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Parshat Tzav - Questions for Self Study

Questions for the Shabbat Table
Questions for Shiur Preparation
Questions on Parshanut

Part I - Questions for the 'Shabbat Table'
Kashrut - Laws of Chaylev V'Dam and Korbanot
1. Towards the end of Parshat Tzav we find two important laws concerning Kashrut:

    1) the prohibition against eating "chaylev" (7:22-25)
    2) the prohibition against eating blood (7:26-27).
In your opinion, why are these laws, which apply to eating an animal which is not a korban, included in Parshat Tzav?
Be sure to relate to 7:25 - "from an animal which can be a korban for Hashem..."

2. These same laws (in a more concise form) had already been mentioned in Parshat Vayikra (see 3:17).
Why is it necessary to repeat them again in Tzav?
Is their context in each Parsha the same or different?
[In other words, what specific korban do they related to in each Parsha?]

3. Now read Vayikra 17:8-12.
Is this prohibition against eating blood the same as the one mentioned in Parshat Tzav or different?
If it is the same, why do you think it is being repeated?
If it is different, what is different?
In your opinion, why is "chaylev" not mentioned here?
Now read 17:13-14. What prohibition is being added? Why?
How do these psukim relate to your answer to the first part of this question?

4. Now read Devarim 12:13-16.
In what context is the prohibition against eating blood being mentioned?
Why do you think that it is necessary to repeat this law in this parsha (what is the overall topic of this parsha - 12:4-19)?

Now read Devarim 12:20-28.
What is the topic of this parsha?
How is this parsha related to 12:4-19? To 12:15-16?
According to this parsha, are there two reasons for not eating blood, or only one?
[Relate to 12:23 and 12:27; is this the same reason or two different reasons?]
How does this parsha relate to Vayikra 7:22-27 and its context?

5. Based on the above questions, how does the prohibition against eating "dam v'chaylev" (which applies to this very day) relate to the laws of korbanot?
Why is this significant?

6. For further iyun, see:
Ramban Vayikra 17:11 and Dvarim 12:23-25;
Chizkuni Vayikra 3:17 and Dvarim 12:16;
Sefer HaChinuch Mitzvah 147 and 148.

Part II - Questions for Preparation (for weekly shiur)
[Note: these questions are (and should be) very similar to last week's questions on Vayikra. When you finish, you will probably understand why.]

1. Take a blank page and make a list of all the 'parshiot' in Parshat Tzav.
For each 'parsha,' write no more than a short phrase (two or three words) that summarizes its gist [one line for each 'parsha'].

2. Now, take your list and transform it into an outline.

3. Review your outline, and give an appropriate title for the header of each level!
Give a title for the entire outline.

4. Scan the entire Parsha once again, and note each time that a new "dibur" begins [i.e. "vayomer Hashem el Moshe..."].
Make note of those positions on your outline.
Does each "dibur" correspond to certain level of your outline?
Try to explain where it does and where it doesn't.

5. Scan the Parsha once again, making note of where each chapter begins.
How does the division into chapters correspond to your outline?

6. Attempt to define the overriding principle that guides the order of the parshiot in Parshat Tzav.
Is that principle the same or different for each category of korbanot?
In what way is the order of Parshat Tzav different than Parshat Vayikra?
Based on your answer to this question, can you explain why?

7. Now, suggest a title for both Parshiot Vayikra and Tzav together, and then a subtitle header for each Parsha.

8. Based on your definition, why are all the korbanot be repeated twice?
Are the same details for each korban being repeated?
For details that are the same, attempt to explain why they are repeated.
For details that are different, attempt to explain why there are listed specifically in each respective Parsha.

9. Would it not have been more logical for the Torah to combine all of these laws concerning korbanot into one Parsha?
Based on your outline, can you explain why each Parsha is presented separately?

10. Read, once again, the opening psukim of each Parsha (Vayikra and Tzav) carefully.
Can you find support for your answer to questions 8 and 9 for these psukim?

11. Why (all of the sudden) is there a "dibur" in 7:22-27 to Bnei Yisrael, and not only to the Kohanim?
How do these laws enhance your understanding of the laws of Kashrut today?
Why is 7:28-34 also a "dibur" to Bnei Yisrael?
Based on these two sources (these two "dibur"s) must you redefine your overall definition of Parshat Tzav?
If so, what would your new definition be?

