Parashat Ekev


Devarim 7:12 And it will be because of your listening to these ordinances, and your observing and performing them; then Hashem, your G-d, will safeguard for you the covenant and the kindness that He swore to your forefathers.

Rashi on 7:12 AND IT WILL BE BECAUSE OF YOUR LISTENING, literally, heel. If you will heed the minor commandments which one [usually] tramples with his heels [i.e., which a person treats as being of minor importance]. That Hashem, your God, will keep He will keep His promise to you.

7:13 He will love you, He will bless you and He will multiply you, and He will bless the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your land; your grain, your wine, and your oil; the offspring of your cattle and the herds of your flock; on the land that He swore to your forefathers to give to you.

Rashi on 7:13 THE OFFSPRING OF YOUR CATTLE, [meaning] the offspring born of your herd, which the female casts out meshageret from her womb.

AND THE HERDS OF YOUR FLOCK. Menachem [ben Saruk] explains this expression as: "the strong rams of Bashan" (Tehillim 22:13), [meaning] the choicest of the flock, similar to "Ashterot-Karnaim" (Bereyshit 14:5), [ashterot being] an expression for "strength." Onkelos translates it: "and the flocks of your sheep." Our Rabbis said: Why are they ashterot? Because they enrich (maashirot) their owners.

7:14 You will be the most blessed of all the peoples; there will be no infertile male or infertile female among you or among your animals.

Rashi on 7:14 INFERTILE MALE. Hebrew: akar, [meaning] that does not beget children.

7:17 Perhaps you will say in your heart, "These nations are more numerous than I; how will I be able to drive them out?"

Rashi on 7:17 PERHAPS YOU WILL SAY IN YOUR HEART. Hebrew: ki tomar bilvavcha. [ki here] must mean "perhaps." [I.e.,] will you perhaps say to yourself, "Because they are many, I will be unable to drive them out"? Do not say this [but rather,] do not fear them. It is, however, impossible to explain this with one of the other [three] meanings of ki so that the statement "You shall not fear them," (v18) will appropriately follow it.

7:19 the great tests that your eyes saw, and the signs, the wonders, the strong hand, and the outstretched arm with which Hashem, your G-d, took you out - so shall Hashem, your G-d, do to all the peoples before whome you fear.

Rashi on 7:19 THE GREAT TESTS, [meaning] the trials.

THE SIGNS. For example, "and it became a serpent" (Shemot 4:3), [and] "will become blood on the dry land" (Shemot 4:9).

THE WONDERS. The wondrous plagues.

THE STRONG HAND. This is the pestilence.

AND THE OUTSTRETCHED ARM. This refers to the sword in the plague of the firstborn.

7:20 Also the tzirah will Hashem, your G-d, send among them,, until the survivors and hidden ones perish before you.

Rashi on 7:20 THE TZIRAH, a species of flying insect which injected poison into them [the Kenaanim], making them impotent and blinding their eyes wherever they hid.

7:22 Hashem, your G-d, will thrust these nations from before you little by little; you will not be able to annihilate them quickly, lest the beasts of the field increase against you.

Rashi on 7:22 LEST THE BEASTS OF THE FIELD INCREASE AGAINST YOU. But is it not so that if [the Yisraelim] obey the will of the Omnipresent, they need not fear the beasts? As it is said, "And the beasts of the field made peace with you" (Iyov 5:23). It was, however, revealed before him [Moshe] that they would sin in the future.

7:23 Hashem, your G-d, will deliver them before you, and will confound them with great confusion, until their destruction.

Rashi on 7:23 AND WILL CONFOUND THEM. All of this [word] is vocalized with a "kamatz" because the last "mem" is not part of the root, [but it is a suffix,] and it is equivalent to ham otam, "And He will confound them." But in "and the wheel of his wagon shall break vehamam" (Yeshayahu 28:28), the [word] is all root [letters], therefore, half of it [one syllable] has a "kamatz" and half of it has a "patach," just like any other verb of three letters.

8:1 All the commandment that I command you today you shall observe to perform, so that you may live and increase, and come and take possession of the land that Hashem swore to your forefathers.

