The Commandment to Remember the Exodus From Egypt

Rabbi Michael Pitkowsky
1.

‫ג‬:‫שמות יג‬

Exodus 13:3
Moses said to the people, “Remember this
day on which you came out of Egypt, out of
the house of slavery, because the LORD
brought you out from there by strength of
hand; no leavened bread shall be eaten.

ַ ‫ל־ה ָעם ָזכוֹ ר ֶא‬
‫ת־ה ּיוֹ ם ַה ֶ ּזה‬
ָ ‫ֹאמר מ ׁ ֶֹשה ֶא‬
ֶ ‫ַו ּי‬
‫אתם ִמ ִּמ ְצ ַר ִים ִמ ֵ ּבית ֲע ָב ִדים ִּכי ְ ּבח ֶֹזק‬
ֶ ‫ֲא ׁ ֶשר ְי ָצ‬
.‫הוה ֶא ְת ֶכם ִמ ֶ ּזה ְולֹא ֵי ָא ֵכל ָח ֵמץ‬ֹ ָ ‫ָיד הוֹ ִציא ְי‬

2.

‫ח‬-‫ו‬:‫שמות יג‬

Exodus 13:6-8
6) Seven days you shall eat unleavened
bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a
festival to the LORD.

‫יעי‬
ִ ‫ֹאכל ַמ ּצֹת וּ ַב ּיוֹ ם ַה ּ ׁ ְש ִב‬
ַ ‫ו( ׁ ִש ְב ַעת ָי ִמים ּת‬
.@‫הוה‬-‫י‬
ָ ‫ַחג ַל‬

‫ֹא־י ָר ֶאה‬
ֵ ‫ז( ַמ ּצוֹ ת ֵי ָא ֵכל ֵאת ׁ ִש ְב ַעת ַה ָ ּי ִמים ְול‬
7) Unleavened bread shall be eaten for seven
ָ
ּ ְ ‫ֹא־י ָר ֶאה ְל ָך שְׂ אֹר ְ ּב ָכ‬
.@‫ל־ג ֻב ֶלך‬
ֵ ‫ְל ָך ָח ֵמץ ְול‬
days; no leavened bread shall be seen in your
possession, and no leaven shall be seen
‫ח( ְו ִה ַ ּג ְד ָּת ְל ִבנְ ָך ַ ּב ּיוֹ ם ַההוּ א ֵלאמֹר ַ ּב ֲעבוּ ר ֶזה‬
among you in all your territory.
.‫אתי ִמ ִּמ ְצ ָר ִים‬
ִ ‫הוה ִלי ְ ּב ֵצ‬ָ ‫ָעשָׂ ה ְי‬

8) You shall tell your child on that day, ‘It is
because of what the LORD did for me when I
came out of Egypt.’
3.

‫ג‬:‫דברים טז‬

Deut. 16:3

You must not eat with it anything leavened.
‫ֹאכל ָע ָליו ָח ֵמץ ׁ ִש ְב ַעת ָי ִמים‬
ַ ‫לֹא־ת‬
For seven days you shall eat unleavened
‫את‬
ָ ‫ל־ע ָליו ַמ ּצוֹ ת ֶל ֶחם עֹנִ י ִּכי ְב ִח ּ ָפזוֹ ן ָי ָצ‬
ָ ‫ֹאכ‬
ַ ‫ּת‬
bread with it—the bread of affliction—be‫את ָך‬
ְ ‫ֵמ ֶא ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ַר ִים ְל ַמ ַען ִּת ְז ּכֹר ֶאת־יוֹ ם ֵצ‬
cause you came out of the land of Egypt in
ָ ‫ֵמ ֶא ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ַר ִים ּכֹל ְי ֵמי ַח ֶ ּי‬
.‫יך‬
great haste, so that all the days of your life
you may remember the day of your departure
from the land of Egypt.

-1-

4.

‫ה‬:‫משנה ברכות א‬

mBerakhot 1:5

They mention the exodus from Egypt [in the rec- ‫ ָא ַמר ַר ִ ּבי‬.‫יאת ִמ ְצ ַר ִים ַ ּב ֵ ּלילוֹ ת‬
ַ ‫ַמ ְז ִּכ ִירין ְי ִצ‬
itation of the Shema] at night [just as they do in
‫ ֲה ֵרי ֲאנִ י ְּכ ֶבן ׁ ִש ְב ִעים‬,‫ֶא ְל ָע ָזר ֶ ּבן ֲע ַז ְר ָיה‬
the morning]. Said R. Eleazar b. Azariah, “I am
‫יאת ִמ ְצ ַר ִים‬
ַ ‫יתי ׁ ֶש ֵּת ָא ֵמר ְי ִצ‬
ִ ‫ ְולֹא ָז ִכ‬,‫ׁ ָשנָ ה‬
like a seventy-year-old but was not worthy [of
‫ ׁ ֶש ֶ ּנ ֱא ַמר‬,‫ ַעד ׁ ֶשדְּ ָר ׁ ָש ּה ֶ ּבן זוֹ ָמא‬,‫ַ ּב ֵ ּלילוֹ ת‬
understanding why] the [passage referring to] the
exodus from Egypt is said at night, until Ben
‫את ָך ֵמ ֶא ֶרץ‬
ְ
ְ ‫"ל ַמ ַען ִּת ְז ּכֹר ֶאת יוֹ ם ֵצ‬
Zoma expounded it. “As it says, So that you may
ָ
.(‫ג‬:‫ִמ ְצ ַר ִים ּכֹל ְי ֵמי ַח ֶ ּייך" )דברים טז‬
remember the day on which you left Egypt all
ָ ‫"כֹל ְי ֵמי ַח ֶ ּי‬
ָ ‫"י ֵמי ַח ֶ ּי‬
ּ .‫" ַה ָ ּי ִמים‬,‫יך‬
",‫יך‬
ְ
the days of your life (Deut. 16:3). “[If Scripture
ָ
simply stated], The days of your life [this would
",‫"י ֵמי ַח ֶ ּייך‬
ְ ,‫ ַו ֲח ָכ ִמים אוֹ ְמ ִרים‬.‫ַה ֵ ּלילוֹ ת‬
mean only] the days. [But since it states], All the
ָ ‫"כֹל ְי ֵמי ַח ֶ ּי‬
ּ .‫ָהעוֹ ָלם ַה ֶ ּזה‬
‫" ְל ָה ִביא‬,‫יך‬
days of your life, [this includes] the nights [you
.‫יח‬
ַ ‫ִלימוֹ ת ַה ָּמ ׁ ִש‬
must also remember at night].” But sages say,
“The days of your life [would include only] this
world. All the days of your life—to include the
messianic age.”
5.

