Make a Dedication
August 23, 2018
Rabbi Eytan Yehudah Dzikowski
Why only Moabite men are banned from converting to Judaism?
עַל־דְּבַ֞ר אֲשֶׁ֨ר לֹא־קִדְּמ֤וּ אֶתְכֶם֙ בַּלֶּ֣חֶם וּבַמַּ֔יִם בַּדֶּ֖רֶךְ בְּצֵאתְכֶ֣ם מִמִּצְרָ֑יִם וַאֲשֶׁר֩ שָׂכַ֨ר עָלֶ֜יךָ אֶת־בִּלְעָ֣ם בֶּן־בְּע֗וֹר מִפְּת֛וֹר אֲרַ֥ם נַהֲרַ֖יִם לְקַֽלְלֶֽךָּ׃
Because they did not meet you with food and water on your journey after you left Egypt, and because they hired Balaam son of Beor, from Pethor of Aram-naharaim, to curse you.
Moabite men are banned from converting and joining the Jewish people because they did not offer the Jewish people food and drink.
Women, however, do not customarily go out and greet strangers with food and drink, and hence, they were not punished for not doing so.
This is why Ruth was permitted to convert and join the Jewish people.
On the other hand, since the Torah doesn’t give a reason why Edomites and Egyptians may not convert and join the Jewish people, we apply the ban equally to both men and women.
(Yevamot 76b, Jerusalem Talmud Yevamot 8:3)
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Dedicated Today L'iluy nishmat Shmuel Ben Gershon
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