ANSWERS TO REVIEW QUESTIONS
prepared by Rabbi Eliezer Chrysler
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Jerusalem
Previous daf Megilah 14
MEGILAH 14 (Yom Kipur 5760) - Dedicated by Dovid and Zahava Rubner of Petach
Tikva. May Hashem grant them and all of their offspring with joy,
fulfillment, and all that they need!
(a) The removal of Achashverosh's ring caused Klal Yisrael to do Teshuvah -
more effectively than all the combined words of the prophets (which fell
mainly on deaf ears).
(b) There were forty-eight prophets and seven prophetesses.
(c) These were not the only prophets that Yisrael ever had. In fact, they had
twice as many prophets as people who left Egypt. Only whereas these left
recorded prophesies for future generations, the others did not.
(a) Most of the forty-eight prophets prophesied in Eretz Yisrael during the
time of the Beis Hamikdash, the first of them being Yehoshua. There were four
however, who prophesied earlier - Avraham, Yitzchak, Ya'akov and Moshe (see
(b) Besides Moshe Rabeinu, there were two kings who were also prophets -
David and Shlomoh.
(c) Daniel cannot be included in the list - because we learned above (on 3a.)
that Daniel was not a prophet. (The Tana of the Beraisa later however, on
14a., does include Daniel among the prophets).
(d) The prophet who prophesied together with Chagai, Zecharyah and Mal'achi -
was Mordechai Balshan.
(a) The only Mitzvah that the Nevi'im added to the Torah of Moshe - was that
of Mikra Megilah.
(b) Rebbi Yehoshua ben Korchah - explains that since Yisrael sang Shirah when
they went from slavery to freedom, then how much more so should one sing
Shirah when going from death to life.
(c) Hadlakas Ner Chanukah is not also counted - because it was not instituted
by the prophets (but in the post prophet period).
(a) Rav Yitzchak gives the reason for not saying Hallel on Purim - because
Hallel is not said on a miracle that takes place in Chutz la'Aretz (once they
entered Eretz Yisrael, that is).
(b) According to Rav Nachman, we *do* say Hallel on Purim - in the form of
(c) Rava is surprised at the very suggestion (of saying Hallel on Purim) -
because, how can we say "Halelu Avdei Hashem" implying 've'Lo Avdei Par'oh',
when we are still under the jurisdiction of 'Par'oh' (of one sort or
(d) Rava and Rav Nachman confine the Tana of the Beraisa, who said that once
they entered Eretz Yisrael, miracles in other lands were no longer eligible
for Hallel to be said over them, to the period when they lived in Eretz
Yisrael - but once they went into Galus, Chutz la'Aretz regained its original
status in this regard.
(a) Shmuel ha'Navi is described as "Ish Echad min *ha'Ramasayim*" (in the
plural), according to Rebbi Shmuel bar Nachmeini, because he came from two
peaks that 'looked at one another'. Rebbi Chanin says it is - because he
descended from people who stood 'on top of the world' (i.e. the sons of
(b) Earlier, we Darshened 'Echad mi'Masayim Tzofim' - meaning that Shmuel
was only one of two hundred prophets who prophesied at that time.
(c) After the earth swallowed them up - the sons of Korach remained on a
specially-reserved place in Gehinom on which they stood (and from which,
according to the Medrash, they later emerged).
(a) Four of the seven prophetesses were Sarah, Miriam, Devorah and Chanah -
the other three, were Aviga'il, Chuldah and Esther.
(b) We prove that Sarah was a prophetess from her other name, Yiskah - which
means that she looked with Ru'ach ha'Kodesh.
(c) 'Yiskah' could also mean - that people would gaze at her beauty.
(d) The Torah explicitly indicates that she was indeed a prophetess - in
va'Yeira, where Hashem told Avraham to do whatever Sarah told him (with
regard to sending away Hagar and Yishmael), because, as Rashi explains there,
she was his superior in prophesy.
(a) Rav proves that Miriam was a prophetess from the fact that the Torah
calls her the sister of Aharon - due to the fact that it was when she was the
sister of Aharon (only - before Moshe was born) that she was prophesied.
(b) Following her prophesy that her mother would give birth to a son who was
destined to save Yisrael - Yocheved did indeed give birth to Moshe, at which
the entire house was filled with light. Her father (Amram) then kissed her on
the head and praised her wisdom. But when Moshe was later thrown into the
Nile, he tapped her on the head and asked her what had happened to her
(c) That is why the Torah writes "va'Teisatzav Achoso me'Rachok *le'Dei'ah*
Mah Ye'aseh Lo" - because she wanted to know what would happen to her
(a) Devorah merited prophesy - because she used to manufacture wicks for the
(b) Devorah sat under a date-palm, when she judged the people, because its
size ruled out any possibility of Yichud (the prohibition of being alone with
a man in a confined space). In addition - the palm-tree has only one heart
(see Agados Maharsha), symbolizing Yisrael of that generation, who had only
one heart for their Father in Heaven.
(c) We prove that Chanah was a prophetess from her words (recorded in Shoftim
- Navi) "Ramah Karni ba'Hashem" - indicating that those who would be anointed
with the horn of oil (David and Shlomoh) would rule for a long time; whereas
those who were not (Shaul and Yeihu ben Nimshi, who were anointed from an
earthenware jar), would not.
(d) When Chanah said ...
1. ... "Ein Kadosh ka'Hashem Ki *Ein Biltecha"* - she meant "Ki Ein
le'Valosecha", none of Hashem's works outlive Him; it is *He* who outlives
*them* (because 'Kedushah' has connotations of eternity).
