Parsha Q&A - Mishpatim

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Parsha Q&A

This issue is dedicated to the memories of Moshe Ben Yakov Baruch (Michael Leigh) Z'L, 22nd Shevat, and Yetta Freida Bat Avraham Gutman (Nettie Leigh) Z'L, 26th Shevat

Parshas Mishpatim

For the week ending 27 Shevat 5756; 16 & 17 February 1996

  • Parsha Questions
  • Bonus Question
  • I Did Not Know That!
  • Recommended Reading List
  • Answers to Parsha Questions
  • Answer to Bonus Question
  • The Chronology of the Giving of the Torah According to Rashi
  • Subscription Information
  • Ohr Somayach Home Page

  • Parsha Questions

    Answers | Contents
    1. Where did the Sanhedrin hold court?
    2. Who supports the family of an Eved Ivri (Hebrew servant)?
    3. If an Eved Ivri wished to remain with his master after the six years of servitude are completed, what must be done to the servant?
    4. What special mitzvah does the Torah give to the master of an Amah Ivria (Hebrew maidservant)?
    5. What three obligations does a man have toward his wife?
    6. What is the penalty for: a) kidnapping; b) cursing one's parents; c) murder?
    7. What is the penalty for someone who wants to murder a particular person, but accidentally kills another person instead?
    8. An ordinary ox gores a more valuable ox. What is the maximum amount that the owner of the damaging animal is obligated to pay if his animal had previously gored less than three times?
    9. Where in the Parsha does the Torah demonstrate its concern for the honor of the wicked?
    10. What degree of force may one use to resist a thief who is breaking-and-entering?
    11. What fine does the Torah impose upon one who steals and is caught?
    12. A person borrows an object from his employee, and it is destroyed accidentally. What financial obligation does the borrower have to the lender?
    13. What constraints are placed upon a lender?
    14. Where in the Parsha does the dog receive its reward, and why?
    15. Which verse forbids listening to slander?
    16. What constitutes a majority ruling in a capital case?
    17. What happens to a person who the courts mistakenly exonerate?
    18. How many prohibitions are transgressed when cooking meat and milk together?
    19. How many of the seven Canaanite nations lived east of the Jordan River?
    20. How did Moshe manage to "sprinkle the blood" on all of the Jewish People (24:8)?

    Bonus Question
    In verse 21:19, the Torah commands the damager to pay the physician's fee for healing the victim. From this we learn that a doctor is permitted to heal injuries inflicted by other people.

    How do we know that a physician is permitted to treat also ordinary illnesses?

    I Did Not Know That!

    "The word of both of them (the plaintiff and the defendant) shall come before haelohim (the judges)" (22:8).
    From here we see that anywhere Hashem's name Elokim is used it refers to Hashem as absolute Judge.

    Recommended Reading List

    Parallel with Ten Commandments
    (first part) Divine Role in Human Justice
    The Severity of Cursing One's Parents
    Death Penalty and Ransom
    (first part) Two kinds of Shomrim
    Prosecutor of the Helpless
    Holiness of Kashrus
    Blessings and Destruction
    Matan Torah Chronology

    Sefer Hachinuch
    Human Kindness
    Divine Kindness
    Capital Punishment
    Penalty for Anger
    Despising Destruction
    The Danger of Sorcery
    Why Hashem Creates the Poor
    Respect for Authority
    Antidote to Anarchy
    Relations with Heathens

    Answers to this Week's Questions

    Questions | Contents

    All references are to the verses and Rashi's commentary, unless otherwise stated

    1. 21:1 - Adjacent to the Mizbe'ach (Altar).
    2. 21:3 - The master of the servant.
    3. 21:6 - His master must bore his right ear with an awl.
    4. 21:8,9 - The Torah mandates a special mitzvah to marry her.
    5. 21:10 - Food, clothing, marital relations.
    6. Execution by: a) 21:16 - strangulation; b) 21:17 - stoning; c) 21:20 - sword.
    7. 21:23 - One opinion: The murderer deserves the death penalty. Another opinion: The murderer is exempt from capital punishment, but must compensate the heirs of his victim.
    8. 21:35 - The full value of his own animal.
    9. 21:37 - When a thief steals a lamb, he degrades himself by carrying it on his shoulders. The Torah counts this degradation as part of the thief's punishment, and reduces the fine he pays when he is caught.
    10. 22:1 - Whatever necessary, even at the expense of the thief's life.
    11. 22:3 - He pays double the value of the object stolen.
    12. 22:14 - None, he is exempt from payment.
    13. 22:24 - The lender may neither demand the debt forcibly nor charge interest.
    14. 22:30 - Non-kosher meat is preferentially fed to dogs as a reward for their being silent on the night of Makkas Bechoros (Shemos 11:7).
    15. 23:1 - Targum Onkolos translates "don't bear a false report" as "don't receive a false report".
    16. 23:2 - A simple majority is needed for an acquittal. A majority of two is needed for a ruling of guilty.
    17. 23:7 - Hashem exacts punishment.
    18. 23:19 - One. There are three prohibitions involving the combining of milk and meat. Only one is violated by cooking.
    19. 23:28 - Two, the Hitites and the Canaanites.
    20. 24:8 - Targum Onkolos translates "He poured the blood on the Altar as an atonement for the people."

    Bonus Question
    From the phrase "v'rapo y'rapei" (and heal, he will heal). If the Torah had written only "rapo," one might think that a doctor is allowed to heal only injuries caused by others, since they are not Divinely decreed, but illnesses due to Divine decree would not be under the physician's jurisdiction. Thus, the Torah wrote the word twice - "v'rapo y'rapei" - to teach that a doctor may treat even ordinary illnesses.
    Tosafos, Bava Kama 85a

    Written and Compiled by Rabbi Eliyahu Kane
    General Editor: Rabbi Moshe Newman
    Production Design: Lev Seltzer
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