AVODAH ZARAH 4 - Two weeks of study material have been dedicated by Mrs. Estanne Abraham Fawer to honor the Yahrzeit of her father, Rav Mordechai ben Eliezer Zvi (Rabbi Morton Weiner) Z'L, who passed away on 18 Teves 5760. May the merit of supporting and advancing Dafyomi study -- which was so important to him -- during the weeks of his Yahrzeit serve as an Iluy for his Neshamah.

1)

(a)The third comparison of Adam to fish in the sea is not confined to Yisrael, but to national, interpersonal relationships. What is it?

(b)What is the antidote to the problem? What does Rebbi Chyanina S'gan ha'Kohanim sayyt about this in Pirkei Avos?

(c)How does Rav Chin'na bar Papa reconcile the Pasuk in Iyov "Shakai, Lo Metzanuhu Sagi Ko'ach" with the Pasuk in Tehilim "Gadol Adoneinu ve'Rav Ko'ach" and the Pasuk in the Shirah "Yemincha Hash-m Ne'edari ba'Ko'ach"?

(d)And how does Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina reconcile the Pasuk in Yeshayah which states that Hash-m does not become angry, with the Pasuk in Nachum which describes Him as a G-d of vengeance and fury?

(e)Rav Chin'na bar Papa disagrees. How does he reconcile the two Pesukim even assuming that both refer to Yisrael? What did Hash-m mean when He said 'Mi Yitneni she'Lo Nishba'ti'?

1)

(a)The third comparison of Adam to fish in the sea that pertains to the whole of mankind is that - like fish in the sea (where the big fish swallow the little ones) - people would swallow each other alive ...

(b)... were it not for their fear of the ruling power. Hence Rebbi Chanina S'gan ha'Kohanim says in Pirkei Avos that - 'One should Daven for the welfare of the ruling power, because were it not for one's inherent fear of it, one man would swallow the other alive'.

(c)To reconcile the Pasuk in Iyov "Shakai, Lo Metzanuhu Sagi Ko'ach" with the Pesukim in Tehilim "Gadol Adoneinu ve'Rav Ko'ach" and in the Shirah "Yemincha Hash-m Ne'dari ba'Ko'ach" - Rav Chanina bar Papa establishes the former with regard to Hash-m sitting in judgment, and the latter, with regard to war.

(d)And Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina reconciles the Pasuk in Yeshayah which states that Hash-m does not become angry, with the Pasuk in Nachum which describes Him as a G-d of vengeance and fury - by establishing the former with regard to Yisrael, and the second, with regard to the other nations.

(e)Rav Chin'na bar Papa reconciles the two Pesukim even assuming that both refer to Yisrael - by explaining that although Hash-m is prone to become angry, He does not, because He swore that He would not. And when He said 'Mi Yitneni she'Lo Nishba'ti', He meant that - He (sometimes) wishes that He had not made that oath.

2)

(a)Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina's explanation conforms to that of Rebbi Alexandri (see Tosfos DH 've'Haynu'). How does Rebbi Alexandri interpret the Pasuk in Zecharyah "Ve'hayah ba'Yom ha'Hu Avakesh Leshashmid es Kol ha'Goyim"? What does Hash-m want to find out before making His decision?

(b)What will be the result of His inquiry?

(c)Yisrael however, He treats like a Pid shel Tarnegoles, like Rava explains. What does this mean? What is a 'Pid shel Tarnegoles'?

(d)How will we then interpret the Pasuk in Iyov "Im be'Fido lahen Shu'a"?

2)

(a)Rebbi Chama b'Rebbi Chanina's explanation conforms with that of Rebbi Alexandri (see Tosfos DH 've'Haynu'), who interprets the Pasuk in Zecharyah "be'Yom ha'Hu Avakesh Leshashmid es Kol ha'Goyim" to mean that - Hash-m wants to find out whether the Nochrim have any merits or not, before making His decision.

(b)The result of His inquiry will be that - if they do not, He will destroy them.

(c)Yisrael however, He treats like a Pid shel Tarnegoles, like Rava explains - that Hash-m punishes them little by little (like a hen pecks around for its food).

(d)The Pasuk in Iyov "Im be'Fido lahen Shu'a" therefore means that - by punishing Yisrael little by little, Hash-m saves them for the World to Come.

3)

(a)What will the same Pasuk mean if "be'Fido" refers, not to punishments, but to Mitzvos?