‫ב‬:‫משנה ברכות ב‬

mBerakhot 2:2

The following are [the breaks] between the paragraphs: ‫ ֵ ּבין ְ ּב ָר ָכה‬,‫ֵא ּלוּ ֵהן ֵ ּבין ַה ּ ְפ ָר ִקים‬
(1) Between the first blessing and the second [of those
ׁ ‫ִר‬
‫ ֵ ּבין ׁ ְשנִ ָ ּיה‬,‫אשוֹ נָ ה ִל ׁ ְשנִ ָ ּיה‬
which precede the Shema]; (2) between the second bless‫ וּ ֵבין ׁ ְש ַמע ִל ְו ָה ָיה ִאם‬,‫ִל ׁ ְש ַמע‬
ing and [the paragraph which begins] Shema (Dt. 6:4-9);
‫ ֵ ּבין ְו ָה ָיה ִאם ׁ ָשמ ַֹע‬,‫ׁ ָשמ ַֹע‬
(3) and between [the two sections which begin] Shema
and “And it shall come to pass If you shall hearken” (Dt. .‫ֹאמר ֶל ֱא ֶמת ְו ַי ִ ּציב‬
ֶ ‫ ֵ ּבין ַו ּי‬,‫ֹאמר‬
ֶ ‫ְל ַו ּי‬
11:13-21); (4) Between [the two sections beginning]
‫ֹאמר‬
ֶ ‫ ֵ ּבין ַו ּי‬,‫ַר ִ ּבי ְיהוּ ָדה אוֹ ֵמר‬
“And it shall come to pass” and “And God said [to
Moses]” (Num. 15:37-41) (5) Between [the two sections] ‫ ָא ַמר ַר ִ ּבי‬.‫ֶל ֱא ֶמת ְו ַי ִ ּציב לֹא ַי ְפ ִסיק‬
“And God said” and "True and Certain.” R. Judah said,
‫ ָל ָּמה ָק ְד ָמה‬,‫ְיהוֹ ׁ ֻש ַע ֶ ּבן ָק ְר ָחה‬
“Between [the two sections] 'And God said' and 'True
‫ ֶא ָ ּלא‬,‫ׁ ְש ַמע ִל ְו ָה ָיה ִאם ׁ ָשמ ַֹע‬
and Certain' one may not interrupt.” Said R. Joshua b.
‫ׁ ֶש ְ ּי ַק ֵ ּבל ָע ָליו עֹל ַמ ְלכוּ ת ׁ ָש ַמ ִים‬
Qorha, “Why does [the passage of] Shema precede [that
of] 'And it shall come to pass [if you keep my command- ‫ ְו ַא ַחר ָּכ ְך ְי ַק ֵ ּבל ָע ָליו עֹל‬,‫ְּת ִח ָ ּלה‬
ments]?' So that one may first accept upon himself the
,‫ֹאמר‬
ֶ ‫ ְו ָה ָיה ִאם ׁ ָשמ ַֹע ְל ַו ּי‬.‫ִמ ְצוֹת‬
yoke of the kingdom of heaven and afterwards may ac‫ׁ ֶש ְו ָה ָיה ִאם ׁ ָשמ ַֹע נוֹ ֵהג ַ ּב ּיוֹ ם‬
cept the yoke of the commandments. [Why does] 'And it
‫ֹאמר ֵאינוֹ נוֹ ֵהג ֶא ָּלא‬
ֶ ‫ ַו ּי‬,‫וּ ַב ַ ּל ְי ָלה‬
shall come to pass' [precede] 'And God said?' Since 'And
it shall come to pass' is recited by both day and night.
.‫ַּב ּיוֹ ם‬
[But] 'And God said' is recited only by day.”

-2-

6.
Maimonides, The Book of Commandments,
Positive Commandment no. 157
The 157th mitzvah is that we were commanded
to talk about (le-saper) the Exodus from Egypt
on the night of the 15th of Nisan at the beginning of the night, according to the ability of the
teller.

‫ספר המצוות לרמב"ם מצות עשה קנז‬
‫והמצוה הקנ"ז היא שצונו לספר ביציאת‬
‫מצרים בליל חמשה עשר בניסן בתחלת‬
…‫הלילה כפי צחות לשון המספר‬

7.

