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‫פרשת קרח‬


‫הריני בא ללמוד תורה לשמה לעשות נחת רוח לאבינו שבשמים‬

‫ג' תמוז תשע”ח‬ 16TH JUNE 2018

‫ פרק ד‬:‫פרקי אבות‬ ‫לב‬:‫יח‬-‫א‬:‫ במדבר טז‬:‫קריאת התורה‬



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SHABBOS TIMES FOR LONDON, UK ‫מוצאי שבת‬ (10.44 PM

‫ ) ר”ת‬10.36PM

‫שקיעת החמה‬


‫סו"ז ק"ש מג"א סו"ז ק"ש גר"א סו"ז תפילה גר''א‬

9.20 PM

1.01 PM

10:14 AM

8.51 AM


8.15 AM

‫הנץ החמה‬

‫עלות השחר‬

4.42 AM

3.30 AM

‫זמן הדלקת נרות‬ 9.04 PM


HaRav Zvi Kushelevsky ‫שליט"א‬


Rosh Yeshivas Heichal HaTorah, Yerushalayim

Ambition and Perspective And Korach, son of Yitzhar son of Kehas took [Bamidbar 16:1] If one takes the gematria of Hevel (37) away from the gematria of Moshe (345) you get the gematria of Korach (308), Arizal, Sha’ar Hapesukim Korach 16 What does the Arizal mean; how can one remove the numerical equivalent of one person from a different person, to end up with a third person?! In order to understand this, we have to analyse who Kayin and Hevel were, how Moshe combined both of their qualities, and where Korach was found lacking. Broadly speaking, there are two types of people who walk this planet. There are those who are tremendously charismatic, ambitious, and carry a heavy influence on others. And there are those who humbly keep themselves to themselves. The former has an obvious advantage - they affect the world and inspire others. Yet this type also has a risk of becoming too haughty. The latter has the advantage of humility, they are often therefore liked, but has the disadvantage of not seeing or correcting the world - not stepping up to the plate when things need changing and improving. In this vein, the Gemara in Gittin (56a) tells us that the humility of Rabbi Zechariah ben Avkulas destroyed the Temple. For Rav Zechariah did not object when the Sanhedrin rejected the korban of the Roman ruler, nor did he take a stand against Bar Kamtza for blemishing the animal. Passivity can be destructive too. Kayin was the first character, whilst Hevel was the second. The name Kayin comes from the root kinyan, meaning to acquire, conquer, and cover



territory. He was someone who moved, someone who acted, and someone who had ideas and plans. It was thus his idea to bring a korban to Hashem. Hevel, on the other hand was the second type of person. His name Hevel means ‘nothingness,’ reflecting humility, and instead of having the korban idea himself, he simply copied the idea from Kayin: and Hevel also brought... (4:4). The Torah requires us to take the best of both of these characters; to marry ambition with humility. This is who Moshe was. On the one hand he was a leader, rising to new heights, and continuously doing and reaching new targets. But on the other hand he was the most humble person that ever lived. He was both Kayin and Hevel, so to speak. Korach, on the other hand, had all the ambition and family lineage of Moshe, without the humility of Hevel. This is what pushed him over the rails to rebel and not be considerate of other people nor his own suitability for the task. Appropriately, Moshe has Korach swallowed and buried in the ground; a throwback to Kayin who brought his korban from the fruits of the ground (4:3). This is what the Arizal meant: Moshe (total ambition) minus Hevel (humility) equals Korach. Our lesson is to play to our strengths; to recognise our qualities and traits and couple them with requisite self-analysis and humility, whilst not stifling any ambition.

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SEDRA SUMMARY Thank you to


orach incites a mutiny challenging Moshes’ leadership and the granting of

the kehunah to Aharon. He is accompanied by Moshe Rabbeinu’s inveterate foes, Dasan and Aviram. Joining them are 250 distinguished members of the community, who offer the sacred ketores (incense) to prove their worthiness for the priesthood. The earth opens up and swallows the rebels, and a fire consumes those offering the ketores. A subsequent plague is stopped by Aharon’s offering of ketores. Aharon’s staff miraculously blossoms and brings forth almonds, to prove that his designation as Kohen Gadol is Divinely ordained. Hashem commands that terumah is meant to be taken from each crop of grain, wine and oil, as well as all firstborn sheep and cattle, and other specified gifts, be given to the kohanim.

