POINT BY POINT SUMMARY
by R. Nosson Slifkin
Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
Ask A Question on the daf
Previous dafRosh Hashanah 24
1) THE POSITION OF THE MOON
(a) If the witness said that the moon was north of the sun,
his testimony stands; if he says it was south of it, his
testimony is worthless.
2) MISHNAH: THE SANCTIFICATION OF ROSH CHODESH
1. Question: Surely it states the opposite in a Beraisa
(b) If one of the witnesses gives the height of the new moon
as two saddle-cloths, and the other one as three, their
testimony is accepted.
2. Answer: One is referring to summer (when the moon is
south of the sun) and the other refers to winter.
1. But if one were to say three saddle-cloths, and the
other five, it is disqualified.
(c) If they saw the moon's reflection, or they saw it through
a crystal, or through clouds, they cannot testify about
i. However, either can combine with other
1. If they saw half of it in this was, they cannot
testify about it.
(d) (Beraisa) If they say that they saw it but later they
didn't see it, their testimony does not work.
i. Question: If they cannot testify when they saw
the whole moon this way, isn't it obvious that
they cannot testify when they only saw half of
it this way?
ii. Answer: It means that they saw the other half
of it in the sky directly.
1. Question: Surely they don't need to constantly keep
it in view?
2. Answer: It means that they casually observed it but
did not see it when they tried to inspect it for the
purpose of testimony.
i. Their testimony is unacceptable because it
might have been a cloud that they saw.
(a) The Rosh Beis Din pronounces "Mekudash!" and everyone
repeats it twice.
3) THE SOURCE OF THE LAWS
(b) Whether the moon was seen on the 30th or 31st, this is
(c) (R. Elazar b. R. Tzadok) If it was seen on the 31st, it
is not done, as it has already been sanctified by Heaven.
(a) Question: How do we know that the Rosh Beis Din does it
4) IN WHICH CASES IT IS SANCTIFIED
(b) Answer: Because the Pasuk states that Moshe told over the
Mo'adim to the Bnei Yisrael.
(c) Question: How do we know that the people repeat it after
(d) Answer: Because the Pasuk that "they shall declare them"
can be read as "*you* shall declare them."
(e) Alternate answer (R. Nachman bar Yitzchak): The source is
a Pasuk which refers to "them" declaring the Mo'adim.
(f) Question: Why do they repeat it twice?
(g) Answer: As the Pasuk speaks of "Mikra'i Kodesh" in the
(a) (R. Elazar b. R. Tzadok) If it was seen on the 31st, it
is not sanctified, as it has already been sanctified by
5) MISHNAH: RABBAN GAMLIEL'S PICTURES
(b) (Plimo) It is only sanctified if seen on the 31st, not if
seen on the 30th.
(c) (R. Elazar b. R. Shimon) In either case, it is not
1. The source is that the Pasuk about consecrating the
fiftieth year teaches us that only years are
consecrated with a proclamation, and not new months.
(d) (R. Yehudah citing Shmuel) The halachah follows R. Elazar
b. R. Tzadok.
(e) Support (Abaye): This is also evident from a later
1. (Mishnah) If Beis Din didn't manage to sanctify it
before dark, it is a full month.
(f) Refutation: The Mishnah is not excluding this; the
purpose of it is to stress that even though everyone saw
the moon on the 30th, it is a full month if it wasn't
sanctified before dark.
2. But it doesn't say that they sanctify it on the next
(a) Rabban Gamliel had pictures of the moon to show people
and ask which they saw.
6) THE PERMISSIBILITY OF PICTURES OF THE MOON
(a) Question: Surely the Pasuk forbids making images of
(b) Answer (Abaye): It only forbids making images of those
servants which it is possible to make a replica of (but
not of heavenly bodies):
1. (Beraisa) One may not make a replica of the Mikdash
or anything in it.
2. One may make a Menorah as long as it doesn't have
3. A seven-branched Menorah may not be made even from
metals other than gold.
(c) Question: Surely it is not permitted to make images of
the Heavenly bodies:
4. (R. Yosi bar Yehudah) It may not even be made from
wood, as the Chashmona'im made a menorah from wood.
i. Rejection: Their menorah was made from iron and
overlaid with tin (and later upgraded to silver
and then to gold).
1. (Beraisa) We learn from a Pasuk that one may not
make an image of anything that serves Hashem in the
(d) Answer (Abaye): Only the combined image of four creatures
that is on Hashem's throne is forbidden.
1. Question: This implies that an image of man alone is
permitted, yet we see in a Beraisa that it is
(e) Question: We see in a Beraisa that images of other
servants, such as Ofanim etc., are also forbidden!
2. Answer: The Pasuk also prohibits the image of Hashem
(which is that of a man in the visions of prophets).
(f) Answer (Abaye): It is only the servants in the upper
Heavens that one may not make images of.
(g) Question: We see in a Beraisa that the Pasuk also
prohibits making images of the sun, moon and other bodies
in the lower Heavens?
(h) Answer: That is referring to making images for the sake
1. Question: For such purposes, even making the image
of a worm is forbidden!?
(i) Question: We see in a Beraisa that the Pasuk prohibits
making images of the sun and moon even not for the sake
2. Answer: True, and the continuation of the Pasuk
(j) Answer: Rabban Gamliel had non-Jews make the images for
(k) Question: When R. Yehudah had non-Jews make such images
on a signet-ring for him, Shmuel rebuked him!?
(l) Answer: The images protruded from the ring, which risks
suspicion of being an idol:
1. (Beraisa) A ring whose image protrudes may not be
worn, but may be used for a seal;
(m) Question: Surely Rabban Gamliel was an individual and
there should be the risk of suspicion (even for a flat
image, since that is how the moon appears anyway)?
2. If the image is sunken, it may be worn but not used
for a seal.
i. Question: Surely there is no risk of suspicion,
as we see that Rav, Shmuel and others would
Daven in a Shul that had a statue in it!?
ii. There is no such suspicion in a public place.
(n) Answer: Since he was a prince, he would be visited by
many people (and there is no suspicion in a public
(o) Alternate answer: They were not whole pictures, but
rather were composites of partial pictures.
(p) Alternate answer: They were made for learning purposes,
and the Pasuk only forbids making them for practical