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    6. RASHI METHOD: STYLE
    Rashi examines how rules of style influences inferences between general and detail statements in paragraphs.
    • Example: Every solo example stated by the Bible must be broadly generalized;
    • Theme-Detail: A general principle followed by an example is interpreted restrictively---the general theme statement only applies in the case of the example;
    • Theme-Detail-Theme: A Theme-Detail-Theme unit is interpreted as a paragraph. Consequently the details of the paragraph are generalized so that they are seen as illustrative of the theme.
    This examples applies to Rashis Ex06-29z, Ex06-29a, Ex06-30a
    URL Reference: (c) http://www.Rashiyomi.com/w33n7.htm
    Brief Summary: God asked Moses to redeem the Jews but Moses was from a cursed tribe and didn't consider himself worthy.

Certain Biblical paragraphs are stated in a Theme-Development-Theme form. In other words a broad general idea is stated first followed by the development of this broad general theme in specific details. The paragraph-like unit is then closed with a repetition of the broad theme. The Theme-Detail-Theme form creates a unified paragraph. The detailed section of this paragraph is therefore seen as an extension of the general theme sentences. Today's example illustrates this as shown immediately below.

    Biblical paragraph Ex06-10:30 is stated in a Theme-Detail-Theme form as shown below.
    • Theme: And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, Go, speak to Pharaoh king of Egypt, that he let the people of Israel go out of his land. And Moses spoke before the Lord, saying, Behold, the people of Israel have not listened to me; how then shall Pharaoh hear me, who am of uncircumcised lips? ....
    • Detail: These are the chiefs of their fathersí houses; The sons of Reuben .... And the sons of Simeon; ... And these are the names of the sons of Levi ... ...These are Aaron and Moses, to whom the Lord said, Bring out the people of Israel from the land of Egypt by their hosts.
    • Theme: ....and it came to pass on the day when the Lord spoke to Moses in the land of Egypt, That the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, I am the Lord; speak to Pharaoh king of Egypt all that I say to you. And Moses said before the Lord, Behold, I am of uncircumcised lips, and how shall Pharaoh listen to me?

Rashi comments on the above theme-detail-theme structure as follows: We have seen above in rule #5, contradiction that the three tribes whose genealogy is given - Reuben, Shimon, Levi - are cursed tribes who produced evil people. Such a context enables us to understand Moses protest indicated by the underlined words ...who am I of uncircumcised lips that I should speak to Pharoh...

And it is exactly in such a cursed setting that it is befitting that the redeemer of the Jewish people should come. For the whole essence of Egypt was structure and the curse of gods from which no-one could escape. And lo and behold Levi produced Elijah and Moses. Well does the verse state This is the Moses and Aaron that God told to take the Jews out of Egypt. For by God picking a person from a cursed tribe who was a stutterer who had all the cards stacked against him and nevertheless became one of the greatest people in human history, by such a selection, God erased the whole foundation of Egypt which was that the class status of cursed people cannot change.


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