Summary of Deuteronomy: Chapters 1-25

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Parashat Devarim

Verses: 105 [Siman:מלכיה ]

Haftorah: Isaiah 1:1-27

 

Number of Mitzvot:

There are a total of Two Mitzvot in Parashat Devarim; Zero positive commands and Two negative commands. The following are the commands in the order listed by the Sefer Hachinuch.

 

A. Negative:

1. Mitzvah 414/Negative 242: Not to appoint judges who are not knowledgeable in Torah law.

2. Mitzvah 415/Negative 243: The prohibition for the judges to fear anyone in their verdict.

 

Chapter 1

First Aliyah

  1. Moses recounts the past occurrences since Matan Torah:
  • The date: The following are the words that Moses spoke to all the Jewish people, across the Jordan, an eleven-day journey from Horeb. This was said on the first day of the 11th month [Shevat], in the 40th year, after conquering Sihon and Og. Moses began clarifying the Torah saying:
  • Traveling from Sinai: G-d spoke to us, saying that we have sat enough time by the mountain and we should travel to the Amorite mountains, to the land of Canaan. “I have given you the land, go conquer the land that I promised to your forefathers.” Moses told the children of Israel at that time that he could not carry their governance alone, being that G-d has made them into a multitude.
  • Moses’s blessing: Moses blessed the children of Israel “May G-d the G-d of your fathers add to you a thousand-fold and bless you [to be fruitful and multiply].

Second Aliyah[1]

  • Appointing judges: Moses stated “How can I carry alone all of your disputes? Bring judges of proper wisdom and quality and appoint them to be your leaders.” the children of Israel consented to Moses’s request and Moses appointed the tribal leaders as judges to arbitrate the disputes between one man and another. Moses instructed the judges to judge properly and not show favoritism in judgment or fear any man. All cases that are beyond the scope of the judge’s ability to arbitrate are to be brought to Moses. The sons of Yisrael were commanded at that time all the laws [of judgment].
  • Traveling from Choreiv: the children of Israel traveled from Horeb until Kadeish Barnea and the Amorite mountain and I then told you that G-d has given you the land, go and inherit the land of Israel.

 

Third Aliyah

  • The incident of the spies: [After telling you to go conquer the land] you then all came to me and asked me to send spies to the land. I agreed and appointed 12 people from amongst you to be part of the delegation, one person per tribe. They returned with the fruits of the land and reported that the land is good, and you, the nation, did not desire to ascend it and you rebelled against G-d. You slandered against G-d saying that He took you out of Egypt in order to have you annihilated by the Amorites. Your hearts were melted after hearing the reports that the land contains a strong nation, giants and fortified cities. I, however, told you not to fear them or worry as G-d will lead you and fight for you just as He did in Egypt, and as He has done for you thus far in the desert. Yet, you did not believe in G-d’s ability and He became angry with you and swore that none of you would ever see the land and only Kaleiv Ben Yefuneh would see it. Also with me G-d became angry because of you, and He said I would not enter the land. Joshua Ben nun will now lead you and you shall strengthen him, as he will conquer the land for you.

 

Fourth Aliyah

  • The aftermath of the spy incident and the failed battle: Your children who you said would become spoils of the enemy will inherit the land, and now you should turn around and return to the desert towards the Reed Sea. You then regretted what you did and had a change of heart to gather an army and go fight to conquer the land. However, G-d warned me that it is too late, and He will not assist you, and hence you should desist from going. I tried convincing you, but yet, here too you did not listen to the word of G-d and ascended to wage battle against them. They destroyed you and chased you like bees and you sat and cried before G-d but He refused to listen to you. You therefore sat in Kadeish for many days [for a total of 19 years]. We then traveled to Mount Seir and went around it for many days.

 

Chapter 2

Fifth Aliyah

  • Moses recounts passing the borders of Esau: G-d said to me that we have spent enough time circling the mountain and we should travel towards north. We were warned by G-d that while traveling through the border of Esau we are to take great heed not to instigate them, as we will not inherit even one parcel of their land. We shall buy food and water from them.
  • Moses recounts passing the borders of Moab: So, we passed the border of Esau and traveled towards the desert of Moab. G-d warned us not to oppress Moab or instigate them into war, as their land will not be given to us as an inheritance. We were then instructed to travel across Nachal Zared. It took us 38 years to travel from Kadeish until crossing Nachal Zared, by which time the entire generation had already passed away.
  • Moses recounts passing the borders of Ammon: G-d told us that we will be passing the border of Moab and arrive by the nation of Ammon. G-d warned us not to oppress or instigate them, as it will not be given to us as an inheritance.
  • Moses recounts passing the border of Sihon: G-d told us to go travel past Nachal Arnon and instigate a war with Sihon the Amorite king, as he will be handed into our hands. I sent envoys to Sihon with a peaceful message saying that we request to pass though his land, and we will go through the kings road and not swerve right or left. We will purchase food and drink from you, just as was done when we passed the land of Seir and Moab. However, Sihon refused our entry due to G-d hardening his heart so he be handed over to us.

 

Sixth Aliyah

  • Moses recounts the conquering of Sihon: G-d told me that He has begun handing over Sihon and his land to us, and so it was that Sihon confronted us in battle and we smote them with G-d’s help. We captured all of the cities, women and children and left no survivors. We took only the animals and possessions of the city as booty.

Chapter 3

  • Moses recounts conquering Og: We turned and traveled towards the Bashan, and Og the king of Bashan confronted us in battle with his entire nation. G-d told me not to fear him, as He has handed him into our hands just as he did with Sihon. And so it was that G-d handed to us Og and his entire nation, we left no survivors. We captured all of his cities, sixty in total. The cities were fortified with high walls. We destroyed every city and all its inhabitants, men, women, and children. The animals and its possessions we took as spoil. Og was a giant who came from the Refaim. He was nine cubits tall and four cubits wide.
  • Moses recounts the distribution of land to the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half of Manasseh: I gave the land of Sihon to Reuben and Gad, while the land of Og was given to half the tribe of Manasseh. Yair the son of Manasseh captured the region of the Refaim.

Seventh Aliyah

  • Machir was given the Gilad, while Reuben and Gad were given the entire region of the Jordon river, the Kineret and dead sea.
  • The condition for Reuben, Gad and Manasseh to join the battle: I instructed you [the tribes who settled past the Jordon] to join the battle together with the rest of Israel, and to leave your wives, children, and cattle in the cities. Once the Jewish people have crossed the Jordon, and conquered and settled the land, then you may return.
  • I commanded Joshua that he should look and see all that G-d has done to these two kings, and that so would be done to all the kings across [the Jordon]. You shall not fear, as G-d will be with you and wage war for you.

Parashat Vaetchanan

Verses: 118 [Siman:עזיאל ]

Haftorah: Isaiah 40:1-26

 

Number of Mitzvot:

There are a total of Twelve Mitzvot in Parashat Vaetchanan; Eight positive commands and Four negative commands. The following are the commands in the order listed by the Sefer Hachinuch.

 

A. Positive:

1. Mitzvah 417/Positive 173: To unify G-d’s name in Shema Israel and accept his unity upon us.

2. Mitzvah 418/Positive 174: To love G-d and contemplate his greatness until a love is aroused.

3. Mitzvah 419/Positive 175: To learn Torah.

4. Mitzvah 420/Positive 176: To read the Shema morning and evening.

5. Mitzvah 421/Positive 177: To don the hand Tefillin/Phylactery.

6. Mitzvah 422/Positive 178: To don the head Tefillin/Phylactery.

7. Mitzvah 423/Positive 179: To put Mezuzot on one’s doors.

8. Mitzvah 425/Positive 180: To destroy the seven Canaanite nations.

 

B. Negative:

1. Mitzvah 416/Negative 244: Not to covet the item of another even in one’s heart.

2. Mitzvah 424/Negative 245: Not to doubt or question the prophets.

3. Mitzvah 426/Negative 246: Not to have mercy on idolaters or find favor with their service.

4. Mitzvah 427/Negative 247: Not to marry a gentile.

 

First Aliyah

  1. Moses pleads to G-d to allow him to enter into Israel:
    • I [i.e. Moses] implored G-d at that time saying: “G-d, you have begun showing your servant your greatness [in conquering Sihon and Og] let me now cross and see the good land on the other side of the Jordon. “G-d became angry at me due to you (the children of Israel) and replied that I may not enter and should not continue praying for it.”
    • G-d shows Moses the land: G-d instructed Moses to ascend a large cliff to see the land [of Israel] as he will not inherit it.
    • Encouraging Joshua as the new leader: G-d instructed Moses to command Joshua and strengthen him as he will lead the Jewish people to conquer the land.
    • The children of Israel stayed in the valley opposite Beth Peor.