Rashi on 8:1 ALL THE COMMANDMENT. [This is to be understood] according to its simple meaning. A midrashic explanation is ["the whole of the commandment... you shall keep"]: If you have started a mitzvah, finish it, because it is attributed only to the one who completes it, as it is said, "And the bones of Yosef, which the children of Yisrael had brought up from Egypt, they buried in Shechem" (Yehoshua 24:32). But did not Moshe alone occupy himself with them to bring them up? [See Shemot 13:19] However, since he did not complete the mitzvah [of burying the bones], and [the children of] Yisrael did, [this mitzvah ] is accredited to their name.

8:2 You shall remember the entire road on which Hashem, your G-d, led you these forty years in the wilderness so as to afflict you, to test you, to know what is in your heart, whether you would observe His commandments or not.

Rashi on 8:2 WHETHER YOU WOULD OBSERVE HIS COMMANDMENTS that you would not test Him or suspect Him [i.e., doubt His ways].

8:4 Your garment did not wear out upon you and your foot did not swell, these forty years.

Rashi on 8:4 YOUR GARMENT DID NOT WEAR OUT. The clouds of glory would rub their [the Yisraelim] clothes and clean them so that they looked like freshly laundered clothes. And also their children, as they grew, their clothes grew along with them, like a snail’s shell, which grows along with it.

AND YOUR FOOT DID NOT SWELL. [This means:] Neither [did your foot] swell like dough batzek, as [usually happens] with those who walk barefoot, that their feet swell.

8:8 a land of wheat, barley, grape, fig, and pomegranate; a land of oil-olives and honey;

Rashi on 8:8 OIL-OLIVES, literally, olives of oil, [i.e.,] olives that produce oil.

9:1 Hear, O Yisrael, today you cross the Yarden, to come and drive out nations greater and mightier than you, cities great and fortified to the heavens,

Rashi on 9:1 GREATER AND MIGHTIER THAN YOU. You are mighty, but they are mightier than you.

9:4 Do not say in your heart, when Hashem pushes them away from before you, saying, "Because of my righteousness did Hashem bring me to take possession of this land and because of the wickedness of these nations did Hashem drive them away from before you."

Rashi on 9:4 DO NOT SAY IN YOUR HEART - "My righteousness and the nations, evil brought it about."

9:5 Not because of your righteousness and the uprightness of your heart are you coming to take possession of their land, but because of the wickedness of these nations does Hashem, your G-d, drive them away from before you, and in order to establish the word that Hashem swore to your forefathers, to Avraham, to Yitzchak, and to Yaakov.


9:9 Then I ascended the mountain to receive the Tablets of stone, the Tablets of the covenant that Hashem sealed with you, and I stayed on the mountain for forty days and forty nights; bread I did not eat, and water I did not drink.

Rashi on 9:9 I STAYED ON THE MOUNTAIN. Hebrew: vaeshev. The word yeshiva means "staying" [i.e., I stayed on the mountain].

9:10 And Hashem gave me the two stone Tablets, inscribed by the finger of Hashem, and on them were all the words that Hashem spoke to with you on the mountain from the midst of the fire, on the day of the congregation.

Rashi on 9:10 TABLETS. [This word] is written , [in a singular form, and not, , to indicate that] both of them were identical.

9:18 Then I fell [in prayer] before Hashem as the first time - forty days and forty nights - bread I did not eat and water I did not drink, because of your entire sin that you committed, to do that which is evil in the eyes of Hashem, to anger Him.

Rashi on 9:18 THEN I FELL [IN PRAYER] BEFORE HASHEM AS THE FIRST TIME - FORTY DAYS. As it says, "And now I will go up to Hashem perhaps I will atone [for the golden calf]" (Shemot 32:20). At that ascent, I stayed there forty days; consequently, these ended on the twenty-ninth of Av, since he [Moshe] ascended on the eighteenth of Tammuz. On the same day, G-d was reconciled with Yisrael and He said to Moshe, "Hew for yourself two tablets" (Shemot 34:1). He [Moshe] remained there another forty days; consequently, these ended on Yom Kippur [the tenth of Tishri]. On that very day, the Holy One, blessed is He, was joyfully reconciled with Yisrael, and He said to Moshe, "I have forgiven according to your words" (BaMidbar 14:20). Therefore [Yom Kippur] was designated [as a day] for pardon and forgiveness. And from where do we know that [G-d] was reconciled [with Yisrael] in complete acceptance? Because it says referring to the forty [days] of the later tablets, "And I remained on the mountain as the first days" (Devarim 10:10). Just as the first [forty days] were with [G-d’s] good will, so too, the last [forty days] were with [G-d’s] good will. We may now deduce that the intermediate [forty days] were with [G-d’s] anger.

