Kiddushin, Chapter One, Mishnah Nine

 

Introduction

This mishnah deals with commandments which are “dependent on the land.”  “Dependent on the land” refers to commandments which are agricultural in nature, such as the giving of the first fruits, tithes, terumah, the leaving of corners of fields etc. 

The reason that this mishnah is here is its linguistic connection to the previous mishnayoth, especially mishnah seven. 

 

Mishnah Nine

Every commandment which is dependent on the land is practiced only in the land [of Israel]; and every commandment which is not dependent on the land is practiced both in and outside the land, except orlah and kilayim.  

Rabbi Elazar says:  also [the prohibition of] new produce.

 

Explanation

In general, all commandments which are connected to the land are practiced only in the land of Israel.  There are some commandments such as tefillin concerning which the Torah uses language such as “When God brings you into the land…” (Exodus 13:5).  One might have thought that these commandments would only be obligatory for a Jew living in the land of Israel.  The mishnah, however, says that the distinction between commandments observed in and outside of Israel is not the language used in the Torah but rather whether or not the observance of the commandment itself is tied to land. 

The only exceptions to this rule are “orlah” and “kilayim.”  “Orlah” is the prohibition of using the fruit of a tree for its first three years.   “Kilayim” refers to the prohibition of planting wheat in a vineyard. 

Rabbi Elazar adds to the list of exceptions the prohibition of new produce.  This refers to the prohibition from eating from the new grain harvest until the omer sacrifice is brought on the sixteenth of Nisan (see Leviticus 23:14). 

 

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