Chapter 4

  1. Moses commands the children of Israel to follow the Torah:
  • Moses tells the Jewish people to listen to the laws that he is teaching today so that they shall live and enter and inherit the promised land.
  • Lo Sosif: You shall not add or subtract to the Mitzvot.
  • Baal Peor: the children of Israel’s own eyes witnessed that which happened to those who worshiped Baal Peor and how they were decimated and those who have attached to G-d remained alive today.

 

Second Aliyah

  • The Torah is our wisdom: The Torah is the wisdom of the Jewish people in the eyes of the nations. The nations will declare how wise the Jewish people are. There is no nation that is closer to G-d than the Jewish people.
  • Remembering Matan Torah: We must never forget our witnessing of the giving of the Torah and are to teach it to our children. We stood under the mountain and a fire came out from the mountain until the heavens and G-d’s voice came out from the fire. We were commanded 10 commands and they were written on two Tablets of Stone. G-d commanded Moses the remaining commands that he must tell the Jewish people.
  • One must guard his soul very much.
  • Idolatry: Moses warns the children of Israel against performing idolatry. “One is not to make a replica of a human, male or female, or of an animal or bird or fish. Lest your eyes look at the heavens and you see the sun, moon and stars and worship them.
  • G-d has removed you from the iron crucible of Egypt and chosen you as a nation.”
  • Moses will not enter Israel: G-d became angry with Moses due to the sons of Israel and told him that he will not enter Israel, although the children of Israel will enter.
  • Prophecy that the Jewish people will go astray and their punishments:When you have many descendants and live long in the land, you will go astray and in corrupt ways, performing evil in the eyes of G-d. I forewarn you today that you will perish from the land. G-d will disperse you amongst all the lands and you will serve their gods. You will search for G-d your G-d there and you will find him. G-d is merciful, and He will not destroy you or forget the covenant with your forefathers.”
  • Moses recounts the miracles G-d has done and that there is nothing but Him: “Inquire and see, has there ever been a time that a nation has heard the voice of G-d and taken one nation out from another with miracles and wonders. You have been shown today that G-d is G-d and there is nothing aside for Him. Internalize this message into your heart.”

 

Third Aliyah

  1. Moses separates three cities of refuge:
  • Moses then separated three cities of refuge on the eastern side of the Jordon. The cities were built to serve as a refuge for the inadvertent killer, for him to escape to there and live. The names of these three cities are:
    • Betzer, which was in the land of Reuben.
    • Ramos, which was in land of Gad.
    • Golan, which was in Bashan, in the land of Manasseh.
  • The Torah recounts the conquering of the lands of Sihon and Og.

 

Chapter 5

Fourth Aliyah

  1. Moses recounts the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai:
  • Moses called all the Jewish people and told them to hear the commands of G-d. G-d made a covenant with us by Horeb. This covenant was not just made with our forefathers, but also with us. G-d spoke to you on the mountain face to face from within the fire. I stood between G-d and you at that time to relate to you G-d’s words, as you feared the fire and did not ascend the mountain.

 

  1. Moses repeats the Ten Commandments:
  • “I am G-d your G-d who took you out of Egypt.
  • Do not have other deities. Do not make for yourselves an image or picture that is found in the heavens or earth, or underwater. Do not serve them, as I am a G-d of retribution who gives judgment against the third and fourth generation for those who hate Me, although I do kindness for a thousand generations for those who love me and fulfill my Mitzvot.
  • Do not recite G-d’s name in vain.
  • Guard the Shabbat to sanctify it. Six days a week you shall work and on the seventh day it shall be a day of rest for G-d. You shall not do any work, neither you or your son or daughter, or slave or animal. You shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt and G-d took you out with an outstretched arm. Therefore, He commanded you to keep the Shabbat.
  • Honor your father and mother so you live a long life on the land.
  • Do not murder.
  • Do not commit adultery.
  • Do not steal.
  • Do not testify falsely regarding a friend.
  • Do not covet the wife of a friend, nor shall you desire his house, slave, ox, donkey or any of his possessions.”

 

Fifth Aliyah

  1. The children of Israel asked Moses to speak instead of G-d:
  • G-d spoke the above words before you all, within a fog, and in a loud endless voice. He wrote them on two stone tablets and gave them to me. When you heard the voice of G-d, all your tribal leaders and elders approached me saying that you could no longer handle hearing the voice of G-d, lest you die, as there is no one who can hear G-d and stay alive. You asked me to be the intermediary to tell you of His commands. G-d agreed to your request, saying that if only they would learn from here to fear Me all their days, so I can benefit their children forever. “Go tell them to return to their tents, but you [Moses] shall remain with Me and I will teach you all the laws and commands that they shall perform in the promised land.”

Chapter 6

Sixth Aliyah

  1. The Portion of Shema and Veahavta:
    • The Mitzvot of unity of G-d, Love, Torah learning, Shema, Tefillin, and Mezuzzah: “Hear Israel, G-d is our G-d and G-d is one. You shall love G-d with all your heart and soul and possessions. These words shall be on your heart and you shall teach it to your children and speak of them at home and on the road, when you lie down and when you rise. You shall bind them to your arm and eyes and write them on the doorposts of your homes and gates.”

 

  1. Moses forewarns the children of Israel not to forget G-d after they conquer the land:
    • “Upon entering the promised land, you will find great cities that you did not build. The homes will be filled with all good, vineyards and olive orchards and you will eat and be satiated. Do not forget G-d who took you out of Egypt. You shall fear Him and serve Him and swear by His name. You shall not stray after their gods, lest G-d become angry with you and destroy you from the land. Do not test G-d like you did in Massah. Do the fair and proper in the eyes of G-d.”

 

  1. The question of the wise son [i.e. Chacham]:
    • “When your son asks you tomorrow as to why we keep these laws, you are to answer him that we were slaves in Egypt and G-d took us out with miracles and a mighty hand. He did this in order to bring us to the Promised Land where we can keep His commands.”

 

Chapter 7

Seventh Aliyah

  1. Moses commands the children of Israel to destroy all the nations of the land of Canaan:
  • “When you enter the promised land, G-d will drive out many nations from before you who are greater and mightier than you. They will be given to your hands and you are to annihilate them completely. You shall not make a covenant with them or have them find favor in your eyes.
    • Intermarriage: Do not marry them. Do not give them your daughter in marriage and do not take as a wife for your son from amongst them. They will cause your son to go astray and serve other gods. G-d will then become angry with you and hurriedly destroy you.
    • You are to destroy all of their idols and their accessories, such as their altars, statues, trees of idolatry and idols.”

 

  1. G-d expresses His love for the Jewish people:
  • “You are a holy nation onto G-d who has chosen you as a treasure amongst all people that roam the earth. He did not choose you because you are greater, as in truth you are smaller, but rather because He loved you and due to the covenant that He made with your forefathers. You shall know that G-d is trusted to safeguard the covenant for a thousand generations for those who keep his Mitzvot, and to punish. You shall guard the Mitzvot that I commanded you today.”

Parashat Eikev

Verses: 111 [Siman:יעלא]

Haftorah: Isaiah 49:14-51:3

 

Number of Mitzvot:

There are a total of Eight Mitzvot in Parashat Eikev; Six positive commands and Two negative commands. The following are the commands in the order listed by the Sefer Hachinuch.

 

A. Positive:

1. Mitzvah 430/Positive 181: To bless G-d after eating bread.

2. Mitzvah 431/Positive 182: To love the convert.

3. Mitzvah 432/Positive 183: To fear G-d.

4. Mitzvah 433/Positive 184: To serve G-d and Daven to Him daily.

5. Mitzvah 434/Positive 185: To attach to the Sages and Torah scholars.

6. Mitzvah 435/Positive 186: To swear using G-d’s name.

 

B. Negative:

1. Mitzvah 428/Negative 248: Not to benefit from the ornaments of idolatry.

2. Mitzvah 429/Negative 249: Not to benefit from any item of idolatry.

 

First Aliyah

  1. The blessings received for guarding the Mitzvot:
    • If you adhere by the commands of G-d, He will guard with you the covenant that he made with your forefathers.
  • He will love you and bless you and multiply you.
  • You will have many offspring, and the land will give off much produce. You will be blessed amongst all the nations.
  • You and your animals will not be infertile.
  • He will remove all illnesses from you and rather place them onto your enemies
  • You will destroy all your enemies.

