Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Chapter 121:5
Laws of Public Fast Days

5. The Ninth of Av (Tish'oh B'Ov) [is also a public fast day]. On this day, it was decreed that our ancestors in the desert would not enter the land of Israel; the spies had returned that day [from their reconnaissance mission,] and, [in response to their report,] the Jews wept for no purpose(1); consequently, [G-d] established this as a day of weeping for [future] generations (2).

On this day, the ultimate destruction occurred, namely, the devastation of both the first and second Temples. Furthermore, the city of Beitar, a large metropolis with tens of thousands of Jewish inhabitants, was conquered on this day [by the Romans] (3). Also, it was on this day that Turnus Rufus ploughed the site of the Temple and thus fulfilled the prophecy [Michah 3:12]: "Zion will be ploughed like a field."

([The laws regarding] another communal fast, the Fast of Esther, are discussed in Chapter 141, Law 2).

FOOTNOTES:

(1) The report given by the spies about the Land of Canaan frightened the Jews, and convinced them that they would not have the power to conquer the land. In response to their lack of faith, G-d decreed that the generation would die out while wandering through the desert for 40 years, and only their children would be able to enter the land (See Numbers, Chapters 13 and 14).

(2) The Rambam (Yad, Laws of Fasts, 5:3) calls the ninth of Av a day "set aside for punishment" ("muchan le'poranus").

(3) Shimon Bar Kochba successfully led a rebellion against the Romans in about 128 CE, and re-established an independent Jewish state in the land of Israel (limited to the area of Judah) for a brief period. Many thought that he was the Moshiach (Messiah). In about 135 CE, the Roman army re-conquered Jerusalem, forcing Bar Kochba and the Jews to retreat to Beitar. When Beitar finally fell on the 9th of Av, hundreds of thousands of Jews were killed, and the Rambam (Yad, Laws of Fasts, 5:3) writes that the pain of the tragedy was equivalent to that of the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash.

Back  Paragraphs 3 and 4  Table of Contents  Paragraphs 6 & 7 Next 

Halacha-Yomi, Copyright (c) 2002 Project Genesis, Inc.

 






ARTICLES ON MASEI AND THE THREE WEEKS:

View Complete List

Appreciation
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5772

Wandering Jew
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5762

Your Flattery Will Be The Death of Me
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5774

> Not Very Promising
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5759

Criticm - To Accept or to Defend
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5759

Marriage Vows
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5770

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Taking Action
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5760

Creatures of Our Environment
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5763

The Price Of Choice
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5761

ArtScroll

The Accidental Murderer
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5770

Ramban: Why was Parshas Nedarim given over specifically to "Roshei haMatos?"
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5771

From the Depths of Your Heart
Rabbi Chaim Flom - 5767

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Eye Generation
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5763

The Geography of the Exodus
Shlomo Katz - 5774

More Generous Thoughts
Rabbi Label Lam - 5764

What to Make of My Summer Break?!
Rabbi Label Lam - 5767



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information