Step awaaaay from the argument!


here is a phenomenon in criminal trials called a ‘cut-throat defence’. Before you turn the page in revulsion, based on a literal interpretation, allow me to explain. Such a situation arises when there are two or more defendants pointing the finger at one another in terms of blameworthiness for the criminality alleged in the indictment. Whilst not relieving the prosecution of the burden of proving the case against the defendants, there is an understandable, often irresistible, temptation to sit back and watch, almost from the side-lines, as the accused scurry to exculpate themselves and inculpate their fellow occupants of the court dock. It is a regrettable but inescapable truth that we Jews are pretty adept at the art of internal wrangling, and I am not referring to the ‘lesheim shomayim’ variety. Yet, ‘twas ever thus as we see from this week’s parshah, dominated as it is by the lamentable incident of Korach and his followers, who contested Moshe’s leadership and the legitimate rights of Aharon and his sons to be the Kohanim. Indeed, despite the apocalyptic demise of the protagonists, the end of the parshah sees yet more communal grumbling about the kehunah of Aharon. On the subject of the spectacular downfall (I know, I know) of Korach’s allies, close attention to the text of our parshah yields a substantial question over Moshe’s choice of wager. Ve’im beri’oh yivroh Hashem – either Hashem will create the astonishing display of the earth opening and swallowing the perpetrators, or else lo Hashem shelochani – it is not Hashem who sent Moshe to lead the people. From where did Moshe conjure up such a high-stakes gauntlet to throw down before the people? Rav Shimshon Pincus zt’’l proffers a pointed answer containing an important lesson for life. The Torah states [Bamidbar 17:5] ve’lo si’hiyeh


ke’korach ve’cha’adoso – you shall not conduct yourself as Korach and his cohort, that is not engage in machlokes as they did. The Gemoro in Maseches Sanhedrin [110a] explains that if a person enters into a machlokes, he transgresses a restrictive commandment. This issur, says Rav Pincus, applies equally to the person on the right side of the dispute, as much as to the person who is in the wrong. The practical application of this dictum is that if the argument can be won decisively and unequivocally by those in the right, this should be done and swiftly. However, if those that are in the wrong refuse to yield their position and the argument continues, then it is incumbent on the righteous side to end the machlokes by being mevater and dropping the dispute. Not doing so constitutes a breach of the issur for these participants in the quarrel. The failure of those in the wrong to give away would seem to occur more often than not, requiring not infrequently the overcoming of a person’s natural instinct. This, expounds Rav Pincus, provides the basis for Moshe’s oration to Korach. If Hashem were to create an unprecedented and unmistakable miracle causing the contretemps to become null and void, then the correctness of Moshe’s position would be unequivocally demonstrated. However, in the absence of such an eventuality Moshe would be required to desist from arguing further, irrespective of the correctness of his stance. We cannot expect such miracles in our own lives to assist us in disputations. Yet, perhaps, we can condition ourselves to make our point (assuming we are right), and if not conceded, to move on. This itself is a sign of true greatness and strength of character, conquering the yetzer hora’s consistent desire to foment discord amongst our holy nation.

Please Daven For

Please Daven For

Please Daven For

‫יצחק אייזיק בן יהודית רחל נ"י‬

’‫שירה תמר בת שושנה דבורה תחי‬

‫אריאל יהודה בן יהודית נ”י‬

‫לרפואה שלימה בתוך שאר חולי ישראל‬

‫לרפואה שלימה בתוך שאר חולי ישראל‬

‫לרפואה שלימה בתוך שאר חולי ישראל‬




How many sticks were taken?

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Rav, Kehillas Netzach Yisroel & Director of Education, Federation

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The indignance of difference The Sefas Emes utilises a cryptic comment of the Zohar to explain the inner meaning of the Machlokes of Korach. The Zohar Hakadosh explains that Korach was aiming to fight ‘Shabbos & Sholom’ His argument was designed to wreck the unity and harmony of Creation itself. The architect of his demise had therefore to be Creation itself.

‫ואם בריאה יברא ה’ ופצתה האדמה את פיה‬ Rashi quotes the Gemara in Sanhedrin

‫ורבותינו פירשו (סנהדרין קי) אם בריאה פה לארץ מששת ימי בראשית מוטב ואם לאו‬ ’‫יברא ה‬ Moshe Rabbenu makes an extraordinary demand of Hashem. If the ‘mouth in the Earth’ was already written into the DNA of Creation during the 6 days of Creation, that is good. But if not, Hashem will have to do something that he has not done since then, i.e. engage in an act of Creation ex nihilo to obliterate Korach and his followers. Machlokes – division and fragmentation were introduced into Creation on Day Two (the number implying multiplicity). The upper and lower realms were separated and Gehinom was created. Shomayim was no longer in direct contact with Eretz. Shomayim itself is the paradigm of unity, consisting of two conflicting elements (in their spiritual primordial forms of Din and Chesed) Aish & Mayim. These cannot normally coexist, one extinguishes or evaporates the other. But Hashem acts as a supreme conciliator – Oseh Sholom Bimeromov – He makes peace in his upper realms.