  1. Moses encourages the children of Israel not to fear the nations of Canaan:
    • “If you tell yourself that the nations are too mighty and many to be destroyed, do not fear. Remember what G-d did to Egypt, as He will do the same to those nations. He will send the wasp against them until no survivor remains. Do not fear them, as G-d is amongst you. G-d will annihilate them little by little and not quickly, lest the animals of the field increase.
    • Idolatry: Destroy their idols in fire. Don’t desire to take any of their ornaments of idolatry as it is an abomination of G-d. You shall loathe it and abominate it.”

Chapter 8

  1. Recounting the desert experience:
    • “Remember the entire 40-year journey in the desert where He challenged you to see if you would follow his word.
    • The Mun: G-d gave you the Mun in the desert to test you and teach you that man does not live on bread alone, but on the word of G-d.
    • Clothing: Your clothing did not wear out and your foot did not swell.”

  1. The greatness of the promised land:
    • “The land G-d is giving you contains water and springs. It is a land of wheat and barley and grapes, figs, rimon, olives and date-honey. It is a land of abundance of food. A land whose stones are iron and whose mountains contains copper.
    • Birchas Hamazon: You shall eat and be satiated and bless G-d for the good land that He gave you.”

 

Second Aliyah

  1. Moses warns the children of Israel not to become accustomed to the luxuries and forsake G-d:
  • “Be careful that you do not forget G-d by not keeping His commands. Perhaps you will eat and be satiated and have good houses built and settled, and have much gold and silver and you will become haughty and forget G-d who took you out of Egypt. You may tell yourself that your power and strength is what made you accomplish this and not G-d. Remember that G-d is the one who gives you strength to be successful.
  • If you do forget G-d and sway after idolatry, I am forewarning you today that you will be destroyed.”

Chapter 9

  1. Conquering the land:
  • “Hear Israel, you are going today to the promised land which contains nations that are mightier than you, and have cities fortified to the heavens. You shall know today that G-d your G-d is the one who will pass before you, and He will destroy them.”

 

Third Aliyah

  • “Don’t tell yourselves that those nations are being destroyed before you because you are more righteous than them, and they were evil. This is not the case. Rather, it is due to their wickedness that they are being destroyed, and in order to upkeep G-d’s promise to your forefathers. It is not due to your righteousness, as you are a stubborn nation.”

  1. Moses recounts in detail the sin of the golden calf:
  • “Remember that you angered G-d in the desert, and G-d desired to destroy you. When I ascended the mountain to carry down the Tablets of Stone, I was there for 40 days and nights without eating or drinking. I was given the Tablets of Stone by G-d and at the conclusion of the 40 days was told to descend back down as the nation has sinned and made an idol. G-d said to me that the nation is stubborn, and He wishes to destroy them and make a new and better nation from me. I descended the mountain with the Tablets of Stone and behold I saw that you sinned to G-d. I took the two Tablets of Stone and threw them, breaking them in front of you. I then fell before G-d another 40 days and nights, not eating or drinking, to plead for forgiveness for your sins. G-d became enraged at Aaron and desired to destroy him, so I also prayed for him. I took the sinful calf and burnt it within fire and turned it into dust. I threw the dust in the valley/river that descended from the mountain.”
  • Moses recounts other rebelliousness: “Remember the provocation made in Taveira and Kivros Hataava. When G-d sent you from Kadesh to go inherit the land, you replied with disbelief in His ability to do so.
  • I prayed for you forty days and nights to rescind the decree of destruction against you. I asked G-d not to destroy His nation which He redeemed from Egypt, lest the nations say You took them out to murder them.”

Chapter 10

Fourth Aliyah

  1. Moses recounts the giving of the 2nd Tablets of Stone:
  • “At that time G-d told me to carve two new sets of stone just like the first ones, and ascend the mountain. I made an Aron of acacia-shittim wood and carved the stones and ascended the mountain. G-d wrote on the Tablets of Stone the same words that were written on the first tablets and He gave them to me. I descended from the mountain and placed the Tablets of Stone in the Aron.”

  1. Moses recounts the travels:
  • “We traveled to Moseirah and Aaron passed away and was buried there. Elazar, his son, became the priest in his place. From there we traveled to Gudgod, and from there to Yatvasah, a land of channels of water.
  • At that time, G-d set apart the Levites to carry the Aron and serve before Him, and bless in His name until this day. For this reason, the Levites do not have a portion with their brothers, as G-d is their portion.
  • I stood by the mountain for forty days and G-d listened to me not to destroy you. G-d told me to arise and go travel towards the promised land.”

Fifth Aliyah

  1. Moses commands the children of Israel several Mitzvot:
    • “What does G-d ask from you but to fear Him and follow His ways. To love Him and serve Him with all your heart and soul. To guard His commands for your own benefit.
    • Everything in the heaven and earth belongs to G-d and yet He chose you. G-d loved our ancestors and hence chose us as His nation.
    • You shall remove the foreskin of your hearts and not be stubborn, as G-d is the great and mighty G-d who cannot be bribed and does justice for the widow and orphan.
    • One is to love the convert, as you too were converts in Egypt.
    • You shall fear and love G-d, attach to Him and swear by Him.”

Chapter 11

  • The miracles G-d did for us: “He is your G-d who performed for you all the miracles that you witnessed. He brought you to Egypt with 70 souls and now you have become as abundant as the stars. You saw what He did to Egypt and how He smote them by the sea, and what He did for you in the desert. You saw what He did to Datan and Abiram for whom the earth opened, and it swallowed them and their homes and tents.”
  • Moses encourages the children of Israel to guard the Mitzvot and hence solidify their stay in Israel and merit a long life in the land of milk and honey.

 

Sixth Aliyah

  1. The greatness of Israel:
    • “The land of Israel is unlike the land of Egypt from where you exited in which you had to irrigate the fields. This land that you will inherit is a land of mountains and valleys which drinks the waters of the heavens.
    • It is a land that G-d seeks, and His eye is constantly watching over it from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.”

 

  1. The Portion of Vehaya Im Shamoa:
  • “If you adhere by all the commands, to love G-d and serve Him with all your heart and soul, then I will give you rain on time. You will gather your grain, wine, and oil. Your animals will be provided grass, and you will eat and be satiated.
  • Beware, lest your hearts be seduced, and you sway after other gods and worship them. G-d will get angry with you, and stop the rain, and growth of produce, from the good land that he gave you. You shall place these words on your heart and soul and you shall bind them to your hands and eyes. Teach them to your children and speak of them in your house, and on the road, and when you lie, and when you rise. Write them on the doorposts of your homes and gates so that I may increase your days in the promised land.”

Seventh Aliyah

  • “If you listen to G-d, He will guard his covenant with you, and drive out all the mighty nations from the land, and your enemies will fear you.”

 

Parashat Re’eh

Verses: 126 [Siman:פליאה]

Haftorah: Isaiah 54:11-55:5

 

Number of Mitzvot:

There are a total of Fifty-five Mitzvot in Parashat Re’eh; Seventeen positive commands and Thirty-eight negative commands. The following are the commands in the order listed by the Sefer Hachinuch.

 

A. Positive:

1. Mitzvah 436/Positive 187: To destroy all idolatry, and their houses, and any remnant of them.

2. Mitzvah 438/Positive 188: To bring all obligatory offerings, or voluntary sacrifices, by the first holiday. 

3. Mitzvah 440/Positive 189: To offer all the Sacrifices in the Temple.

4. Mitzvah 441/Positive 190: To redeem Sacrifices that have a blemish.

5. Mitzvah 451/Positive 191: To slaughter animals and poultry that one desires to eat.

6. Mitzvah 453/Positive 192: To bring all Sacrifices in the Diaspora of Chatas, Asham and Olah to the Temple.

7. Mitzvah 463/Positive 193: To interrogate witnesses.

8. Mitzvah 464/Positive 194: To burn a city of idolatry.

9. Mitzvah 470/Positive 195: To check the Kashrut signs of birds

10. Mitzvah 473/Positive 196: To separate a second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni] in the 1-2nd, and 4th-5th years of the Shemita cycle.

11. Mitzvah 474/Positive 197: To separate the pauper tithe [i.e. Maaser Ani] in the 3rd and 6th year of the Shemita cycle.

