Home Subscribe Services Support Us

Amailus Batorah

Leviticus 26:3

"If you walk in my statutes and guard my commandments and perform them, I will give rain in its season the earth will give forth its produce and the tree will yield its fruit..."


"If you walk in my statutes," What is the "walking in the statutes?" I would think this is referring to fulfilling the mitzvos; when the verse goes on to say: "and guard my commandments" this is clearly referring to fulfilling the mitzvos!  If so, what did it mean when it mentioned "walking in the statutes?" Struggle diligently in Torah study...

"and guard my commandments," -- Struggle diligently in Torah study in order to guard and perform.

           To Rashi, the meaning of the verses becomes: "If you will struggle diligently in Torah study in order to guard and perform the commandments, I will give rain in its season the earth will give forth its produce and the tree will yield its fruit..."

           The reward is difficult to understand... for keeping the commandments there will be tangible reward in this material world? Didn't the Talmud say:  "The reward for mitzvos is not in this world?" (Kidushin 39b)

           Similarly, the Talmud states (Moed Koton 28a): "Children, Length of days and wealth are not dependent on merit [alone] but on 'mazal' (fortune)."

           However, the Tosafos commentary there mentions that "a great mitzva is different," and can change one's "mazal." The legal commentary Elya Rabba explains that this is Rashi's meaning here, as well. Amailos Batorah -- diligent application to Torah studies -- is a "great mitzva" that can help inspire a change in one's 'mazal.

           Indeed, Torah study is unlike any other study. In Medrash Tanchuma to Parshas Noach, the Rabbis describe to what lengths the Torah Scholars must go: "The people who walked in darkness -- saw a great light," refers to them, because they deny themselves sleep, struggling over obscure passages in the Talmud -- until the great light of understanding comes. They deny themselves food and drink and pleasures in this world, instead spending their time toiling, struggling to understand the Torah.

Proverbs 16

"The soul of the working man works for him, for his mouth forces him." The soul of the man striving for Torah works for him, for while he works in one area of Torah study, his soul strives for him in another area. (Sanhedrin 99b).

           The Elya Rabba explains: One who constantly reviews his learning -- it will become orderly for him. This is the meaning of the prayer (in the daily blessings over Torah study): "Please, G-d, make the words of Your Torah sweet in our mouths... so that we... may all know Your name and learn Torah for Your name's sake..."  

          "So that we may all know Your name:" All the Torah is the Name of G-d.  Another explanation: The Zohar states (like Rashi and Tosaphos quoted above), that diligent study of Torah can change a heavenly decree. Therefore, we will know G-d's name, and not the name of the "mazal" (literally, a constellation).

(c) Rabbi Yaakov Bernstein and Genesis, '97



View Complete List

Build with Your Dreams
Shlomo Katz - 5772

Festival of The Reflecting Lights
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5773

On the Way to Yisroel
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5759

Looking for a Chavrusah?

On A Wing and A Prayer
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5770

Yetzer Hara - Friend or Foe?
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5760

Honoring Parents: Parental Guidance
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5766


Chanukah: Lights, Camera, Action!
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5768

The Roots of Strength
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5767

Not Just Trappings
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5762

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

To Fergin or Forget
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5774

The Passions Of Youth
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5759

Chanukah, Chutzpah, and Coming Close to G-d
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5757

> A Good Name Forfeited in a Moment
Shlomo Katz - 5758

Know With Whom You Are Dealing
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5775

Interpreting Dreams
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5771

Honor And Suspicion
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5761

Project Genesis Home

Torah Portion

Jewish Law



Learn the Basics




Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base


About Us

Contact Us

Free Book on Geulah! Home Copyright Information