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Beit Midrash Series Ein Ayah

based on Ein Ayah, Shabbat 12:58

Every Possible Negative Thought to Curse

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Gemara: Rav Acha bar Yaakov said: The curse [of Shimi ben Geira to David] which was described as nimretzet (powerful) is notrikon (an acronym) for [the following accusations of David]: He is an adulterer, a Moavite, a murderer, an enemy, and an abomination.

Ein Ayah: Notrikon includes uncovering people’s secret thoughts; one word can express many of them. Shimi, in his hatred, wanted his curse to cover all of his disregard for David.

Shimi called David an adulterer (as indicated by the nun of nimretzet) because of his relations with Bat Sheva, even though David did not commit adultery, since Uriya gave Bat Sheva a get like all who fought in David’s wars. Although a ruling was already given that David’s lineage was not of a Moavite, because Ruth was female, Shimi labeled him according to the view that David held that disqualification (the letter mem). Although Uriya was guilty of rebelling against the king’s authority, and therefore David was not a murderer for arranging Uriya’s death, Shimi called him a murderer, as hinted by the reish.

The establishment of the House of David as kings was the greatest possible good for the nation. It was Shaul who was unable to raise the nation to the characteristics needed for Mashiach. Yet, Shimi declared that David was a tzorer, i.e., that he caused tragedy in Israel (based on the tzaddi). The whole goal of David’s dynasty was to raise up the honor and sanctity of Israel for the whole world to see. Nevertheless, Shimi denigrated him in his heart and said that he brought on only abomination (tav of nimretzet).

We are interested in the internal feelings of a person, even when they are not verbalized. Chazal saw all of the elements of the aspersions Shimi cast on David when cursing him.
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