9:20 Hashem became very angry with Aharon to destroy him, so I prayed also for Aharon at that time.

Rashi on 9:20 HASHEM BECAME VERY ANGRY WITH AHARON. Because he listened to you.

TO DESTROY HIM. This refers to the destruction of [his] children. Similarly, it states, "And I destroyed his fruit [i.e., children] from above" (Amos 2:9).

SO I PRAYED ALSO FOR AHARON. And my prayer succeeded to atone for half, thus [only] two [of his sons] died, and two remained [alive].

9:21 Your sin that you committed - the calf - I took and burned it in fire, and I pounded it, grinding it well, until it was fine as dust, and I threw its dust into the valley that descended from the mounatin.

Rashi on 9:21 GRINDING. Hebrew: tachon. This is the present tense [of the verb], haloch vechalut, "continuously destroying'" moulant in French, grinding.

9:25 I fell [in prayer] before Hashem for the forty days and the forty nights that I feel [in prayer], for Hashem had intended to destroy you.

Rashi on 9:25 I FELL [IN PRAYER] BEFORE HASHEM FOR THE FORTY DAYS... THAT I FELL [IN PRAYER]. These are the same [forty days] mentioned above (v18). And it is repeated here because now the content of his prayer is written, as it is stated [in the next verse], "O Hashem G-d, do not destroy Your people, etc."

10:1 At that time Hashem said to me, "Carve for yourself two stone Tablets like the first ones, and ascend to Me to the mountain, and make a wooden Ark for yourself.

Rashi on 10:1 AT THAT TIME. At the end of forty days [which was the first of Elul], G-d was reconciled with me and said to me, "Hew for yourself [two tablets]," and afterwards, "make for yourself a [wooden] ark." I, however (see v3), made the ark first, because [I considered that] when I would come with the tablets in my hand, where would I put them? This was not the ark that Betzalel made, because the Yisraelim did not occupy themselves with the Mishkan until after Yom Kippur [which was forty days later], for when Moshe descended the mountain, he commanded them regarding the construction of the Mishkan. [Then] Betzalel made the Mishkan first, and only afterwards the ark and the [other] furnishings. It follows, therefore, that this was another ark, and that was the one that went out with them to battle, but the one Betzalel made did not go out to battle except in the days of 'Eli, and they were punished for it, and it [the ark] was captured [by the Pelishtim].

10:6 The Children of Yisrael journeyed from the wells of Bney-yaakan to Moserah; there Aharon died and he was buried there, and Elazar his son ministered in his place.

Rashi on 10:6 THE CHILDREN OF YISRAEL JOURNEYED FROM THE WELLS OF BNEY-YAAKAN TO MOSERAH. What is the relevance of this here? Furthermore, did they really journey from the wells of Bney Yaakan to Moserah? Was it not from Moserah that they came to the wells of Beney Yaakan, as it is said, "And they journeyed from Moserot [and encamped in Bney Yaakan]" (BaMidbar 33:31)? Moreover, [why does it say:] "there Aharon died"? Did he not die at Mount Hor? If you calculate it, you will find eight stations from Moserot to Mount Hor! However, [the answer is that] this is also part of the reproof [introduced in Devarim 1:1 and continued through here]: [In effect Moshe said,] This, also, you did. When Aharon died on Mount Hor at the end of the forty years and [consequently] the clouds of the Divine Glory departed, you were afraid of the [impending] war with the king of 'Arad. So you appointed a leader to return to Egypt, and you went back eight stations until Bney Yaakan, and from there to Moserah. There, the sons of Levi battled with you. They slew some of you, and you some of them, until they forced you to return by the way you had retreated. From there, you returned to Gudgodah, which is Hor Haggidgad (BaMidbar 33:32).

10:7 From there they journeyed to Gudgodah, and from Gudgodah to Yotvatah, a land of brooks of water.

Rashi on 10:7> AND FROM GUDGODAH TO YOTVATAH... And at Moserah, you made a great mourning for the death of Aharon, which was the cause of this [your retreat], and it seemed to you as though he had died there. Moshe juxtaposed this reproof with the breaking of the tablets to indicate that the death of the righteous is as grievous to the Holy One, blessed is He, as the day the tablets were broken, and to inform you that when they said, "Let us appoint a leader [and return to Egypt]" (BaMidbar 14:4) — and divorce ourselves from him [Moshe], was as grievous for him as was the day on which they made the golden calf.

