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Parshas Pinchas - Sheini with Rashi

Moshe and Elazar HaKohen counted the Yidden, like Hashem told them to.

The Torah tells us each of the Shevatim, and the families from that Shevet.

By looking at the names of the families, we learn interesting things about some of the people in the Torah!

- Korach’s family is counted too, because Korach’s sons didn’t die! (During the argument with Korach, they did teshuvah in their hearts, but it looked like they were still part of Korach’s group. Hashem gave them a fair punishment: Because it looked like they were part of the machlokes, they were swallowed by the ground so it looked like they died. But because they did teshuvah, Hashem gave them a safe place to stay underground, and let them come out after the generation who knew them had passed away.)

- One of the families of Menasheh, Tzelofchad, had no boys — only girls. The Torah tells us all of their names: Machla, Noa, Chaglah, Milkah, and Tirtza. (We will hear a special story about them later in the parsha!)

- The Torah also tells us that Serach, Asher’s daughter, was still alive!

All together, there were 601,730 Jewish men older than 20.



72 - 76

Today’s kapitelach are Ayin-Beis to Ayin-Vov.

Kapitel Ayin-Beis begins with the word “L’Shlomo.” This was the last kapitel of Tehillim that Dovid Hamelech said. (The kapitelach of Tehillim are not in the order that they were made.) Dovid Hamelech saw with Ruach Hakodesh that his son Shlomo would ask Hashem for a special bracha, and Dovid Hamelech asked Hashem to give it!

What was this bracha?

In Sefer Melachim, we learn the story of what happened: When Shlomo became king, there was not yet a Beis Hamikdash. People would bring korbanos wherever they wanted, on a bamah, a type of Mizbeiach.

Shlomo Hamelech went to Givon, where the Mizbeiach Hanechoshes was in those days. There he brought a thousand korbanos to Hashem!

In Givon, Hashem came to Shlomo Hamelech in a dream. Hashem asked, “What should I give you?”

Shlomo Hamelech could have asked for a long life, or for riches, or for his enemies to leave him alone. But Shlomo Hamelech answered, “Hashem made me the king, but I am still young. Please, Hashem, give me the understanding to properly take care of the Yidden!”

Hashem was very happy with the bracha that Shlomo Hamelech had asked for! Not only did Hashem give Shlomo Hamelech wisdom to understand, Hashem also gave him riches and honor, and promised that if he would keep the Torah, he would live a long life.

This is what Dovid Hamelech asked for in this kapitel. The first posuk says, “L’Shlomo, Elokim Mishpatecha Lemelech Tein, Vetzidkascha Leven Melech.” “About Shlomo: Hashem, give the chochmah of Your Torah to the king (Shlomo), and Your tzedek (to be able to judge properly) to the king’s son (Shlomo, who was the son of Dovid the king).”

The meforshim say that this kapitel is also speaking about the wisdom of another king, who comes from Dovid and Shlomo, Melech HaMoshiach!



Igeres Hateshuvah Perek Daled

To understand what an aveira does to the neshama of a Yid and how we can do teshuvah, we need to learn more about what a Yid is! Today we will see what is special about a Yid by seeing how a Yid is different than a malach.

When Hashem made Adam HaRishon, Hashem blew a neshama inside of him, “Vayipach Be’apav Nishmas Chayim.”

But when Hashem made malachim, it says that He made them using his breath, like what comes out when we speak, like the posuk says, “Uv’ruach Piv Kol Tzeva’am.”

Of course these are only mashalim! But these mashalim help us understand how the chayus in a Yid’s neshama is different than the chayus of a malach.

Which takes more koach, speaking or blowing? Blowing, of course! The Torah tells us that a Yid’s neshama has more chayus from Hashem, like BLOWING! The malachim also have chayus from Hashem, but only like the amount of koach it takes for a person to speak.

That is why malachim are only called with the name Elokim, but neshamos are called with the name Yud-Kay-Vov-Kay! (The name Elokim hides the chayus so it is not so strong, but the main chayus is from Yud-Kay-Vov-Kay, which is where the neshamos come from.)



Yud-Daled Tammuz

Today we learn something that the Alter Rebbe told his sons during the week of Parshas Balak, and was later written in one of the maamarim of the Tzemach Tzedek.

Did you ever wonder why the people on the other side of the world don’t fall off the world, if the world is like a big ball and they are on the bottom?

When the Alter Rebbe spoke about this to his children, he told them that scientists have an answer, but it is not the true answer. The true answer is in Eitz Chayim, where it explains that the world is from the Ruchniyus’dike chayus of Hashem called Igulim.

