For the week ending 11 June 2011 / 8 Sivan 5771

Menachot 94 - 101

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
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  • The baking process of the two loaves of Shavuot and the weekly showbreads
  • The time and place for such baking
  • Whether the showbreads are affected by the movement of the camps
  • The preparation of the minchat chavitin of the kohen gadol
  • The placing of the showbreads on the table
  • The miracle of the showbreads
  • Dimensions of the altar
  • The staves of the Holy Ark and the parochet
  • The table of Moshe and those of Shlomo
  • The golden table and the marble one at the entrance to the heichal sanctuary
  • The importance of Torah study
  • Consumption of the two loaves and the showbreads
  • Redeeming mincha offerings which became contaminated

Torah and Derech Eretz

  • Menachot 99b

"The study of Torah should not be considered as a pressing obligation but you must also realize that you cannot be free of the obligation."

This seemingly paradoxical statement emanating from the yeshiva of Rabbi Yishmael is interpreted by the commentaries in different ways.

Rashi explains that this is a warning against one's viewing Torah study as a burden which he hopes to be rid off with just token study.

Tosefot suggests that this is a guideline for striking a balance between Torah study and working for a livelihood ("Torah and Derech Eretz"). One should not view Torah study as something he must do to the exclusion of all else, but one cannot free himself of the obligation to study Torah.

It is interesting to note that the approach of Tosefot to the words emanating from the yeshiva of Rabbi Yishmael are consistent with the position taken by Rabbi Yishmael himself (Mesechta Berachot 35b) who interprets the Torah passage Devarim 11:14 "that you may gather in your grain" as an indication that one should combine his Torah study with an earthly occupation.

What the Sages Say

"The second tablets and the broken fragments of the first tablets lay in the Holy Ark to teach you that a Torah scholar who has forgotten his learning should not be shown disrespect."

  • Rabbi Yosef - Menachot 99a

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