web analytics
July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Home » Judaism » Parsha »

The Lines Before Sefer Devarim

Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

This column is dedicated to the refuah sheleimah of Shlomo Eliezer ben Chaya Sarah Elka.

This week we begin reading Sefer Devarim. The Gemara in Baba Basra 13b says that four blank lines must be scratched onto the parchment between each of the sefarim of a Sefer Torah (i.e. between Sefer Bereishis and Sefer Shemos).

The first Tosfos in Gittin discusses the reason why we are accustomed to writing a get with twelve lines. Rabbeinu Tam says it is because the gematria of the word get is twelve. Tosfos then says that the Ri heard from Rav Hai Gaon and Rabbeinu Sadya that the reason for this custom is because there are twelve lines that separate the sefarim of the Torah. There are four lines that separate Sefer Bereishis and Sefer Shemos, Sefer Shemos and Sefer Vayikra, and Sefer Vayikra and Sefer Bamidbar – totaling twelve lines. Since these lines separate the sefarim of the Torah they are also used to separate a husband and wife. Tosfos explains that the reason why we do not consider the lines that separate Sefer Bamidbar and Sefer Devarim is because Sefer Devarim is only a repetition of the Torah. Thus it is not a separate sefer, and the lines that separate it are not used in a get.

Rav Moshe Feinstein (Dibros Moshe Ha’aros Gittin 3) asks how Tosfos could say that Sefer Devarim is only a repetition of the Torah, when there are hundreds of mitzvos that are written only in Sefer Devarim. Perhaps the answer is as the Ramban says in this week’s parshah, namely that the general purpose of Sefer Devarim is to repeat the halachos before the bnei Yisrael entered Eretz Yisrael. Even though many new halachos were taught in the process, the purpose of the Sefer was to repeat the halachos.

The Chidushei Anshei Shem, in the beginning of Gittin, offers another explanation to the custom of writing a get on twelve lines. He says that of the four lines that are scratched into the Torah separating each Sefer, only three of them are there for separation purposes. The fourth line is there because there is one line scratched after every parshah in the Torah. Therefore, we in fact write a get on twelve lines because there are twelve lines separating each Sefer in the Torah. This number is reached when one counts the lines that separate Sefer Bamidbar and Sefer Devarim as well. Since only three of the lines are separation lines, we count the lines between each Sefer – totaling twelve lines.

We find a distinction between three of the lines and the fourth line. The Pischei Teshuvah in Yoreh De’ah 273:1 quotes the Tashbitz (volume 1:175), who says that if one forgot to make three of the four lines between the sefarim of a Sefer Torah, the Torah is still valid. However, if one does not make the fourth line, the Torah is invalid. This ruling fits well with the Chidushei Anshei Shem, who explained that one of the lines is not made for separation; rather it is the general halacha that one must make a line between each parshah of the Torah.

Some Acharonim suggest that the Rambam agrees with the Chidushei Anshei Shem. This is because the Rambam says, in Hilchos Sefer Torah 7:15, that when one is writing Nevi’im he must make three lines between each sefer of Navi. Since Nevi’im does not have the kedushah of a Sefer Torah, it does not require the fourth line that is written after each parshah. Thus it is sufficient to only leave three lines between each sefer of Navi.

The Rambam, in the same halacha there, writes that when one writes a sefer that has all of Tanach in it he must leave four lines between each Chumash. This does not fit with the opinion of the Chidushei Anshei Shem. When one writes a sefer that has all of Tanach in it, the sefer does not have the kedushah of a Sefer Torah. Why then is it required to have four lines between each Chumash? Since it does not have the kedushah of a Sefer Torah it should have sufficed to only have three lines of separation.

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 “The Lines Before Sefer Devarim

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
Bibi: ‘Death From Above, Death From Below’ Will Not Continue
Latest Judaism Stories
Weiss-072514

Just as the moon waxes, wanes and renews itself, so has the nation of Israel renewed itself through the millennia.

126_masei_web

Parshat Masei: Rabbi Fohrman addresses the age-old question, are we our brother’s keeper?

Hertzberg-072514

When Germany invaded neutral Belgium on August 4, England declared war on Germany. Thus, by the end of the first week of August all the major powers of Europe were at war.

Winiarz-072514

The Talmud teaches that the Beis HaMikdash was destroyed because of baseless hatred.

When taking any major step in life it is a good idea to carefully re-evaluate one’s past.

Ours is a small and intensely vulnerable people. Inspired, we rise to greatness. Uninspired, we fall

The enormity of Hiram’s accomplishments crazed him and deluded him into self-deification.

When Hashem first thought (if it could be) about creating the world, the middah of din was in operation.

Hallel On Purim?
“Its Reading Is Its Praise”
(Megillah 14a)

If the only person available to perform the milah on the eighth day is a person who is not an observant Jew, the milah should be postponed until a devout mohel is available.

It is apparent from the Maharsha that he does not see galus as atoning for killing accidentally; otherwise, this Gemara would not bother him.

It was found to be a giant deer tick living in her head – with its claws in her scalp.

While daydreaming about finding the perfect job, I never expected to be rewarded in spades for my aforementioned experience.

We are all entrusted with the mission of protecting our fellow Jews

Today, we remain Hashem’s nachal.

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

It is apparent from the Maharsha that he does not see galus as atoning for killing accidentally; otherwise, this Gemara would not bother him.

Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

There are several rules that one must adhere to when making a neder.

We need to understand why Moshe Rabbeinu decided to ask that his sons inherit his position after this new halacha was introduced.

If it is not prohibited when there is a purpose for inflicting the tza’ar, why was Bilam chastised for tza’ar ba’alei chaim?

How can we be certain that any animal can be counted toward ma’asar beheimah when perhaps it is a treifah?

This separation between Kohanim, Levi’im and Yisraelim obligates us to honor kohanim.

The pasuk says that since the halacha concerning a Mechallel Shabbos was uncertain, the mekoshesh was placed in custody until the halacha was clarified.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/parsha/the-lines-before-sefer-devarim/2013/07/10/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: