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    1. RASHI METHOD: REFERENCES
    BRIEF EXPLANATION: Commentary on a verse is provided thru a cross-reference to another verse. The cross references can either provide
    • (1a) further details,
    • (1b) confirm citations, or
    • (1c) clarify word meaning.
    This examples applies to Rashis Nu32-17b
    URL Reference: (c) http://www.Rashiyomi.com/w34n3.htm;
    Brief Summary: The Gadites promised to fight on the front line. This promise is confirmed in the book of Joshua.

Verse Jo06-13, discussing the military formation Joshua formed to conquer Israel states And seven priests carrying seven shofarot of ramsí horns before the Ark of the Lord went on continually, and blew with the shofarot; and the armed men went before them; but the rear guard came after the ark of the Lord, the priests going on, and blowing with the shofarot. Rashi clarifies the underlined words armed men went before them by referencing verse(s) Nu32-17b, discussing the deal Moses made with the Gaddites - that they would fight for the Jews in return for letting them keep the Transjordan as an inheritance - which states but we [the Gaddites] ourselves will be ready armed to go before the Jews, until we have brought them unto their place; and our little ones shall dwell in the fortified cities because of the inhabitants of the land. Hence the Rashi comment: The verse text in Joshua which speaks about the front-line of armed men that went before them is clarified by the statement of the Gaddites to Moses that they would go armed before the Jews. In other words this front line of armed men was in fact the Gaddites.

Text of Target verse Jo06-13 Text of Reference Verse Nu32-17b
And seven priests carrying seven shofarot of ramsí horns before the Ark of the Lord went on continually, and blew with the shofarot; and the armed men went before them; but the rear guard came after the ark of the Lord, the priests going on, and blowing with the shofarot. but we [the Gaddites] ourselves will be ready armed to go before the Jews, until we have brought them unto their place; and our little ones shall dwell in the fortified cities because of the inhabitants of the land.
Rashi comments: The verse text in Joshua which speaks about the front-line of armed men that went before them is clarified by the statement of the Gaddites to Moses that they would go armed before the Jews. In other words this front line of armed men was in fact the Gaddites.

Advanced Rashi: Notice the twist here: Usually Rashi uses the verse he is commenting on to clarify some other verse. However here Rashi is clarifying the target verse in Joshua by using the verse he is commenting on in Numbers. Such switches occur infrequently in Rashi's application of the reference method.

This Rashi is further elaborated on in rule #9, NonVerse below. There we clarify why the Gaddites went armed in the front line. Rashi uses the reference method again, citing a verse from Dt33-20, And of Gad he said, Blessed be he who enlarges Gad; he lives as a lion, and tears the arm with the crown of the head. In other words Gad volunteered to go in the front lines because he is a good lion-like warrior. Front lines need stronger fighters because it is the thick of battle.


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