Parshah I would like to give to Bnei Yisrael. Similarly, Hashem sanctified the Kohanim with a special gift called the Kehunah. Korach argued with Shabbos because he argued with the concept of a gift from Hashem which is a total chesed and can’t be earned. Bnei Yisrael can use their Kedushah to establish Yom Tov, but they can’t create a Shabbos. Shabbos is a gift from Hashem. However, an important caveat is required. One cannot aim for unity as an overarching goal, if one does not first acknowledge, respect and appreciate boundaries. There are real differences between day and night, man and woman, kodesh and chol, Yisrael and amim. The absurd and pernicious attempts of society to blur these distinctions is, in essence, an attempt to unravel, deny and violate Creation5 itself. ,‫ יכולים אתם להפוך בקר לערב? כן תוכלו לבטל את זו‬,‫גבולות חלק הקב”ה בעולמו‬ ‫שנאמר (בראשית א) ויהי ערב ויהי בוקר ויבדל‬ Hashem has designated boundaries which are immutable. Korach refused to accept this (we are all equally holy), and argued that the power structures were artificial constructs, not Divine. His indignance was the result of his inability (or unwillingness) to accept difference. Without acknowledging the Divine provenance of real difference, there can be no ‫שלום‬, no ‫ שבת‬and no real purpose to our ‫עבודה‬ 5 Deeming some of these as mere ‘social constructs’ is as unhelpful as it is unpalatable to the Torah mindset.

Shabbos is the ultimate expression of harmony and unity – ‫– רזא דאחד‬ the resolution of the tension between opposing concepts. The harmony of being able to unite conflicting forces finds expression in the duality1 of

‫מזמורה כפול‬2 ,‫ מתן שכרה כפול‬,‫ עונשה כפול‬,‫ עומר כפול‬, ‫ לחם משנה‬,‫זכור ושמור‬ All aspects of Shabbos speak to the unity of Creation – the challenges posed by fragmentation and division can all be resolved in Shabbos. The dissonance and clash of ideas and forces that torment us though the week - self and other, inner and outer, head and heart, body and soul - are all synthesised into a glorious, regal oneness that acknowledges Hashem (the ‫ ’טוב להודות לה‬as the fulfilment of the ‫ כי טוב‬omitted on day two!) as the supreme source of all3, and the consequence is a serenity and inner peace that is a foretaste of Olam Haba. The Gemara in Shabbos 10B describes Shabbos as a gift - Matanah Tovah Yesh Li B’Beis Genazi, I have a good present4 in my treasure house 1 See Maharal Tiferes Yisroel 30 for an elaboration of this idea with regard to the unity of marriage – (note the double expression in lecha dodi – ‫)!בואי כלה בואי כלה‬ 2 The entire theme being the ability to accept the sovereignty of Hashem, despite appearances to the contrary, the tension of ‫ מזמור‬as fragmentation (‫ )לא תזמור‬clashing with the round wholeness of ‫שיר‬ (both as poem and ‫שיר‬, the round ring worn by animals ‫)’משנה שבת פ”ה משנה א‬ 3 In a fascinating aside the Sefas Emes, also explains the concepts of Kedusha and Tahara referring to the Kohen and Levi respectively – the latter being attainable, the former ultimately a gift, thus Divinely ordained (‫)עי’ מסלת ישרים פכ”ו‬ 4 Is there any other sort?? Again, perhaps an allusion to the ‫ טוב‬omitted on day 2.


SHAILATEXT 07403 939 613




A Quick Vort: Ma’ayanah Shel Torah by Yisroel Avrohom Kaye

The pasuk (Bamidbar 16:1) says “And Korach…. took…..” The Maayanah Shel Torah brings R’ Simcha Bunim of Peshischa who explains that Korach failed because he tried to seize greatness and strength for himself with his own hands. Greatness is only good if it is conferred upon man min hashamayim.

PERSONAL & CONFIDENTIAL RESPONSE TO SHAILOS ON ANY TOPIC WITHIN FOUR WORKING HOURS Wherever possible it is preferable to take shailos to your own rov who knows you personally. ShailaText is not intended to be used as substitute for a rov but L’zakos es horabim. For more information visit To sponsor a day/week/month of Shailatext, please email

What lies behind these three different stages of flowering?

