Thursday, April 29, 2010

Thursday's Parsha Tidbits - Parshas Emor

The following is a brief summary of a thought said over by R' Frand in his shiur this evening. I have attempted to reproduce this vort to the best of my ability. Any perceived inconsistency is the result of my efforts to transcribe the shiur and should not be attributed to R' Frand.

The end of Parshas Emor contains a discussion of the mikallel - one who curses G-d. The Torah recites at Vayikra 24:10 that a man who was the son of a Jewish woman "went out" and cursed Hashem. Rashi asks where did the mikallel go out from? Rashi answers by citing R' Brachya (as recited in the medrash) who states that the man went out from viewing the Lechem HaPanim - the "shewbread" (described above at Vayikra 24:5-9). The man expressed skepticism - a king should eat fresh baked bread daily, how is that Hashem has bread which sits before him for up to nine days after it was baked? Since the mikallel could not understand ,he wound up cursing Hashem.

The Imrei Emes (Gerrer Rebbi) asks - how can the mikallel have questioned the Lechem HaPanim as being stale, old bread? The bread was miraculous as it stayed fresh and warm the entire time that it was on the table. Indeed, we learn from the the Gemara in Chaggiga that when those who had been oleh regel to Yerushalayim were leaving, the Kohanim would pick up the table which had the Lechem HaPanim on it in order to show those leaving the great miracle of the Lechem HaPanim. The Gemara states that when the Kohanim picked up the table they remarked to those who were leaving - see how dear you are to Hashem.

In light of the above - how do we understand the confusion of the mikallel which led him to ultimately curse Hashem?

The Imrei Emes answers that the Lechem HaPanim was given that name because it reflected the views of the person who looked at it. Rabbi Frand quoted a pasuk in Mishlei which states "Kamayim panim l'panim, ken lev ha'adam l'adam" - translated as - like the water of the face to the face, so too is the heart of a man to a man. Rabbi Frand explained that the way a person looks at another person, that person will look back at him. If a person scowls or looks skeptically at another, that person will return the look or the feeling which was emoted.

In the same way, the Lechem HaPanim would reflect back the look of the person who gazed at it. If the person looked at the Lechem HaPanim in awe (like the oleh regel) the Lechem HaPanim would appear to be the miracle that it was. However, if a person looked at the Lechem HaPanim skeptically, it would reflect back as stale old bread.

This mikallel could not understand the miracle of the Lechem HaPanim and was in all likelihood frustrated by the reverence shown by all of the other Jews to the bread. This frustration was only amplified when he looked at the bread skeptically and it only appeared to him to be old bread.

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AC said...

Great job beer man..

Yaakov said...

Thank you Neal I save and print these every week and this week Rabbi Frand brought an Imrei Emes I never heard thanks

Neil T said...

Thanks for the comments. Glad to be of service.