10:8 At that time, Hashem set apart the tribe of Levi to carry the Ark of the covenant of Hashem, to stand before Hashem to minister to Him and to bless with His Name until this day.

Rashi on 10:8 AT THAT TIME, HASHEM SEPARATED THE TRIBE OF LEVI. This is connected to the previous context - AT THAT TIME, during the first year of your departure from Egypt, when you erred [by making] the calf, and the sons of Levi did not thus err, the Omnipresent separated them from you. This verse is juxtaposed to the retreat to Bney Yaakan, to tell you that also in this matter, the sons of Levi did not err, but rather remained steadfast in their faith.

TO CARRY THE ARK OF THE COVENANT. [Referring to] the Leviim.

TO STAND BEFORE HASHEM TO MINISTER AND TO BLESS WITH HIS NAME. [Referring to] the Kohanim, and this is the "raising of the hands" [when they bless the people].

10:9 Therefore, Levi did not have a share and a heritage with his brothers; Hashem is his hertiage, as Hashem, your G-d, had spoken of him.

Rashi on 10:9 THEREFORE, LEVI DID NOT HAVE A SHARE since they were separated for the service of the altar, and therefore were not free to plow and sow.

HASHEM IS HIS HERITAGE. Levi receives his daily fare, designated for him, from the King’s house [i.e., with the gifts due the Kohanim, granted them by G-d].

10:10 And as for me, I stood on the mountain as [on] the first days - forty days and forty nights - and Hashem listened to me this time, as well, and Hashem did not wish to destroy you.

Rashi on 10:10 I STOOD ON THE MOUNTAIN to receive the latter tablets. Since Moshe does not state above how long he remained on the mountain at this last ascent, he again begins with it.

AS [ON] THE FIRST DAYS. I.e., those of the first tablets. Just as those days were with [G-d’s] good will, so were these with good will. But the intermediate [forty days], when I remained to pray for you, were in anger.

10:11 Hashem said to me, "Arise, go on the journey before the people; let them come and take possession of the land that I swore to their forefathers to give them."

Rashi on 10:11 HASHEM SAID TO ME, ARISE, GO ON THE JOURNEY BEFORE THE PEOPLE. Although you [Yisrael] had turned away from following Him, and you had erred with the [golden] calf, He [nonetheless] said to me, "Go, lead the people" (Shemot 32:34).

10:12 And now, Yisrael, what does Hashem, your G-d, ask of you but to fear Hashem, your G-d, to go in all His ways and to love Him, and to serve Hashem, your G-d, with all your heart and with all your soul,

Rashi on 10:12 AND NOW, YISRAEL. Even though you did all this, His mercy and His affection are still upon you, and with all that you have sinned against Him, He demands nothing of you, except only to fear [Hashem, your G-d,...]

ONLY TO FEAR HASHEM, YOUR G-D,... Our Rabbis derived from this verse ["And now... what does... G-d ask of you"] that everything is in the hands of Heaven except the fear of Heaven.

10:13 to keep the commandments of Hashem and His statutes, which I command you today, for your benefit.

Rashi on 10:13 TO KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS OF HASHEM and this too, is not for nothing, but—for your good—that you should receive a reward.

10:14 Behold, to Hashem, your G-d, are the heavens and highest heavens, the earth and everything that is in it.

Rashi on 10:14 BEHOLD, TO HASHEM, YOUR G-D, ARE everything, and even so—"Only your forefathers Hashem desired" — out of everything [i.e., the whole universe].

10:15 Only your forefathers did Hashem cherish to love them, and He chose their offspring after them - you - from among all the peoples, as this day.

Rashi on 10:15 AND HE CHOSE...YOU. Just as you see yourselves as the most beloved of all peoples, as it is this day.

10:16 You shall cut away the barrier of your heart and no longer stiffen your neck.

Rashi on 10:16 THE BARRIER OF YOUR HEART, the blockage and covering of your heart.

10:17 For Hashem, your G-d - He is the G-d of the powers and the L-rd of lords, the great, mighty, and awesome G-d, Who does not show favor and does not take a bribe.

Rashi on 10:17 AND L-RD OF LORDS, meaning that no lord will be able to deliver you from His hand. Who will show no favor if you cast off His yoke, nor will He take a bribe - i.e., to appease Him with money.