This week’s Shailatext is

‫לע”נ שמעון בן שרגא ז”ל‬

Rabbi Reuven Chaim Klein


Author of Lashon HaKodesh: History, Holiness, & Hebrew (Mosaica Press)

The author can be contacted at


Korach: The Land Down Under


hen relating the story of Korach and his household being miraculously swallowed into the ground, the Torah (Numbers 16:30–34) employs an interesting word-switch which we will closely examine. In response to Korach’s rebellion, Moshe warned that Hashem will implement a supernatural phenomenon whereby the land (adamah) will open its mouth and swallow Korach’s household. As Moses finished uttering these words, the ground (adamah) that was under them split open, and the land (eretz) opened its mouth and swallowed them. Then, all the Jews who were present fled because they feared being swallowed by the land (eretz). In other places where the Torah recalls this episode, Korach and his household were said to have been swallowed by the eretz (Numbers 26:10 and Deuteronomy 11:6). Why does the Torah switch between two seemingly synonymous words for “land” and what is the difference between them?

the land (eretz)”, while the blessing recited over vegetables blesses Hashem as He “who creates the fruit of the ground (adamah).” For some reason, bread is more associated with eretz and vegetables are more associated with adamah. R. Bachaya (1255–1340) and the Ritva (1250–1330) note that the blessing over bread should have used the more specific word adamah (which refers to a field), but instead uses the vague word eretz. They explain that this is because the Rabbis decided that the wording of the blessing should mirror the terminology of Tanach (Psalms 104:14), which explicitly says that Hashem brings forth bread “from the eretz”. R. Yechiel Michel Moravsky (Moraftschik) of Lublin (d. 1593) writes that the word eretz is more encompassing than the word adamah because adamah is limited to the immediate top level of dirt, while eretz can mean even that which lies underground. As a result, because the grain needed for making bread develops roots which descend deep underground (see, for example, Yerushalmi Taanst 1:3 which asserts that the roots of wheat penetrate fifty handbreadths into the ground), bread is said to come from the eretz. Other vegetables, on the other hand, do not necessarily require such deep roots, so they are called fruits of the adamah. R. Yisrael Lipschitz (1782–1860) offers a similar explanation.

The Vilna Gaon (1720–1797) explains that the word eretz (or aretz) connotes the national settlement of land and can be used in the construct form to denote the land of a specific nation. In this way, eretz can be aptly translated as “country”. In many instances, an unspecified eretz refers especially to the Land of Israel. The word adamah, on the other hand, specifically denotes uninhabited lands set aside for agrarian purposes.

In light of this distinction between the words eretz and adamah, R. Yaakov Chaim Sofer (Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivat Kaf HaChaim in Jerusalem) explains the passages concerning the ground swallowing up Korach. He argues that the opening of the ground transpired in two stages: first the uppermost layer of the ground opened up and then the deeper layers of the ground opened up. These two stages are reflected in the word change found in the Bible, as first the Bible uses the word adamah to describe the surface-level opening of the

Similarly, Malbim (1809–1879) explains that eretz includes the entire earth from the surface of the planet to its innermost core, while the word adamah generally refers to only the surface layer of the earth’s crust whose dirt I used for agriculture. The difference between the words eretz and adamah is accentuated by their respective appearances in ritual blessings over food. Before eating bread, one blesses Hashem as the One “who brings forth bread from

ground and then uses the word eretz to record the opening of the subterranean depths. Nonetheless, in contrast with the explanations above, R. Shlomo Luria (1510– 1573) understands that eretz is limited to the surface of the earth, while the word adamah also includes the depths of the land. He explains that bread is said to come forth from the eretz because the word eretz is limited to the surface of the earth and up to three cubits of topsoil (see Rashi to Bereishis 6:13). Therefore, when the grains used to make bread shoot forth from the land, they are said to be coming forth from the eretz. However, since vegetables receive their nourishment from the depths of the soil, they are said to be created from the more general word for land, adamah which includes the eretz and more. These assumptions about the meanings of eretz and adamah are also adopted by the illustrious Wurzberger Rav, R. Yitzchok Dov Bamberger (1807–1878). R. Yosef Frankel-Teomim (1727–1792), author of the Pri Megadim, writes that the word eretz refers to land in its supernal, unblemished state (it is therefore appropriately associated with the Holy Land which is viewed as the terrestrial epitome of good). In contrast, the word adamah focuses on the stained and imperfect land which Hashem cursed in response to Adam’s sin of eating from the Tree of Knowledge (Bereishis 3:17). The blessing for vegetables thus uses the word adamah because it recalls Hashem’s benevolence in contemporary times whereby He forms vegetables which grow from the cursed land below. However, the blessing over bread conjures the period before Adam’s sin, when complete loaves of bread would rise from the ground, just as they will do in the Messianic Era (see Shabbos 30b). Accordingly, the blessing for bread uses the word eretz to describe the land from whence it comes— which will by then break free from its curse and return to its pure, unblemished state.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK Comparison is an act of violence against the self. QUIZ TIME



When did these stages take place? Who saw them?

