason might have forced him to send Rebbi Chiya out of Yavneh to fix Rosh Chodesh (even if it was not Tishrei)?
(c) What message did Rebbi instruct Rebbi Chiya to send him as a sign that he had accomplished his mission?
(d) What is the connection between Malchus David and the moon?
(a) The Beis-Din of Raban Gamliel once accepted a viewing (of what they thought was the new moon) on the twenty-ninth of the month. On what grounds did Raban Gamliel reject this outright?
(b) Why did he subsequently eulogize the mother of Ben Zaza, who died that day, far more extensively than he would otherwise have done?
(c) When Rebbi Yehoshua left Raban Gamliel (after he had been issued with his devastating instructions), the Tana relates how R. Akiva found him most distressed. We have already seen in our Mishnah how Rebbi Akiva consoled his Rebbe. How did he go on to explain the three times "Osom" written in Parshas Emor?
(a) The Beraisa cites the Pasuk in Shmuel "va'Yishlach Hash-m es Yeruba'al, v'es Be'dan v'es Yiftach v'es Shmuel. Why does the Navi refer to ...
1. ... Gid'an as Yeruba'al?
2. ... Shimshon as B'dan?
(b) From where do we know that Shmuel was greater than the other three leaders mentioned in this Pasuk?
(c) Chazal therefore link Yeruba'al with Moshe, Shimshon with Aharon and Yiftach with Shmuel. What do we learn from this?
(d) And what do we learn from the Pasuk ...
1. ... "u'Vasa el ha'Kohanim ha'Leviyim v'El ha'Shofet Asher Yih'yeh ba'Yamim ha'Heim" (Shoftim)?
2. ... "Al Tomar Mah Hayah, she'ha'Yamim ha'Rishonim Hayu Tovim me'Eileh"?
(a) What was the original ending of Raban Gamliel's statement regarding a generation whose juniors obey their seniors? To whom was he referring?
(b) On what grounds do we reject it?
(c) So how do we amend it?
***** HADRAN ALACH, 'IM EINAN MAKIRIN' *****
PEREK RA'UHU BEIS-DIN
(a) Our Mishnah rules that 'If Beis-Din and all of Yisrael saw the new moon on the thirtieth, but night fell before they managed to declare Rosh Chodesh, Rosh Chodesh will have to be postponed until the thirty-first of the month. Why does the Tana need to add 'and all of Yisrael'?
(b) And he continues 'Nechkeru ha'Eidim, v'Lo Hispiku Lomar Mekudash ... '. Is this part of the same case, or is it an independent one?
(c) What will be the procedure if the only ones to have seen the new moon are ...
1. ... the twenty-three members of the Sanhedrin Ketanah?
2. ... the three members of Beis-Din? Why is this necessary?
(d) Having taught us the Din in the case where the whole of Yisrael saw the new moon, but did not manage to declare Rosh Chodesh before nightfall, why does the Tana need to add that the same applies to a case where the witnesses were examined ... ? Is this not obvious?
(a) What do we learn from the Pasuk ...
1. ... in Ki Setzei "va'Hayah b'Yom Hanchilo es Banav"?
2. ... in Tehilim (with regard to Kidush ha'Chodesh) "Ki Chok l'Yisrael Hu Mishpat l'Elokei Yakov"?
(a) If three members of Beis-Din saw the new moon, why do they need to testify at all? Why do we not apply the principle 've'Lo Tehei Shemi'ah Gedolah me'Re'iyah'?
(b) Why does the principle of 'v'Lo Tehei Shemi'ah Gedolah me'Re'iyah' not apply to other cases of testimony?
(a) Having established the previous case when they saw the moon at night, what do we learn from the Seifa, when the Beis-Din of three saw the new moon?
(b) Why might we have thought otherwise?
(c) Why then, do we not learn from money-matters?
(a) From which Pasuk in Shoftim do we know that for Beis-Din to issue the death-sentence, there must be testimony (and we will not apply 'v'Lo Tehei Shemi'ah Gedolah me'Re'iyah')?
(b) Can witnesses testify and then sit and judge?
(c) Rebbi Tarfon permits Dayanim who saw a murder to judge. What does Rebbi Akiva say?
(d) On what grounds do we establish our Mishnah (which permits witnesses who saw the moon to sit as judges, provided they do not first testify) even like Rebbi Akiva? Why might Rebbi Akiva concede there that 'Eid Na'aseh Dayan'?