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Numbers Chapter 30
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Deuteronomy

The Shemini Atzereth Offering
30:1 Moses spoke to the Israelites [telling them] all that God had commanded him.

Vows
30:2 Moses spoke to the tribal heads of the Israelites, telling them that this is the word that God had commanded:
30:3 If a man makes a vow to God, or makes an oath to obligate himself, he must not break his word. He must do all that he expressed verbally.
30:4 [This is the law] when a woman makes a vow to God or binds herself by an obligation while still a girl in her father's house.
30:5 If her father remains silent when he hears her vow or self-imposed obligation, then all her vows and self-imposed obligations must be kept.
30:6 However, if he obstructs her on the day he hears [it], then any such vow or self-imposed obligation of hers shall not be fulfilled. Since her father has obstructed her, God will forgive her.
30:7 [This is the law] if she is [betrothed] to a man and is bound by her vows and self-imposed verbal obligations.
30:8 If the men in her life hear about it and remain silent on the day they hear, then her vows and self-imposed obligations must be kept.
30:9 However, if the men in her life obstruct her on the day they hear about it, they can annul her vows and self-imposed verbal obligations, and God will forgive her.
30:10 The vow of a widow or divorcee must be kept, no matter what obligation she takes upon herself.
30:11 [This is the law] if [a woman] makes a vow or an oath for a self-imposed obligation in her husband's house.
30:12 If her husband hears it and remains silent without obstructing her, then all her vows and self-imposed obligations must be kept.
30:13 However, if her husband annuls them on the day he hears them, then all her verbally expressed vows and self-imposed obligations need not be kept. Since her husband has annulled them, God will forgive her.
30:14 Thus, in the case of every vow or oath involving self-denial, [a woman's] husband can uphold them, and her husband can annul them.
30:15 If her husband remains silent for the entire day, then he has [automatically] upheld any vow or obligation that she has assumed. He has upheld them simply by remaining silent on the day he heard them.
30:16 However, if he annuls them after hearing them, he removes any guilt that she may have [for violating them].
30:17 These are the rules that God commanded Moses regarding the relationship between a man and his wife, [and] between a father and his daughter as long as she is a girl in her father's house.



Commentary:

him
  Literally, 'Moses.' This ends God's word to Moses (Rashi; cf. Ramban).

Moses spoke
  Some say that this was given after the war with Midian (Numbers 31) (Ibn Ezra; Chizzkuni).

obligate himself
  (Yerushalmi, Nedarim 9:1; Septuagint). Assar in Hebrew. Or, 'forbid' (Sifri).

he must not...
  This is a commandment (Sefer HaMitzvoth, Negative Commandment 157).

girl
  From age 11 until 12-1/2 (Yad, Nedarim 11:7). Before that age, her vows are not binding, and later, her father can no longer annul them.

hears
  There is a question as to whether this means that he must actually hear the vow, or if he merely hears of it (Yoreh Deah 334:25).

obstructs
  (Rashi). Heyni in Hebrew. Or, 'breaks' (Ibn Ezra), 'annuls' (Sifri; cf. Mizrachi); or 'countermands' (Septuagint). Any wording that negates the vow is effective (Nedarim 77b; Yad, Nedarim 13:1,2).

on the day
  Until nightfall of that day; Numbers 30:15 (Nedarim 76b; Yad, Nedarim 12:15).

betrothed
  (Nedarim 67a; Rashi). See Exodus 22:15.

verbal
  (Malbim). Bata in Hebrew. Or, 'oath' (Shevuoth 20a). See Leviticus 5:4.

men in her life
  That is, both her father and her husband together (Nedarim 66b, 67a; Yad, Nedarim 11:9). Although the Torah literally says, 'her man,' it denotes both (Yad, Nedarim 12:17; Tzafanath Paneach). Or, 'If her husband [also]' (Rashi, Ran, Nedarim, 67a).

in her husband's house
  Once a woman enters her husband's house, she is considered fully married, and is no longer under her father's control. The wedding canopy (chupah) is a symbolic 'home' into which the husband brings her. The husband can annul the vows of his wife even when she is an adult (cf. Yad, Nedarim 11:8).

hears
  Here too there is a question as to whether he must actually hear it (see Numbers 30:5).

self-denial
  While the father of a young girl can annul any vow, a husband can only annul a vow that involves self-denial (Nedarim 79b; Yad, Nedarim 12:1). It does not matter how minor the self-denial is (Yad 12:4). Any self-denial on the part of the wife will ultimately affect the husband (HaKethav VeHaKabbalah). Others, however, maintain that the father also can annul only vows that involve self-denial (Ran, Nedarim 68a, s.v. Lomer: Rosh, Nedarim 79a, s.v. VeElu; Yoreh Deah 234:58).

entire day
  (Nedarim 76b; Rashi). Literally, 'from day to day.'





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