Rabbi Jonathan Gewirtz


Author The Observant Jew, Migdal Ohr

The author can be contacted at

“And Moshe brought out all the staffs from before Hashem, to all the Children of Israel, and they looked, and each man took his staff.” [Bamidbar 17:24]


fter Korach’s stand against Moshe and Aharon, wherein his entire entourage was swallowed alive, except for the 250 men who offered

incense and were burned alive by a holy fire,

on their staffs to ensure that nobody could

When Moshe brought the sticks out to

switch the staffs and just inscribe the name

all Klal Yisrael, he wanted them to see that

on non-flowering sticks. This is why the Torah

Aharon’s lot was to be the Kohen Gadol.

stresses that they took them.

That meant that their destiny was something

Hashem wished to provide further proof to Klal

It makes sense, then, that the leaders of the

Yisrael that He had, indeed, chosen Aharon as

tribes had to see the sticks, but what of the rest

His Kohen.

of Klal Yisrael? For what purpose did Moshe present these sticks to all of Israel?

He instructed Moshe to take twelve sticks,


one from each tribe in Israel, and have the tribal

Simply understood, they wanted to see for

leader inscribe his name upon it. Those staffs

themselves who had been chosen, and the

were then placed in the Ohel Moed overnight.

leaders reserved the right to challenge this

The next morning, Aharon’s staff had flowered

choice if the staffs had been tampered with.

and sprouted buds and fruit (almonds) while

But there is more.

the other staffs remained bare. This pasuk tells

When Aharon was chosen, the tribal leaders

us that Moshe brought the staffs out so that

could give up on being chosen by Hashem to

each person might see for himself that his own

be the Kohanim. However, what was the next

staff had not flowered.

step? They might very well have given up any

Why did the pasuk say that they each

ambitions of rising to lofty spiritual levels,

took their staffs? Why wasn’t it enough to

or of being close to Hashem. Especially on

say that they looked and saw that their staffs

the heels of the Korach debacle, one could

hadn’t flowered? The Sforno says that they

feel that he had no chance to advance in his

took them home to examine them. They had

service of Hashem. That would have been just

each inscribed hidden symbols and signs

as disastrous.

different, that they were intended to serve a difference purpose in Hashem’s Creation, to fill a different role in the world. The point was that each man would see - meaning reflect and introspect - and take - meaning internalise - his staff: the measure of his abilities and life. Each of us has a calling. The lesson of the staffs is that we cannot get so stuck on a preferred vision of what we’d like to be, that we fail to become what we can and are intended to be. Every human being looks different and thinks differently than every other human being because we are meant to do something different than every other human being. Instead of being disappointed about what we’re not, we should proudly examine our strengths, abilities, and natural inclinations to find out what Hashem really chose us to do.




Thank you to Boruch Kahan



Without looking in a Chumash, which of the following is Rashi’s first commentary to this week's Parsha. a) Korach's complaint against Moshe was that it was unfair that Elitzofon should be appointed the Nosi ahead of him. b) Korach took himself to one side to be separated from the assembly of Yisroel. c) Korach's Yichus does not go up to Yaakov since he did not want to be mentioned in context with Korach but did agree when it came to Korach's sons. d) Parshas Korach is beautifully explained in the Medrash Tanchuma. e) Korach took (persuaded) the heads of the Sanhedrin with words. f) Korach dressed up his colleagues with cloaks made of Techeiles and asked Moshe what is the Din about Tzitzis. g) Korach's complaint was that he did not receive the Kehuna. Clue Ayin BeRashi Parshas Vayikro Perek 3 Possuk 17.


ANSWER FROM LAST WEEK [Question: Twice later on in Sefer Bamidbar we find the same group of women who are upset about missing out on something because their father was no longer alive. How can you connect that story to two different incidents that are recorded in this week's Parsha?]

In Parshas Pinchos and Parshas Masei, the five daughters of Tzelofchod were upset about missing out on the division of the Nachlois once Bnei Yisroel entered Eretz Yisroel. The Gemoro Shabbos (Daf 96b) identifies two possible reasons why Tzelofchod died which are both to do with this week's Parsha. Either because he was the Mekoishesh Eitzim (Perek 15 Possuk 32) or because he was one of the Maapilim mentioned right at the end of the story of the Meraglim (Perek 14 Posuk 44-45)

When was the stick of Aaron created and what happened to it? Where is it now?

