web analytics
September 24, 2016 / 21 Elul, 5776
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Home » Judaism » Parsha »

Lechem Mishneh

At the onset of the Bnei Yisrael’s journey through the midbar, we read in this week’s parshah that the Bnei Yisrael’s complaint was for food to eat. Hashem responded that He would send “lechem min hashamayim” (also known as mun), and that the Bnei Yisrael would collect each day’s portion according to the number of members of his household. One was not allowed to leave over any mun for the next day, and if he would it would spoil. On the sixth day a double portion would fall and the second portion was to be saved for Shabbos, as the mun would not fall on Shabbos. This double portion would not spoil, even though it was left over to the next day.

The Gemara in Shabbos 117b derives from the pasuk that mentions the double portion of mun that fell for Shabbos that one is obligated to “break” bread on two loaves of bread on Shabbos. Rashi explains that the obligation is only to recite the berachah of “hamotzi lechem” on two loaves; one need not break both loaves. The Gemara relates a story in which Rav Kehana held two loaves while reciting the berachah and only broke one of the loaves. The Gemara then relates another incident in which Rav Zera broke enough bread for the entire meal. The interpretation of the second incident is the subject of a dispute between Rashi and the Rashba. Rashi explains that it is an unrelated episode that teaches us that Rav Zera would break a bigger piece of bread than usual in honor of Shabbos. The Rashba explains that the Gemara is offering a disputing opinion to the previous one of Rav Kehana. Rav Kehana would only recite the berachah on the two loaves, and Rav Zera would even break both of them.

In other words, according to Rashi, one must only recite the berachah of hamotzi on two loaves and one need not break both of them; in his view this is not a matter of dispute. According to the Rashba, this is the opinion of Rav Kehana. Rav Zera disagrees and says that one must break both loaves as well. The Rashba adds that Rav Hai Gaon ruled that since the Gemara did not rule in this matter between Rav Kehana and Rav Zera, one is free to do as he wishes.

The Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chaim 274:2) rules in accordance with Rashi’s view that one must only recite the berachah on the two loaves, and that one need not break both of them. Also, that it is a mitzvah on Shabbos to break a big piece that would suffice for the entire meal. The Vilna Gaon, in the abovementioned siman, agrees with the Rashba that one should break both loaves of bread. Similarly, the Magen Avraham cites the fact that the Maharshal was accustomed to breaking both loaves of bread as well.

I would like to discuss the basis for this machlokes, and explain on a deeper level where they disagree. According to Rashi everyone agrees that one must only recite the berachah on the two loaves. On this opinion, the halacha that one must have lechem mishneh is similar to that of the daytime Kiddush. There is an obligation that the seudah begins with a berachah on lechem mishneh. Therefore, the following chiddush halacha should result: Just the same as Kiddush Rabbah (by day), only one person is required to recite the berachah, and everyone can fulfill their obligation without even drinking from the wine. So too only one person must recite the berachah on the lechem mishneh, and everyone will have fulfilled the obligation of lechem mishneh. This applies even if they do not eat from the lechem mishneh; rather they can eat from their own bread and make their own birchas hamotzi on it.

The Eishel Avraham (Reb Avraham from Butchatch found this in the back of the Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 274) adds that one can even be yotzi his obligation of lechem mishneh if he hears the berachah before he washed his hands, and that the washing and reciting of its berachah will not be an interruption. Even though he will recite his own berachah of hamotzi, it is sufficient that he heard the berachah that was recited on the two loaves.

The Rashba explained that Rav Zera disagrees with Rav Kehana, saying that one must break both loaves. In fact he makes no mention of the berachah at all. In his view one must break both loaves and need not recite the berachah over both of them. According to this opinion the obligation to break both loaves of bread is a part of the seudah, and the seudah should be eaten with both loaves broken. One need not eat from both loaves, but we see that it is a part of the seudah. According to this opinion one would have to eat from one of the two broken loaves. It would not suffice to merely listen to the recitation of the berachah over them.

For questions or comments, e-mail RabbiRFuchs@gmail.com.

Rabbi Raphael Fuchs

About the Author: For questions or comments, e-mail RabbiRFuchs@gmail.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Lechem Mishneh”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Czechoslovakian Jewish girls’ soccer team and their coach, circa 1930.
Project to Build Visual Memory of Places & People Before, During the Holocaust
Latest Judaism Stories
staum-092316-maze

Each mitzvah and each holiday is a guide and a map

Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

From this decree on, the two days of Rosh Hashanah – unlike the two days of Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot – were no longer celebrated out of doubt but out of certainty.

Q-A-Klass-logo

Question: Where does the name Elul come from? Also, how can Elul be both the last month of the year and the prequel to the holidays (Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur) that occur in the following month, Tishrei, the first month of the new year? Finally, can you please discuss the religious practices of Elul?

M. Goldman
Miami Beach, FL

Daf-Yomi-logo

His Silence Is Deafening
‘One Seized It In Our Presence’
(Bava Metzia 6a)

Tosfos writes [Gittin 47a; Pesachim 57a] that hefker (disowning) rooted in error is not hefker, just as a gift or transaction rooted in error is not valid [C.M. 246:1-3].

The visitor does not hand over his basket of First Fruits; he first shares it with the Temple representative. This is not a ceremony of give and take but of sharing.

Studies show that not only do athletes who use them improve, but so do many other people whose activities require peak performance.

It seems from the Vilna Gaon and the Ra’avan that shomei’a k’oneh would not work for reciting the parshah of bikurim. But why not?

Leah and Benyamin were both so used to being independent that Leah did not consider asking anyone for help.

As Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur approach and we appeal to Hashem for a blessed New Year, we also prepare for the awesome moment when we will all stand before Almighty G-d.

Ki Tavo is so difficult to read; how could Hashem be so cruel to us? Join us as we grapple with the incredibly difficult curses of this week’s parsha

We are what we remember, and the first-fruits declaration was a way of ensuring that Jews would never forget.

Many commentators sense a significance to the placement of the bikkurim declaration, at the beginning of this week’s pasha, right after the injunction to destroy Amalek. What is the connection?

Just as Noach established and created a certain merit for himself when being saved, so too Bnei Yisrael need to do the same in order to be redeemed.

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are almost here. How will you pray? How will you reunite with your Heavenly Father? Will your visit with Him have meaning, or will it be a meaningless empty ritual?

More Articles from Rabbi Raphael Fuchs
Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

It seems from the Vilna Gaon and the Ra’avan that shomei’a k’oneh would not work for reciting the parshah of bikurim. But why not?

Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

The Torah explicitly says that a husband may divorce his wife if he so pleases. How can Rabbenu Gershom forbid this practice when the Torah seemingly permits it?

When I first encountered this explanation, I took issue with it. For even if a shul’s courtyard does not possess kedushah, planting in it could still be prohibited.

The Dovev Meisharim (chelek 1, 18:3) quotes the Divrei Chaim who says that writing all four letters of the name simultaneously is considered writing the name out of order.

They bentched nonetheless, though, because they were given a specific mitzvah to thank Hashem for the mon.

The halacha is that even if a person has already fulfilled a mitzvah he can still be motzi another who has not yet fulfilled it.

If a person will not be fasting on Sunday for whatever reason, he should say havdalah on a cup prior to eating.

The sefer Harirai Kedem suggests a different understanding of the machlokes.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/parsha/lechem-mishneh/2012/02/02/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: