Vol 26.05 - Va'eira 1 Spanish French Audio Video
Resolution of the question of the Mordechai (Tal. Perek Arvei Pesachim): "We should need four loaves (matzot)" - corresponding to the four cups of Geulah. The reason for three cups and four matzot; Explanation of the law of "If one swallows (without chewing) the matzot, discharges his duty" (Tal. Pes 115b)
(5744 Vol. XXVI, pp. 43-46)
The Matzos and Four Cups of Wine
This was accomplished as the Jews prepared themselves in the days between the exodus and the receiving of the Torah;7 they achieved such heights that by the time the Torah was given they could justifiably be called a “holy nation.”8
The difference between the symbolism of “matzah” and “wine” will be understood accordingly:
Matzah emphasizes the aspect of the exodus that came about as a result of G‑d’s redemption from the impurity of Egypt. It is for this reason that matzah is called “impoverished bread”9 — bread that lacks taste — for it is a remembrance of spiritual impoverishment.
“Taste” refers to10 something a person can appreciate in some way. Since the liberation from Egypt originated from Above rather than from the spiritual preparation of the Jewish people, it is understandable that it lacked “taste” — the Jews were compelled to leave.
Wine, however, has taste and is enjoyable. It is a “remembrance of the liberation and freedom ”11 ultimately achieved by the Jews, i.e., it was through their own service that they were redeemed from the evil of Egypt.
The reason for three matzos vis-à-vis four cups of wine now becomes clear:
There is a difference between the first three expressions of liberation and the fourth, in that the first three — “I will release you… I will save you… I will liberate you” — are aspects of redemption that took place immediately upon the departure from Egypt; they came from Above.
The fourth expression — “I will take you unto Me as a Nation” — however, depended on the Jewish people; they had to become worthy of being called G‑d’s nation. This was accomplished when they received the Torah.
Thus, matzah is equated with the number three, corresponding to the first three expressions of liberation, inasmuch as matzah commemorates the redemption as it came from Above.
The cups of wine, however, allude to the liberation accomplished by and within the Jewish people. The cups are therefore equated with the number four, for they denote the fourth expression of redemption — “I will take you unto Me as a Nation.”
2. Yerushalmi, Pesachim 10:1; Bereishis Rabbah 88:5; Shmos Rabbah 6:4.
3. Text of the Haggadah.
4. See Mordechai, Pesachim — “Tosefes m’Arvei Pesachim” ; Matei Moshe section 607.
5. See Tzror Hamor, Bo 12:40. See also Zohar Chadash beginning of the portion Yisro.
6. See Shmos 3:12.
7. See Zohar Chadash ibid.; Ran conclusion of Pesachim ; See also Likkutei Sichos XXII , p. 114.
8. Shmos 19:6.
9. Devarim 16:3.
10.See Likkutei Sichos XVI p. 124ff and sources cited there.
11.Shulchan Aruch Admur HaZakein, Orach Chayim 472:14.
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