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Chapter And Verse?
‘Has The Time For Slaughter Arrived?’
(Yoma 28a)

 

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The mishnah on our daf relates that before slaughtering the tamid shel shachar, the one in charge would send someone up to an elevated place to make sure that dawn had arrived. The mishnah explains that this extra precaution was instituted because the tamid was once slaughtered before dawn due to the light of the moon being mistaken for that of the sun. They then had to burn the animal in the Beis HaSreifah.

What is the biblical source for the mishnah’s ruling, though?

 

‘On The Day Of Your Slaughter’

Rashi (sv “zman ha’shechita”) explains that the basis for invalidating a sacrifice that’s slaughtered before dawn is Vayikra 19:6: “b’yom zivchachem… – on the day of your slaughter…” This verse comes to teach that it must be slaughtered during the day and not at night.

Rabbenu Chananel (bottom of 29a, sv. “shachatu es hatamid”) derives this rule from a different verse, Bamidbar 28:4: “es hakeves echad ta’aseh baboker v’es hakeves ha’sheni ta’asehbein ha’arbayim… – the one lamb you shall make in the morning and the second lamb you shall make in the afternoon…”

 

Explaining Rashi

The Brisker Rav (Kuntres Krias ha’Torah, Yoma and Sukkah, p.14b) explains why Rashi rejected Rabbenu Chananel’s source even though the word “baboker – in the morning” concerns the tamid whereas “b’yom zivchachem” (Rashi’s source) concerns a shelamim. He suggests that “baboker” only teaches us that the mitzvah of tamid cannot be fulfilled before morning; it does not teach us that the sacrifice itself is worthless.

If not for “b’yom zivchachem,” we would have said that a tamid slaughtered at night, though not valid as a tamid, is nevertheless acceptable as an olas nedavah (a donated olah offering) and therefore need not be burned in the Beis HaSreifah. The words “b’yom zivchachem” teach us that a korban that’s slaughtered at night is invalid and must be burned.

 

Explaining Rabbenu Chananel

The Brisker Rav explains Rabbenu Chananel’s view as follows. Once we know from the word “baboker” that the korban tamid obligation is not fulfilled with a nighttime korban, we know that it can’t count as a korban nedavah either because the tamid must be the first korban of the day.

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Rabbi Yaakov Klass is chairman of the Presidium of the Rabbinical Alliance of America; rav of Congregation K’hal Bnei Matisyahu in Flatbush, Brooklyn; and Torah Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at yklass@jewishpress.com and Rabbi@igud.us.