Rabbi Yissochor Frand


Rosh Yeshiva, Ner Yisrael Baltimore


Korach Cashes In On The “It’s Not My Fault” Syndrome


here is an interesting Ramban at the beginning of this week’s parsha. The Ramban writes that Korach’s jealousy towards Elitzaphan ben Uziel’s appointment as prince of the Tribe of Levi, already existed at the time that the Children of Israel were in the Wilderness of Sinai. The Ramban is elaborating on Rashi’s comment that Korach’s complaint against Moshe Rabbeinu was due to the fact that Korach felt Moshe was guilty of nepotism for denying him his due honour. Moshe took for himself the role of leader, he assigned his brother the role of High Priest, and he made Elitzaphan — also a close relative — prince of the Tribe of Levi. The Ramban notes, however, that the appointment of Elitzaphan occurred much earlier than Korach’s rebellion. Why did Korach suddenly ‘wake up’ now? The Ramban therefore comments that this plan had been percolating with Korach for a long time already. But as long as things were going well with the Jewish people, and Moshe’s popularity was high, Korach had to bide his time. Up to this point, things were going well. Moshe Rabbeinu’s ratings in the polls were way up there! No one starts up with the President when he has an 85% approval rating. Even in the case of the sin of the Golden Calf, the number of people who died as a result of punishment therein was relatively small — in no small measure as a result of Moshe’s

heroic plea to G-d for mercy in their defense. The Ramban suggests that had Korach tried to start a revolt against Moshe when his jealousy was first aroused, he would have been stoned by the people in outrage. However, in the more recent narrative in the Torah, things have been going ‘downhill’ for the Jewish people. In Parshas Be’ha’aloscha, we read of the Complainers (misonenim) and the Graves of the Lustful (Kivros HaTaavah). In Parshas Shlach, we read about the sin of the spies and the decree that everyone would die in the dessert. In this case, Moshe did not pray on their behalf and was unable to nullify the decree. This was a watershed event that marked the people’s disenchantment with Moshe Rabbeinu. “Moshe, what kind of leader are you? What have you done for us lately?” Korach saw that this was his moment. He was now ready to make his move and implement the plan that he had been waiting to unleash for all these many months of stifled jealousy. Rav Yerucham Levovitz zt’’l (1874-1936) points out that this is human nature. The Jewish People were upset at Moshe Rabbeinu because Hashem was punishing them and Moshe “didn’t do anything about it.” Wait a minute! Why blame Moshe? He only sent out the spies because the people pressured him to send out spies. It wasn’t Moshe Rabbeinu who started complaining when the spies gave

their report; it was the Jewish People who were weeping for no reason. Who is really at fault here? Moshe Rabbeinu could certainly argue “It is not my fault! It is your fault!” But the Jewish people are doing what we all do — transferring the blame to someone else. If this was true in Biblical times and it was true when the Ramban wrote about it in medieval times, and it was true when Rav Yerucham pointed it out two generations ago — what should we say in modern day America where everybody and his uncle is a ‘victim’? It is impossible to do anything wrong in America today. Everyone is a ‘victim’. My mother didn’t treat me right; my father didn’t treat me right; I was abused; my father was an alcoholic; I was raised in the streets. “It is not my fault” — for all the reasons in the world. Nothing is “my” fault today. It is always “somebody else’s” fault. The refrain today is “mistakes were made”. Who made the mistakes? An anonymous person always makes the mistakes. Today, no one gets up and says, “I made a mistake. I blew it! It is my fault!” The “Victim Syndrome” can be traced back to Biblical times — back to the days of Kayin and Hevel. Korach recognized it and he attempted to use the opportunity to cash in on it. This is why only now does he first begin to register his complaints against Moshe Rabbeinu.

ANSWERS 1. Ramban (and Rashi) say twelve, as the tribes are always only twelve. Therefore when the tribe of Levi is counted then the tribes of Menashe and Efrayim are counted together as one – the tribe of Yosef. The Netziv says that there were thirteen as Menashe and Efrayim were counted separately so that they could not have complaints that had their stick been there then their stick would have been chosen with the flowering. 2. The Kli Yakar (17:23) explains that there were three stages each with an allusion to the quality needed for the chosen Kohanim. The first stage of flowering, the word “perach” alludes to the “pirchei” kehuna, the young kohanim. The second stage of Tzitz, blossoming, alludes to the Tzitzthat was worn by the Kohen Godol, High Priest, as one of his eight garments. The third stage of Shekaidim, almonds, since these are one of the quickest fruit to develop and allude to the attribute of Kohanim who are zerizim, act with quickness. 3. Some say that they all took place in front of the Aron. The Rashbam says that Moshe found only the first stage of flowering there. Afterwards, Moshe brought it out in front of the people and then the next two stages happened for all to see.



