Parshas Vayelech :
 By: Yaacov Silverstein
e@mail: hm16@popeye.cc.biu.ac.il
HomePage: http://faculty.biu.ac.il/~hm16/

Parshas Vayelech:

Pasuk (31:19):

This Pasuk tells the Bnei Yisroel the commandment of writing a Sefer Torah, and that "this Song shall be a witness for Hashem, towards the Bnei Yisroel".

Rashi comes and explains that when this Pasuk tells us of writing a "Song", it is talking about the next Pasrsha, Ha-azinu.

According to Rav Gedaliah Schorr, the Parsha of Ha-azinu, is talking about the harmony that is reached when all the elements of Hashem's universe work in harmony. It also shows the Bnei Yisroel how all parts of the creation respond harmoniously to the sins and good deeds of Hashem's people.

There is a Gemarah in Sotah(35:a) that tells us that David sinned and was punished because he called "Divrei Torah" - Zemiros.

Why was he punished, we see in our own Pasuk here that the Torah is called Song?

Comes the G"rah and explains that there is a difference between Zemiros and Shira.

When someone calls Torah Zemiros, it is as if one is saying that Torah is limited, not encompassing. It is limited in words. As if to say that Torah is only what is written as Torah. Yet Torah is much more than just the written word, it is all encompassing, for Torah is Shira, it brings out the outpouring of the soul, with out any limits, therefore Torah is called Shira and not Zemirah.

We can see a similar idea found in the Rosh Hashana Davening, in the Shacaris of the Chazaras Hashatz.

There is a Piyut of "Hashem Melech, Hashem Malach, Hashem Yimloch Le-Olam V'aed."

We read a verse that says:

"Zochrei Zemiros, Yezamru Bekol" - Jews that realize that every miracle is from Hashem, praise aloud.

Yet when we are dealing with "Shira" - song, it is dealing with Hashem's Torah. As it says:

"Yorshei Yekarah Yashiru Bekol" - Those who inherited the precious Torah, say properly aloud.

For when we deal with Torah, we call it Shera, song and not Zemer.

The Chazal tell us, that because of this mistake that David made, he failed, and placed the Ahron Ha Bris, on an ordinary wagon.

What is the Mida - Ke- Neged Mida here?

What is the connection between the sin and the punishment?

For the main acquiring of the Torah is through troubles and striving to learn Torah. If one "doesn't sweat" to learn Torah, than he didn't find Torah.

For it says, "Yagutah Umatzasah, Ta-amin".

Comes the Tiferas Yonason and explains that by calling Torah Zemiros, their is no striving found in this language.

Thus David Hamelech stumbled in the same thing, placing the Ahron on a wagon, without "Yegiah".

While we know that the Torah commands the Leviem that when they travel with the Ahron, it must be caried on there "Kateif". It must be carried with "Yegiah", once it is carried with true "Yegiah", we know that the Ahron would carry itself. The same is with learning Torah, at times we have to put in much effort, and put aside time during the day in order to learn Torah. Yet once we do the Yegiah, the Torah will carry itself into our hearts.

We also find this hinted in the Torah, that one acquires the Torah only through Yegiah, as it says, "And Moshe wrote the Torah and he gave it to the Cohanim the sons of Levi. Why the Cohanim? For they are "the ones who carry the Ahron, Bris Hashem. For they are the ones who are Yegiah on the Torah, just like one is Yegiah on carrying the Ahron.


This Pasuk tells us that "Hashem will certainly hide his countenance on that day... and we should write that song..."

In continuation to the previous Divrei Torah above, I would like to bring it out a bit further. Rav Dovid Feinstein explains that "Song" means Torah. Yet Hashem is telling us to write the "Song" for him, "Li".

For through this song, one has the ability to see Hashem's presence in the world. Hashem is telling us that at a time of "Hester Panim", when Hashem is as if, hiding his face. That is a time that we must increase our studying of Torah, we must immerse ourselves in the Song, and we than can see Hashem, even in the time that he is most hidden. We must live according to the Torah even in a time when it is hard, and especially when we may find it hard to see Hashems hand in our everyday life. In times of questioning of where is Hashem, that is the time to increase our learning and teaching of the Torah, then we will merit, even in hidden times, to see the "hand of Hashem."

The Vilna Gaon brings down that there is a Gemarah in Chulin(139:b) that asks, "From where do we know Esther from the Torah?

The Gemarah answers that we know it from this Pasuk of "and I will certainly hide my countenance on that day".

The Gr"ah asks, why Davkah by Esther does the Gemarah ask, from where is she hinted in the Torah, weren't there many other great Tzadikim that had miracles done for them?

So he answers that a miracle in Eretz Yisroel, is not something new.

Thus Chanukah, even though it was a great miracle, it was in Eretz Yisroel, at the time of the Bais Hamikdash.

Then we may ask, what is the Gemarah, truly asking?

It is asking, where do we know Esther from the Torah?

Where is it hinted in the Torah, that even at a time of Hester Panim, in Galus, Hashem still makes for us great miracles?

Thus the Pasuk tell us that even in a time of Hester Panim, I will still send Esther. I will still send out miracles for the Bnei Yisroel.


Writing a Sefer Torah:

This weeks Parsha tells us that one is required to write a Sefer Torah.

The Rambam writes in Hilchos Sefer Torah, that there is a Mitzvah's Asei, that one must write a Sefer Torah, for it says, "And now write for yourselves this Song".

He also writes that if one doesn't know how to write a Sefer Torah, still he is Yotzei with even writing one word in a Sefer Torah, and it is as if he wrote the whole Torah.

The Chafetz Chaim brings down in his Sefer HaMitzvos, that this Mitzvah only applies for males and not females.

The Chazal in Gemarah Sanhedrin(21:b) bring down that even though ones father may have left him a Sefer Torah, still he has the commandment to write for himself a Sefer Torah. For it says "VehAtah", "Now" - meaning, at any place and time, making no difference of what a persons present state is.

The R"ash brings down that since now we don't learn from our Sifrei Torah, and they are kept in the Ahron Kodesh, we are thus commanded to buy Seforim to learn from. Since the whole reason of writing a Sefer Torah, is in order to learn from it and to teach the Bnei Yisroel. Yet there are Poskim that disagree on the Ra"sh' s explanation.

a) The Beit Yosef says that one is not exempt of writing a Sefer Torah, yet he is coming to tell us that Seforim don't replace writing a Sefer Torah, yet it is preferred to learn from Seforim, than for a Sefer Torah to sit in the Ahron.

b) While the Prisha explains the R"ash that there is no Mitzvah now to write a Sefer Torah, yet one is required to buy and write Seforim.

The R"ash also brings out that one is permitted to sell the Seforim, only in order to marry a wife or in order to learn Torah. Otherwise one is not allowed to sell his Seforim.

If he buys other Seforim in their place, there are those that permit it, when a condition was made before the first purchase.

Most Poskim hold that one should not use Ma-aser money to buy Seforim.

If he can't afford it otherwise, than he might be allowed.

If he does use Ma-aser money, he must make the Seforim available for all and write in them that they were purchased with Ma-aser money.

Rav Frand brings down that when one buys Seforim with Ma-aser money, he is not allowed to sell them for they don't belong to him.

May We All be Blessed with a Good Successful and Torah full year!

Good Shabbos!