NON-JEWISH KINGS (cont.)
Answer #1 (R. Yitzchak): He only gave them gifts so that they would pray for him and his children.
Question: Is that not appropriate? Surely we find in a Beraisa that if someone gives money to charity so that his children will live long lives and so that he will merit the World-to-Come, is considered utterly righteous!
Answer: It is befitting for a Jew, but not for a non-Jew (who will be resentful if he is not rewarded).
Answer #2: Daryavesh was evil in that he commanded to build wood into the walls of the Temple, so that he could burn it in the event of a revolt by the Jews (Ezra 6,4).
Question: King Shlomo also built wood into the walls!(Melachim I (6,36)
Answer: Shlomo placed the wood above the stone, embedded it inside the wall, and covered it with plaster and Daryavesh did the opposite.
Answer #3 (R. Yosef/ R. Yitzchak): He was evil in that the "shegal" sat beside him;(Nechemyah 2,6) Rabbah bar Leima explains that "shegal" is a female dog to sleep with him.
Question: There is a verse that speaks of the "Shegal" drinking wine!(Daniel 5,23)
Answer: A dog can be trained to drink wine.
Question: There is a prophecy that the "Shegal" shall stand for Israel!
Answer: It means that Jews will be rewarded since the Torah is as beloved to Israel as a dog is to non-Jews.
Alternative answer: "Shegal" generally means a "queen" However, Rabbah bar Leimah had a tradition that in this case, it refers to a dog, who is termed "Shegal" because it was as beloved to him as a queen or because it sat on the queen's throne.
Answer #4: He turned evil in that he later placed limits on the extent of his gifts.(Ezra 7,23)
Question: Perhaps he later became aware of the exact needs of the Jews for building the Temple?
Conclusion: The former answers are the correct ones.
THE NEW YEAR FOR FESTIVALS
Question: How can the new year begin on the first of Nisan when Pesach is on the fifteenth?
Answer (R. Chisda): It means that Nisan is the month whose festival is the new year for festivals.
The relevance of the new year for festivals is when someone vows to bring a Korban . The Tanna sets a date after which he transgresses the sin of Bal Te'acher; He follows the view of R. Shimon in the Beraisa:
(Tana Kama) When three festivals have elapsed, one has transgressed Bal Te'acher.
(R. Shimon) Only when three festivals after Pesach have elapsed.
Support to R Shimon (R. Shimon bar Yochai): Pesach must begin the sequence, thus sometimes four or five festivals will pass before Bal Te'acher is transgressed.
THE BERAISA OF BAL TE'ACHER
The Beraisa discusses Damin, Arachin, Charamin, Hekdesh, Chatas, Ashamos, Olos, Shelamim, Tzedakos, Ma'asros, Bechor, Ma'aser Behemah, Korban Pesach, Leket, Shikchah and Peyah.
(Tana Kama) Bal Te'acher is transgressed after any three festivals have passed.
(R. Shimon) The three festivals must be in a sequence with Pesach first.
(R. Meir) Bal Te'acher is transgressed after any single festival has passed.
(R. Eliezer ben Yaakov) Bal Te'acher is transgressed after two festivals have passed.
(R. Eliezer ben Shimon) Bal Te'acher is transgressed after Sukkos has passed.
ANALYZING THE BERAISA OF BAL TE'ACHER
The Tana Kama's reasoning is that the additional listing of three festivals (Devarim 16,16) teaches us that Bal Te'acher is transgressed after they have passed.
R. Shimon's reason is that Sukkos need not be mentioned with the other two festivals, as that is the immediate context; its mention tells us that it must be last in the sequence.
R. Meir's reason is that the Torah (Devarim 12, 5-6) tells him to "come to the Temple and bring it (the offering)"; hence, he transgresses Bal Te'acher after missing one such festival opportunity.
The Rabanan counter that indeed it is a Mitzvas Aseh, but not Bal Te'acher.
R. Meir, however, maintains that once the Torah makes it clear that one is obligated to bring the Korban at the first Regel, it stands to reason that he will transgress the Lo Sa'aseh of Bal Te'acher for not bringing it at that time.
R. Eliezer ben Yaakov's reason is that the Torah (Bamidbar 29,39) speaks of festivals in the plural; thus, he transgresses Bal Te'acher after two festivals have elapsed.
The Rabanan counter that the verse is for R. Yonah's inference (by way of a hekesh) that the goat-offerings of any of the festivals is equally effective in atoning for impure entering into the Beis ha'Mikdash or eating of its offerings.
R. Eliezer ben Shimon's reason is that Sukkos need not be mentioned, as that is the immediate context; its mention tells us that the passage of it alone causes the transgression of Bal Te'acher.
Question: What do R. Meir and R. Eliezer ben Yaakov learn from the Torah's repeated listing of the three festivals?
Answer: They use it for the exegesis of R. Elazar citing R. Oshiya: It lists Shavuos together with Pesach to teach us that Shavuos has a seven-days of Tashlumim (reparations to bring the Chagigah Korban), just like Pesach.
Question: Why not compare Shavuos to Sukkos and give it an eight-day period for Tashlumim?
Answer: The eighth day of Sukkos is an independent festival.
Objection: The eighth day's status as an independent festival was stated regarding P.Z.R.K.Sh.B. (Payis, Zman, Regel, Korban, Shir and Berachah); but regarding Tashlumim, it is part of Sukkos, as stated in a Mishnah?
Replacement answer: It is proper to learn the Tashlumim period of Shavuos from the smaller period of Pesach than from the longer period of Sukkos because it is definite.
Question: If so, why is Sukkos mentioned with the others?
Answer: To link it to Pesach and thereby deduce that just as Pesach requires an overnight stay in Jerusalem after the first day, so does Sukkos.