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Avodah Zarah 51

1) [line 4] SHACHAT LAH CHAGAV - he slaughtered for it (i.e. for the sake of worshipping an idol) a locust

2a) [line 6] K'EIN ZEVICHAH - an action that resembles the slaughtering of an animal [when offering a Korban]. This refers to an act that even slightly resembles the act of slaughtering (such as the breaking of a stick or the killing of a locust).

b) [line 7] K'EIN PENIM - an action that resembles one of the services performed inside [the Beis ha'Mikdash when offering a Korban]. This refers to an act that is *very* similar to an act that is performed in the Beis ha'Mikdash.
Actions that are performed to Korbanos in the Beis ha'Mikdash are prohibited mid'Oraisa to perform for any Avodah Zarah, whether these actions are the specific service of the Avodah Zarah or not (Sanhedrin 60b). They are Zevichah (slaughtering and offering a sacrifice), Haktarah (burning incense), Nisuch (pouring a libation) and Hishtachava'ah (bowing down to the Avodah Zarah ).

3) [line 19] NA'ASEH KI'MEGADEL AVODAS KOCHAVIM - it is considered as if he is enlarging the actual Markulis Avodah Zarah itself (and the stones are not considered Tikroves at all)

4a) [line 27] MATZA B'ROSHO - if one finds the structure of a Markulis Avodah Zarah with one of the following items on top of it (lit. on its head):
b) [line 27] KESUS - an article of clothing
c) [line 27] MA'OS - coins
d) [line 28] KELIM - utensils

5a) [line 28] PARCHILEI ANAVIM - interwoven branches laden with clusters of grapes
b) [line 28] ATAROS SHEL SHIBOLIM - wreaths made of stalks of grain

6a) [line 29] YEINOS - wines
b) [line 29] SHEMANIM - oils
c) [line 29] SELATOS - fine flour

7) [line 29] KOL DAVAR SHEKA'YOTZEI VO KAREV L'GABEI MIZBE'ACH - things the likes of which may be brought upon the Mizbe'ach of the Beis ha'Mikdash

8) [line 33] BETZARAN - he cut them (the branches of grapes)

9) [line 34] BEHEMAS BA'ALAS MUM - a blemished animal (BA'AL MUM)
The following is a list of blemishes that invalidate an animal from being offered as a sacrifice (Vayikra 22:22-24, based partially on Rav Aryeh Kaplan's "The Living Torah"). Although there is a dispute as to the precise meaning of the names of the Mumim, all of the blemishes are known through tradition (RAMBAM, Perush ha'Mishnah to Bechoros 7:2).

1. AVERES - blind (even in one eye)
2. SHAVUR - broken-limbed
3. CHARUTZ - gashed; this includes a perforated or split eyelid, nose or lip, or a gash anyplace where there is a bone
4. YABELES - warts
5. GARAV - mange, the animal equivalent of eczema
6. YALEFES - ringworm
7. SARU'A - an extra limb or an overgrown limb
8. KALUT - a missing limb or un-split hooves
9. MA'UCH - testicles crushed by hand
10. KATUS - testicles crushed by an implement
11. NATUK - testicles that are pulled loose
12. KARUS - severed testicles
10) [line 36] HAVI BAH RAVA - Rava asked a question about it (Rebbi Yochanan's statement)

11) [line 36] B'DOKIN SHEBA'AYIN
(a) See above, entry #9.
(b) "Dokin sheb'Ayin" (lit. eye's web, O.F. teile) refers to a thin film (cataract?) that develops due to an eye-disease which is considered to be a blemish, or, alternatively, a cut on the eyelids, that disqualifies an animal from being brought as a Korban, as the Torah states in Vayikra 21:20.

12a) [line 36] HASHTA LI'VENEI NO'ACH CHAZYA L'GAVO'AH B'VAMAH DIDHU - Seeing as it is permitted for a Ben Noach to offer such an animal (with the Mum of Dokin sheb'Ayin) to HaSh-m on their Bamos (high places reserved for sacrifices),
b) [line 37] L'AVODAS KOCHAVIM MIBA'EI? - there is no question that a Jew who offers such an animal to Avodah Zarah has transgressed the prohibition against serving Avodah Zarah. (Even though after Matan Torah, Dokin sheb'Ayin is a blemish that invalidates animals for sacrifices to HaSh-m, since the Jews used to be Benei Noach (for whom such an animal is fit even nowadays), they would be in the category of "Chotei Niskar" ("a sinner who benefits from his actions") because of their new status after Matan Torah, had the Halachah not ruled that they are liable for serving Avodah Zarah in this manner.)