12. Mitzvah 476/Positive 198: To demand a gentile who is a debtor to pay his debts.

13. Mitzvah 477/Positive 199: To abolish all debts in the Shemita/Sabbatical year.

14. Mitzvah 479/Positive 200: To give charity and support to those in need with a happy and glad heart.

15. Mitzvah 482/Positive 201: To give severance pay to a slave.

16. Mitzvah 488/Positive 202: To rejoice on the Holidays.

17. Mitzvah 489/Positive 203: To visit the Temple on each of the three Holidays.

 

B. Negative:

1. Mitzvah 437/Negative 250: Not to destroy holy items, such as the Temple and Sefarim.

2. Mitzvah 439/Negative 251: Not to offer Sacrifices outside of the Temple area.

3. Mitzvah 442/Negative 252: Not to eat the second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni] of grain outside of Jerusalem.

4. Mitzvah 443/Negative 253: Not to eat the second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni] of wine outside of Jerusalem.

5. Mitzvah 444/Negative 254: Not to eat the second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni] of oil outside of Jerusalem.

6. Mitzvah 445/Negative 255: For the Kohen not to eat a firstborn animal outside of Jerusalem.

7. Mitzvah 446/Negative 256: Not to eat the meat of the Chatas and Asham offering outside of the Temple.

8. Mitzvah 447/Negative 257: Not to eat from the Olah sacrifice.

9. Mitzvah 448/Negative 258: Not to eat from Kodshim Kalim offerings prior to the blood being thrown on the altar.

10. Mitzvah 449/Negative 259: The Kohanim may not eat from the Bikkurim prior to it being placed in the Temple courtyard.

11. Mitzvah 450/Negative 260: Not to abstain from giving the Levites their presents and rejoicing with them by the Holidays.

12. Mitzvah 452/Negative 261: Not to eat a limb from a live animal [i.e. Eiver Min Hachaiy].

13. Mitzvah 454/Negative 262: Not to add to the Torah prohibitions.

14. Mitzvah 455/Negative 263: Not to subtract from the Torah prohibitions.

15. Mitzvah 456/Negative 264: Not to listen to one who prophesizes in name of idolatry.

16. Mitzvah 457/Negative 265: Not to listen to, or find favor with, an instigator of idolatry.

17. Mitzvah 458/Negative 266: Not to stop hating an instigator of idolatry.

18. Mitzvah 459/Negative 267: Not to save the life of an instigator of idolatry from danger.

19. Mitzvah 460/Negative 268: The one influenced is not to learn merit on an instigator of idolatry.

20. Mitzvah 461/Negative 269: The one influenced is not to refrain from finding fault with the instigator of idolatry.

21. Mitzvah 462/Negative 270: Not to lead a Jew astray to follow idolatry.

22. Mitzvah 465/Negative 271: Not to build a city of idolatry.

23. Mitzvah 466/Negative 272: Not to benefit from a city of idolatry.

24. Mitzvah 467/Negative 273: Not to cut our bodies like idolaters.

25. Mitzvah 468/Negative 274: Not to shave one’s head in mourning.

26. Mitzvah 469/Negative 275: Not to eat invalid Sacrifices.

27. Mitzvah 471/Negative 276: Not to eat non-Kosher locusts or any flying creature.

28. Mitzvah 472/Negative 277: Not to eat meat that was not ritually slaughtered.

29. Mitzvah 475/Negative 278: Not to demand payment of a loan during Shemita/Sabbatical year, and rather to forgive it.

30. Mitzvah 478/Negative 279: Not to abstain from giving charity, kindness, and mercy.

31. Mitzvah 480/Negative 280: Not to abstain from lending money due to fear of Shemita/Sabbatical year.

32. Mitzvah 481/Negative 281: Not to send a slave away without severance pay.

33. Mitzvah 483/Negative 282: Not to do work with offerings.

34. Mitzvah 484/Negative 283: Not to sheer the wool of offerings.

35. Mitzvah 485/Negative 284: Not to eat Chametz after midday of Erev Pesach.

36. Mitzvah 486/Negative 285: Not to let meat remain from the Chagiga offering into the third morning.

37. Mitzvah 487/Negative 286: Not to bring the Pesach sacrifice on a private altar [i.e. Bama].

38. Mitzvah 490/Negative 287: Not to visit the Temple on the Holidays without bringing Sacrifices.

 

First Aliyah

  1. The Blessings and Curses of Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal:
  • “See that I am giving you today the blessings and curses. The blessings are received if you fulfill G-d’s will, while the curses are received if you transgress G-d’s will and you go astray after foreign gods.”
  • Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal: Upon your arrival to the promised land, the blessings will be given on Mount Gerizim while the curses will be given on Mount Ebal.

Chapter 12

  1. Commandments relating to conquering the land:
  • The following are the laws that you shall follow upon entering the promised land: “You are to destroy all the areas of worship of the gentile nations. You are to destroy their altars, statues, and idols, and burn their trees of idolatry, and all their apparatus.
  • Do not do this to G-d your G-d [to destroy items of Holiness].”

  1. Commandments relating to Sacrifices, meat and tithes:
    • Bringing the sacrifices to Shilo: “You are to offer all the Sacrifices only in the Temple, in the area that G-d has chosen to reside. You are to eat there before G-d and rejoice there. You will no longer bring sacrifices on Bamos as you are accustomed today.”

 

Second Aliyah

  • Bringing the sacrifices to Jerusalem: You are to offer all the Sacrifices only in the Temple, in the area that G-d has chosen to reside. You are to eat there before G-d and rejoice there. You may not bring sacrifices in other areas.
  • Shechita: You may slaughter animals as you desire, and you may eat their meat in any area, while pure or impure.
  • Blood: You may not eat the blood of the animal.
  • The second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni]: The second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni] may not be eaten outside of the chosen area [i.e. Jerusalem].
  • Firstborn: The firstborn animal may not be eaten outside of the chosen area [i.e. Jerusalem].
  • The Levite: Do not abstain from giving the Levites their presents and rejoicing them by the Holidays.
  • Voluntary offerings: You shall offer the sacrifices that you vowed to offer onto the altar. Its blood is to be spilled on the altar, while its meat is to be eaten.

 

Third Aliyah

  1. Commandments relating to the inhabitants of the conquered land:
    • “When you enter the land that G-d has conquered before you, do not be fooled to seek out their idolatry and worship them. You shall not do this to G-d, as all the abominations which G-d hates they did towards their gods, and they burned their children in fire.
    • You are to guard all the commands and not add or subtract from the commands.”

 

Chapter 13

  1. Laws relating to a prophet of idolatry:
    • “When a prophet or dreamer rises from amongst you who performs miracles, and he states that he received a prophetic vision from G-d that one is to serve idolatry, you are not to listen to him. G-d is testing you to see if you love Him with all your heart and soul. The above prophet is to be killed, and you should destroy the evil from your midst.
    • You shall go in the path of G-d, fear Him, guard His commands, serve Him, and attach to Him.”

 

  1. Laws relating to a Meisis-Missionaries of idolatry:
    • “If your brother, or son, or daughter, or wife, or friend tries to persuade you to serve idolatry, telling you “Let us go and worship the gods of other nations” you are not to listen to him. You are to have no mercy on him, or protect him, and cover up for him. Rather, you shall kill him. Your hand should be the first to kill him and the hand of the nation will be the last. You shall stone him until he dies, and all the Jewish people will hear and witness, so they do not do the same.”

  1. Laws relating to city of idolatry:
    • “If you hear that missionaries have persuaded an entire city to serve idolatry, you are to properly inquire the matter, and if found true the city is to be destroyed. All of the city’s possessions are to be gathered in the square and burnt. The city is never to be rebuilt. It is forbidden to take any spoils from the city.
    • If you do the above, you will quench G-d’s anger and He will have mercy on you.”

Chapter 14

Fourth Aliyah

  1. Cutting skin in mourning:
    • “You are children of G-d and a holy nation. Therefore, you are not to cut your skin or shave your head in mourning of a loved one.

