THOUGHTS ON THE DAILY DAF
brought to you by Kollel Iyun Hadaf of Har Nof
Rosh Kollel: Rav Mordecai Kornfeld
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1) THE REASON ONE MAY NOT FULFILL THE MITZVAH OF MATZAH WITH MATZAH WHICH IS
FORBIDDEN TO BE EATEN
QUESTION: The Mishnah (35a) states that we cannot fulfill the obligation to
eat Matzah on Pesach night with Matzah of Tevel and Ma'aser Rishon from
which Terumah was not yet taken, nor with Matzah of Ma'aser Sheni or Hekdesh
that was not redeemed.
2) "MITZVAH HA'BA'AH B'AVEIRAH"
The Gemara concludes that this is derived from a verse which teaches that
only an item which can become Asur as Chametz can be used for Matzah to
fulfill the Mitzvah. Something which has another Isur, such as Tevel, which
cannot become Asur because of Chametz, cannot be used for fulfilling the
Mitzvah of eating Matzah.
RASHI on the Mishnah (DH v'ha'Kohanim) cites this reason. In the Gemara,
though, Rashi (DH Tavul mid'Rabanan) says that the reason one cannot fulfill
his obligation to eat Matzah with fruit of Tevel which was grown in a
perforated pot (an "Atzitz Nakuv," the content of which is only Tevel
mid'Rabanan) is because of the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah."
Why does Rashi ignore the reason that he mentioned in the Mishnah, which is
also the Gemara's reason?
Furthermore, Rashi (DH Demai) explains why the Gemara says that it is
obvious that one may not fulfill his obligation to eat Matzah by eating
Matzah of Demai. Rashi says it is either because of the Derashah (that
teaches that one can only fulfill the Mitzvah with items that can become
Asur because of Chametz), or because of the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah
b'Aveirah." Why does Rashi mention both reasons here, while in his comments
on the Mishnah, Rashi mentions only the reason of the Derashah, and in his
comments later in the Gemara he mentions only the reason of "Mitzvah
ANSWER: The MAHARSHA explains that the Derashah of the Gemara applies only
when there is an Isur d'Oraisa forbidding the food item, which precludes the
Isur of Chametz from being the only Isur d'Oraisa. But if the food is only
Asur because of an Isur d'Rabanan, then the Derashah does not tell us that
such Matzah cannot be used for the Mitzvah. The Matzah is Kosher for the
Mitzvah, for it has no other Isur d'Oraisa! That is why Rashi on the Mishnah
mentions the Gemara's reason (the Derashah) -- the Mishnah is talking about
an Isur d'Oraisa.
Rashi later in the Gemara is discussing Tevel in a perforated pot, which is
only Asur mid'Rabanan, and therefore Rashi had to say that the reason it
cannot be used for Matzah is because of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah."
When Rashi discusses Demai, though, Rashi is uncertain concerning the
Gemara's intention. When the Gemara says it is obvious that Demai cannot be
used, does the Gemara mean that it is obvious because it is a *Safek Isur
d'Oraisa* of Tevel, or because it is a *Vadai Isur d'Rabanan* of Demai? If
Demai cannot be used for the Mitzvah of Matzah because of the Safek Isur
d'Oraisa, then the reason is because of the Derashah mentioned in the
Gemara. If Demai cannot be used because it is a Vadai Isur d'Rabanan, then
the reason of the Derashah does not apply and the reason must be because of
"Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah." Therefore, Rashi mentioned both reasons with
regard to Demai in order to cover both possible ways of understanding the
QUESTION: The Gemara concludes that the reason why Tevel cannot be used for
the Mitzvah of Matzah is because of a Derashah that teaches that only
something which can be Asur because of Chametz may be used for the Mitzvah
of Matzah. Tevel does not become Asur with the Isur of Chametz, because "Ein
Isur Chal Al Isur" (an item that is forbidden because of one Isur cannot
become forbidden because of another Isur; this is the opinion of Rebbi
Why doesn't the Gemara mention another, more basic reason why one cannot use Matzah of Tevel to fulfill the Mitzvah of Matzah -- it is a "Mitzvah
ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah, as Rashi mentions numerous times in the Gemara! Why does
the Gemara make no mention of that principle, but instead look for another
source? (TOSFOS Sukah 30a DH Mishum)
Furthermore, we do not rule like Rebbi Shimon, but like the Rabanan who say
that an object *can* become Asur with an additional Isur ("Isur Chal Al
Isur") when the second Isur is a greater Isur (such as an Isur Kolel).
