Ajs Review 1986: Spring, No 1 by Robert Chazan

By Robert Chazan

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The night of watchfulness"(Exod. 12:42). This marksthe beginningof the second stage in the redemptiveprocess. Hence the verse comes to 60. See I, 226b; II, 40a, 182a; III, 95b. Cf. Sefer ha-Rimmon, MS Oxford 1607, 54a-b. It should be noted that leaven was already used allegorically as a symbol for that which is evil or impure in Greco-Jewish, New Testament, and talmudic sources. See Philo, Questions on Exodus, 1:15, 11:14(but see The Special Laws, 11:184);I Cor. 5:6-8; Matt. 16:11-12; Berakhot 17a; Gen.

7:12). Moreover, the magicians' use of secret arts could match the divine power only for the first two plagues (ibid. 8:18-19). Finally, the magicians themselves are affected by the plague of boils, causing them to disappear. For a succinct discussion of these issues, see M. Noth, Exodus: A Commentary, trans. J. S. Bowden (Philadelphia, 1962), pp. 71-72. The impotence of the Egyptian magicians vis-A-vis God was a favorite theme in rabbinic Aggadah. , Sanhedrin 67b, Exod. R. 10:7, Tanhuma, Va-Era 14.

156. "43 The knowledgeof this "greatcrocodile"is alludedto as wellin the verse"Go in to Pharaoh"(Exod. That is, the esotericmeaningof God's injunctionto Moses, "Go in to Pharaoh," is that God imploredMoses to plumbthe innerdepthsof the divinesecrets concerningthe demonic side. "45It was necessaryfor Moses 43. II, 34a. , a male and a female sea-monster. v. " According to the author of the Zohar, Leviathan and his mate correspond to Samael and Lilith, who, in turn, correspond to the Holy One and the Shekhinah.

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