The Weekly Shtikle Blog

An online forum for sharing thoughts and ideas relating to the Parshas HaShavua

View Profile

Friday, May 31

The Weekly Shtikle - Bechukosai

Today, 23 Iyar, is the 14th yahrtzeit of my great aunt, Lady Amélie Jakobovits, a"h. The shtikle is dedicated le'iluy nishmasah, Mayla bas Eliyahu.


Sunday, 25 Iyar, is the 23rd yahrtzeit of my mother, a"h. The shtikle is dedicated le'iluy nishmasah, Tzirel Nechamah bas Tovia Yehudah.


In the beginning of this week's parsha we are told of the blessings that will be bestowed upon us if we follow the mitzvos. We are told (26:8) that five of us will chase away 100 and 100 will chase a myriad (10,000). Rashi comments on the obvious discrepancy in the proportions. If five will chase 100, then 100 should only be able to chase 2,000. Rather, the merit of a small group of individuals who follow the Torah is incomparable to that of a large group that follow the Torah. It seems the idea being conveyed is that a greater deliverance is given to a larger group of worthy men. 


For a long while I have had difficulty reconciling this with a certain passage in Navi. In Shmuel I perek 14, Yonasan decides to attack the Pelishtim with his nosei keilim, his armourman. He says to him (pasuk 6) "Ulay ya'ase HaShem lanu, ki ein laShem ma'tzor lehoshia berav o bim'at," Yonasan assures him that if HaShem is to bring about a victory it matters not whether it be done by many or few. Does this not directly contradict the above? Maybe only a large group of B'nei Yisrael would have the combined merit to defeat the Pelishtim.


The only approach I could think of is that perhaps the pesukim in our parsha are dealing with a scenario where victory is inevitable. It has already been determined that we will overcome our enemies. The difference between many and few is only the speed at which we achieve that victory. However, the overall end result, whether or not we ultimately triumph over our adversaries, is not affected by quantity - only quality. (This idea does require a little more development, however, and I would certainly welcome other suggestions.)


In these troubling times, we seem to be more outnumbered than we had ever imagined, with entities previously thought of as neutral ganging up against us. The important point, however, is not to focus on quantity, rather on quality – to work together and work on ourselves to be the best we can be to overcome all of our challenges.


Have a good Shabbos.

Eliezer Bulka

Shtikle Blog Weekly Roundup:

Dikdukian: Qualification of the AHOY rule
Al Pi Cheshbon: An Ironic Observation

Please visit the new portal for all Shtikle-related sites,

The Weekly Shtikle and related content are now featured on


To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email to


Post a Comment

<< Home