יומא  פרק  שני   בראשונה  ( כב: )       yoma 22b  ❃

או דילמא בר מאמה יסוד ואמה סובב?

- תיקו.

ואם היו שניהן שוין הממונה אומר להם הצביעו וכו'.

תנא: הוציאו אצבעותיכם למנין.

ונימנינהו לדידהו - מסייע ליה לרבי יצחק, דאמר רבי יצחק: אסור למנות את ישראל אפילו לדבר מצוה, דכתיב (שמואל א' יא) ויפקדם בבזק.

- מתקיף לה רב אשי: ממאי דהאי בזק לישנא דמיבזק הוא?

ודילמא שמא דמתא הוא, כדכתיב (שופטים א) וימצאו אדני בזק?

- אלא מהכא, (שמואל א' טו) וישמע שאול את העם ויפקדם בטלאים.

אמר רבי אלעזר: כל המונה את ישראל עובר בלאו, שנאמר (הושע ב) והיה מספר בני ישראל כחול הים אשר לא ימד.

רב נחמן בר יצחק אמר עובר בשני לאוין שנאמר לא ימד ולא יספר.

אמר רבי שמואל בר נחמני, רבי יונתן רמי: כתיב: והיה מספר בני ישראל כחול הים וכתיב אשר לא ימד ולא יספר לא קשיא: כאן - בזמן שישראל עושין רצונו של מקום, כאן - בזמן שאין עושין רצונו של מקום.

רבי אמר משום אבא יוסי בן דוסתאי: לא קשיא כאן - בידי אדם, כאן - בידי שמים.

אמר רב נהילאי בר אידי אמר שמואל: כיון שנתמנה אדם פרנס על הציבור - מתעשר.

מעיקרא כתיב ויפקדם בבזק ולבסוף כתיב ויפקדם בטלאים.

- ודילמא מדידהו?

- אם כן מאי רבותא דמילתא?

(שמואל א' טו) וירב בנחל, אמר רבי מני: על עסקי נחל.

בשעה שאמר לו הקדוש ברוך הוא לשאול (שמואל א' טו) לך והכית את עמלק, אמר: ומה נפש אחת אמרה תורה הבא עגלה ערופה, כל הנפשות הללו על אחת כמה וכמה ואם אדם חטא - בהמה מה חטאה?

ואם גדולים חטאו - קטנים מה חטאו?

יצאה בת קול ואמרה לו (קהלת ז) אל תהי צדיק הרבה.

ובשעה שאמר לו שאול לדואג (שמואל א' כב) סב אתה ופגע בכהנים, יצאה בת קול ואמרה לו (קהלת ז) אל תרשע הרבה.

אמר רב הונא: כמה לא חלי ולא מרגיש גברא דמריה סייעיה שאול באחת - ועלתה לו, דוד בשתים - ולא עלתה לו.

שאול באחת מאי היא - מעשה דאגג, והא איכא מעשה דנוב עיר הכהנים - אמעשה דאגג כתיב (שמואל א' טו) נחמתי כי המלכתי את שאול למלך.

דוד בשתים, מאי נינהו - דאוריה ודהסתה.

- והא איכא נמי מעשה דבת שבע - התם אפרעו מיניה, דכתיב (שמואל ב' יב) ואת הכבשה ישלם ארבעתים - ילד, אמנון, תמר, ואבשלום.

- התם נמי אפרעו מיניה, דכתיב (שמואל ב' כד) ויתן ה' דבר (בעם מן הבקר) (מסורת הש"ס: [בישראל מהבקר]) ועד עת מועד - התם לא אפרעו מגופיה.

- התם נמי לא אפרעו מגופיה.

- לאיי, אפרעו מגופיה.

דאמר רב יהודה אמר רב: ששה חדשים נצטרע דוד, ופרשו הימנו סנהדרין, ונסתלקה הימנו שכינה, דכתיב (תהלים קיט) ישובו לי יראיך וידעי עדותיך, וכתיב (תהלים נא) השיבה לי ששון ישעך.

והא אמר רב: קבל דוד לשון הרע - כשמואל, דאמר: לא קבל דוד לשון הרע.

- ולרב נמי, דאמר קבל דוד לשון הרע הא איפרעו מיניה, דאמר רב יהודה אמר רב: בשעה שאמר לו דוד למפיבושת (שמואל ב' יט) - אמרתי אתה וציבא תחלקו את השדה, יצאה בת קול ואמרה לו: רחבעם וירבעם יחלקו את המלכות.

(שמואל א' יג) בן שנה שאול במלכו.

אמר רב הונא: כבן שנה, שלא טעם טעם חטא.

מתקיף לה רב נחמן בר יצחק: ואימא כבן שנה שמלוכלך בטיט ובצואה?

אחויאו ליה לרב נחמן סיוטא בחלמיה.

אמר: נעניתי לכם עצמות שאול בן קיש.

הדר חזא סיוטא בחלמיה.