 

  1. Laws relating to Kashrut:
    • You are not to eat any abominating item.
    • The Kosher animals: You may only eat the following animals: The ox, sheep, goat, ram, deer, Yachmur, Akko, Dishon, Teo and Zamer. You may eat all animals that have split hooves and chew their cud. The following animals you may not eat amongst those who chew their cud or have split hooves: The Shesuah, camel, rabbit, and hyrax, as although they chew their cud they do not have split hooves. Likewise, the pig may not be eaten, as it has split hooves but does not chew its cud. You may not eat their flesh, and may not touch their corpse [during the festivals].
    • Kosher fish: The following sea creatures may be eaten: All fish that have fins and scales may be eaten. All fish that do not have fins and scales are not Kosher and are considered impure for you.
    • Non-Kosher birds: You may eat all pure birds. The following [20] birds may not be eaten: [the identification of these birds from the original Hebrew is mostly unknown] 1) Eagle; 2) Peres; 3) Ozniah; 4) Raah, Ayah, and Dayah; 6) Raven; 7) Bas Hayaanah; 8) Tachmos; 9) Shachaf; 10) Netz [i.e. sparrow hawk]; 11) Kos; 12) Yanshuf [i.e. owl] 13) Tinshemes; 14) Kaas; 15) Rachamah; 16) Shalach [i.e. seagull]; 17) Chasidah [i.e. stork]; 18) Anafah; 19) Duchifas [i.e. wild rooster]; 20) Atalef [bat].
    • Insects: All flying creatures are impure for you and may not be eaten.
    • Fowl: All pure fowl may be eaten.
    • Carcass: A carcass may not be eaten, and it is to be given to the strangers who live with you, or sold to the gentiles, as you are a holy nation onto G-d.
    • Meat and milk: You shall not eat meat and milk together.

 

Fifth Aliyah

  1. Laws relating to the second tithe [i.e. Maaser Sheiyni]:
    • “You shall tithe all the produce of your field annually.
    • Where to eat it: This tithe is to be eaten in the chosen place where G-d rests [i.e. Jerusalem] so that you learn to fear G-d all your days. The tithe of your grains, wine, oil, and the firstborn of your cattle and flock. [This tithe is called Maaser Sheiyni.] If you live a distance from the area, and are unable to carry all the produce there, then you shall redeem the produce with money and take the money to the chosen place [i.e. Jerusalem]. That money shall than be used [in Jerusalem] to buy cattle, flock, wine, and everything that you desire.
    • You and your family are to rejoice there. You are not to ignore the Levite.”

  1. The law of Biur Maaser-Ridding one’s home of tithes:
  • “At the conclusion of the 3rd year you are to remove all of your tithes from your home and place it within your gates. The Levite, and convert, orphan and widow will come and eat it to satiation. Do this so that G-d shall bless you in all your actions.”

Chapter 15

Sixth Aliyah

  1. The laws of loan abolition/Shemitas Kesafim:
    • “At the conclusion of the seventh year you are to perform a Shemita/Sabbatical year The following is the release that you are to do: You are to abolish all debts that you are owed. You are to no longer press your friend to pay back the loan. However, a gentile is to be pressed to pay what he owes.”

  1. Poverty:
    • “No poor people if listen to G-d: You will have no poor people amongst you as G-d will bless you if you adhere His words. You will lend to nations and will not need to borrow from them and they will not rule over you.
    • Tzedaka to the poor: If there shall be a poor person from amongst you, you are to support him. Do not close your heart and hands from giving to your brother the pauper. You shall open your hands to him and grant him whatever he lacks.
    • Not to abstain from lending the poor because of Shemita: Beware, lest you tell yourself not to lend your destitute brother due to the approach of the Shemita/Sabbatical year. He will call out to G-d against you and you will have sinned. You shall grant him a loan and not be of bad heart to abstain, as by doing so G-d will grant you blessing in all that you do.
    • There will always be poor people: You will always have poor people amongst your land [if you disobey G-d’s will], and therefore I am commanding you to support them.”

  1. Laws relating to freeing a slave:
    • “Seventh year let free: If your brethren, a man or woman, are sold to you, the slave shall serve you for six years and is to be let free in the seventh year.
    • Severance pay: When you send him free, you are not to send him emptyhanded. Grant him presents from your flock and grains and wine, and from everything that G-d has blessed you with. Remember, that you were once a slave in Egypt and G-d redeemed you from there, and hence I too am now commanding you to do as stated above.
    • A slave who does not wish to leave: If the slave tells you that he does not wish to leave, as he likes his house and his dwelling with you. Then you shall take the awl and pierce his ear by the doorpost, and he is then to become an eternal slave. The same shall be done for a maidservant.”

 

Seventh Aliyah

  1. Laws of firstborn:
    • “Every firstborn animal that will be born to your cattle and flock is to be sanctified to G-d.
    • Work and use: You are not to perform work with the firstborn ox, nor sheer the sheep.
    • Where to eat: It is to be eaten [by the Kohen] in the chosen area by G-d [i.e. Jerusalem].
    • Blemish: If it has a blemish, such as being lame or blind, it is not to be slaughtered to G-d your G-d, and is rather to be eaten in your cities by the pure and impure.
    • Blood: One may not eat its blood and it is rather to be spilled on the earth like water.”

Chapter 16

  1. Laws relating to Pesach:
    • “One is to guard the month of Aviv/spring to celebrate Pesach, as in this month G-d took you out of Egypt at night.
    • The sacrifice: The Pesach offering is to be brought to the area that G-d chooses to reside [i.e. Jerusalem]. It is to be offered in the afternoon. You shall cook it and eat it in the area that G-d chooses, and then leave back home the next morning. You may not let the meat remain past the morning.
    • Chametz and Matzah: One may not eat Chametz with it, and one is to eat Matzot for seven days, as you left Egypt in a haste. You may not see [i.e. own] Chametz or yeast [i.e. leavened bread] in all your borders for seven days.
    • Labor: On the seventh day one may not do labor.”

  1. Laws relating to Shavuot:
    • To count the Omer: “You shall count for yourselves seven weeks from when the harvest of the Omer takes place.
    • Shavuot: You are to celebrate the festival of Shavuot for G-d [on the 50th day] in accordance to what you have to offer from that which G-d has bequeathed you.
    • Rejoicing: You shall rejoice before G-d, you and your children and slaves, the Levite, orphan, and widow who is in your midst, in the area that G-d has chosen.”
  2. Laws relating to Sukkot:
    • “You shall celebrate the festival of Sukkot for seven days, when you gather from your fruits and from the wine pit.
    • Visamachta Bechagecha-To rejoice on Sukkot: You are to rejoice for seven days, you and your children and slaves, and the Levite, orphan and widow who is in your midst, in the area that G-d has chosen. As G-d has blessed you in your harvest and you are to be happy.”

  1. Laws relating to pilgrimage:
    • “Three times a year every male is to see G-d in the area of His choosing [i.e. Jerusalem], during the festival of Matzot, Shavuot and Sukkot.
    • Reiya offering: One is not to come see My face empty handed. Each man is to bring in accordance to that which he can afford.”

Parashat Shoftim

Verses: 97 [Siman:סלוא]

Haftorah: Isaiah 51:12-52:12

 

Number of Mitzvot:

There are a total of Forty-one Mitzvot in Parashat Judges; Fourteen positive commands and Twenty-seven negative commands. The following are the commands in the order listed by the Sefer Hachinuch.

 

A. Positive:

1. Mitzvah 491/Positive 204: To appoint judges and police in every Jewish city.

2. Mitzvah 495/Positive 205: To adhere to the words of the supreme court. 

3. Mitzvah 497/Positive 206: To appoint a king.

4. Mitzvah 503/Positive 207: For the king to write his own personal Sefer Torah.

5. Mitzvah 506/Positive 208: To give the arm, cheek, and stomach, of an animal to the Kohen.

6. Mitzvah 507/Positive 209: To separate Teruma Gedola from grain, wine and olive oil.

7. Mitzvah 508/Positive 210: To give the first sharing of wool from sheep to the Kohen.

8. Mitzvah 509/Positive 211: For the Kohanim and Levites to set up shifts and rotations of service in the Temple.

9. Mitzvah 516/Positive 212: To adhere to the voice of a Navi/prophet.

10. Mitzvah 520/Positive 213: To separate cities of refuge.

11. Mitzvah 525/Positive 214: To punish Eidim Zomimim/false witnesses measure for measure for what they desired to do.

12. Mitzvah 527/Positive 215: To anoint a Kohen during times of war to speak to the soldiers.

13. Mitzvah 528/Positive 216: To give an option of surrender and peace to an enemy city if the war being waged is optional.

