Parsha Q&A - Parshat Korach

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Parsha Q&A

Parshat Korach

For the week ending June 23, 2001 / 2 Tammuz 5761

Contents:
  • Parsha Questions
  • Kasha
  • I Did Not Know That!
  • Recommended Reading List
  • Answers to Parsha Questions
  • Back issues of Parsha Q&A
  • Subscription Information
  • Ohr Somayach Home Page

  • This publication is also available in the following formats: [Text] Explanation of these symbols


    Parsha Questions

    Answers Contents
    1. Why did Datan and Aviram join Korach?
    2. Why is Yaakov's name not mentioned in Korach's genealogy?
    3. What motivated Korach to rebel?
    4. What did Korach and company do when Moshe said that a techelet garment needs tzizit?
    5. What warning did Moshe give the rebels regarding the offering of the incense?
    6. Did Moshe want to be the kohen gadol?
    7. What event did Korach not foresee?
    8. What does the phrase rav lachem mean in this week's Parsha? (Give two answers.)
    9. What lands are described in this week's Parsha as "flowing with milk and honey"?
    10. When did Moshe have the right to take a donkey from the Jewish Community?
    11. What did Korach do the night before the final confrontation?
    12. What sin did Datan and Aviram have in common specifically with Goliath?
    13. Before what age is a person not punished by the Heavenly Court for his sins?
    14. What happens to one who rebels against the institution of kehuna? Who suffered such a fate?
    15. Why specifically was incense used to stop the plague?
    16. Why was Aharon's staff placed in the middle of the other 11 staffs?
    17. Aharon's staff was kept as a sign. What did it signify?
    18. Why are the 24 gifts for the kohanim taught in this week's Parsha?
    19. Who may eat the kodshei kodashim (most holy sacrifices) and where must they be eaten?
    20. Why is Hashem's covenant with the kohanim called "a covenant of salt"?

    Recommended Reading List

    Ramban
    16:21
      The Sin of the Congregation
    16:29   The Sin of Datan and Aviram
    16:30   A New Creation
    18:7   The Gifts of the Kehuna
    18:20   Inheritance of the Kehuna
       
    Sefer Hachinuch
    389   Defined Roles
    394   Service of the Levi'im
    395   Ma'aser Rishon (The First Tithe)
         
    Sforno
    16:15   Nullifying Atonement
    16:32   Why Also Their Possessions


    Kasha

    How would you answer this question on the Parsha?

    Farrel Werner <fwernieone@aol.com> asked:
    Dear Rabbi,
    What did the people mean when they told Moshe, "You killed Hashem's People?" (17:6) Obviously, Moshe didn't kill them. Korach's followers died by Divine decree: The ground swallowed some and fire from Heaven killed the others.

    Dear Farrel Werner,
    Those who complained reasoned as follows: Although the first-born lost their rights as kohanim (priests), they should retain the right to serve as levi'im. Thus, they felt the test Moshe had proposed, that his detractors offer incense, was unfair. The incense offering was designated specifically for kohanim, so it wasn't a true test for those who deserved at least to serve in the lesser capacity of levi.
    Based on Ramban


    Do you have a Kasha? Write to kasha@ohr.edu with your questions on any Parsha!


    I Did Not Know That!

    Korach's followers attacked Moshe with their mouths, making fun and provoking rebellion. Their sin was compounded by their lowly spiritual stature compared to that of Moshe. They were punished measure for measure: The ground - the "lowly of lowlies" - opened its "mouth" and swallowed them.
    Abarbanel


    Answers to this Week's Questions

    Questions Contents

    All references are to the verses and Rashi's commentary, unless otherwise stated

    1. Why did Datan and Aviram join Korach?
      16:1 - Because they were his neighbors.
    2. Why is Yaakov's name not mentioned in Korach's genealogy?
      16:1 - Yaakov prayed that his name not be mentioned in connection with Korach's rebellion (Bereishet 49:6).
    3. What motivated Korach to rebel?
      16:1 - Korach was jealous that Elizafan ben Uziel was appointed as leader of the family of Kehat instead of himself.
    4. What did Korach and company do when Moshe said that a techelet garment needs tzizit?
      16:1 - They laughed.
    5. What warning did Moshe give the rebels regarding the offering of the incense?
      16:6 - Only one person would survive.
    6. Did Moshe want to be the kohen gadol?
      16-6 - Yes.
    7. What event did Korach not foresee?
      16:7 - That his sons would repent.
    8. What does the phrase rav lachem mean in this week's Parsha? (Give two answers.)
      16:7,3 - Rav lachem appears twice in this week's Parsha. It means "much more than enough greatness have you taken for yourself (16:3)" and "It is a great thing I have said to you (16:17)."
    9. What lands are described in this week's Parsha as "flowing with milk and honey"?
      16:12 - Egypt and Canaan.
    10. When did Moshe have the right to take a donkey from the Jewish Community?
      16:15 - When he traveled from Midian to Egypt.
    11. What did Korach do the night before the final confrontation?
      16:19 - Korach went from tribe to tribe in order to rally support for himself.
    12. What sin did Datan and Aviram have in common specifically with Goliath?
      16:27 - They all blasphemed.
    13. Before what age is a person not punished by the Heavenly Court for his sins?
      16:27 - Twenty years old.
    14. What happens to one who rebels against the institution of kehuna? Who suffered such a fate?
      17:5 - He is stricken with tzara'at, as was King Uziyahu (Divrei HaYamim II 26:16-19).
    15. Why specifically was incense used to stop the plague?
      17:13 - Because the people were deprecating the incense offering, saying that it caused the death of two of Aharon's sons and also the death of 250 of Korach's followers. Therefore, Hashem demonstrated that the incense offering was able to avert death, and it is sin, not incense, which causes death.
    16. Why was Aharon's staff placed in the middle of the other 11 staffs?
      17:21 - So people would not say that Aharon's staff bloomed because Moshe placed it closer to the Shechina.
    17. Aharon's staff was kept as a sign. What did it signify?
      17:25 - That only Aharon and his children were selected for the kehuna.
    18. Why are the 24 gifts for the kohanim taught in this week's Parsha?
      18:8 - Since Korach claimed the kehuna, the Torah emphasizes Aharon's and his descendants' rights to kehuna by recording the gifts given to them.
    19. Who may eat the kodshei kodashim (most holy sacrifices) and where must they be eaten?
      18:10 - Male kohanim may eat them and only in the azara (fore-court of the Beit Hamikdash).
    20. Why is Hashem's covenant with the kohanim called "a covenant of salt"?
      18:19 - Just as salt never spoils, so this covenant will never be rescinded.

     


    Written and Compiled by Rabbi Eliyahu Kane & Rabbi Reuven Subar
    General Editor: Rabbi Moshe Newman
    Production Design: Michael Treblow

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