Pasuk (26 :02 )
This weeks Parsha starts off by discussing the bringing
Bikurim are ones first ripened fruits, these are brought to the Bais-Hamikdash and given to the Cohen.
Once the owner of the fruit comes to the Cohen, he starts saying over the History of Clal-Yisroel.
This, what he says over to the Cohen, became one
of the main topics of the Haggadah, that is recited on Pesach
One may ask, what is going on here? What is the connection of Bikurim to Yetzias Mitzraim?
Also, after the Cohen takes the fruits out of the owner's hands, he says "Veh Anitah Veh Amarta..".
What is the owner of the fruit answering to?? To
what is this response?
Comes Rav Dovid Feinstein and explains that he is
responding to the Beracha that Hashem has taken him out of Egypt
and brought him to the land of Eretz Yisroel, and gave him these
fruits. We must learn how to appreciate events in our lives that
lead to our present enjoyment. We see Hashem talking to us through
nature and history. We are required to give thanks to Hashem,
and express that everything is a gift from Hashem, all the way
from the beginning.
This Bikurim that we are offering is an offering of thankfulness and it brings out our gratitude.
As Rabbi A.J. Twerski writes, when we are dealing with gratitude, we must look at the whole chain of events, and not only the present or past.
One is required to remember his humble beginnings and the sufferings that one may have undergone, just like we are required to repeat Yetzias Mitzrayim. Our responsibility not to have resentment over the suffering's of the past, that we may have experienced. We must also be grateful for the harder times that we may have experienced in our lives, for it was in the furnace of Egypt that we were cleansed and molded into one people Thus it is these hard times that help form our character and personality.
This is included in ones declaration to the Cohen,
in order to remind us that, if, and when we are distressed when
we may pass through some hard times, we must remember that in
a future date we will merit to see the constructive aspects of
The problem is when one seeks joy and happiness on
his own terms. Thus the torah comes along and tells us from the
bringing of the Bikurim, that true joy is achieved when one can
be grateful for everything.
We may also ask why Pasuk (26:6) says "VahNitzak
El Hashem Elokei Avoseinuh, VahYishmah Hashem Eis Koleinuh".
Comes the Ba'al Kehilos Yakov and asks why does the
beginning of the Pasuk, that deals with Crying out, write that
"Hashem the G-D of our Father's". While when the Pasuk
writes "Hashem listened to our voices", and not those
of our Father's?
So he answers that there is a Chazal that writes,
anyone who relies on others merits to be helped, at the end he
his helped from his own merits. While one who feels that he deserves
to be helped in his own merit, if he is helped, it would only
be because of others merits.
Therefore, when the Bnei Yisroel cried out to Hashem-
in the Avos's merits, since they were on such a low level in Egypt
and they felt they had no merit to deserve to be saved, therefore
Hashem saved them in their own merit, and thus it doesn't say
after Vayishmah, the G-D of our Fathers.
This Pasuk tells us that: "The Egyptians mistreated us and afflicted us, and placed hard work on us."
One of the obvious questions that comes to mind is the Lashon of the Pasuk.
What is the connection of the planning to do us harm
and the bad that they caused us?
For the first question, Rav Mordechai Gifter comes and explains that it means to say that the Egyptian people were not against the Jews, thus Paroh and his advisors made the Jews look bad in the Egyptians eyes.
Thus the Pasuk says "Vayarei Osanuh...", they made us bad. Once we looked "bad" in their eyes, it was much easier to place on the Jews hard work and throw their children into the sea.
On the second question, Rav Moshe Feinstein tz"l answers, that true the actual harm done was really not what was in their thoughts, but what they actually did afterwards, yet their thoughts to do "bad" was in itself "bad".
Because bad done without thought is not equal to "bad" done with planning.
When there is no planning, we can hope that soon
it will lessen, and it is not constant. Yet when our enemy plans
"bad", with planned goals, it is the worst. Therefore,
even their thoughts to do bad, is part of "Vayeruh...",
and therefore their evil against us, was very great.
These two answers were seen in our days during the holocaust.
The Germans had complete plans how to destroy the Jews, they also first started making the Jews look bad, in order to spread hatred.
Yet at the end, just like in Egypt, Hashem came and pulled us out of the furnace, during the Holocaust.
We also see how one should act, that if one looks at his fellow Jew with hatred, no one knows where this hatred can end.
Let us only see the positive things in each other,
as we know, the way a person judges the other is the way Hashem
judges him on the Yom Hadin!
1) We learn from Pasuk (27:5) "Mizbayach Avanim
Loh Tanif Aleiheim Barzel"
That the Shulchan Aruch brings down that from here
we have the Minhag to cover the Knife when we say Birchat Hamazon.
Yet on Shabbos and Yom Tov we are Noheg not to cover it.
The Magen Avraham writes that " the reason for
this Minhag is because a table is compared to an Altar, and as
we see in our Pasuk, we are told not to lift a Knife. Yet on Shabbos,
there is no building of the Altar. thus there is no hint of a
table to an altar on Shabbos when dealing with the knife.
2) We learn from Pasuk (26:13) "Loh Avarti Mi
Mitzvosecha, Veh Loh Shachachti"
Rashi on this Pasuk comes along and explains that "not forgetting" means that one did not forget about making a blessing over the taking of Maasros.
3) Answering Amen after a Beracha - we can learn
from the Amen said after the Berachos/Kelalos
Even though, one should note that our Parsha is talking
about saying amen after an oath.
4) Bikurim - First Fruits:
As we see, there is a Mitzvah from the Torah for one to bring from his first fruits to the Beis Hamikdash.
This Mitzvah only applies in Israel, and at the time when the Beis Hamikdash exists.
It also only applies to the seven species that Eretz Yisroel was blessed with.
One is required to take Bikurim before one takes Terumah Gedolah.
The Parshat Bikurim that one says, when he brings his fruit to the Cohen, is only said during a time of Simcha (between Shevuous and Succos). However, from Succos to Chanukah, one brings Bikurim, yet he doesn't say the special Parsha of Bikurim.