10:18 Who carries out the judgment of orphan and widow, and loves the convert to give him bread and garment.

Rashi on 10:18 WHO CARRIES OUT THE JUDGMENT OF ORPHAN AND WIDOW, [previously, in v17,] we had a description of G-d’s power. Now alongside His power, we find [a description of] His humility.

AND LOVES THE CONVERT TO GIVE HIM BREAD AND GARMENT, and this [provision of bread and clothing] is a matter of great importance, for the very essence of our father Yaakov prayed for this [as it says], "And if He will give me bread to eat and a garment to wear" (Bereyshit 28:20).

10:19 You shall love the convert for your were strangers in the land of Egypt.

Rashi on 10:19 YOU SHALL LOVE THE CONVERT FOR YOU WERE STRANGERS. Do not reproach others with your own defect.

10:20 Hashem, your G-d, you shall fear, Him shall you serve, to Him shall you cleave, and with His Name shall you swear.

Rashi on 10:20 HASHEM, YOUR G-D, YOU SHALL FEAR and worship Him and cleave to Him. After you have all these qualities, then you may swear by His Name.

11:2 You should know today, for it is not with your children who did not know and who did not see the chastisement of Hashem, your G-d, His greatness, His strong hand, and His outstretched arm;

Rashi on 11:2 YOU SHOULD KNOW THIS DAY. Set your attention to know, understand, and accept my reproof.

FOR IT IS NOT WITH YOUR CHILDREN am I now speaking, who would be able to say, "We did not know or see all this."

11:6 and what He did to Datan and Aviram the sons of Eliav son of Reuven, when the earth opened its mouth wide and swallowed them, and their households, and their tents, and all the sustence which was at their feet, in the midst of all Yisrael.

Rashi on 11:6 WHEN THE EARTH OPENED ITS MOUTH WIDE AND SWALLOWED THEM...IN THE MIDST OF ALL YISRAEL. Wherever one of them fled, there the earth split under him and swallowed him up; these are the words of Rabbi Judah. Rabbi Nehemiah said to him: But has it not already been stated, "And the earth opened its mouth" (BaMidbar 16:32), and not, "its mouths" [implying that the earth opened up at only one place]? Rabbi Judah said to him: How, then, do you [Reggio ed.] explain: "in the midst of all Yisrael" [implying it opened up in many areas]? Rabbi Nehemiah replied to him: The earth began to slope as a funnel, and wherever one of them happened to be, he rolled down until he reached the place where the earth was split.

AND ALL THE SUSTENCE WHICH WAS AT THEIR FEET. This is a man’s money, which sets him on his feet.

11:7 Rather it is your eyes that see all the great work of Hashem, which He did.

Rashi on 11:7 RATHER IT IS YOUR EYES THAT SEE. This is connected to the verse stated above (v2), "That [I speak] not with your children, who did not know...," but rather with you—"your eyes, which have seen..." [i.e., to you, whose eyes have seen...]

11:10 For the land to which you come, to take possession of it - it is not like the land of Egypt from where you left, where you would plant your seed and water it by your foot like a vegetable garden.

Rashi on 11:10 THE LAND TO WHICH YOU COME... is not like the land of Egypt but better than it. This promise was made to Yisrael when they left Egypt, for they would say, "Perhaps we will not come to a land as good and beautiful as this one." One might think that Scripture is speaking derogatorily of it [the Land of Yisrael], and so he said to them: It is not like the land of Egypt, but it is worse than it! Therefore, Scripture says, "And Chevron was built seven years before Tzoan of Egypt..." (BaMidbar 13:22): One man built [both of] them—Cham built Tzoan for his son, Mitzrayim, and he built Chevron for Kenaan [his other son]. It is customary that one first builds the better city and afterwards builds the inferior one, because the refuse [left over] from the first, he puts into the second, and in any case, the favorite one first. Thus we learn that Chevron was a more beautiful city than Tzoan. Egypt was superior to all other lands, as is stated [of it], "like the garden of Hashem, like the land of Egypt" (Bereishit 13:10), and Tzoan was the best of the land of Egypt, as it was the seat of royalty, for so it is stated: "For his princes were in Tzoan" (Yeshayahu 30:4), and Chevron was the worst city of Eretz Yisrael. For this reason, they set it apart for a burial ground, and yet it was better than Tzoan. In Tractate Ketuvot (112a), however, our Rabbis explained the above in another manner: Is it possible that a man would build a house for his younger son [here Kenaan], and only afterwards for his older son [Mitzrayim]? We must therefore explain [the meaning of vechevron sheva shanim nivneta to be] that Chevron was built up seven times better than Tzoan.

