April 20, 2018 ~ Sh TAZRIA-TAHOR. Maqam SABA.

Shabbat Behar

The Sabbatical

וידבר ה׳ אל משה בהר סיני לאמר - A famous question is asked: "What does the topic of the Sabbatical Year (שמיטה) have to do with Mount Sinai (הר סיני)?" The rabbis, in various commentaries for Leviticus 25:1, take this question as an opportunity to remind us that it is not only the Ten Commandments (אבות) presented on Sinai that are important, but also the details of hundreds of Torah laws that may be derived (תולדות) from them. For example, we were commanded on Mount Sinai to "safeguard the sanctity of Sabbath day" (שמור את יום השבת לקדשו) by granting a day of rest to all of the workers. The words בהר סיני, however, come to teach that it isn't enough to only observe the Fourth Commandment regarding the Sabbath day, but also the many laws that are derived from the Shabbat. This includes releasing all slaves, forgiving all debt, and not working the land on the Sabbatical Year. Beth Torah Bulletin, May 20, 2017.