(a) Benei Noach are prohibited from offering, as a Korban to HaSh-m, an animal that is missing a limb, as the verse states, "umi'Kol ha'Chai, mi'Kol Basar, Shenayim mi'Kol Tavi El ha'Teivah l'Hachayos Itach." - "And from all living things, from all flesh, two of everything you shall bring into the ark to keep alive with you" (Bereishis 6:19).
(b) This command to Noach teaches that the animals which he will, in the future, offer as Korbanos to HaSh-m must be fully alive -- i.e. all of its limbs must be intact. Their idolatrous descendants adopted this precept into their own practices, and they do not offer to their idols an animal that is missing a limb.


15) [line 39] SHE'CHAYIN ROSHEI EVARIN SHELAH - that its Roshei Evarim (limb-tips) are whole

(a) A Tereifah is a person or an animal that has acquired or was born with a fatal defect that will result in his or its death within a year. The signs of a Tereifah are described in Chulin 42a et seq. (There are some who maintain that a Tereifah can live for more than a year -- see Chulin 42a-b.)
(b) There is a dispute in the Gemara (Chulin 57b, and as mentioned here) whether or not a Tereifah is able to give birth.

17) [line 40] "... L'(HA)CHAYOS ZERA..." - "[Also birds of the air by seven pairs, male and the female,] to keep seed alive [upon the face of all the earth.]" (Bereishis 7:3)

18) [line 42] "[umi'Kol ha'Chai, mi'Kol Basar, Shenayim mi'Kol Tavi El ha'Teivah l'Hachayos] Itach." - "[And from all living things, from all flesh, two of everything you shall bring into the ark to keep alive] with you" (Bereishis 6:19) - The word "Itach" teaches that the animals that Noach was to bring into the ark with him were to be similar to him -- i.e. fully healthy animals.

19) [line 43] TAMIM BI'DERACHAV V'TZADIK B'MA'ASAV - perfect in his ways and righteous in his deeds

20) [line 46] L'TZAVSA B'ALMA - just to have company
21) [line 46] SARIS - an impotent (lit. castrated) animal
22) [line 47] "V'LO YIZBECHU OD ES ZIVCHEIHEM LA'SE'IRIM" - "And they shall no more offer their sacrifices to demons" (Vayikra 17:7)

23) [line 48] "... EICHAH YA'AVDU HA'G0YIM..." - "[Take heed that you be not snared by following them (the nations in Eretz Kena'an), after they are destroyed from before you; and that you inquire not about their gods, saying,] 'How did these nations serve their gods? [that I may also do likewise.']" (Devarim 12:30)


(a) b- A Bamah is a raised area used for sacrifices. Before the Beis ha'Mikdash was built (when the Mishkan was not in use), there were times when it was permitted to offer sacrifices on public altars (Bamas Tzibur or Bamah Gedolah) and private altars (Bamas Yachid or Bamah Ketanah) (see Insights to Pesachim 91:2).
(b) BAMAH GEDOLAH - Only one public altar was in use at any particular time. At various times in our history, the Bamah Gedolah was in Gilgal (where the Mishkan stood before the land was completely conquered, until it was moved to Shiloh), Nov and Giv'on (after the Mishkan in Shiloh was destroyed, see Zevachim 112b). An individual could offer only voluntary sacrifices on a Bamah Gedolah. There is a difference of opinion among the Tana'im as to whether all communal sacrifices could be offered on a Bamah Gedolah or only the communal sacrifices that have a fixed time (Zevachim 117a).
(c) BAMAH KETANAH - Any person, even if he was not a Kohen, could build a Bamah Ketanah anywhere in Eretz Yisrael and offer upon it his personal sacrifices. Only voluntary sacrifices could be offered on a Bamah Ketanah.
(d) MIZBE'ACH - The Mishkan was built in Shiloh, a city in the portion of Efrayim, after the 14 years of conquest and apportionment of Eretz Yisrael. A Mizbe'ach (altar) was built to replace the Bamos, and as long as the Mishkan stood in Shiloh, sacrificing on the Bamos was prohibited. The Tana'im argue as to whether this Mizbe'ach was a stone structure or whether it was the hollow wooden Mizbe'ach overlaid with copper that was constructed for the Mishkan in the desert, filled with stones (Zevachim 61b). The Mishkan stood in Shiloh for 369 years (Seder Olam Raba 11).
(e) BEIS HA'MIKDASH - The Beis ha'Mikdash is known as the "Beis Olamim," the "Eternal Dwelling," because once it was chosen, it became the permanent dwelling place of the Shechinah. Once again the Bamos were prohibited, but this time permanently. The Mizbach ha'Chitzon (Outer Mizbe'ach), also know as the Mizbach ha'Olah (Mizbe'ach of the Korban Olah) of the Beis ha'Mikdash consisted of three concrete and stone platforms poured one on top of the other. (For a description of the Mizbe'ach ha'Chitzon, see Background to Sukah 45:15.)