THE LAND OF EGYPT FROM WHERE YOU LEFT. Even the land of Goshen and the land of Rameses in which you dwelt, and which is the best of the land of Egypt, as it is said, "in the best of the land, [in the land of Rameses]" (Bereishit 47:11)—even that is not like the land of Yisrael.

AND WATER IT BY YOUR FOOT. The land of Egypt required bringing water from the Nile by foot in order to water it; you had to rise from your sleep and toil. And only the low-lying areas were watered [i.e., were irrigated by the Nile], but not the high land, so you had to carry up water from the lower to the higher areas. But this [land, namely Kenaan] "absorbs water from the rains of heaven." While you sleep in your bed, the Holy One, blessed is He, waters both low and high areas, both areas that are exposed and those that are not, all at once.

LIKE A VEGETABLE GARDEN which does not have enough water from rain, and one has to water it by foot, [carrying water] upon one’s shoulder.

11:11 But the land to which you cross over there to take possession of it is a land of mountains and valleys; by the rain of the heavens it drinks water;

Rashi on 11:11 A LAND OF MOUNTAINS AND VALLEYS. The mountain land is superior to the land of the plain: On the plain, in an area of land that would produce a kor [a measure of grain], one would actually sow only [enough seed to produce] a kor. On the mountain, however, from an area of land that would produce a kor, one could take out of it five kors, four from its four slopes and one on its summit.

AND VALLEYS. These are plains.

11:12 a land that Hashem, your G-d, seeks out; the eyes of Hashem, your G-d, are always upon it, from the beginning of the year to year's end.

Rashi on 11:12 HASHEM, YOUR G-D, SEEKS OUT. But does He not look after all lands, as it is said, "To rain on the earth where no man is" (Iyov 38:26)? Rather, it is as if G-d cares only for it, and with that caring, which He cares for it, He cares for all the [other] lands along with it.

THE EYES OF HASHEM, YOUR G-D, ARE ALWAYS UPON IT to see what it requires and to make for it new decrees, sometimes for good and sometimes for bad, as is found in [Tractate] Rosh Hashanah (17b).

FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE YEAR TO YEAR'S END. At the beginning of the year [i.e., Rosh Hashanah], it is judged [by G-d] what will be at its conclusion.

11:13 And it will be that if listening, you will listen to My commandments that I command you today, to love Hashem, your G-d, and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul,

Rashi on 11:13 AND IT WILL BE THAT IF LISTENING. [The word] vahaya is referring to what is said above (v11): "and absorbs water from the rains of heaven"

AND IT WILL BE THAT IF LISTENING, literally, And it will be, if hearkening you will hearken. If you hearken to the old [i.e., if you study what you have already learned], you will hearken to the new [i.e., you will have a new and deeper understanding]. Similar is [the meaning of] "And it will be, if you forget" (Devarim 8:19): If you have begun to forget [the Torah you have learned], eventually you will forget all of it, for so it is written in the Megillah 1: "If you leave Me for one day, I will leave you for two days."

COMMAND YOU THIS DAY, ["this day" suggests] that [the commandments] should [always] be to you as new, as though you had just heard them on this very day.

TO LOVE HASHEM. You should not say: "I will learn in order to become rich, [or] in order to be referred to as ‘Rabbi,’ [or] in order that I receive a reward. Rather, whatever you do, do out of love [for G-d], and ultimately, the honor will come."

AND TO SERVE HIM WITH ALL YOUR HEART, i.e., with a service of the heart, and that is prayer, for prayer is called service, as it is said, "your G-d, Whom you serve regularly" (Daniel 6:17). But was there a [Temple] service in Babylon? Rather, [the term service is used] because he prayed, as it is said, "where there were open windows [in his upper chamber opposite Yerushalayim, and three times a day he kneeled on his knees and prayed...]" (Daniel 6:11). And so, too, it states regarding David, "My prayer shall be established like incense before You" (Tehillim 141:2).

