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Shekalim 19


QUESTION: The Mishnah says that if one finds money between the donation box of money designated to be used as Shekalim (to buy the public offerings) and the donation box of money designated to be used as Nedavah (to buy Korbanos Olos for Kayitz ha'Mizbe'ach), out of doubt that money goes to Nedavah. The Gemara asks why does that money not go to Shekalim. The KORBAN HA'EDAH explains that the Gemara is asking that since money used for Shekalim is more Chamur than money used for Nedavah, the money should go to Shekalim. (The Korban ha'Edah explains that the money for Shekalim is more Chamur because it is used for Korbanos which have a set time to be brought.)

The Gemara gives two answers. First, the Gemara says that the money in doubt does not go to Shekalim in this case, because it is not certain that it will be used for Korbanos at all -- it might be left over and go to Sheyarei ha'Lishkah and be used for fixing the city's walls. Second, the Gemara says that if the money is between the two boxes, it is considered like the money of "one who died" ("k'Mi sh'Mes"), and therefore the money goes to Nedavah.

What does the second answer mean? What does being like the money of one who died have anything to do with the questionable money at hand?


(a) The text of the Gemara of RABEINU MESHULAM reads "k'Mi *she'Mishtayerah*" -- the money that is found between the boxes is considered *as if it was left over*. The Halachah is that when there are Korbenos Temidin which were purchased but were not used, they are brought as Olos for Kayitz ha'Mizbe'ach (11b). The money that is in doubt is treated like *leftover* Temidin (since it will be leftover out of doubt) and is used for Kayitz ha'Mizbe'ach.

(b) The text of the Gemara of the TALMID SHEL RABEINU SHMUEL BAR SHNEUR reads "k'Mi *she'Mis'ameh*" -- the money is treated as if it was money of Shekalim that became totally *mixed together* with the money of Nedavah ("Mis'ameh" comes from the word "Te'um," or twin, implying that it was mixed in with the money which is all used for the *same* thing (Olos), i.e. Nedavah). Still, though, why should the money be used for Nedavah? If Shekalim is more Chamur, it should go to Shekalim!

The Talmid Shel Rabeinu Shmuel bar Shneur learns that the Gemara never actually thought that Nedavah is less Chamur. It knew all along that Nedavah is *more* Chamur than Shekalim (because the Korbanos of Nedavah are completely consumed by the Mizbe'ach). The Gemara is just asking whether there is *another* reason why the money should go to Nedavah, other than the reason that Nedavah is more Chamur. The Gemara answers in its second answer that there is no other reason, and the reason the money goes to Nedavah is because it is more Chamur. It is like a mixture of two types of money, in which case all of the money is treated like the more Chamur type, which is Nedavah in this case.

This explanation is consistent with the RAMBAM's explanation (in Perush ha'Mishnayos). The Rambam writes that Nedavah is certainly more Chamur than Shekalim, because the money of Nedavah is all brought as Olos, which are totally burned, whereas some of the money of Shekalim is used for Shelamim which are not totally burned. In fact, the Rambam might have had the same Girsa as the Talmid Shel Rabeinu Shmuel bar Shneur, and perhaps he based his explanation on that Girsa. "K'Mi sh'Mis'ameh" could mean that the money is used for the type that is all equal -- that is, the type of donation which is all used for one type of Korban, Olos, and that is Nedavah (as opposed to Shekalim, some of which are brought as Chata'os Tzibur). The Gemara, therefore, concludes that Nedavah is more Chamur.

(c) RABEINU SHLOMO SIRILIYO has the Girsa that we have ("k'Mi sh'Mes") and says that the money in doubt here is used for Nedavah just as it is used for Nedavah in the case of a person who contributed money for the Shekalim and then died. In that case, the money is considered ownerless and is not placed together with the rest of the Shekalim, because if we were to place it there on behalf of the deceased, it would be coming from us and not from the original contributor. Here, too, the money resting outside of the box of Shekalim cannot be placed back into the box, because it will not be the original owner placing it there, and therefore it is as if it has no owner.

According to this explanation, the Gemara is assuming that the money between the boxes was not placed into one of the boxes and fell out, but rather it fell onto the floor *before* it was placed in a box. That is why it is considered like the money of one who died; it is was not given as a Shekel by its owner money cannot be given to Shekalim without being given expressly by its owner. (See the commentary of Har Efraim there.)

(d) RAV CHAIM KANIEVSKY suggests an original explanation for our Girsa. He explains why it is that when a person dies before his Shekel is placed in the Lishkah, the money is not placed with the other Shekalim but is used for a public Nedavah (Kayitz ha'Mizbe'ach). The reason is that the Shekel must be given by someone who is obligated to give it, and a dead person is not obligated. Therefore, even if the money of Shekalim is more Chamur than the money of Nedavah, the money found between the boxes does not go to Shekalim, because if it actually fell from the Nedavah box, then giving it to the Shekalim would be giving it as a voluntary donation, and we are *not allowed* to give a voluntary donation to the Shekalim. Therefore, the money goes to Nedavah.


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