4. The Gemara (Pesachim 54a) brings that this stick was one of the things created Erev Shabbos Bein Hashmashos. The Gemara (Yuma 52b) brings that it was hidden away with the Aron before the churban. 5. The parsha discusses questioning who were the right people to be Kohanim and what happened to them. It therefore goes on to prove the right people and continues to discuss what benefits and presents they get. 6. They are split into ten gifts to be eaten in the Mikdash, four gifts that had to be eaten in Yerushalayim and ten presents that can be eaten outside Yerushalayim. The ten in the Mishkan were: Chatas of animal and bird; Ashom Vadai Vitolui; Zivchei Shalmai Tzibur; the log of oil of the metzorah; the Shtei Halechem; and left over from the menachos and mincha of the omer. The four to be eaten in Yerushalayim were: Bechor; Bikurim; what was lifted from the korban toda and the ram of the Nazir and the skins from the kodshim animals. The ten outside Yerushalayim were: Teruma; terumas ma’aser; challa; reishis hagez; the presents of the zero’a, lechayayim and keiva; pidyon haben; pidyon peter chamor; s’dei hacherem; s’dei achuza and gezel ha’ger.

5. Why does the Matnas Kehuna, presents for the Kohanim, come into Parshas Korach?

Halacha from


Rabbi Shraga Kallus Rosh Kollel, 'The 2nd Seder Kollel'; 'Machon Hora'ah L'Rabanim'

Kiddush b’Makom Seudah

On his recent trip to London, Rabbi Paysach Krohn suggested we all ‫ שבת שלום‬that greet our fellow Jew because you make them feel special. See Miracles Good Shabbos In

Part I: Definition & Background Both on Friday night and on Shabbos day there is a Mitzvah to make Kiddush. Friday night the Mitzvah is Min HaTorah, whereas on Shabbos day it is a Mitzvah D’rabanan. There are numerous components that comprise this Mitzvah, including the beverage of choice, quantity of that which is consumed, and appropriate text recited. There is another important part of this Mitzvah, which will be the topic of our discussion, which is not as related to the Kiddush recitation itself, but rather to the connection of the Kiddush and the ensuing Seudah.

Life Every Day

When walking on the street on Shabbos, say Good Shabbos (or Good Yom Tov) to all of your fellow brothers & sisters.

This requirement that the Kiddush be connected to the ensuing Seudah is the Rabbinic obligation of Kiddush b’Makom Seudah. The source for this Halachah is found in the words of the Navi Yeshayeh, “v’Karasah l’Shabbos Oneg”, which the Poskim explain is a requirement of the calling/ sanctification of Shabbos – Kiddush – to be in proximity to the Oneg – Seudah of Shabbos. The consensus of Poskim is that the requirement that one’s meal be connected in time and place is Rabbinic in nature. If one’s Kiddush is not connected to a meal, then the Kiddush is not valid.

It doesn’t matter if the recipient doesn’t respond, if you don’t like that person or in a rush, it doesn’t hurt to greet someone.

There is an obligation that one’s Kiddush be followed in close proximity (both in time and location) to the meal that follows.

‫גוט שבת‬

Adapted by Rabbi Avraham Chaim Slansky

Rabbi Slansky can be contacted at


An international program which involves learning 4 new Mishnayos each day from Sunday to Thursday, reviewing that week's 20 Mishnayos on Friday, and going over the previous Masechtos on Shabbos. A time committment of just 15 mins a day, and finish Shas Mishnayos in 4 years - having reviewed it multiple times! To Sign Up for a 15 min daily Shiur visit the website Just a few minutes a day and finish Nach in just a year and a half! Sign Up at