WITH ALL YOUR HEART AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL. But did he not already admonish us, [by the words] "[And you shall love Hashem, your G-d,] with all your heart and with all your soul" (Devarim 6:5)? [That, however, was] an admonition addressed for the individual, [while this is] an admonition to the community.

11:14 then I shall provide the rain of your land in its time, the early rain and the late rain; and you shall bring in your grain, your wine, and your oil.

Rashi on 11:14 I SHALL PROVIDE THE RAIN OF YOUR LAND. You will have done what is [incumbent upon] you; [so] I will do what is [incumbent] upon Me.

IN ITS TIME. At night, so it will not disturb you. Another explanation of at its time is: On Shabbat [Friday] nights, when everyone is at home.

THE EARLY RAIN. This is the rain that falls after [the] sowing [season], which thoroughly sates the soil and the seeds.

THE LATE RAINS. The rain that falls just before the harvest time, to fill the grain on its stalks. The term malkosh refers to something that is late, as in the Targum [Onkelos], we translate vehayahaatufim "the ones that delayed were Lavan’s" (Bereishit 30:42) as lekishaya. Another explanation: For this reason, it is called malkosh namely because it falls upon the ears (melilot) and the stalks (kashin [i.e., just before the harvest, thus malkosh is a combination of these two words].

AND YOU SHALL BRING IN YOUR GRAIN. You will gather it into the house, and not your enemies. as it is said: "[Hashem swore...] 'I will no longer give your grain as food [to your enemies, and foreigners will no longer drink your wine....[But those who gather it in will eat it..." (Yeshayahu 62:8,9), and not as it is said "And it was when Yisrael had sown, [that Midyan came up... and they destroyed the produce of the earth]" (Shoftim 6:3,4).

11:15 I shall provide grass in your field for your animal and you will eat and you will be satisified.

Rashi on 11:15 I SHALL PROVIDE GRASS IN YOUR FIELD FOR YOUR ANIMAL so that you will not have to lead them to distant pastures. Another explanation: That you will be able to trim your grain all through the winter and cast it before your livestock, and if you refrain from doing this thirty days before the harvest, it will not produce any less grain.

AND YOU WILL EAT AND YOU WILL BE SATISIFIED. This is another blessing: That the bread will be blessed within the stomach, that you may eat and be sated.

11:16 Beware for yourselves, lest your heart be seduced and you will turn astray and you will serve other gods and prostrate yourselves to them.

Rashi on 11:16 BEWARE FOR YOURSELVES, LEST YOUR HEART BE SEDUCED. Since you will eat and be full, beware that you do not rebel [against the Holy One, blessed is He], for nobody rebels against the Holy One, blessed is He, except out of satiety, as it is said, "lest you eat and be sated... and your herds and your flocks multiply... What does he [Moshe] say after this? "and your heart grows haughty, and you forget Hashem, your G-d" (Devarim 8: 12-14).

AND YOU WILL TURN ASTRAY to depart from the Torah, and as a result of this, and SERVE OTHER GODS for as soon as a man departs from the Torah, he goes and cleaves to idolatry. Similarly, David said, "for they have driven me today, from cleaving to Hashem’s heritage, saying, 'Go, worship [strange gods]'" (1Shmuel 26:19). But who [actually] said this to him? [He meant to say,] Since I am driven from being occupied with the Torah, I am closer to the danger of worshipping strange gods.

OTHER GODS that are strangers to those who worship them. The worshipper cries out to it, but it does not answer him; consequently, it becomes to him as a stranger.

11:17 Then the wrath of Hashem will blaze against you; He will restrain the heavens and there will be no rain, and the ground will not yield its produce; and you will perish quickly from the good land that Hashem gives you.

Rashi on 11:17 THE GROUND WILL NOT YIELD ITS PRODUCE. It will not yield the quantity that you bring to it, as it said: "You have sown much, but you bring in little" (Chaggai 1:6).

AND YOU WILL PERISH QUICKLY. In addition to all the other sufferings, I will exile you from the land that caused you to sin. This may be compared to a king who sent his son to a feast hall and admonished him, "Do not eat or drink more than necessary, so that you will arrive home clean." The son, however, did not take heed. He ate and drank more than he needed, and he regurgitated and soiled all the guests. They took him by his hands and feet, and threw him behind the palace.

QUICKLY. I will give you no extensions. And if you ask: Was not an extension given to the generation of the flood, as it is said, "and his days will be [i.e., an extension will be given to him for] one hundred and twenty years" (Bereishit 6:3)? [The answer is that] the generation of the flood had no one to learn from, but you do have someone to learn from.

