Index | Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
1 – 23 – 4 – 56

כל ישראל יש להם חלק לעולם הבא, שנאמר ועמך כולם צדיקים, לעולם יירשו ארץ, נצר מטעי מעשה ידי להתפאר


1. “By Ten Sayings the world was created. And what is learned from this? For could it not have been created by One Saying? But it was that vengeance might be taken on the wicked, who destroy the world that was created by Ten Sayings, and to give a goodly reward to the righteous, who maintain the world that was created by Ten Sayings.”

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him. Without him was not anything made that has been made.”
John 1:1-3


2. “There were ten generations from Adam to Noach, to show how great His patience was, as all the generations were provoking Him, until He brought the flood upon them.”

“The L-rd is not slow concerning his promise, as some count slowness, but is patient with us, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
2 Peter 3:9


3. “There were ten generations from Noach to Avraham, to show how great His patience was, as all the generations were provoking Him, till Avraham Avinu came, and received the reward of them all.”


4. “With ten temptations was Avraham Avinu tempted, and he withstood them all, to show how great was the love of Abraham our father.”

“By faith, Abraham, being tested, offered up Isaac. Yes, he who had gladly received the promises was offering up his one and only son; even he to whom it was said, In Isaac will your seed be called;[3] concluding that God is able to raise up even from the dead. Figuratively speaking, he also did receive him back from the dead. ”
Hebrews 11:17-19


5. “Ten miracles were performed for our fathers in Egypt, and ten by the sea.”


6. “With ten temptations did our fathers tempt God in the wilderness, for it is said, “And they have tempted me now these ten times, and have not listened to my voice (Number 14:22).”


7. Ten miracles were performed in the Sanctuary. No woman miscarried from the scent of the holy meat, and the holy meat never smelled bad. And never did ritual impurity befall the Kohen Gadol on the Day of Atonement, and a fly was not seen in the slaughterhouse, and a defect was not found in the sheaf, nor in the two loaves,  nor in the showbread, and rains quenched not the pile, and the wind prevailed not against the pillar of smoke, they stood serried, and bowed down at ease, and serpent and scorpion harmed not in Yerushalayim, and a man never said to his fellow, ‘This place is too small for me (Isaiah 49:20) to lodge in Yerushalayim.”


8. “Ten things were created on the twilight of the Eve of the Sabbath. The mouth of the earth, the mouth of the well,  the mouth of the donkey, the rainbow, manna, the rod, and the shamir-worm, and the Script, and the writing, and the Tablets. And some say, “the spirits also, and the grave of Moshe and the Ram of Abraham Avinu (Genesis 22:13). And some say, “tongs also, made with tongs.”


9. “Seven things are in a clod, and seven in a wise man. The wise man speaks not before one who is greater than he in wisdom; and does not interrupt the words of his companion; and is not hasty to reply; he asks according to canon, and answers to the point; and speaks on the first thing first, and on the last last; of what he has not heard he says, I have not heard; and he acknowledges the truth. And their opposites are in the clod.”


10. “Seven kinds of punishment come on account of seven main transgressions. When some tithe, and some do not tithe, dearth from drought comes. Some of them are hungry, and some of them are full. When they have not tithed at all, a dearth from tumult and from drought comes. And when they have not offered the challah, a deadly dearth comes.”


11. “Pestilence comes into the world for the capital crimes mentioned in the Torah, which are not brought before the tribunal, and for the seventh year fruits. The sword comes upon the world for suppression of judgment, and for perversion of judgment, and for explaining Torah not according to halacha. Wild beasts come into the world for vain swearing, and for profanation of the Name. Captivity comes upon the world for strange worship, and for incest, and for shedding of blood, and for (not) giving release to the land.”


12. “At four seasons the pestilence waxes: in the fourth (year); in the seventh; at the ending of the seventh; and at the ending of the Feast in every year. In the fourth (year), on account of the poor’s tithe in the third; in the seventh, on account of the poor’s tithe in the sixth; and at the ending of the seventh, on account of the seventh year fruits; and at the ending of the Feast in every year,, on account of the largesses of the poor.”


13. “There are four traits in men, He that says, ‘Mine is mine, and your is yours,’ is an indifferent character, but some say, ‘It is the character of Sodom.’ He that says, ‘Mine is yours, and yours is mine,’ is am ha-aretz. Mine and yours are yours, pious. ‘Yours and mine are mine,’ wicked.


14. “There are four traits in temperaments. Easily provoked, and easily pacified, his gain is cancelled by his loss. Hard to provoke and hard to pacify, his loss is cancelled by his gain. Hard to provoke, and easily pacified, pious. Easily provoked, and hard to pacify, wicked.”


15. “There are four characters in students. Quick to hear and quick to forget, his gain is cancelled by his loss: slow to hear and slow to forget, his loss is cancelled by his gain: quick to hear, and slow to forget, is wise: slow to hear, and quick to forget, this is an evil lot.”


16. “There are four traits in givers of charity. He who is willing to give, but not that others should give, his eye is evil (that is, he is greedy) towards the things of others. That others should give, and he should not give, his eye is evil towards his own. He who would give and let others give, is pious. He who will not give, nor let others give, is wicked.”


17. “There are four traits in those who to go the Beit HaMidrash (House of Study). He that goes and does not practice, the reward of going is in his hand. He that practices and does not go, the reward of practice is in his hand. He that goes and practices is pious. He that does not go and does not practice is wicked.”


18. “There are four traits in those who sit under the sages: A Sponge, a Funnel, a Strainer and a Sieve. A Sponge, which sucks up all. A funnel, which lets in here and lets out there. A Strainer, which lets out the wine and keeps back the dregs, and a Sieve, which lets out the pollard and keeps back the flour.”


19. “All love which depends on something, when that thing ceases, the love ceases. And love that does not depend on anything, never ceases. What love is that which depends on something? The love of Amnon and Tamar. And that which does not depend on anything? This is the love of David and Jonathan.”


20. “Any argument that is for the sake of Heaven will in the end be established, and that which is not for the sake of Heaven will not be established in the end. What kind of argument is that which is for the sake of Heaven? The disputes of Shammai and Hillel. And that which is not for the sake of Heaven? This is the argument of Korach.”


21. “Whoever influences the masses to be righteous, sin prevails not over him. Whoever influences the masses sin, he is not granted the ability to repent. Moshe was righteous, and made many righteous, and the righteousness of many was laid upon him, for it is said, ‘He executed the justice of HaShem and His judgments, with Israel (Deuteronomy 33:21).’ Yerovam sinned, and caused the masses to sin, and the sin of the masses was laid upon him, for it is said, “Because of the sins of Yerovam who sinned, and made Israel to sin (I Kings 14:16).”


22. “In whomsoever are three traits, he is a disciple of Avraham, and three (other) things, a disciple of Bilam. A good eye, a lowly soul, and a humble spirit belong to the disciple of Avraham. A evil eye, a arrogant soul, and a haughty spirit, to the disciple of Bilam. And what is the difference between the disciples of Avraham and the disciples of Bilam? The disciples of Bilam go down to Gehinnom, for it is said, “But you, O G-d, shall bring them down into the pit of destruction (Psalm 55:24), but the disciples of Avraham inherit the Garden of Eden, for it is said, “That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance, and I will fill their treasures (Proverbs 8:21).”


23. Yehuda ben Tema said, “Be bold as a leopard, and swift as an eagle, and quick as a deer, and strong as a lion, to do the will of your Father who is in Heaven.”

“Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”
Matthew 7:21


24. He used to say, “The boldfaced go to Gehinnom, and the shamefaced to the Garden of Eden. May it be well-pleasing in your sight, HaShem our G-d, and G-d of our fathers, that your city may be built in our days, and give us our portion in your Torah.”


25. He used to say, “At five years old, Scripture. At ten years, Mishnah. At thirteen, the Commandments. At fifteen, Gemara. At eighteen, the Chuppah. At twenty, pursuits. At thirty, strength. At forty, discernment. At fifty, counsel. A sixty, age. At seventy, hoariness. At eighty, strength. At ninety, decrepitude. At a hundred, it is as though he were dead, and gone, and had ceased from the world.”


26. Ben Bag Bag said, “Turn it over, and turn it over again. For all is contained in it. Search deeply into it, and do not depart from it for you can have no greater excellency than this.” Ben Hei Hei said, “According to the toil, is the reward.”


 רצה הקדוש ברוך הוא לזכות את ישראל, לפיכך הרבה להם תורה ומצות, שנאמר: ה’ חפץ למען צדקו יגדיל תורה ויאדיר

Index | Previous Chapter | Next Chapter
1 – 23 – 4 – 56