14. Mitzvah 531/Positive 217: To break the neck, and follow the process of, the Egla Arufa.

 

B. Negative:

1.  Mitzvah 492/Negative 288: Not to plant a tree in the Temple.

2. Mitzvah 493/Negative 289: Not to build a Matzeiva, a tall stone structure designated for worship.

3. Mitzvah 494/Negative 290: Not to sacrifice an offering that has a blemish.

4. Mitzvah 496/Negative 291: Not to argue with the Sages.

5. Mitzvah 498/Negative 292: Not to appoint a non-Jew or Ger as a king.

6. Mitzvah 499/Negative 293: The prohibition for a king to have many horses.

7. Mitzvah 500/Negative 294: Not to return to live in Egypt.

8. Mitzvah 501/Negative 295: The prohibition for a king to have too many wives.

9. Mitzvah 502/Negative 296: The prohibition for a king to have more gold and silver than necessary.

10. Mitzvah 504/Negative 297: The prohibition for the tribe of Levi to receive a portion in Israel.

11. Mitzvah 505/Negative 298: The prohibition for the tribe of Levi to take any spoilage from war.

12. Mitzvah 510/Negative 299: The prohibition to perform Kesima-actions to clear one’s mind to receive prophetic vision.

13. Mitzvah 511/Negative 300: Not to perform magic.

14. Mitzvah 512/Negative 301: Not to perform Chaver, which is the saying of charms to mystically cure various maladies.

15. Mitzvah 513/Negative 302: Not to seek the service of an Ov.

16. Mitzvah 514/Negative 303: Not to seek the service of a Yidoni.

17. Mitzvah 515/Negative 304: Not to seek to exhume the spirit of the dead.

18. Mitzvah 517/Negative 305: Not to say a false prophesy in name of G-d.

19. Mitzvah 518/Negative 306: Not to prophesize in name of idolatry.

20. Mitzvah 519/Negative 307: Not to fear a false prophet, and not to fear killing him.

21. Mitzvah 521/Negative 308: Not to have mercy on a murderer, or one who injured another.

22. Mitzvah 522/Negative 309: Not to steal property by changing the line of the border.

23. Mitzvah 523/Negative 310: Not to accept the testimony of a single witness.

24. Mitzvah 525/Negative 311: Not to fear the enemy during war.

25. Mitzvah 528/Negative 312: Not to allow any soul of the seven Canaanite nations to live.

26. Mitzvah 529/Negative 313: Not to destroy trees that surrounds a city under siege.

27. Mitzvah 531/Negative 314: Not to cultivate the channel where the Egla Arufa was killed.

 

First Aliyah

  1. Appointing honest judges and police:
  • You shall appoint judges and police in all your cities. The judges are to judge righteously and may not take bribes, as bribes blinds the eyes of the wise. You shall pursue justice so that you live and inherit the land.

  1. Miscellaneous commandments:
  • Tree in Temple: You shall not plant a tree for idol worship or any tree near G-d’s altar.
  • Monument: You shall not build a Matzeiva, monument, which G-d despises.

Chapter 17

  • Offering with blemish: You shall not sacrifice an offering that has a blemish, as this is an abomination for G-d.
  • Death penalty for idol worshipers: If you find a man or woman who is an idol worshiper, then you shall investigate the matter appropriately and if it is found to be true the person is to be killed. He is to be removed from your city and stoned to death.
  • Two witnesses: One may only be put to death if there are two witnesses to the crime. One may not accept testimony from one witness to kill a man. The witnesses are to be the first to kill the guilty one, and the remainder of the nation is to be last.
  • To listen to the words of the supreme court: If a certain matter of judgment in Torah law is beyond your understanding then you shall go to the area chosen by G-d, and address the issue to the priests and Levites and judges of those times and they will instruct you as to the ruling. You must obey their teachings and directives and not swerve to the right or left. One who does not obey them will be put to death.

Second Aliyah

  1. Mitzvot relating to a king:
  • When you arrive onto the promised land, you are to appoint a king over you like all the other nations. You are to appoint a king from whom G-d has chosen. One may not appoint a non-Jew, or Ger, as a king.
  • Horses: The king may not have too many horses, so he does not return the nation to Egypt.
  • Wives: The king may not have too many wives so that his heart not go astray.
  • Wealth: The king may not have too much gold and silver.
  • Sefer Torah: When the king sits on his throne he is to write two copies of his own personal Sefer Torah. It is to be with him, and he is to read from it for his entire life in order so that he follows the commands. In order so his heart does not become haughty and so he may merit his children to reign under him.

 

Chapter 18

Third Aliyah

  1. Mitzvot relating to the Levites and Kohanim:
    • Inheritance: The tribe of Levi shall not receive a portion in Israel. His portion is the sacrifices of G-d.
    • The arm, jaw, and stomach presents: The Kohen receives the rights towards the arm, jaw (including the tongue) and stomach of a slaughtered animal of the people, whether oxen or sheep. One is to give it to the Kohen.
    • Teruma: The Kohen is to be given the first of your grain, wine, and oil [i.e. Teruma Gedola].
    • Sheering of sheep: One is to give the Kohen the first sharing of wool from the sheep as G-d has chosen him from amongst your tribes to serve Him.

Fourth Aliyah

  • The [Kohanim who are] Levites are to set up shifts and rotations of service in the Temple and they may eat portions of the Sacrifices that are designated for them.

  1. Mitzvot relating to not resemble the Canaanite nations:
    • Upon entering the Promised Land you shall not learn from their abominations.
    • Idolatry of Moleich: You shall not pass your sons and daughters through the fire.
    • Divination and witchcraft: You shall not practice Kesima/divination, Meonein, superstitions, or sorcery. You may not perform Chaver/Charms. You may not seek the service of an Ov. Not to seek the service of a Yidoni. You may not consult the dead. All the above are abominations for which the nations were banished from the land. Be wholehearted with G-d.

 

Fifth Aliyah

  1. Mitzvot relating to a Navi:
    • The gentile nations need to turn to Meoninim and Kosmin for future guidance. However, G-d gave the Jewish people the prophets in their place [as the Shekhinah resides on the prophets and the Urim Vetumim]. G-d will bring to you a prophet from your midst who is similar to me, and you shall listen to him.
    • You asked G-d by Horeb not to hear G-d’s voice directly lest you die. G-d agreed with you and told me that He would establish for you a prophet through whom I shall speak. One who does not listen to the words of the prophet who speaks in My name, I shall hold him accountable.
    • A false prophet: A prophet who speaks not in My name, and one who speaks in the name of idolatry, is to be killed.
    • How to tell if one is a false prophet: Now, if you ask yourselves how will you know who is a false or true prophet, if the matter that he predicted does not come true, he is a false prophet. Do not fear him.

 

Chapter 19

  1. Mitzvot relating to city of refuge:
    • Upon arrival to Israel and the eventual conquest and inheritance, three cities of refuge [i.e. Arei Miklat] are to be established. Each city is to be placed in an equal distance from each other and spread out in the land for a murderer to seek refuge in. The refuge city is meant for an accidental murderer, such as one who accidently killed while wood chopping. He is to seek refuge from the relative of the victim who may kill him.
    • Building an additional three cities: When G-d expands your borders, you are to build another three cities.
    • An intentional murderer: An intentional murderer cannot seek refuge in the city and he is to be extradited and killed. You are not to have mercy on him.

Sixth Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
  • Stealing property: Do not steal another’s property by changing the line of the border.
  • Witnesses: One may not accept the testimony of a single witness for any sin. Testimony is to be accepted only with two to three witnesses.
  • Eid Zomeim-False witnesses: If false witnesses testify against someone and the judges discover their falsehood, one is to do to the witnesses just like they desired to do to their victim.

Chapter 20

  1. Laws relating to war:
    • Not to fear the enemy during war: When you leave to war and see horses and a great nation, do not fear them, as G-d is with you.
    • The speech of the war appointed Kohen: The appointed Kohen is to talk to you and encourage you not to fear the enemy, as G-d will wage battle for you.
    • Exemptions from battle: The officers are to speak and announce to the children of Israel that all those who are engaged to be married, built a home, or planted a vineyard, are to return. They are to also say that those who fear [the battle or their sin] are to return home and not cause the hearts of their comrades to be fearful as well.

Seventh Aliyah

  • Offering ultimatum of peace: When you approach a city to wage war against them, you shall offer them the option of surrender and peace. If they agree, they will be subjugated to you for a tax and slavery.
  • If they refuse peace: If they should refuse the offer of peace, every male is to be killed and only the women and children and cattle are to remain. However, from the Canaanite nations, not one soul is allowed to survive.
  • Not to destroy fruit trees: One may not destroy a fruit tree even when placing siege onto a city, as man is a tree of the field.

Chapter 21

  1. The Mitzvah of Egla Arufa:
    • If a murder victim is found on your land and it is unknown who killed him, the elders and judges must go out and measure to which city it is closest in distance.
    • The calf: Whichever city is closest, the elders of that city must bring a calf who has never done work or been pulled with a yoke, to a valley that has never been cultivated. The back of calf’s neck is to be broken in the valley.
    • All the elders of that city are to wash their hands over the calf in the valley, and state that they were not involved in the murder and did not witness it. They are to pray to G-d to atone for the spilled blood.