Igulim is a chayus that is like a circle — a circle doesn’t have a top and a bottom! The world gets its chayus from Hashem this way, so no part of the world is really “on top”! Everything is part of the world-circle, which is inside of the sky-circle. The people on the other side don’t fall because they aren’t underneath us. Their sky is over them like our sky is over us!



Shiur #336 - Mitzvas Asei #173, Lo Saasei #362, #364, #363, #365

We are now on the last set of halachos in Rambam! These perakim talk about the mitzvos of kings, and later we will learn about the greatest king of all, Moshiach!

In today’s Sefer Hamitzvos, we learn 5 mitzvos — 2 for all of the Yidden, and 3 mitzvos especially for kings!

1) (Mitzvas Asei #173) The Yidden need to choose a king who will lead them. They need to have a lot of kavod for him, even more kavod than they have for a Navi! If the king tells them to do anything that is not against Torah, they NEED to do it. If someone doesn’t listen to the king, he is called a Mored Bemalchus and he deserves to be killed.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Shoftim: שׂוֹם תָּשִׂים עָלֶיךָ מֶלֶךְ

The halachos are explained in Mesechta Sanhedrin perek Beis, Mesechta Kerisus perek Alef, and Mesechta Sotah perek Zayin.

2) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #362) We are not allowed to choose a Ger for any official jobs, like a judge or a king. For kings, it is even more specific — Hashem says that the kings will come from the family of Dovid Hamelech.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Shoftim: לֹא תוּכַל לָתֵת עָלֶיךָ אִישׁ נָכְרִי אֲשֶׁר לֹא אָחִיךָ הוּא

The halachos are explained in Mesechta Sanhedrin perek Beis.

3) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #364) A king can’t marry too many women. In those days, people were allowed to have more than one wife, but a king can’t have more than 18. If he gets married to more wives than that, he gets malkos.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Shoftim: וְלֹא יַרְבֶּה לּוֹ נָשִׁים

The halachos are explained in Mesechta Sanhedrin perek Beis.

4) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #363) A king isn’t allowed to collect horses. He is only allowed to have what he needs for the army, and only one horse for himself! He can’t have extra horses to run in front of him for honor or respect.

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Shoftim: לֹא יַרְבֶּה לּוֹ סוּסִים

The halachos are explained in Mesechta Sanhedrin perek Beis.

5) (Mitzvas Lo Saasei #365) A king shouldn’t have too much money for himself. He shouldn’t have more than he needs to spend for his chariots or his servants. But he IS allowed to collect a lot of money to take care of the needs of Yidden.

The Torah tells us the reasons for these last three mitzvos. But the Torah doesn’t always tell us a reason for mitzvos, since if we would know the reasons, we might skip the mitzvah because we think the reason doesn’t apply to us. But even when we know the reason, we don’t understand the REAL reason — only Hashem does! So no matter what, we should do the mitzvos the way Hashem tells us to, whether we know why or not!

We learn this mitzvah from a posuk in Parshas Shoftim: וְכֶסֶף וְזָהָב לֹא יַרְבֶּה לּוֹ מְאֹד



Hilchos Melachim

In Perek Alef, the Rambam tells us that there are 3 mitzvos the Yidden have to keep when they come into Eretz Yisroel — in order! First, they have to make a Jewish king, then they have to get rid of Amalek, and then they have to build the Beis Hamikdash.

We learn who can be a Jewish king — only a man, who is not a Ger, who never had a job that might make people think he isn’t important.

Perek Beis teaches us about the kavod of a king. Nobody is allowed to use his things, and he needs to always dress beautifully. He should sit on a throne in his palace, and wear a crown.

The king needs to be very humble! He should take care of every Yid, like a shepherd who takes care of every sheep.

In Perek Gimmel, we learn the mitzvos for a king (which we learned in Sefer Hamitzvos). A king also has a special mitzvah to carry a Sefer Torah with him wherever he goes! Even if he can’t hold it (like when he’s sleeping or eating) it needs to be right there near him. He also has to be careful not to do anything that makes him forget about the Sefer Torah or his special job of taking care of the Yidden.



Hilchos Melachim - Perek Tes

Perek Tes teaches us many details about the Sheva Mitzvos, and the punishment for a goy who does not keep them.



Yud-Beis Tammuz

Even though it’s already after Yud-Beis Tammuz, the inyan of the Yom Tov continues for another few days!