According to the Rabanan, wheat that is Asur because of Tevel can become
Asur because of Chametz as well. If so, will the Mishnah's ruling, that one
does not fulfill the Mitzvah of eating Matzah by eating Matzah made from
Tevel, still apply?
(a) TOSFOS RABEINU PERETZ and TOSFOS SHANZ (here, and "Ba'alei ha'Tosfos"
cited by the RAMBAN and RITVA here and in Sukah 31a) explain that indeed, we
do not follow the Halachah as stated in the Mishnah, and if one eats Matzah
of Tevel he fulfills the Mitzvah of eating Matzah. Why is there no problem
of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah?" Because the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah
b'Aveirah" applies only to an object which serves to be "Meratzeh Hashem"
(i.e. to ask Hashem for forgiveness) or to praise Hashem. We find the
principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" applied in the Gemara in only
three instances. (1) A stolen animal that is brought as a Korban is invalid.
A Korban is brought to be Meratzeh Hashem. (2) A stolen Lulav is invalid,
because a Lulav is used to be Meratzeh and Mehalel Hashem (see Rashi, Sukah
36b, DH Ela l'Rav). (3) A Shofar that is Asur b'Hana'ah cannot be used
because of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" (Rosh Hashanah 28a, according to
some Rishonim), because a Shofar, too, is meant to be Meratzeh Hashem (Rosh
Hashanah 26a). Only where the role of the Mitzvah is to be Meratzeh Hashem
does the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" apply, but not for any
(b) The RITVA (here, and in Rosh Hashanah 28a and Sukah 30b) proves from the
Yerushalmi that the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" does not apply
here, because it only applies when the *performance of the Mitzvah itself
causes one to transgress an Aveirah*. For example, by making an animal that
belongs to someone else a Korban or by designating someone else's branch as
a Lulav, one acquires the object through changing the name of the object
(Shinuy ha'Shem) into a "Korban" or a "Lulav," and thereby transgresses the
Isur of stealing. The very act of making the object into one of a Mitzvah
was associated with stealing the object. In such a case, the Mitzvah is a
"Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah." When one eats Matzah of Tevel, though, the
fact that one fulfills a Mitzvah by eating it has nothing to do with the
Aveirah. Even if, by eating the Matzah of Tevel, one would not fulfill the
Mitzvah, he would still be transgressing the Isur of eating Tevel! The Isur
does not play a role in the performance of the Aveirah. Therefore, the laws
of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" do not apply here (and the Mishnah is only
in accordance with the opinion of Rebbi Shimon).
(c) Some suggest that the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" applies
only when the Aveirah which is done with the object *leaves an impression on
the object*. That is, the object is still affected by the Aveirah that was
committed with it. For example, a stolen object has a Kinyan Gezeilah on it
even after the act of the Gezeilah has been completed (because of which the
robber can acquire the object through making a Shinuy). Likewise, if an
object is worshipped as Avodah Zarah, the item remains forbidden as an
object of Avodah Zarah even after the act of the transgression is over.
Tevel, on the other hand, is not an Aveirah. Tevel is merely the status of
produce before its Terumos have been removed. The Aveirah occurs only when
Tevel is eaten. Since the item of Tevel itself is not an item of Aveirah,
one is able to fulfill a Mitzvah with it (b'di'Eved), and it is not a
"Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah." (CHEMDAS SHLOMO, OC #30. Tosfos Sukah 30a, DH
Mishum, appears to consider this opinion but eventually rejects it. However,
support can be drawn for this view from the Yerushalmi cited by the Ritva.)
Alternatively, the RAMBAN (in our Sugya, see also Milchamos in the beginning
of the Maseches) suggests that perhaps "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" does
not apply to a relatively "weak" prohibition like that of Tevel, which it is
in one's ability to remove (by separating Terumah) from it. Once again, the
Mishnah must then be expressing the opinion of Rebbi Shimon, and it is not
(d) The RAMBAN (in his conclusive suggestion, in our Sugya) and his
disciple, RABEINU DAVID, explain that "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" is a
principle learned from Divrei Kabalah, as it is derived from a verse in
Malachi (Sukah 30a). It does not have a status of a Torah principle.
Therefore, the Gemara wanted to show that at least according to Rebbi
Shimon, we even have a source from the Torah which prevents one from using
Tevel for Matzah. Even according to the Rabanan of Rebbi Shimon, though, one
does not fulfill the Mitzvah of Matzah by eating Tevel, but only mi'Divrei
Kabalah and not mid'Oraisa.
This might also be the opinion of RASHI who keeps mentioning "Mitzvah
ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah" in our Sugya (and in Rashi 39a DH u'Demai).
(e) Others suggest that the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah"
applies in every case when an Aveirah is committed at the same time the
Mitzvah is performed. However, it does not apply in the case of our Mishnah,
because in our case we apply the principle of "Aseh Docheh Lo Ta'aseh;" the
performance of a Mitzvas Aseh overrides a Lo Ta'aseh, so that one may -- and
is bidden to -- perform the Mitzvah and is not considered to have
transgressed the Aveirah. (In fact, TOSFOS in Kidushin (38a) cites a
Yerushalmi that says that one should be permitted to eat Matzah of Chadash
for this reason.) Therefore, the principle of "Mitzvah ha'Ba'ah b'Aveirah"
does not apply here, because the Aveirah is permitted for the sake of the
However, others argue, pointing out a number of reasons why the principle of
"Aseh Docheh Lo Ta'aseh" does not apply in our case:
1. Eating Tevel is punishable with Misah, and a Mitzvas Aseh cannot override
a Lav which is punishable with Misah (SHA'AGAS ARYEH 96).
2. RABEINU DAVID explains that the principle of "Aseh Docheh Lo Ta'aseh"
applies only when the Torah itself forces the Aseh and the Lo Ta'aseh into
opposition. But if the confrontation between the Aseh and the Lo Ta'aseh
comes only as a result of one's particular situation and circumstances (for
example, he has no other Matzah available other than Matzah of Tevel), then
"Aseh Docheh Lo Ta'aseh" does not apply. In such a situation, the Torah
telling the person to eat Tevel. (This is not the case with other instances
of "Aseh Docheh Lo Ta'aseh," such as the Aseh of Milah which overrides the
Lo Ta'aseh of cutting Tzara'as from the body. In that case, the
confrontation between the two is created by the Aseh of Milah itself, which
tells us "Cut this skin even though it has Tzara'as." With regard to Matzah,
the Mitzvah never directs us, "Eat this Tevel.") (A very similar answer is
suggested by SHA'AGAS ARYEH loc. cit., echoing the opinion of BEIS YOSEF OC
3. The MINCHAS CHINUCH (10:13) points out that the Mitzvah is only to eat a
k'Zayis of Matzah. After the initial k'Zayis, there is no longer a Mitzvas
Aseh to eat Matzah, so it would be Asur to eat Matzah of Tevel after the
first k'Zayis. Consequently, Matzah of Tevel may not be used even for the
first k'Zayis, because the Gemara says that the Matzah used for the Mitzvah
must be Matzah which is fit for eating all seven (or eight) days of the
festival. Tevel, though, cannot be eaten after the first k'Zayis on the
first evening, after which the Mitzvas Aseh expires.
4. Finally, it would appear that the principle of "Aseh Docheh Lo Ta'aseh"
should not apply here, because one may not do a Mitzvah at the expense of
someone else's money! If one eats Tevel in order to fulfill the Mitzvah of
eating Matzah, one is stealing from the Kohen, by not separating their
portion from the Tevel. It is obvious that one may not steal someone else's
Lulav if one has no other Lulav! Similarly, one may not steal the property
of the Kohanim (Terumos and Ma'aseros) in order to fulfill a Mitzvah. (M.