Rav Moshe Shternbuch: Is It Preferable to Speak Ivrit Over English?


reb_moshe_shternbuchRav Moshe Shternbuch (1:538) quotes the Rambam who says that language is not important, only the content. Nevertheless, says Rav Shternbuch, to the extent that the language you speak will impact the content you discuss, it does become an issue. Therefore, if when speaking Lashon Hakodesh you will not speak lashon hara and other forbidden things, then surely it is better to speak Lashon Kodesh. If, however, you will speak these things even in Lashon Kodesh, then he says it is better not to defile the holy language with improper speech and you are better off speaking a different language.

However, he makes a distinction between Lashon Kodesh and “Ivrit. Ivrit, he says, is worse than other languages, because it was created by people who have no part of the Torah and all their intentions were purely nationalistic. Certainly there is no kedushah in this language. He adds that when the non-religious element started speaking Ivrit in Yerushalayim, Rav Yehoshua Leib Diskin decided that the people in Yerushalayim should switch over to speaking Yiddish as opposed to Lashon Hakodesh, which was too similar to the national language of Ivrit.

{Revach.net/Dovid Bernstein-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Should be: Rav Moshe Shternbuch in Teshuvos v’Hanhagos (1:538) quotes…

    Also, it should be noted that Reb Moishe is Vice President of of Eida Chareidis and his views represent the minority opinion among poskim of our generation.