After the Frierdiker Rebbe went free, he wasn’t able to say the bracha Hagomel (that a person usually says when coming out of jail) until Tes-Vov Tammuz, when he actually came home! (According to the Alter Rebbe, a person who was in jail isn’t allowed to make the bracha until he gets home.)

One year, the Rebbe told Chassidim to keep on making farbrengens every day until Tes-Vov Tammuz! At each farbrengen we should make three hachlatos — one in Torah, one in Avodah, and one in Gemilus Chassadim.


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Before we go to sleep
There is a bracha we recite
We bless Hashem Who helps us
To fall asleep every night.

We ask to sleep peacefully
And that when morning comes again
Our neshama be peacefully returned
Full of chayus, from Hashem

We ask that while we’re sleeping
Our dreams should be just right
With no bad thoughts to bother us
Or disturb our rest tonight

We finish with the bracha
Praising Hashem’s light
His glory fills the world
And makes it shining bright.

When the light shines through our windows
We will wake up again
For another joyful day
In the service of Hashem!



Interruption After Hamapil

The halachos about Hamapil depend on what kind of bracha it is.

Some poskim say that Hamapil is like any other bracha we make on things which bring us pleasure, Birchos Hanehenin. We make a bracha before eating or drinking, and a bracha before enjoying a night’s sleep!

According to this opinion, after we say Shema, we can’t do or say anything else. We don’t make any interruptions after saying a bracha on food, until we’ve eaten some. In the same way, we shouldn’t make any interruptions after saying Hamapil, before we’ve slept.

Other poskim say that Hamapil is a bracha of praise to Hashem, like the brachos we say in Birchos Hashachar. When we say a bracha praising Hashem for giving us shoes (“She’asa Li Kol Tzorki”) we don’t have to run and put on shoes right away! The same way, we don’t have to go to sleep right after praising Hashem for making people sleep.

Most poskim say that it’s a bracha of praise. Therefore, if we realize that we forgot something important after saying Hamapil, we are allowed to do it. That’s especially true if it’s a mitzvah, like if we forgot to count sefirah or bring negel vasser.

Still, we should try our best to make sure that everything is taken care of before we say Hamapil. This way, we can say Hamapil and go to sleep right away.

If we did have to make an interruption, before we go to sleep we say the first paragraph of Shema again, and the posuk of Beyadcha Afkid Ruchi.

According to Piskei Teshuvos p. 987

לעילוי נשמת הרה״ח ר׳ דניאל יצחק ע״ה בן ר׳ אפרים שי׳ מאסקאוויץ
שליח כ"ק אדמו"ר נשיא דורנו למדינת אילינוי



Why the Chachomim Wanted Moshiach

Why should we want Moshiach?

The Rambam tells us the reason why the Chachomim wanted Moshiach:

לֹא נִתְאַווּ הַחַכָמִים וְהַנְבִיאִים יְמוֹת הַמָשִׁיחַ לֹא כְּדֵי שֶׁיִשְׁלְטוּ עַל כָּל הָעוֹלָם וְלֹא כְּדֵי שֶׁיִרְדוּ בַּגוֹיִים וְלֹא כְּדֵי שֶׁיְנַשְׂאוּ אוֹתָם הָעַמִים וְלֹא כְּדֵי לֶאֶכוֹל וְלִשְׁתּוֹת וְלִשְׂמוֹחַ אֶלָא כְּדֵי שֶׁיִהְיוּ פְּנוּיִין בַּתּוֹרָה וְחָכְמָתָה וְלֹא יִהְיֶה לָהֶם נוֹגֵשׂ וּמְבַטֵל

Lo Nis’avu Hachachomim Vehaneviim Yemos Hamoshiach — The Chachomim and the Neviim didn’t want Moshiach to come for these reasons:

Lo Kedei Sheyishletu Al Kol Ha’olam — They didn’t want Moshiach so they could be in charge of the whole world,

Velo Kedei Sheyirdu Bagoyim — Or so they could rule over the goyim,

Velo Kedei Sheyenas’u Osam Ha’amim — Or so all of the goyim would realize how special they are,

Velo Kedei Le’echol Velishtos Velismo’ach — Or so they could eat, drink, and be happy.

So why DID they want Moshiach?

Ela Kedei Sheyiheyu Pnuyin BaTorah Vechachmasa — They wanted Moshiach so they would be free to learn Torah and the Chochmah in it

Velo Yihiyeh Lahem Noges Umevatel — Without anyone or anything bothering them!

See Rambam, Hilchos Melachim perek Yud-Beis, beginning of halacha daled

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