‫א‬:‫ הלכות חמץ ומצה פרק ז‬,‫רמב"ם‬

Rambam, Laws of Ḥametz u-Matzah 7:1

It is a positive commandment of the Torah to re‫ִמ ְצ ַות ֲעשֵׂ ה ׁ ֶש ַ ּל ּתוֹ ָרה ְל ַס ּ ַפר ְ ּבנִ ִּסים‬
late the miracles and wonders that were done
,‫ְונִ ְפ ָלאוֹ ת ׁ ֶש ַ ּנ ֲעשׂ וּ ַל ֲאבוֹ ֵתינוּ ְ ּב ִמ ְצ ַר ִים‬
for our ancestors in Egypt on the night of the
ָ ‫ש ֶ ּנ ֱא ָמר‬--‫ן‬
‫"זכוֹ ר‬
ֶ ׁ ‫יס‬
ָ ִ‫ְ ּב ֵליל ֲח ִמ ּ ׁ ָשה ָעשָׂ ר ְ ּבנ‬
fifteenth of Nisan, as [Exodus 13:3] states: "Reַ ‫ֶא‬
ֶ ‫ה ּיוֹ ם ַה ֶ ּזה ֲא ׁ ֶשר ְי ָצ‬-‫ת‬
member this day, on which you left Egypt," just ,(‫ג‬,‫אתם" )שמות יג‬
as [Exodus 20:8] states: "Remember the Sabָ ‫ְּכ ַמה ׁ ֶש ֶ ּנ ֱא ָמר‬
"‫יוֹ ם ַה ּ ׁ ַש ָ ּבת‬-‫"זכוֹ ר ֶאת‬
bath day." From where [is it derived that this
mitzvah is to be fulfilled on] the night of the fif- --‫ וּ ְמנַ ִין ׁ ֶש ְ ּב ֵליל ֲח ִמ ּ ׁ ָשה ָעשָׂ ר‬.(‫ז‬,‫)שמות כ‬
ְ ‫ַּת ְלמֹד לוֹ ַמר‬
‫ ַ ּב ּיוֹ ם ַההוּ א‬,‫"ו ִה ַ ּג ְד ָּת ְל ִבנְ ָך‬
teenth? The Torah teaches [Exodus 13:8]: "And
you shall tell your son on that day, saying: 'It is ‫ ְ ּב ׁ ָש ָעה‬,(‫ח‬,‫ ַ ּב ֲעבוּ ר ֶזה" )שמות יג‬:‫ֵלאמֹר‬
because of this...'", when matzah and maror are
ָ ֶ‫ׁ ֶש ֵ ּי ׁש ַמ ָ ּצה וּ ָמרוֹ ר ֻמ ָ ּנ ִחים ְל ָפנ‬
.‫יך‬
placed before you.
8.

‫ג‬:‫ הלכות קריאת שמע א‬,‫רמב"ם‬

Rambam, Laws of Reading the Shema 1:3

The commandment of tzitzit is not obligatory ,‫יצית נוֹ ֶה ֶגת ַ ּב ַ ּל ְי ָלה‬
ִ ‫ַאף ַעל ּ ִפי ׁ ְש ֵאין ִמ ְצ ַות ִצ‬
at night. Nevertheless, we recite [the section
‫ ִמ ּ ְפנֵ י ׁ ֶש ֵ ּי ׁש ָ ּב ּה ִז ְכרוֹ ן‬,‫קוֹ ְר ִאין אוֹ ָת ּה ַ ּב ַ ּל ְי ָלה‬
describing] it at night because it contains
‫יאת ִמ ְצ ַר ִים‬
ַ ‫יאת ִמ ְצ ַר ִים; וּ ִמ ְצ ָוה ְל ַה ְז ִּכיר ְי ִצ‬
ַ ‫ְי ִצ‬
mention of the exodus from Egypt. We are
ְ ‫ ׁ ֶש ֶ ּנ ֱא ָמר‬,‫ַ ּב ּיוֹ ם וּ ַב ַ ּל ְי ָלה‬
commanded to mention the exodus both dur- ‫יוֹ ם‬-‫"ל ַמ ַען ִּת ְז ּכֹר ֶאת‬
ָ
ing the day and at night as [Deuteronomy
‫ ּכֹל ְי ֵמי ַח ֶ ּייך" )דברים‬,‫את ָך ֵמ ֶא ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ַר ִים‬
ְ ‫ֵצ‬
16:3] states: "In order that you shall rememּ
ּ
ַ ‫ וּ ְק ִר‬.(‫ג‬,‫טז‬
ber the day of your leaving the land of Egypt ‫יאת ׁ ָשלוֹ ׁש ּ ָפ ָר ׁ ִשיוֹ ת ֵאלוּ ַעל ֵס ֶדר‬
.‫ ִהיא ַה ִ ּנ ְק ֵראת ִק ְר ַית ׁ ְש ַמע‬,‫ֶזה‬
all the days of your life." Reading these three
sections in this order constitutes the recitation
of the Shema.