Parashat Ki Teitzei

Verses: 110 [Siman:עלי]

Haftorah: Isaiah 54:1-10

 

Number of Mitzvot:

There are a total of Seventy-Four Mitzvot in Parashat Ki Teitzei; Twenty-seven positive commands and Forty-seven negative commands. The following are the commands in the order listed by the Sefer Hachinuch.

 

A. Positive:

1. Mitzvah 532/Positive 218: To act with the Yefat Toar according to the instructions given in the Torah.

2. Mitzvah 535/Positive 219: To hang those who are liable for capital punishment of death by hanging. 

3. Mitzvah 537/Positive 220: To bury those hung on the same day.

4. Mitzvah 538/Positive 221: To return lost objects to their rightful owner.

5. Mitzvah 540/Positive 222: To help load one’s friend’s animal.

6. Mitzvah 545/Positive 223: The Mitzvah of Shiluach Hakein, to send away the mother bird.

7. Mitzvah 546/Positive 224: To make a fence around a roof and remove any danger from others.

8. Mitzvah 552/Positive 225: To be Mikadesh/consecrate a woman prior to marriage.

9. Mitzvah 553/Positive 226: To remain married forever to a wife whom one was Motzi Shem Ra.

10. Mitzvah 555/Positive 227: To stone one who had relations with a Naarah, girl who is engaged to be married.

11. Mitzvah 557/Positive 228: That a rapist of a young virgin [i.e. Naarah Betula] must marry her and give her father money.

12. Mitzvah 566/Positive 229: To designate an area for doing one’s needs at a time of battle.

13. Mitzvah 567/Positive 230: For every soldier to carry a shovel with which he can dig and cover when he does his needs.

14. Mitzvah 573/Positive 231: To take interest from gentiles when giving them a loan.

15. Mitzvah 575/Positive 232: To fulfill one’s vows.

16. Mitzvah 576/Positive 233: To allow a worker to eat the food that he is working with. 

17. Mitzvah 579/Positive 234: To divorce one’s wife with a document of divorce.

18. Mitzvah 582/Positive 235: To rejoice one’s wife for the first year of marriage and not go to war.

19. Mitzvah 587/Positive 236: To return a collateral to the owner when he needs it.

20. Mitzvah 588/Positive 237: To pay a worker on time.

21. Mitzvah 592/Positive 238: To leave a forgotten bundle in the field for the poor.

22. Mitzvah 594/Positive 239: To give lashes for certain sins.

23. Mitzvah 598/Positive 240: The Mitzvah of a levirate marriage.

24. Mitzvah 599/Positive 241: The Mitzvah of Halitza.

25. Mitzvah 600/Positive 242: To kill a potential murderer.

26. Mitzvah 603/Positive 243: To remember the acts of Amalek.

27. Mitzvah 604/Positive 244: To destroy Amalek.

 

B. Negative:

1. Mitzvah 533/Negative 315: Not to sell a Yefat Toar.

2. Mitzvah 534/Negative 316: Not to make a Yefat Toar work in slavery.

3. Mitzvah 536/Negative 317: Not to allow one who was hung to remain on the tree.

4. Mitzvah 539/Negative 318: Not to ignore the return of a lost object.

5. Mitzvah 541/Negative 319: Not to ignore helping the fallen animal of a friend.

6. Mitzvah 542/Negative 320: The prohibition for a woman to wear the clothing of a man [i.e. Beged Ish].

7. Mitzvah 543/Negative 321: The prohibition for a man to wear the clothing of a woman [i.e. Beged Isha].

8. Mitzvah 544/Negative 322: Not to take the birds with its chicks or eggs.

9. Mitzvah 547/Negative 323: Not to ignore a public safety hazard and rather to get rid of it.

10. Mitzvah 548/Negative 324: Not to plant a mix breed of grains and grapes.

11. Mitzvah 549/Negative 325: Not to eat a mix breed of grains and grapes.

12. Mitzvah 550/Negative 326: Not to plow using two different animals.

13. Mitzvah 551/Negative 327: Not to wear a mix breed of wool and linen.

14. Mitzvah 554/Negative 328: Not to divorce a woman who one slandered.

15. Mitzvah 556/Negative 329: Not punish one who was forced to sin.

16. Mitzvah 558/Negative 330: Not to divorce a woman whom one raped and then married.

17. Mitzvah 559/Negative 331: The prohibition for one with damaged reproductive organs to marry a Jewess.

18. Mitzvah 560/Negative 332: The prohibition for a Mamzer to marry a Jewess.

19. Mitzvah 561/Negative 333: The prohibition for an Amonite/Moabite male convert to marry a Jewess.

20. Mitzvah 562/Negative 334: Not to ever make peace with Amon/Moab.

21. Mitzvah 563/Negative 335: Not to prevent an Edomite convert from marrying a Jewess in the third generation.

22. Mitzvah 564/Negative 336: Not to prevent a third-generation Egyptian convert from marrying a Jewess.

23. Mitzvah 565/Negative 337: The prohibition for an impure person to enter into the Levite encampment.

24. Mitzvah 568/Negative 338: Not to force a run-away slave to return from Israel to his master in the Diaspora.

25. Mitzvah 569/Negative 339: Not to oppress a slave who ran away to Israel.

26. Mitzvah 570/Negative 340: Not to have relations with a woman without Chuppah and Kiddushin.

27. Mitzvah 571/Negative 341: Not to offer an offering that was the payment of a harlot, or that was given in exchange of a dog.

28. Mitzvah 572/Negative 342: Not to give/take interest by a loan between Jews

29. Mitzvah 574/Negative 343: Not to delay bringing a voluntary offering.

30. Mitzvah 577/Negative 344: The prohibition for a worker to take more food than allowed under law.

31. Mitzvah 578/Negative 345: The prohibition for a worker to eat on the job.

32. Mitzvah 580/Negative 346: Not to remarry an ex-wife who remarried.

33. Mitzvah 581/Negative 347: The prohibition for a groom to leave home the first year of marriage.

34. Mitzvah 583/Negative 348: Not to take food vessels as collateral.

35. Mitzvah 584/Negative 349: Not to remove the skin rash of Tzara’at from the area.

36. Mitzvah 585/Negative 350: Not to enter the home of a debtor to take collateral from him.

37. Mitzvah 586/Negative 351: Not to abstain from returning the collateral to the debtor upon him needing it.

38. Mitzvah 589/Negative 352: Not to accept testimony of a relative.

39. Mitzvah 590/Negative 353: The prohibition for a judge to twist the judgment of an orphan or convert.

40. Mitzvah 591/Negative 354: The prohibition to take collateral from a widow.

41. Mitzvah 593/Negative 355: Not to take the forgotten bundles left in the field.

42. Mitzvah 595/Negative 356: Not to give more lashes than instructed.

43. Mitzvah 596/Negative 357: Not to muzzle an animal while it works in the field.

44. Mitzvah 597/Negative 358: The prohibition for a Yevama [widow of deceased brother] to marry anyone else other than her Yavam [i.e. brother in-law].

45. Mitzvah 601/Negative 360: Not to have mercy on a potential murderer.

46. Mitzvah 602/Negative 361: Not to own false weights and measurements.

47. Mitzvah 605/Negative 362: Not to forget the actions of Amalek

 

First Aliyah

  1. The laws of a Yefas Toar [i.e. beautiful captive of war]:
  • When you go to war against your enemies and G-d gives them into your hands and you capture a captive, the following laws are to be followed:
  • Shave head, grow hair, and mourn: If you see a beautiful woman during war that you wish to take as a wife, you are to bring her into your home and shave her head and have her grow her nails. She is to remove her [beautiful] clothing that she wore when taken captive. She is to sit in your home and mourn her parents for a month.
  • Afterwards, you may be intimate with her and take her as a wife. If, however, you do not desire her, then she is to be sent out free. She may not be sold, or work, as a slave.

  1. Inheritance of a firstborn -The son of a beloved wife versus the son of a hated wife:
  • If a man has two wives, one loved and the second hated, and each begot him a son, the eldest son, the firstborn, is to receive a double portion of the inheritance. One may not remove the double portion from the firstborn son born to the hated wife, and instead grant it to the younger son born to the beloved wife.
  • The firstborn is to receive a double portion of all one’s assets, as he is the first of his father’s strength and that is his right as firstborn son.