אמר: נעניתי לכם עצמות שאול בן קיש מלך ישראל.

אמר רב יהודה אמר שמואל: מפני מה לא נמשכה מלכות בית שאול - מפני שלא היה בו שום דופי.

דאמר רבי יוחנן משום רבי שמעון בן יהוצדק: אין מעמידין פרנס על הציבור אלא אם כן קופה של שרצים תלויה לו מאחוריו, שאם תזוח דעתו עליו - אומרין לו: חזור לאחוריך.

אמר רב יהודה אמר רב: מפני מה נענש שאול - מפני שמחל על כבודו, שנאמר (שמואל א' י) ובני בליעל אמרו מה ישענו זה ויבזהו ולא הביאו לו מנחה ויהי כמחריש וכתיב (שמואל א' יא) ויעל נחש העמוני ויחן על יבש גלעד וגו'.

ואמר רבי יוחנן משום רבי שמעון בן יהוצדק: כל תלמיד חכם


or does it mean exclusive of the one cubit base and one cubit gallery?(1) - [The question] stands.

IF TWO WERE EVEN, THE OFFICER WOULD SAY TO THEM: RAISE THE FINGER, etc. A Tanna taught: Put forth your fingers for the count.

But let him count them?(2) - That supports the statement of R`Isaac, for R`Isaac said: It is forbidden to count Israel even for [the purpose of fulfilling] a commandment, as it is written: And he numbered them be-bezek [with pebbles].(3)

R`Ashi demurred to this: Whence do you know that the word 'bezek' is here used in the sense of being broken [i.e., pebbles], perhaps it is the name of a place, as it is written: And they found Adoni-Bezek in Bezek?(4) - Rather it is from here: And Saul summoned the people and numbered them with telaim(5) [sheep].

R`Eleazar said: Whosoever counts Israel, transgresses a [biblical] prohibition, as it is said: Yet the numb of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured.(6)

R`Nahman B`Isaac said: He would transgress two prohibitions, for it is written: 'Which cannot be measured nor numbered'.

R`Samuel B`Nahmani said: R`Jonathan raised an objection: It is written: 'Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea,' and it is also written: 'Which cannot be numbered? '(7) This is no contradiction: Here(8) it speaks of the time when Israel fulfils the will of the Lord, there of the time when the do not fulfil His will.

Rabbi,(9) on behalf of Abba Jose son of Dosthai, said: This is no contradiction: Here it speaks of [counting done] by human beings, there of counting by Heaven.(10)

R`Nehilai B`Idi said in the name of Samuel: As soon as a man is appointed administrator of a community, he becomes rich - First it was written: 'And he counted them by means of pebbles,' and, in the end, 'And he counted them by means of sheep'.

But perhaps these sheep were of their own? - Then what is remarkable about it?(11)

And he strove in the valley.(12)

R`Mani said: Because of what happens 'in the valley': When the Holy One, blessed be He, said to Saul: Now go and smite Amalek,(13) he said: If on account of one person the Torah said: Perform the ceremony of the heifer whose neck is to be broken,(14) how much more [ought consideration to be given] to all these persons! And if human beings sinned, what has the cattle committed; and if the adults have sinned, what have the little ones done?(15)

A divine voice came forth and said: Be not righteous overmuch.(16)

And when Saul said to Doeg: Turn thou and fall upon the priests,(17) a heavenly voice came forth to say: Be not overmuch wicked.(18)

R`Huna said: How little does he whom the Lord supports need to grieve or trouble himself! Saul sinned once and it brought [calamity] upon him, David sinned twice and it did not bring evil upon him - What was the one sin of Saul?

The affair with Agag.(19)

But there was also the matter with Nob,(20) the city of the priests? - [Still] it was because of what happened with Agag that Scripture says: It repenteth Me that I have set up Saul to be king.(21)

What were the two sins of David? - The sin against Uriah(22) and that [of counting the people to which] he was enticed.(23)

But there was also the matter of Bathsheba?(24) - For that he was punished, as it is written, And he shall restore the lamb fourfold:(25) the child, Amnon, Tamar and Absalom.(26)

But for the other sin he was also punished as it is written: So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning even to the time appointed?(27) - There his own body was not punished - But in the former case, too, his own body was not punished either?(28)

Not indeed?

He was punished on his own body, for Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: For six months David was smitten with leprosy, the Sanhedrin removed from him, and the Shechinah departed from him, as it is written: Let those that fear Thee return unto me, and they that know Thy testimonies,(29) and it is also written: Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation.(30)

But Rab said that David also listened to evil talk?(31) - We hold like Samuel [who says] that David did not do so.

And even according to Rab, who says that David listened to calumny, was he not punished for it?

For Rab Judah said in the name of Rab.

At the time when David said to Mephibosheth: I say: Thou and Ziba divide the land,(32) a heavenly voice came forth to say to him: Rehoboam and Jeroboam will divide the Kingdom.