2. ... "ve'Ein *Tzur* k'Elokeinu" - she meant 'Ein Tzayar k'Elokeinu': a
painter is able to paint an image on the wall, but he is not able to give it
a Ru'ach, a Neshamah, a stomach and intestines. Only Hashem can do that!
(a) Aviga'il knew full well that a Chacham is not permitted to examine Dam
Nidah at night-time. She asked David to do so - so that, when he would tell
her why he could not, she would retort that, just as one cannot examine Dam
Nidah at night, so too, can one not judge Dinei Nefashos at night.
(b) When David replied that Naval was a Moreid be'Malchus (guilty of
treason), and one is permitted to judge a Moreid be'Malchus at night-time
(see Tosfos DH 'Moreid') - Aviga'il reminded him that Shaul was currently the
ruling monarch, and that his (David's) coronation was not yet common
knowledge (in which case, he was not justified in applying the laws of a king
to himself - yet).
(c) David thanked her for having prevented innocent blood from being shed. He
used the expression "mi'Bo *be'Damim*" (in the plural) - because she stopped
him from committing *two* sins connected with blood (from shedding the blood
of a currently innocent man, and from committing adultery with a woman who
was a Nidah - see Agados Maharsha).
(a) David, aroused by the sight of Aviga'il's calf, accosted her (see
ha'Gahos ha'Gra). The reason that she revealed her calf in the first place -
was to enable David to travel by the incredible light that emanated from it
(He did indeed walk three Parsah by that light).
(b) When she said to him "ve'Lo Tihyeh *Zos* Lecha le'Fukah" ("as a weakness"
or "to bring you to Gehinom") - she meant to say that he should not allow
*this* sin to cause a weakness in his merits (implying that there would be
another occasion when he *would*).
(c) She said to him "ve'Haysah Nefesh Adoni Tzerurah bi'Tz'ror ha'Chayim"
(which the Gemara presumably brings as part of Aviga'il's prophesy - to
predict that, in spite of his sin with Bas-Sheva, he would go to Gan Eden -
due to his Teshuvah). When she added "ve'Heitiv Hashem la'Adoni, ve'Zachart
es Amasech" - she hinting to him that, after Hashem would seat him on the
throne, he should marry her.
(d) This conforms with two folk-sayings, one of them: 'Even as a woman talks,
she still sews' - the other: 'Although the duck walks very low, he
nevertheless looks far ahead.
(a) We know that Chuldah was among the prophetesses, because the Pasuk in
Melachim specifically records how Yoshiyahu sent Chilkiyahu ha'Kohen, Chanan
and Achbur to her for a prophesy, and that she responded. The reason that she
prophesied when Yirmiyah was available is - because she knew that, Yirmiyah,
a relative of hers, did not mind her doing so.
(b) Yoshiyahu chose to send to *her* (rather than to Yirmiyah) for one of two
reasons. Either because women are generally softer than men, and he hoped for
a merciful prophecy; or - because Yirmiyah was not even there. He had gone to
bring back (some of) the ten tribes from Galus.
(c) We know for sure that they returned - because Yechezkel would later
prophesy that the Yovel would become nullified, something which it should
have been anyway (from the moment the ten tribes, and even Reuven and Gad and
half Menasheh, went into Galus), since all ten tribes were not in their
place. Consequently, Yechezkel's prophesy would not make any sense, unless we
say that, at some stage, the exiles returned.
1. The Gemara learns from the episode of Yoshiyah and the Mizbe'ach in Beis-
El - that (Yirmiyah brought the exiles back in the eighteenth year of
Yoshiyahu's reign - the year that they found the Seifer and he did Teshuvah,
and that Yoshiyahu, King of Yehudah, ruled over them. That explains what he
was doing in Beis-El, which belonged to the ten tribes.
2. Rav Nachman learns from the Pasuk in Hoshei'a "Gam Yehudah Shas Katzir
Lach be'Shuvi Shevus Ami" - that Yirmiyah returned the ten tribes.
(a) We learn from the Pasuk in Esther "va'Tilbash Esther Malchus" (and not
"Bigdei Malchus") - that Esther was enveloped in Ru'ach ha'Kodesh when she
went before Achashverosh to save K'lal Yisrael.
(b) Rav Nachman learns from the names of the two prophetess, Devorah and
Chuldah - that high positions are not good for women (because it goes to
their heads (despite the fact that they had disgusting names which ought to
have humbled them - Agados Maharsha).
(c) This was manifest in the words of ...
1. ... Devorah - who called Barak (a leader of K'lal Yisrael, as well as
being her husband according to the Medrash) to come to *her*, instead of
going to *him*.
2. ... Chuldah - who referred to Yoshiyah ha'Melech as "the man".
1. Rav Nachman learns from the 'Gezeirah-Shavah' "ben *Charchos*" (in
connection with Chuldah) and "be'Timnas *Cheres*" (in connection with
Yehoshua's burial-site) - that Chuldah was a descendent of Yehoshua.
(b) Rav Nachman ...
2. The Tana of the Beraisa learn from the 'Gezeirah-Shavah' "ben Tikvah" (in
connection with Chuldah) and "Tikvas ha'Shani" (in connection with Rachav
ha'Zonah) - that Chuldah was a descendent of Rachav ha'Zonah.
1. ... does not clash with the Beraisa - because Yehoshua married Rachav
2. ... can also conform with the Pasuk in Divrei Hayamim, which lists
Yehoshua's genealogy, but stops at Yehoshua (from which it would appear that
he had no children) - because although he had no sons, that is not to say
that he had no daughters.