-3-

9.

‫ג‬:‫רש"י על שמות יג‬

Rashi on Exodus 13:3
Remember this day: This teaches us that we
are to mention the Exodus from Egypt daily.

‫ למד שמזכירין יציאת‬- ‫זכור את היום הזה‬
‫מצרים בכל יום‬

10.

‫מכילתא פיסחא טז‬

Midrash Mekhilta, Pisḥa 16

"And Moses said unto the people: 'Remember this
‫"ויאמר משה אל העם זכור את‬
day..." (Exodus 13:3) From this I only know that the
‫ג( אין לי‬:‫היום וגו'" )שמות יג‬
exodus from Egypt should be mentioned during the
‫מזכירין יציאת מצרים אלא‬
daytime. From where do I know about the nighttime?
‫ בלילות מניין? ת"ל "למען‬,‫בימים‬
The verse says, "so that all the days of your life you
may remember the day of your departure from the land
‫ג( "ימי‬:‫תזכור וגו'" )דברים טז‬
of Egypt." (Deut. 16:3) Had it only said "the days of
"‫ "כל ימי חייך‬,‫חייך" בימים‬
your life", it would have only meant the daytime,
‫ וחכמים‬.‫בלילות כדברי בן זומא‬
[since it says] "all the days of your life" [we also learn
that it should be mentioned] at night, these are the
‫אומרים "ימי חייך" בעולם הזה‬
words of Ben Zoma. But the sages say "the days of
‫"כל ימי חייך" להביא את ימות‬
your life," would have meant only this world, "all the
…‫המשיח‬
days of your life" includes the days of the Messiah...
11.

‫ברכות כא ע"א‬

Berakhot 21a
R. Judah said, “If one is in doubt whether or not he
has recited the Shema, he should not go back and recite it. If one is in doubt whether or not he has said
the prayer, ‘True and established...(emet ve-yatziv),’
he should go back and recite it.” What is the reason?
The recitation of the Shema derives from the authority of rabbis, while reciting the prayer, “True and
firm” derives from the authority of the Torah.

-4-

‫אמר רב יהודה ספק קרא קריאת‬
‫ אינו חוזר‬- ‫שמע ספק לא קרא‬
‫ ספק‬,‫ ספק אמר אמת ויציב‬,‫וקורא‬
.‫ חוזר ואומר אמת ויציב‬- ‫לא אמר‬
,‫ קריאת שמע דרבנן‬- ‫מאי טעמא‬
.‫אמת ויציב דאורייתא‬

12.
Rashi on Berakhot 21a s.v. emet ve-yatziv

‫רש"י ברכות כא ע"א ד"ה אמת ויציב‬

Since "True and established" is from the Torah:
That it mentions the exodus from Egypt, which is a
Biblical obligation, as it is written "so that all the
days of your life you may remember the day of
your departure from the land of Egypt." (Deut.
16:3)

‫ שמזכיר‬- ‫אמת ויציב דאורייתא היא‬
‫ דחיובא דאורייתא‬,‫בה יציאת מצרים‬
‫ דכתיב "למען תזכר את יום‬,‫היא‬
.(‫צאתך מארץ מצרים" )דברים ט"ז‬

13.

‫א‬:‫תוספתא ברכות ב‬

tBerakhot 2:1

A person who reads the Shema must mention ‫הקורא את שמע צריך להזכיר יציאת מצרים‬
the exodus from Egypt in Emet ve-Yatziv. Rab- ‫באמת ויציב ר' או' צריך להזכיר בה מלכות‬
bi says that one needs to mention in it the kingdom [of heaven]. Others says that one needs to ‫אחרים או' צריך להזכיר בה מכת בכורים‬
.‫וקריעת ים סוף‬
mention in it the plague of the first born and
the splitting of the Reed Sea.

-5-

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