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Torah Teasers Parshat Ha'azinu

Ha'azinu (Deuteronomy 32 )

by Moshe Erlbaum

Challenging questions for the Shabbat table.

1. What are four types of precipitation are mentioned in the same verse?

Rain, dew, storms and raindrops all appear in Deuteronomy 32:2.

2. In this parsha, what letter is written as a complete word?

The letter hey - meaning "Did...?" - is written as a separate word in Deuteronomy 32:6.

3. Which part of the body appears in this parsha, and nowhere else in the Torah?

"The pupil of an eye" is mentioned in Deuteronomy 32:10.

4. Which bird is mentioned in this parsha?

An eagle is referred to in Deuteronomy 32:11.

5. In this parsha, which five animals appear together the same verse?

Deuteronomy 32:14 mentions cattle, sheep, lambs, rams and goats.

6. Which two ancient cities appear together the same verse?

Sodom and Amora are mentioned in Deuteronomy 32:32.

7. At the end of the Song of Haazinu, the Torah states: "And Moshe completed (vayechal Moshe) speaking all these words to all of Israel" (Deut. 32:45). What 2 other places in the Torah are the words "vayechal Moshe" used to describe something that Moshe completed?

(1) In parshas Ki Tisa, in discussing that when Moshe "finished" talking to the Jews he would put a mask on his face, the Torah states that "Moshe finished speaking with them" (Exodus 34:33). (2) In parshas Pekudei, when the Tabernacle is completed, the Torah states: "And Moshe completed the work" (Exodus 40:33).

8. a) What event in this parsha occurs "b'etzem hayom hazeh" - "on that very day"? b) What other three events in the Torah are said to have occured "on that very day"? c) With regard to which holidays is the same phrase used?

a) Hashem commands Moshe to ascend Har Nevo "on that very day" and look out toward the holy land (Deut. 32:48). b) These same words are used: (1) In parshas Noach, when Noach enters the ark with his family (Genesis 7:13). (2) In parshas Lech Lecha, when Avraham gives all the members of his household a circumcision (Genesis 17:23, 26). (3) In parshas Bo, when Hashem takes the Jews out of Egypt (Exodus 12:17). c) The expression is also used in parshas Emor regarding Yom Kippur (Leviticus 23:28, 29, 30) and Shavuot (Leviticus 23:21). A similar expression is used ("ad etzem...") regarding permission to eat new grain on the second day of Passover (Leviticus 23:14).



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