(b)Alternatively, "Shu'a" might be referring to a merit, which saves them from total annihilation. Which merit?

(c)According to Rebbi Aba, Hash-m wanted to save Yisrael from total annihilation by punishing them monetarily (see Agados Maharsha). What does Rav Papi in the name of Rava say?

(d)What was Yisrael's reaction to this act of kindness (in both cases).

3)

(a)If in the same Pasuk in Iyov "be'Fido" refers, not to punishments, but to Mitzvos, then it will mean that - even if Yisrael have performed just a few Mitzvos (like a hen pecking in a trash-heap), Hash-m will add them up to make up a large total.

(b)Alternatively, "Shu'a" might be referring to the merit of - Tefilah (like we say in Ashrei "ve'es (Shav'asam Yishma ... "), which saves them from total annihilation.

(c)According to Rebbi Aba, Hash-m wanted to save Yisrael from total annihilation by punishing them monetarily. According to Rav Papi in the name of Rava, it refers to - striking them bodily (see Agados Maharsha).

(d)Either way, Yisrael reacted to this act of kindness - by accusing Hash-m of punishing them unjustly (and not in order to reward them later).

4)

(a)What did Rebbi Avahu tell a certain Miyn (heretic) about Rav Safra?

(b)How did Rav Safra benefit from Rebbi Avahu's praise?

(c)What did the Minim ask Rav Safra from the Pasuk in Amos "Rak Eschem Yada'ti mi'Kol Mishpechos ha'Adamah, al-Kein Efkod aleichem es Kol Avanoseichem"?

(d)What did they mean when they said 'Ma'an de'Is leih Sisya (or Susya), be'Rachmeih Masik leih'?

4)

(a)Rebbi Avahu told a certain Miyn (heretic) that - Rav Safra was a great man.

(b)Rav Safra benefited from Rebbi Avahu's praise - by being released from taxes for thirteen years.

(c)Based on the Pasuk "Rak Eschem Yada'ti mi'Kol Mishpechos ha'Adamah, al-kein Efkod aleichem es Kol Avanoseichem", the Minim asked Rav Safra - why, if Hash-m loves Yisrael, would He choose to punish them?

(d)When they said 'Ma'an de'Is leih Sisya (or Susya), be'Rachmeih Masik leih', they meant to ask - whether it was the normal procedure to vent one's anger on one's best friend (or to give him one's wild horse to ride).

5)

(a)How did the Minim react when Rav Safra was unable to answer?

(b)How did Rebbi Avahu ...

1. ... reconcile his praise of Rav Safra with latter's inability to answer their question?

2. ... explain the fact that he was able to answer their questions, whereas Rav Safra was not?

3. ... actually solve their problem? What analogy did he give regarding a man who borrowed money from two people?

5)

(a)When Rav Safra was unable to answer - the Minim placed a Sudar (the head-gear of a Talmid-Chacham) around his neck and began to torment him.

(b)Rebbi Avahu ...

1. ... reconciled his praise of Rav Safra with the latter's inability to answer their question - by confining Rav Safra's area of excellence to Torah she'be'Al Peh, but not so much to Torah she'bi'Kesav.

2. ... ascribed the fact that he (Rebbi Avahu) was able to answer their questions, whereas Rav Safra was not to the fact that - he had to deal with them (the Miynim) on an ongoing basis, and had therefore to be constantly on his toes, whereas Rav Safra was not accustomed to dealing with them.

3. ... Rebbi Avahu solved their problem - with an analogy to a man who borrows money from two people, one of whom he likes, whilst the other, he doesn't. The former, he pays little by little, until he has paid off the debt; the latter, he only pays when the expiry date arrives, in one go Similarly, Hash-m punishes Yisrael for their sins little by little in this world, so that their slate remains clean, to receive reward in the World to Come for all their good deeds; whereas He allows the sins of the Nochrim to accumulate, so that He can later deny them entry in the World to Come.

6)

(a)How does Rav Aba bar Kahana interpret the word "Chalilah" in the Pasuk in Vayeira (in connection with Avraham's Tefilah for S'dom) "Chalilah L'cha me'Asos ka'Davar ha'Zeh Lehamis Tzadik im Rasha"?

(b)How do we reconcile this with the Pasuk in Yechezkel ...

1. ... "Ve'hichrati mi'Mecha Tzadik ve'Rasha"?