Saul(33) was a year old(34) when he began to reign.

R`Huna said: Like an infant of one year, who had not tasted the taste of sin.

R`Nahman B`Isaac demurred to this: Say perhaps: Like an infant of one year old that is filthy with mud and excrement?(35)

R`Nahman thereupon was shown a frightening vision in his dream, whereupon he said: I beg your pardon,(36) bones of Saul, son of Kish.

But he saw again a frightening vision in his dream, whereupon he said: I beg your pardon, bones of Saul, son of Kish,(37) King in Israel.

Rab Judah said in the name of Samuel: Why did the kingdom of Saul not endure?

Because no reproach rested on him,(38) for R`Johanan had said in the name of R`Simeon B`Jehozadak: One should not appoint any one administrator of a community, unless he carries a basket of reptiles on his back, so that if he became arrogant, one could tell him: Turn around!(39)

Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: Why was Saul punished?

Because he forewent the honour due to himself, as it is said: But certain base fellows said: 'How shall this man save us? ' And they despised him and brought him no present.

But he was as one that held his peace,(40) and it is written [immediately following that]: Then Nahash the Ammonite came up and encamped against Jabesh-gilead.(41)

R`Johanan further said in the name of R`Simeon B`Jehozadak: Any scholar,


(1) [The altar was constructed with two rebatements of two cubits, one cubit at the base and another at the Sobeb; and R. Papa's query is whether these two cubits are to be included in the four cubits distance, so that the real distance measured in a straight line from the main structure of the altar would be six cubits.]

(2) By heads.

(3) I Sam. XI, 8.

(4) Judg. I, 5.

(5) I Sam. XV, 4.

(6) Hosea II, 1. 'Cannot be numbered' is interpreted-and grammatically there is no solid objection as 'should not, must not be numbered', thus a positive statement becomes a prohibition. The assumption is justified that here again the ultimate basis of the prohibition is not this passage, but the passage is a peg on which to hang the idea. There are more obvious sources of the prohibition known to the disputants.

(7) Ibid. The sand of the sea, however tremendous the number of grains, yet could be counted. Why then the second part of the passage which cannot be numbered'? It is true this verse is divested of its simple meaning, which does not permit this dichotomy. But again the major purpose of the questioner is to drive home a moral.

(8) When Israel fulfils the Lord's commands, it will become infinite, beyond the possibility of a count: if it does not live up to His law, it may, nevertheless, be great in number, but it will be countable.

(9) Another reading: R. Assi. There is no valid objection to the text here.

(10) Maharsha: Human beings would weary of counting, because of the great number.

(11) That Scripture mentions it especially. E.V. takes 'Telaim' to be the name of a place.

(12) I Sam. XV, 5. E.V.: 'And he lay in wait'. Saul was thus 'striving because of what happens in the valley', i.e., he argued from that ceremony against the slaying of the Amalekites. V. Gruenberg, s. Exeg. Beitraege, III, index.

(13) I Sam. XV, 3.

(14) Deut. XXI, 1-9.

(15) I Sam. XV, 3:Slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

(16) Eccl. VII, 16.

(17) I Sam. XXII, 18.

(18) Eccl. VII, 17.

(19) I Sam. XV, 2ff

(20) Ibid. XXII, 19.

(21) Ibid. XV, 11.

(22) II Sam. XI, 2-27.

(23) Ibid. XXIV, 1.

(24) He had committed adultery in addition to having instigated murder.

(25) II Sam. XII, 6. He had unconsciously prophesied his own punishment.

(26) All of whom died during his lifetime; thus he paid four of his 'lambs' for the one he had unrighteously taken from its master.

(27) II Sam. XXIV, 15.

(28) Just as here the people died and not he, so was it his children, but not he, who were afflicted because of his sin.

(29) Ps. CXIX, 79.

(30) Ibid. LI, 14.

(31) The evil reports of Ziba against Mephibosheth. So that he committed a third sin.

(32) II Sam. XIX, 30.

(33) I Sam. XIII, 1.

(34) The literal interpretation being impossible because of earlier texts, the Rabbis endeavour to find therein homiletical suggestion.

(35) R. Nahman was not actuated by any animus against Saul. He objected primarily to the too ready way of moralizing in advance of textual equivocality. With even justice one could illustrate an opposite aspect of infancy, and an analogy would thus throw evil light on King Saul.

(36) His conscience smote him afterwards, for in his eagerness to demonstrate the error of hasty interpretation, he had offended the memory of Saul.

(37) His conscience was not at rest, until he had fully realized that he had offended the King of Israel. His dreams reflected his thoughts by day, and only after his second apology did he feel relieved.

(38) On Saul's descent. None could therefore prevent his arrogance by pointing to a family skeleton, saying: Turn around and your basket of reptiles (family ignominy) will stand revealed.

(39) V. preceding note.

(40) I Sam. X, 27.

(41) Ibid. XI, 1, hence, because immediately following, viewed as consequence of his too great humility.