12. See parshanut section below, question #1.

Now that you've prepared, go to the shiur.

Part III - Parshanut
1. What is the glaring problem with pasuk 7:37?
[Note how this pasuk 'almost' summarizes the entire parsha beginning with "zot torat ha'olah..." etc.]
How do the commentators deal with this problem?
What does the word "miluim" mean?
Does it relate to any topic in chapter 6-7?
Does it relate to chapter 8?
Does it relate in any way to the Korban Shlamim?

Now, [on pasuk 7:37] -
See Rashi; what does he mean by "yom chinuch kehunah?"
Does this refer to 6:12-14?
Why would this be referred to as "miluim?"
Relate to Shmot 29:9 and Vayikra 21:10!
What 'forces' Rashi to prefer this explanation?

Next see Ibn Ezra [and Chizkuni as well].
Why does Ibn Ezra refer to Shmot chapter 29?
Can you find the word "miluim" (or similar) in that chapter? What is its context?
How does that chapter relate to Vayikra chapter 8?
How is Ibn Ezra's pirush different than Rashi?
What is the reason for the machloket between them?

[Extra credit: What is similar between the special laws of the 7 day miluim ceremony (as described in Shmot 29/Vayikra 8) and the korban shlamim?
[Relate to chazeh v'shok.]
In you opinion, could this the "ayl ha'miluim" be considered a 'prototype' of the korban shlamim?
If so, how would this help us understand the order of topic in 7:37?!]

2. Read 7:38.
According to this pasuk, when and where were these mitzvot (i.e. chapters 6-7 - the Torot) given to Moshe Rabbeinu?
On Har Sinai? If so, during the first or last 40 days?
From the Mishkan (ohel moed)? If so, before or after the laws in Parshat Vayikra? Likewise, before or after the Mishkan was dedicated? How would your answer be affected by the principle of "ein mukdam u'm'uchar ba'Torah?"

See Ramban.
Why does Ramban quote (here) the statement by Chazal that all of the mitzvot were given first from har Sinai, and then repeated from the Ohel Moed?
What problem would this solve?
What doesn't Ramban himself accept this pirush?
How does Ramban explain this pasuk?
How do both of these pirushim relate to Vayikra 1:1?
Relate to Ramban's pirush to 8:1!
See question #3 below.

Next, see Ibn Ezra [and Chizkuni].
What specific point concerning 7:38 does this Ibn Ezra deal with?
How does it relate to the above Ramban?
Why does Ibn Ezra quote the pasuk from Amos?

3. Read 8:1-8 (if possible, the entire perek).
Note how this is the first 'narrative' in Sefer Vayikra.
Note also that it is the fulfillment of God's commandment to Moshe in Shmot chapter 29.
[Review also Shmot chapter 40 (in case you forgot it), as well as Vayikra 1:1 and 7:37-38.]

Now, try to determine the chronological order of these events.
In other words, when did the 7 day miluim ceremony take place (on what day), when did the Sh'china dwell on the Mishkan (see Shmot 40:34-37), when were the mitzvot of Parshat Tzav given, etc.?

Now, see Rashi on 8:2.
Why does Rashi state immediately at the beginning of this parshia his principle of "ein mukdam u'm'uchar?"
How and why does Rashi arrive at his conclusion of the date of the 23rd of Adar?
[Relate to Shmot 40:1-2.]

Finally, see Ramban on 8:2!
How and why does Ramban disagree with Rashi?
Is Ramban able to keep Sefer Vayikra in chronological order?
[In order to do so, what assumptions must he make?]
Towards the end of this Ramban, he agrees that a certain parshia (of those listed above) is indeed 'out or order,' but he explains why.
Which 'parshia' is this, and why does Ramban 'move' specifically this one?
Relate your answer to the first Ramban of Sefer Shmot!
[Note how Ramban has a principle as well concerning when we do say "ein mukdam u'muchar." Explain it! See also Shmot 16:30-36 for similar example.]
See also Ramban on Vayikra 25:1!