EXTREME MAKEOVER: Temple Edition ~ Laws on G-d’s Residence of Choice Rambam: Beit HaBechira. Chapter 7; 18-19

Episode #66 – “ORDER IN THE COURT” Ascending the Stairs of Songs to pass through the gleaming “Gates of Nicanor” means entering the Ezrat Yisrael (lit. Courtyard of Israelites) and the actual Beit HaMikdash compound itself.

At this point we would have, by dint of biblical ordination, crossed the line. Yet, the notwithstanding the Torah Law level paradigm shift in sacred scrimmage, the increased level of restriction reflective of the next level of geographic holiness incorporates both biblical as well as rabbinic regulation created by the Sanhedrin as well.

In Rambam’s view even the rational for these added rabbinical regulations are likely designed to further bolster the biblical command to Revere the Temple area. The next layer of sanctity, a smaller step up in holiness referred to as Ezrat Kohanim (lit. Courtyard of Cohanim) was yet again orchestrated by rabbinic ordination and certainly is not of biblical origin despite the terminology and form of Tuma’ah (ritual impurity) being referenced. As previously, the absence of a biblical consequence demonstrates its rabbinic regulatory nature.

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