Mishnah/Seder Zeraim/Tractate Berakhot/Chapter 9/5
- A person is obligated to bless upon the bad just as he blesses upon the good.
- As it says, “And you shall love the Lord your God, with all your heart and all your soul and with all that you have.”
- “With all your heart” – this is the two inclinations, On the inclination of good and the inclination of evil.
- “And in all your soul” – even if He take your soul.
- “And with all that you have” – With all your money.
- Alternatively, “With all that you have” – with every measure that is measured for you thank him very much.
- Man must not be light with his head (frivolous) near the eastern gate;
- It is near the foundation of the house of the holy of holies.
- One may not enter the holy mount with his staff,
- Or with his sandal, or with his belt-pouch, or with dust on his feet,
- And do not make a shortcut,
- And spitting is forbidden, as deduced from lesser to greater.
- All that ended the blessings when they were in the Temple would say, “From the world.”
- From the damage of the heretics (The Sadducees),
- They said, “there is no world but this one,”
- They (the Sages) corrected this and they said,
- “From the world and until eternity.”
- And they corrected this that one shall inquire after peace of his friend with the name of God, as it says,
- “And behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem and said to the harvesters, ‘God be with you’
- And they said to him ‘God bless you.’” (Ruth 2:4)
- And it says “God is with you, great and valorous one.” (Judges 6:12)
- And it says, “Do not scorn, because your mother is old.” (Proverbs 23:22)
- And it says, “It is time to do for God, they have broken your Torah.” (Psalms 119:126)
- R’ Nathan says, “’They broke your Torah’ – because it is time to do for God.”
Alternatively, with all you have - with every measure that is measured for you thank him very much. The Hebrew words for "all you have" [m'odekha], "every measure" [midah u'midah], "metes out" [modeid], thank [modeh], and "very much" [Bim'od me'od] are very similar. The Mishnah uses this similarity as a further "proof" of the first line (To bless for the bad as for the good).
damage of the heretics The Sages believed in the World to Come; other factions did not. Thus they enlarged to phrase from mei'olam to mei'olam ve'ad olam to emphasize that God is present in another world as well as this one.
with the name of God Perhaps to emphasize the importance of a friendly greeting to creating goodwill. The Name of God is not taken lightly, and it might be argued that it should not be used to greet a fellow mortal.
Ruth 2:4 Scriptural precedent for the use of the Name in a greeting, by the righteous man Boaz.
Judges 6:12 An even more persuasive precedent, as the Name is used here by an angel.
Proverbs 23:22 An argument that precedent from Boaz and other elders should not be disregarded.
Ps. 119:126 The plain meaning of the verse is that one must act for God because evildoers have violated the Torah. The Mishnah gives it a homiletic meaning; as Rabbi Nathan puts it, [The Sages] may violate what appears to be Torah law when to do so is to "act for God." Thus even if it were arguably improper to use the Name as part of a greeting, Boaz was authorized to call for its usage, to fulfill God's ultimate purpose of encouraging harmony and goodwill.