2. ... "u'mi'Mikdashai (which the Beraisa cited by Rav Yosef translates as "mi'Mekudashai") Tacheilu"? Why should the Tzadikim be the first to suffer?

(c)How does Rav Yosef describe these Tzadikim?

(d)How does Rav Papa reconcile the two Pesukim "Keil Zo'em be'Chol Yom" (Tehilim), and "Lifnei Za'amo Mi Ya'amod" (Nachum)?

6)

(a)Rav Aba bar Kahana interprets the word "Chalilah" in the Pasuk in Vayeira (in connection with Avraham's Tefilah for S'dom) "Chalilah L'cha me'Asos ka'Davar ha'Zeh Lehamis Tzadik im Rasha" to mean that - it is Chulin (profane) for Hash-m to do such a thing.

(b)We reconcile this with the Pasuk ...

1. ... "Ve'hichrati mi'Mecha Tzadik ve'Rasha" - by establishing the former by a complete Tzadik, and the latter, by a partial one.

2. ... "u'mi'Mikdashai (which the Beraisa cited by Rav Yosef translates as "mi'Mekudashai) Tacheilu" (that Hash-m instructed the angel to first punish the Tzadikim) - because they had the ability to rebuke the people but failed to do so (in which case they were not considered complete Tzadikim).

(c)Rav Yosef describes these Tzadikim as - people who kept the Torah from 'Alef' until 'Tav'.

(d)Rav Papa reconciles the Pasuk in Tehilim "Keil Zo'em be'Chol Yom" with the Pasuk in Nachum "Lifnei Za'amo Mi Ya'amod" - by establishing the former with regard to the community (who are able to survive Hash-m's anger), and the latter, with regard to individuals (who are not).

7)

(a)What is the Beraisa referring to when it gives the time duration of Hash-m's anger as one 53,848 (or 8,888) of an hour each day?

(b)Who was the only person who knew exactly when that moment was?

(c)We learn this from the Pasuk in Balak "Ve'yode'a Da'as Elyon". Why can we not interpret it literally?

7)

(a)When the Beraisa gives the time duration of Hash-m's anger as one 53,848 (or 8,888) of an hour each day - it is referring to Hash-m's anger.

(b)The only person who knew exactly when that moment was - was Bil'am.

(c)We learn this from the Pasuk "Ve'yode'a Da'as Elyon", which we cannot interpret literally - because if he could not even fathom the mind of his ass, as we will soon see, how could he possibly fathom the mind of Hash-m?

4b----------------------------------------4b

8)

(a)What did Bil'am's ass assert, when Bilam explained to Balak's messengers that ...

1. ... he was riding her only because he had left his horse in the meadow?

2. ... usually, he only used her to carry loads?

3. ... he only rode on her occasionally?

(b)What else did she say? What is the significance of the words "ha'Haskein Hiskanti ... "?

(c)If Bil'am knew the exact moment that Hash-m was angry each day, why did he not use that knowledge to curse Yisrael? What does this have to do with the Pasuk in Michah "Lema'an Da'as Tzidkos Hash-m"?

(d)What would have happened if Hash-m had not done so?

8)

(a)Bil'am's ass asserted, when Bilam explained to Balak's messengers that ...

1. ... he was riding her only because he had left his horse in the meadow - that she was his ass.

2. ... usually, he only used her to carry loads - that he used her for riding on too.

3. ... he only rode on her occasionally - that he rode on her regularly ...

(b)... and what's more, she said - if that is what he used her for by day, by night, he used her for more intimate purposes (as is hinted in the words "ha'Hashkein Hiskanti ... ", which we find in Shmuel, in connection with Avishag ha'Shunamis, by whom the Pasuk writes "Vat'hi lo Sochenes" ('and she became his [David's] warmer').

(c)Even though Bil'am knew the exact moment that Hash-m was angry each day, he was unable to use that knowledge to curse Yisrael - because throughout that period, Hash-m, in His kindness, simply quashed His anger, as the Pasuk in Michah hints when it writes "Lema'an Da'as Tzidkos Hash-m".

(d)If Hash-m had not done so - then not a Jew would have remained, by the time Bilam had finished with them.

9)

(a)How did Hash-m's intervention in this matter reflect in Bilam's words to Balak

(b)What do we learn from the Pasuk in Tehilim "Ki Rega be'Apo, Chayim bi'Retzono" (or from the Pasuk in Yeshayah "Chavi Kim'at Rega ad Ya'avor Za'am")?

