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Wednesday, 4th April 2018

Although Miriam sang the whole שירה - song with the women, the Torah only records that they sang one verse “שירו לה' כי גאה גאה סוס ורכבו רמה בים". Why is this פסוק - verse particularly relevant to the women that it is used as the example for the שירה they sang?

Explains Rabbi Ferber as follows, Miriam saw through רוח הקודש that the whole reason for the Exodus was in order to receive the Torah, and this made the women feel very disappointed because they have no obligation in the study of Torah. 

However, the horse and rider (סוס ורכבו) in this verse comes to teach the women a fundamental lesson. What did the horse do wrong that it deserved to drown? Surely only the rider has sinned, and the horse is just an intermediary? The answer is that if the horse wouldn’t be there, the rider would be unable to chase the Israelites. Even though it doesn’t actually sin – it aids and abets the rider to chase – and therefore joins in his punishment.

It was exactly this lesson that Miriam was trying to portray to the women. If by assisting in carrying out a sin one is ‘blamed’ and receives joint punishment, then all the more so for doing positive actions, and especially for the study of Torah will you be ‘blamed’ and receive the same reward!!! Although the women were aware that the Exodus was in order to receive the Torah they weren’t so enthusiastic about it, until Miriam came and began the song with this verse, to teach them that they too have an enormous portion in their husband and sons’ learning.


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