Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
  Page title
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

248 Limbs

“There are 248 limbs in the body, and each word of Shema serves to protect one of them” (Zohar Chadash, Rus 97b). However, when making a tally of all of the sections of Shema, one comes up with only 245 words. How do we make up for the three missing words?

“In order to make up the missing three words, the prayer leader should repeat the last three words of Shema, Hashem Elokeichem Emes (Hashem your G-d is Truth)” (Shulchan Aruch 61,3). This is based on the halachic principle of “shome’a k’oneh,” that when one listens to words it is as if one said them personally. Therefore, these three words, in addition to the 245 words of Shema, bring us to the sum total of 248 words.

Ashkenazim who say Shema without a minyan should not repeat these three words, while the custom of Sephardim is to say them. An Ashkenazi should preface the Shema with the words “Eil Melech Ne’eman” (G-d, Faithful King). These three words bring him to the desired total of 248.


Text Copyright © 2009 by Rabbi Daniel Travis and Torah.org


 

ARTICLES ON TERUMAH:

View Complete List

The Famous Ark
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5770

Charity - A Lopsided Bargain
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5765

No Force Could Ever Frustrate
Rabbi Label Lam - 5775

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Doing What We Must
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5762

A Tabernacle in Your Heart
Shlomo Katz - 5774

Bring G-d out of the "House of Worship"
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5757

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Biblical Fund Raising
Rabbi Aron Tendler - 5761

Holiness: The Golden Calf and the Mishkan
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5775

The Mishkan Gifts Are Listed In Descending Order
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5765

ArtScroll

Whole Life Insurance
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5757

Can Anything Contain G-d?
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5757

A Place To Grow
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5770

> There’s No Place Like Home
Rabbi Label Lam - 5769

Contradictory Descriptions As To How The Menorah Was Made
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5767

Always Giving Charity with a Full Heart
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5770

The Bottom Line
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5756



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information