The Torah obligates a person to bring all Kodshim that are fit to be offered as sacrifices to the Beis ha'Mikdash, as it states in Vayikra 17:1-7. Besides the Mitzvas Aseh, there is a Lav prohibiting slaughtering them outside of the Azarah (Shechutei Chutz) and burning them or parts of them outside of the Azarah (Ha'ala'as Chutz). In addition, the Tana'im learn (Sanhedrin 34b) that casting the blood of a sacrifice outside of the Azarah is also prohibited. The punishment for transgressing these prohibitions is Kares (ibid. 17:9; SEFER HA'CHINUCH Mitzvah #186), and the animal remains Asur b'Hana'ah (i.e. it is prohibited to derive any benefit from it).

25) [line 3] "V'EL PESACH OHEL MO'ED LO HEVI'O..." - "And brings it not to the entrance of the Tent of Meeting, [to offer an offering to HaSh-m before the tabernacle of HaSh-m, blood shall be imputed to that man; he has shed blood; and that man shall be cut off from among his people.]" (Vayikra 17:4)

26) [line 5] "...PEN TA'ALEH OLOSECHA..." - "[Take heed] that you offer not your burnt offerings [in every place that you see.]" (Devarim 12:13)

27) [line 10] "L'MA'AN ASHER YAVI'U BENEI YISRAEL ES ZIVCHEIHEM ASHER HEM ZOVCHIM AL PENEI HA'SADEH VE'HEVI'UM LASH-M..." - "To the end that the people of Yisrael may bring their sacrifices, which they offer in the open field, that they may bring them to HaSh-m, [to the entrance of the Tent of Meeting, to the Kohen, and offer them for peace offerings to HaSh-m.]" (Vayikra 17:5)

28) [line 21] "VA'TIR'U ES SHIKUTZEIHEM V'ES GILULEIHEM, ETZ VA'EVEN, KESEF V'ZAHAV ASHER IMAHEM." - "And you have seen their abominations, and their idols, wood and stone, silver and gold, which were among them." (Devarim 29:16)

29) [line 22] "... LO SACHMOD KESEF V'ZAHAV ALEIHEM [V'LAKACHTA LACH...]" - "[The engraved images of their gods shall you burn with fire;] you shall not desire the silver or gold that is on them, [nor take it to you, lest you be snared there; for it is an abomination to HaSh-m, your G-d.]" (Devarim 7:25)

30) [line 23] DAVAR SHEL NOY - a decorative object
31) [line 27] KIS KASHUR - a tied money-pouch
32) [line 28] KESUS MEKUPELES - (O.F. pleiede) a folded garment
33) [line 29] DI'SECHIFA LEI MASHKILTA A'REISHEI - [we are dealing with a case] where a goblet is upturned on top of it

34) [line 29] LIFNIM MIN HA'KALKALIN - within the curtains (that set apart the Avodah Zarah). [see SEDER YAKOV here]

35) [line 31] NAKTINAN - we have a tradition
36) [line 31] PE'OR - the name of an idol of Moav, worshipped by defecation and highly immoral practices (RAMBAM Hilchos Avodas Kochavim 3:2)

37) [line 32] PE'UREI MEFA'ARIN KAMEI - they defecate in front of it
38a) [line 34] GINAH - a garden
b) [line 34] MERCHATZ - a bathhouse
39a) [line 34] SHE'LO B'TOVAH - (a) for no payment (RASHI); (b) without acknowledging gratitude (RABEINU TAM)
b) [line 35] B'TOVAH - (a) for payment (RASHI); (b) with an acknowledgement of gratitude (RABEINU TAM)

40) [line 43] "ABED TE'ABDUN ES KOL HA'MEKOMOS ASHER AVDU SHAM HA'GOYIM [ES ELOHEHEM; AL HE'HARIM HA'RAMIM V'AL HA'GEVA'OS, V'SACHAS KOL ETZ RA'ANAN.]" - "You shall completely destroy all of the places, where the nations which you shall possess served [their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every leafy tree.]" (Devarim 12:2)

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