Pisqa’ 208

Pisqa’ 2081


“Then the Priests, the sons of Levi, shall approach” (Dt.21:5).

inferring from what is stated—

“And he shall serve in the name of HASHEM his God” (Dt.18:7)—

I only know that

unblemished [Priests] may conduct the rite.

How do I know that

disfigured Priests are qualified as well?2

The Teaching states:

“The sons of Levi” (Dt.21:5)—

[whether unblemished or disfigured].


“For HASHEM your God has chosen from among them to serve Him

and to give blessing in His Name” (Dt.21:5)—

the conjoining of to serve and to bless implies that

                             the blessing of the Priest is invalid if he is disfigured.

“To serve Him and to give blessing in His Name” (Dt.21:5)—

Let us draw out the comparative implications:

Just as serving requires standing,

blessing also requires standing.


“And their instructions (`al pihem) shall resolve every dispute and the status of every plague-sign (Dt.21:5)—

the verse suggests a comparison

between civil disputes and plague-signs:

Just as plague-signs are examined during the day,

so, too, civil disputes are judged during the day;

just as civil disputes are not

judged by relatives,

so, too, plague-signs are not

examined by relatives.

Or [may we argue that]:

Just as civil disputes are

judged by courts of three,

so, too, the status of plague-signs is

examined by three Priests?

Now, this is only reasonable!

If a matter affecting one’s wealth

is judged by three [judges],

shouldn’t a matter affecting one’s body

be judged by three [Priests]?

[Nevertheless,] the Teaching states:

“Now, when there appears, on the skin of his flesh. . . something akin to an unclean eruption, then he should be brought before Aaron the Priest,

or one of his priestly sons” (Lv.13:2)—

This teaches you that only one Priest need examine plague-signs.

  1. H:222-223; JN2:103-104.
  2. See M. Meg.4: 7, which excludes priests with disfigured hands.from lifting them in blessing. Cf. H:464 (pisqa’ 208, n.2).