Thursday, November 04, 2010

Rashi and Penei Yehoshua on Hashem's Day

2 years ago, for Parshat Toledot, I had a post about Bereishit Rabba saying that Eisav sold 1 day to Yaakov Avinu.  I mentioned in the post that it was certain that one day means 1000 years.  I mentioned some explanations and some commenters pointed out some other nice explanations.  It turns out that it's not so certain that one day means 1000 years.

I commented in the comments there that I found the Penei Yehoshua on Gittin 88a who quotes Rashi in Tehillim 90:4.

The verse says:
כִּי אֶלֶף שָׁנִים, בְּעֵינֶיךָ-- כְּיוֹם אֶתְמוֹל, כִּי יַעֲבֹר; וְאַשְׁמוּרָה בַלָּיְלָה

Rashi suggests that the Yom (day) of Hashem is 930 years (the same amount of years that Adam Harishon lived), while the "Ashmura" of the night will complete the rest of the 1000 years.  This means that one Ashmura/Mishmar is 70 years.

The Penei Yehoshua gives his day calculation based on this Rashi and explains how the 852 (ונושנתם) minus 2 years that the Jewish people ruled over the land of Israel can be calculated from it to work with this Midrash.

I (=yaak) want to suggest the following:

The gemara in Berachot 3b has a Mahloket how many Mishmarot there are, but the gemara on 3a indicates that we hold that there are 3 Mishmarot in the night - not 4.  The Shulhan Aruch codifies this in Orah Hayim 1:2

If there are 3 Mishmarot in the night, and one Mishmar of Hashem = 70 years, then the total amount for the night is 210 years.  If you add 210 of the night to 930 of the day, each 24-hour day = 1140 years.

Jewish history is therefore like this:

Night #11-211
Day #1211-1141
Night #21141-1351
Day #21351-2281
Night #32281-2491
Day #32491-3421
Night #43421-3631
Day #43631-4561
Night #54561-4771
Day #54771-5701
Night #65701-5911

Notice that it's very fitting to start Day #3 at about the time the Israelites entered the Land of Israel.  Also, notice that Night #6 started during the Holocaust.  Since we said that an Ashmura/Mishmar lasts 70 years, we are currently at the end of the first Ashmura/Mishmar of the sixth night.

The gemara in Berachot 3a also says:
 אמר רב יצחק בר שמואל משמי׳ דרב ג׳ משמרות הוי הלילה ועל כל משמר ומשמר יושב הקב״ה ושואג כארי ואומר אוי לבנים שבעונותיהם החרבתי את ביתי ושרפתי את היכלי והגליתים לבין אומות העולם

Said Rav Yitzhak bar Shemuel in the name of Rav: The night has 3 watches, and upon every watch, HKB"H sits and roars like a lion and says, "Woe to the children whom with their sins, I destroyed My house and burned My sanctuary and exiled them among the nations of the world."
The gemara earlier on the page says that at the end of the first watch, חמור נוער - a donkey brays.  Perhaps, it means עם משולים לחמור. 

May Hashem, with His roar of the lion, overpower the braying of the donkey and end our exile once and for all.


At Thu Nov 04, 06:36:00 PM 2010, Blogger Devorah said...

How fitting that the end of the sixth night ends in 911.

At Fri Nov 05, 12:13:00 PM 2010, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So this means Moshiach isn't coming in our days unless we hasten his coming??

At Fri Nov 05, 12:49:00 PM 2010, Blogger yaak said...

No, not necessarily. Just like Hashem made the sun set early for Yaakov Avinu and made Galut start 2 years before ונושנתם, He can make the sun rise early too. It could be that the end of the first Mishmar is the right time for this.

כי אשב בחשך ה' אור לי

At Mon Jun 10, 05:49:00 AM 2013, Anonymous Yehuda said...

Have you quantified or qualified your reasoning via existing social science standards, methods and procedures? If not, then why not?


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