21 June - ‫ח' תמוז‬

20 June - ‫ז' תמוז‬

19 June - ‫ו' תמוז‬

18 June - ‫ה' תמוז‬

17 June - ‫ד' תמוז‬

16 June - ‫ג' תמוז‬

15 June - ‫ב' תמוז‬

‫חגיגה‬ ‫ח‬:‫ ג‬- ‫ד‬:‫ג‬

‫חגיגה‬ ‫ג‬:‫ ג‬- ‫ז‬:‫ב‬

‫חגיגה‬ ‫ו‬:‫ ב‬- ‫ג‬:‫ב‬

‫חגיגה‬ ‫ב‬:‫ ב‬- ‫ז‬:‫א‬

‫חגיגה‬ ‫ו‬:‫ א‬- ‫ג‬:‫א‬

‫יומא פרקים‬ ‫ה–ח‬

‫מועד קטן‬ ‫ב‬:‫ חגיגה א‬- ‫ז‬:‫א‬

‫תהלים לז‬

‫תהלים לו‬

‫תהלים לה‬

‫תהלים לד‬

‫לג‬-‫תהלים לב‬

‫מא‬-‫לט תהלים מ‬-‫תהלים לח‬ QUIZ TIME


6. What are the 24 presents the Kohanim, priests, are given?

Zwi Yosef Sacho Baal Koreh at Kehillas Netzach Yisroel

tefilah The ORIGINS AND SIGNIFICANCE OF THE LONG TACHANUN It is well known that Mondays and Thursdays are considered days of judgement when the Beis Din above and the Beis Din below sit in judgement (Aruch Hashulchan 134:1). This is derived from the Gemara in Shabbos (129b) which says that one should not perform bloodletting on Mondays or Thursdays, because those are the days on which the Beis Din shel maala convenes and a person’s mitzvos and aveiros are likely to be reviewed. Similarly, Ezra instituted that Battei Din in Eretz Yisroel convene on Mondays and Thursdays (Bava Kamma 82a and Megillah 5a)). On the other hand, Moshe Rabbeinu ascended Har Sinai to receive the second set of luchos on a Thursday and returned with them forty days later on a Monday (Tosafos Bava Kama 82a and Rabeinu Bechaya, Shemos 35:1:5). Hashem’s decision to give Moshe the luchos clearly implied that the Jewish people were forgiven for the sin of the Golden Calf. As a result, Mondays and Thursdays have also become days appropriate for teshuva and rachamim for the Jewish people. It is for this reason that we recite the so-called long Tachanun or “Vehu Rachum” on these days (Orach Chayim 134:1). What is a little less known is the story concerning the origin of this tefillah which is brought down in the Kol Bo (Siman 18). The story goes that after the destruction of Bayis Sheni (circa 3338), a boatload of fleeing Jews was captured by a cruel, anti-Semitic ruler whose name is not mentioned. Discovering that they were Jews, he decreed that he would throw them into a fiery furnace, just as Nevuchadnezzar had cast Chananyah, Mishael, and Azaryah into a fiery furnace

for refusing to worship idols (see Daniel, Chapter 3). The Jews requested thirty days to prepare themselves for their fate. During each of those days, the Jews fasted and whoever had a dream that would be meaningful would daven from the amud. One day there was an older Jew who was neither a sinner nor a talmid chacham, said that he had seen in a dream that he was being read a possuk from Tanach that mentions the word “‫”כי‬ twice and the word “‫ ”לא‬three times, but he could not remember it. A wise elder realised that the possuk came from Yeshayahu (43:2) “‫ ובנהרות לא ישטפוך וכו' כי‬,‫כי תעבור במים אתך אני‬ ‫ ולהבה לא תבער בך‬,‫תלך במו אש לא תכוה‬, “I will be with you when you pass through water; the rivers will not overcome you. When you pass through fire, you will not be singed, and flame will not burn you” The elder declared that this was clearly a sign from Hashem that just as they had been saved from the sea, so they would be saved from the fiery furnace. After thirty days, the wicked ruler ordered that a huge fire be lit and the old man who had the dream entered the fire on the advice of the wise elder. The fire separated into three sections and three tzaddikim appeared from the fire similar to the appearance of the malach Gavriel in the story of Chananyah, Mishael, and Azaryah (Chomas Anach to Daniel 3:25). The first tzaddik began to recite a tefillah to Hashem beginning with the words “‫ ”והוא רחום‬and ending with the words “melech chanun verachum attah”. The second tzaddik added an additional tefillah, beginning with the words “‫אנא מלך רחום‬ ‫”וחנון‬, again ending with the words “melech chanun verachum attah”. The third tzaddik completed the tefillah. The fire remained split in three and no Jews were harmed. The

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Please could you ensure that there are ample sheets left in shuls for Shabbos before taking one home.

tefillahs recited by these three tzaddikim became the Vehu Rachum tefillah that we recite on Mondays and Thursdays. Although there are other versions regarding the authorship of this Tefillah brought down in the literature of the Geonim (see Siddur Chassidei Ashkenaz of Rebeinu Shlomo of Worms), it is evident that the tefillah was composed in a time of grave danger that affected the entire community. It is not surprising then that many of the pivotal sections of Vehu Rachum come from Chapter 9 of Daniel where he petitions with fervent tefillah to Hashem as to why the 70 years foretold in Jeremiah (29:10) have not been fulfilled and the Beis Hamikdash had not been rebuilt. Daniel’s tefillahs are answered with the sudden appearance of the malach Gavriel who assures Daniel with some fascinating visions that the time of redemption is near. When we say Vehu Rachum on Mondays and Thursdays, it is an auspicious time to connect to the mesiras nefesh of the tzadikkim that were meritorious in composing these tefillahs as well as to Avrohom Avinu who was also cast into the fiery furnace by Nimrod and miraculously prevailed (Bereishis Rabbah 38:13). Whether we are in a situation of comfort or hardship, next time we say Vehu Rachum on Monday or Thursday, let us say it with a little more kavona to merit the yeshuos and nifloas that our ancestors experienced. Acknowledgements: This article is based on a shiur given by Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz, Moreh Desara of Beis Haknesses of North Woodmere, New York. The author would also like to thank for the reference material and incredible “search” function.

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17 oneg korach  
17 oneg korach