Talmud Tips

For the week ending 22 August 2015 / 7 Elul 5775

Nazir 2 - 8

by Rabbi Moshe Newman
The Color of Heaven Artscroll

We learn in a beraita: The verse “This is my G-d and I will glorify Him” in Shmot 15:2 teaches that “I will beautify myself before Him in mitzvahfulfillment”. For example, “I will make a beautiful succah, a beautiful lulav, a beautiful tzitzit and a beautiful Sefer Torah.” (See Shulchan Aruch Aruch Chaim 656:1 for the practical, financial implications in beautiful mitzvah fulfillment, often referred to as “hidur mitzah” — “beautifying a mitzvah”.)

  • Nazir 2b

Mishna: “A term of being a nazir that is unspecified in length is set as being 30 days.”

Why is it this specific time span? Rav Matna on our daf cites a verse that states, “kodesh yihiyeh” — “he will be holy”, and the numerical value of “yihiyeh” (“will be”) is 30. The Sage Bar Pada cites a different basis, the number of times the word “nazir” appears in the Torah. However, we have a rule that measurements are part of the Oral Law that G-d told directly to Moshe, and therefore these sources are not “real sources”, but rather serve as hints in the Torah to this measure of time. (Rambam in his commentary on the Mishna)

  • Nazir 5a

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