Parshas Behar 5757

What Will We Eat?

In Parshas Behar, we find the details of the Mitzvah of the Sabbatical year, (Shemita) that was previously mentioned in the Torah in Parshas Mishpatim. Here the Torah descibes the laws of Shemita, no planting, no pruning, no harvesting; and promises blessing and bounty and security for those that obseve it. The Torah explains the reason for Shemita, that we should know to whom the land belongs, to the Creator - not to us.

Then the Torah says, "And if you will ask...What will we eat in the seventh year (if we don't work the land)...?" And Hashem answers they you shouldn't worry. In the sixth year you will reap three fold, enough foe the 6th, the 7th and the 8th years. (Lev. 25:20-21)

One needs to look very carefully here at the question. The Torah says "if" you will ask...then I will increase your harvest in the 6th year. But if you don't ask . . . didn't the Torah just say that if you keep this miztvah, "The land will yield it's fruit, and you shall eat your fill, and dwell on it safely." Lev. 25:19)
The Midrash teaches us that, ". . . you will eat your fill." In the Sabbatical year you will eat an olives size piece of bread and will be satiated. A blessing will reside in the body of every Jew. But if he should be of weak faith and ask what will we eat in the 7th year, then he will get an abundance of produce in the 6th year to tide him over. He will forfeit Hashem's special Shemita blessing.
May we be able to observe the Shemita years with unflinching faith!!

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