(c)During which period of day does Hash-m's anger occur?

(d)What does this have to do with a rooster's comb?

(e)What is the problem with this statement the way it stands? How do we therefore explain it?

9)

(a)Hash-m's intervention reflects in Bilam's words to Balak - when he said "Mah Kaboh Lo Kaboh Keil, u'Mah Ez'am, Lo Ez'am Hash-m" (meaning that Bil'am could not evoke Hash-m's anger when Hash-m was not angry).

(b)We learn from the Pasuk in Tehilim "Ki Rega be'Apo, Chayim bi'Retzono" (or from the Pasuk in Yeshayah "Chavi Kim'at Rega ad Ya'avor Za'am") that - Hash-m's anger each day lasts only a split second ( as we explained earlier).

(c)Hash-m's anger occurs - during the first three hours of the day ...

(d)... when the rooster's comb turns white.

(e)The problem with this statement the way it stands is that - the rooster's comb turns white regularly. What the Tana therefore means is - that on those other occasions, the white is dotted with red specks, and it is only at that specific moment that it turns completely white.

10)

(a)What did Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi attempt to do with a certain Miyn who would not stop tormenting him?

(b)What happened to prevent his plan from succeeding?

(c)What did learn from this episode? Besides the Pasuk in Mishlei "Gam Anush la'Tzadik Lo Tov", which Pasuk in 'Ashrei' did he quote?

(d)Based on Rebbi Meir in a Beraisa, what is the cause of Hash-m's anger each morning?

10)

(a)When a certain Miyn persisted in tormenting him - Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi placed a rooster between the legs of his bed, intending to curse him when he saw the comb turn white.

(b)His plan failed however - when at the crucial moment he dozed off.

(c)He took this as a sign from Heaven that - it is not correct for a Tzadik to use Hash-m in this way. Besides the Pasuk in Mishlei "Gam Anush la'Tzadik Lo Tov", he quoted the Pasuk in 'Ashrei' "ve'Rachamav al Kol Ma'asav" (that Hash-m has mercy on all His creations, even on Resha'im!

(d)Based on Rebbi Meir in a Beraisa, the cause of Hash-m's anger each morning is - the fact that at around the time in question, the kings of the world place their crowns on their heads and bow down to the rising sun.

11)

(a)Why does Rav Yosef advise an individual not to Daven Musaf during the first three hours of the first day of Rosh Hashanah?

(b)In that case, why does the same not pertain to ...

1. ... a community?

2. ... Davenning Shachris at that ime?

(c)Why specifically Musaf of Rosh Hashanah? Why not Musaf the whole year round?

11)

(a)Rav Yosef advises an individual not to Daven Musaf during the first three hours of the first day of Rosh Hashanah - because, since everyone is judged on that day, by Davening at that time, he attracts Hash-m's attention, so to speak, and is judged then, and it is during those three hours that Hash-m is angry (as we just explained).

(b)The same does not pertain to ...

1. ... a community - because the merits of the community are great.

2. ... Davenning Shachris at that time on one's own - because the community Davens Shachris at that time, in which case the individual will get by together with them.

(c)This applies specifically to Musaf of Rosh Hashanah - when we say Malchuyos, Zichronos and Shofros, and not to Musaf the whole year round, which is merely praises of Hash-m and a description of the Korbanos brought on that day.

12)

(a)What problem do we have with this from the first three hours of Hash-m's schedule that we cited above?

(b)Initially, we answer 'Eipuch' (inverting the order of the first two periods), in which case Hash-m does indeed judge during the first three hours of the day. What alternative answer do we give, leaving the Beraisa intact? Why should one nevertheless avoid Davenning Musaf during the first period, and not during the second?

(c)In that case, how will we explain the Pasuk in Tehilim "Mishp'tei Hash-m Emes"?

(d)What is the meaning of the Pasuk in Mishlei ...

1. ... "Emes Keneih"?

2. ... "ve'Al Timkor"?

12)

(a)The problem with this is that - as we learned earlier, during the first quarter of the day, Hash-m does not judge, but studies Torah.

(b)Initially, we answer 'Eipuch' - switching the order of the first two time-periods of Hash-m's time-table, in which case Hash-m does indeed judge during the first three hours of the day. Alternatively, we leave the Beraisa remains intact and one should nevertheless avoid Davenning Musaf during the first period, and not during the second - because, since the Torah is referred to as 'Emes', Hash-m will not go 'li'Fenim mi'Shuras ha'Din' (beyond the letter of the law [to deal with him leniently]); 'Din' on the other hand, allows Hash-m to judge as He sees fit, even to go beyond the letter of the law should the need arise.