11:18 You should place these words of Mine upon your heart and upon your soul; you shall bind them for a sign upon your arm and let them be for tefillin between your eyes.

Rashi on 11:18 YOU SHOULD PLACE THESE WORDS OF MINE. Even after you have been exiled, make yourselves distinctive with My commandments: Put on tefillin and make mezuzot, so that these will not be new to you when you return. Similarly, it is said, "Set up markers for yourself" (Yirmeyahu 31:20).

11:19 You shall teach them to your children to speak in them, while you sit in your home, while you walk on the way, when you retire and when you arise.

Rashi on 11:19 YOU SHALL TEACH THEM TO YOUR CHILDREN TO SPEAK IN THEM. From the moment your son knows how to speak, teach him, "Moshe commanded us the Torah" (Devarim 33:4). Let him learn speech through this. From this, our Rabbis taught: When the infant begins to talk, his father should speak to him in the Holy Tongue, and should teach him the Torah. If he does not do this, it is as though he buries him, as it is stated [here], "And you shall teach them to your sons to speak with them..." [in order that your days may increase, and the days of your children].

11:21 In order to prolong your days and the days of your children upon the land that Hashem has sworn to your forefathers to give them, like the days of the heavens over the earth.

Rashi on 11:21 IN ORDER TO PROLONG YOUR DAYS AND THE DAYS OF YOUR CHILDREN. If you do so, they will increase, but if not, they will not increase, for the words of the Torah may be interpreted, so that we may deduce from a negative statement its positive inference, and from a positive statement, its negative inference.

THE LAND THAT HASHEM HAS SWORN TO YOUR FOREFATHERS TO GIVE THEM it is not written here "to give you," but rather, "to give them." From this, we learn that [the tenet of] the resurrection of the dead has its basis from the Torah.

11:22 For if observing you will observe all this commandment that I command you, to perform it, to love Hashem, your G-d, to go in all His ways and to cleave to Him.

Rashi on 11:22 IF OBSERVING YOU WILL OBSERVE ALL THIS COMMANDMENT. [The repetition of shamor is to] admonish us many times to be careful with one’s learning, lest it be forgotten.

TO GO IN ALL HIS WAYS. G-d is merciful, so you, too, be merciful; He bestows loving-kindness, so you, too, bestow loving-kindness.

AND TO CLEAVE TO HIM. Is it possible to say this? Is G-d not "a consuming fire" (Devarim 4:24)? Rather, it means: Cleave to the disciples and the Sages, and I will consider it as though you cleave to Me.

11:23 Hashem will drive out all these nations from before you, and you will drive out nations greater and mightier than you.

Rashi on 11:23 HASHEM WILL DRIVE OUT ALL THESE NATIONS FROM BEFORE YOU. Since you have fulfilled what is [incumbent] upon you, I will do what is [incumbent] upon Me.

MIGHTIER THAN YOU. You are strong, but they are stronger than you, for if it were not that the Yisraelim were strong, what is the praise that he [Moshe] is praising the Emorim by saying of them that they arem, "stronger than you"? But, [the answer is that] you are stronger than all other nations and they [the Emorim] are stronger than you.

11:25 No man will stand up before you; Hashem, your G-d, will set your terror and your fear on the face of the entire land where you will tread, as He spoke to you.

Rashi on 11:25 NO MAN WILL STAND UP BEFORE YOU. From this verse it is understood only [that] "a man" [will not be able to stand up before Yisrael]. How do we know that a nation, a family, or a woman with her witchcraft will also not be able to stand up before Yisrael? Therefore, it says: "there will be no standing up [before you]"—at all. If so, why does it say: "man"? [It means any man], even as [mighty as] 'Og, king of Bashan.

HASHEM... WILL SET YOUR TERROR AND YOUR FEAR ON THE FACE OF THE ENTIRE LAND. Hebrew: pachdechem umoraachem. Is not pachad the same as mora [both meaning fear]? But [the answer is that] pachdechem "the fear of you," refers to those near by, and moraachem, "the dread of you," to those distant, for pachad denotes "sudden fear," and mora denotes anxiety enduring many days.

AS HE SPOKE TO YOU. And where did He speak [about this]? "I will cast My terror before you" (Shemot 23:27).


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