Leining on Shabbos

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by Rabbi Berach Steinfeld

                 In Bamidbar 28:10 the posuk teaches us that every Shabbos had its Korban Olah. The Gemara in Sukka 41b asks why is the mitzvah of taking a lulav pushed off on Shabbos? Isn’t it just moving something that might be muktza, which should not be a problem on ShabbosRava answers that we are worried the person might take it in his hand and go to his Rebbe to teach him the bracha or ask for guidance how to shake it and he will carry it 4 amos in reshus horabim. This reason also applies to Shofar and Megilah on Shabbos.

The question that arises seems obvious; how can we read the Torah every Shabbos in Shul? Why are we not worried that somebody may come to carry the Sefer Torah in reshus horabim?

There are a number of answers to this question. The first answer is that since in the Torah, from which we lein, it discusses the mitzvah of keeping Shabbos, we are therefore not worried that a person may come to carry it in reshus horabim. The second answer is that Torah is different than MegilahShofar and lulav. Everyone used to have their own Sefer Torah, whereas owning a MegilahShofar, and lulav were not so common; therefore they worried that someone may come to carry it in reshus horabim.

The third tirutz is based on the Tosfos Yom Tov in Megilah 1:2 based on Tosfos in Megilah 4b that says regarding milah, we are not worried that the mohel will carry his paraphernalia. One who does a milah is considered a baki, so there is no need to go to a chacham to learn. Similarly, a person who reads the Torah is considered a baki and will have no need to go to a chacham to learn. The fourth tirutz is that since Krias haTorah is done betzibbur, there are always more than one person involved, so one person will remind the other not to be oveir the issur of carrying daled amos in reshus horabim. The fifth tirutz is based on the Maharsham that says that a person may not take out a Sefer Torah from the Shul even for people sitting in jail, so there is no chashash that he will come to carry the Sefer Torah. A sixth tirutz could be that when a tzibbur misses Krias haTorah one week, they are able to make it up the next week; there therefore won’t be such a pressure to go learn by the Rov how to lein. The seventh tirutz is similar to the sixth in that since Krias haTorah is a mitzvah on the tzibbur, and not on every yachid, there won’t be such a pressure to go to the Rov to learn how to lein.

The eighth tirutz is that if we were to have this gezeira, we would never be able to have Krias HaTorah on Shabbos, but when it comes to lulavMegilah and Shofar, the mitzvah may be done if it does not fall out on Shabbos. The ninth tirutz is that since the chiyuv of Krias haTorah is for Shabbos, there is no chashash that someone will forget that it is Shabbos and come to carry, since the whole reason he is leining is because it is Shabbos.

May we be zocheh to keep the Shabbos and to learn the Torah on Shabbos properly!

Do you have a topic or discussion you want to read about? Please send comments or questions to hymanbsdhevens@gmail.com or berachsteinfeldscorner@gmail.com

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  1. Maybe the terutz is that the purpose of Krias Hatorah betzibur was to allow Klal Yisroel to know the Mitzvos Hashem. Without it, the majority of the Klal would be completely lost from Emunah & Yedias Hatorah. Chaz”al understood that the Chashash of someone carrying a sefer on Shabbos was a much smaller problem than having the entire Torah be lost to Klal Yisroel, which of course would lead to much more chilul Shabbos.


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