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Shabbat Parashat Sukkot| 5771
Hemdat HaDaf Hayomi: Blessed is he who Gave his World to Guardians (Avodah Zarah 40b)Rav Ofer Livnat
Tishrei 11 - 17, Avodah Zarah 36-42
This week in the Daf Hayomi, the Gemara continues to deal with the decrees the Sages instituted in order to distance us from idol worshippers. Even though the Sages prohibited wine made by gentiles, the Gemara (40b) states that it is permitted to drink wine made from apples even if it was produced by gentiles.
The Gemara tells that one time Rabbi Yehudah Hanasi was ill with stomach pains, and the cure was wine made from apples. His students found an idol worshipper who had a special wine made from apples, which had been aged for seventy years. They brought this wine to Rebbi and it indeed cured him. After he felt better, Rebbi blessed "blessed is he who gave his world to guardians."
The Maharsha explains that by "guardians," Rebbi referred to the job designed for Adam when he was placed in Gan Eden- "to work it and guard it" (Breishit 2, 15). Perhaps, Rebbi's intent was that, even though this gentile was an idol worshipper, he fulfilled his purpose in the world by guarding and cultivating the world Hashem created, thus enabling Rebbi to become healthy and continue worshipping Hashem and teaching Torah.
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