 

  1. Ben Sorer Umorer-The rebellious son:
  • If a man has a son who is rebellious and does not listen to his father or mother despite being disciplined by them, then the son is to be brought by the parents to the city gates, to the city elders. The son is to be stoned by the entire city.

 

Second Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
    • Hanging and Burying a corpse: If a man received the capital punishment of hanging, his corpse is not to be left hanging on the tree [past sundown]. He is to be buried that day.

 

Chapter 22

  • Returning lost objects: If you see a lost animal, or garment, or any lost item of a friend, you shall not overlook it and rather you are to return it to the owner. If you do not know the identity of its owner, it shall remain by you until its owner is discovered.
  • Helping load the donkey of a friend: Do not ignore the fallen donkey or ox of your friend, rather you are to help lift him.
  • Beged Isha/Ish-Crossdressing: A woman may not wear the garments of a man and a man may not wear the garments of a woman. It is an abomination to G-d.
  • Sending away the mother bird: If you happen upon a nest with a bird and chicks or eggs, and the mother is crouching over them, then do not take the mother with the children. Rather, send the mother away and then take the children. G-d will grant you long life for fulfilling this command.

 

Third Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
    • Fences: When you build a new home, you are to make a fence around the roof and not cause blood to spill in your home.
    • Kilayim-Hybrids & crossbreeds: Do not crossbreed your vineyard by sowing the grapes and grains in close proximation to each other. Do not plow with [two different species of animals, such as] an ox and donkey. Do not wear Shatnez, which is wool and linen woven together.
    • Tzitzis fringes: Tie for yourselves Tzitzis fringes on the four corners of your garments.
    • False claims of adultery-Motzi Shem Ra: If a man marries a woman and despises her and falsely slanders his wife saying that she committed adultery, then after the matter is verified to be false, he is to be fined 100 Kesef and cannot ever divorce his wife.
    • Adultery: If, however, it is true that she committed adultery, then both her and the adulterer are to be killed. If she was a young married girl, then she is to be stoned by the entrance of her father’s home. You are to eradicate the evil from amongst your midst.
    • Seduction: If a young Halachically engaged virgin [i.e. Naarah Meurasa] was found in the city by a man and he laid with her [and she did not protest, despite having ability to do so, without being harmed] then both he and the girl are to be killed through stoning.
    • Rape: If, however, the married girl was found in the field and was overcome and raped by a man [against her will, without ability to protest] then only he, the rapist, is killed. If, however, the young girl whom he raped was single, then the rapist is to give her father fifty silver Shekalim and he is to marry her, and cannot divorce her for all his days.

 

Chapter 23

  • Forbidden relations and marriages-Fathers wife, Saris, Mamzer, Amoni: One may not marry his father’s wife. A person with an injury in the reproductive system [i.e. Saris/impotent] may not marry into the congregation of G-d [a Jewess]. A Mamzer may not marry into the congregation of G-d [i.e. a Jewess] even in the 10th An Amonite/Moabite convert may not marry into the congregation of G-d [i.e. a Jewess] even in the 10th generation, forever. This is because they did not offer you bread and water when you were traveling from Egypt, as well as because they hired Balaam to curse you. G-d did not listen to Balaam and turned the curse into a blessing, as G-d loves you.
  • You may not make peace with Amon/Moab all your days.

Fourth Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
  • Edomites and Egyptian: Do not abhor Edomites as they are your brother, and you are not to abhor Egyptians as you lived in their land. The children of a 3rd generation Edomite or Egyptian convert may enter the congregation of G-d [i.e. marry a Jewess].
  • An impure person may not enter into the Levite encampment: One who is impure due to nocturnal emission must exit the camp. Towards evening he is to immerse in water and may then enter the camp after sundown.
  • Tzoa and Erva-Burying one’s excrement: A set place outside the camp is to be established for one to do his needs. Every soldier is to carry a shovel with his weaponry which will be used to cover his needs that were made outside of the camp. G-d is found within the encampment and it therefore must remain holy. He should not see a shameful matter [i.e. Erva] and turn away from you.
  • Slaves: One is not to force a run-away slave to return [from Israel] to his master [in the Diaspora]. One is not to oppress a slave [who ran away to Israel].
  • Prostitution: A man or woman may not be promiscuous [and work as a prostitute]. You shall not offer an offering that was the Esnan payment of a Zona, or was in exchange of a dog. Both are an abomination to G-d.
  • Interest: You may not take interest from a loan to a Jew so that G-d can bless you in all your work. However, you may take interest from a loan to a gentile.
  • To fulfill vows: When you make a vow to G-d, you shall not delay paying it, as G-d will demand it from you and you will carry iniquity. If, however, you abstain from making a vow, you will not have a sin. You are to guard your word.

 

Fifth Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
    • Feeding workers on the job: When a worker comes to harvest the grapes, he may eat from it as he desires, but he may not fill up vessels with it. Likewise, when a worker comes to harvest the grains, he may eat from it with his hands, but he may not cut it with a sickle.

Chapter 24

  • Divorce: When a man takes a woman in marriage, and he dislikes her due to discovering a shameful matter, then he is to write her a bill of divorce. She is to leave his home and may marry another man. If the other man hates her and also divorces her, or if he dies, her first husband may not remarry his ex-wife, being she became defiled with another man. This is an abomination to G-d.

 

Sixth Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
  • First year of marriage: When a man marries a new wife, he is to be with her for the first year and is not to be conscripted into the army. He is to rejoice with his wife which he married.
  • Collateral: One may not take food vessels as collateral.
  • Kidnappers: If a kidnapper of Jews is found, and he enslaves and sells the victim, he is to be killed.
  • Guarding the Tzara’at: “Guard the Tzara’at very much and follow all the directives of the Kohanim, the Levites, as I have commanded. Remember what G-d did to Miriam when she left Egypt.”
  • Laws of collateral: When someone owes you a debt, you may not enter his home to take collateral. You must stand outside, and he is to bring it to you. If he is a pauper, you may not go to sleep with his item (in your possession) and are rather to return it to him prior to sundown.  

 

Seventh Aliyah

  1. Miscellaneous Mitzvot:
    • Paying a worker on time: Do not cheat a poor employee. You are to pay him the same day, prior to sundown, otherwise he may call to G-d and you will carry sin.
    • Witnesses: Fathers and sons are not to die based on [testimony of] each other.
    • Orphans and widows: A judge is not to twist the judgment of an orphan or convert and one is not to take their garment.
    • Harvest donations to the poor: When you harvest your field and you forget a bundle in the field, do not return to take it. It shall be left to the convert, orphan, and widow in order so G-d bless you in all your actions. When you harvest your olive or grape orchard, do not remove all the olives and grapes from the tree, it shall be left for the convert, orphan, and widow. Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and therefore G-d has commanded you in this.

Chapter 25

  • Not to give more lashes than required: When two people have an argument and the guilty is found guilty, then the judge is to give him lashes in accordance to his wickedness. He is to be stricken [close to] 40 times. You may not give him more lashes lest he become degraded before you.
  • Muzzling animals: You may not muzzle an ox while it is threshing.
  • Levirate marriage: When a brother dies and leaves a wife without children, she shall marry her husband’s brother. The child will be born on behalf of his brother who died, and his name will not be obliterated from Israel.
  • Halitza: If the brother does not desire to marry his brother’s wife, then she is to go to the elders by the gates and tell them that her brother in-law does not wish to marry her and establish a name for his dead brother. The brother is to be summoned and spoken to, and if he does not desire to marry her, he is to proclaim it. His sister-in-law is to then approach him before all the elders, and remove his shoe from his feet, and spit in front of him, saying that so is done to whom who does not wish to establish a home for his brother. His name will be called amongst Israel “Beth Chalutz Hanaal.”
  • Woman injures a man: If two men are fighting and the wife of one of the men grabs the other man in his private area, she is to [figuratively] have her palm cut off [by paying a fine].
  • Not to own false measurements: You may not own in your pockets measurements stones which are inaccurate. You must have accurate scales, so you live long on the promised land. It is an abomination before G-d to cheat in measurements.
  • Remembering Amalek: Remember what Amalek did to you on the journey when he killed the weak amongst you and he did not fear G-d. When G-d clears you of all your enemies and gives you the promised land, you are to obliterate the memory of Amalek. Do not forget!

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[1] Some begin the second Aliyah prior to Moses’s blessing. This is done in order to avoid beginning the Aliya with a negative verse of Eicha. [See Sefer Haminhagim p. 61; Luach Kolel Chabad; Hiskashrus]

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