(c)This does not clash with the Pasuk in Tehilim "Mishp'tei Hash-m Emes" - which is referring (not to Midas ha'Din [the court judgment of which we are speaking], but) to the category of Mitzvos called 'Mishpatim'.

(d)In the Pasuk in Mishlei "Emes Keneih ve'Al Timkor", the meaning of ...

1. ... "Emes Keneih" is that - one should be prepared to spend money in order to study Torah.

2. ... "ve'Al Timkor" is that - one should teach it free of charge.

13)

(a)How does Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi explain the Pasuk in Yeshayah ...

1. ... "Yitnu Eidehen Ve'yitzdaku"?

2. ... "Yishme'u Ve'yomru Lach"?

(b)And what does he extrapolate from the Pasuk in Va'eschanan "Ki hi Chochmaschem u'Vinaschem le'Einei ha'Amim"?

13)

(a)Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi explains the Pasuk in Yeshayah ...

1. ... "Yitnu Eidehen Ve'yitzdaku" to mean that - all the Mitzvos that Yisrael have performed will come and testify on their behalf.

2. ... "Yishme'u Ve'yomru Lach" that - the Nochrim will come and support that testimony.

(b)And he extrapolates from the words "le'Einei ha'Amim" (in the Pasuk in Va'eschanan "Ki hi Chochmaschem u'Vinaschem le'Einei ha'Amim") that - those Mitzvos will tap the Nochrim on the face (see Agados Maharsha), to show them up for declining to accept the Torah when it was offered to them.

14)

(a)What does Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi extrapolate from the Pasuk in Va'eschanan (said by Hash-m at Har Sinai) "Mi Yiten Ve'hayah Levavam Zeh lahem Le'yir'ah Osi Kol ha'Yamim", with regard to the sin of the Golden Calf?

(b)Rebbi Yochanan in the name of Rebbi Shimon ben Yochai said the same thing. What did he also extrapolate from the Pasuk in Tehilim "ve'Libi Chalal be'Kirbi" (in connection with the sin of David and Bas-Sheva)?

(c)Why was it necessary to teach us the Chidush of Teshuvah twice? Why, had the Torah taught it to us in the case of ...

1. ... a Yachid, would we not have automatically known that the same applies to a Tzibur?

2. ... a Tzibur, would we not have automatically known that the same applies to a Yachid?

(d)What is the connection between Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmeni Amar Rebbi Yonasan's interpretation of the Pasuk in Shmuel "Ne'um David ... u'Ne'um ha'Gever Hukam Ol" and the previous statement of Rebbi Shimon bar Yochai?

14)

(a)Rebbi Yehoshua ben Levi extrapolates from the Pasuk in Va'eschanan (said by Hash-m at Har Sinai) "Mi Yiten Ve'hayah Levavam Zeh lahem Le'yir'ah Osi Kol ha'Yamim" - that Yisrael's level of Yir'as Shamayim at that time did not warrant the sin of the Golden Calf, and that consequently, it must have been orchestrated by Hash-m, to teach us that the Teshuvah of a Tzibur is accepted.

(b)Rebbi Yochanan in the name of Rebbi Shimon bar Yochai said the same thing. He also extrapolated from the Pasuk in Tehilim "ve'Libi Chalal be'Kirbi" - that, by the same token, David's heart was devoid of sin, and he was therefore unlikely to have sinned with Bas-Sheva if Hash-m had not orchestrated it, to teach us that the Teshuvah of a Yachid is acceptable, too.

(c)Had the Torah taught us the Chidush of Teshuvah only in the case of ...

1. ... a Yachid, we would not have automatically known that the same applies to a Tzibur - whose sin is more widely known, and which therefore constitutes Chilul Hash-m.

2. ... a Tzibur, we would not have automatically known that the same applies to a Yachid - whose collective merits are infinitely less than those of a Tzibur.

(d)Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmeni Amar Rebbi Yonasan interprets the Pasuk in Shmuel "Ne'um David ... u'Ne'um ha'Gever Hukam Ol" to mean that - David was the one to establish the yoke of Teshuvah, bearing out the previous statement of Rebbi Shimon bar Yochai.

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