Nazir 9 - 15
- If a vow to be a nazir from figs obligates him to be a regular nazir
- Can one nullify a commitment to nezirut
- A vow to offer something to the Sanctuary which is incorrectly expressed
- A vow based on whether a cow will get up or a door will open
- A vow made, sober or drunk, on a glass of wine poured for him
- Vows made for partial nezirut or out of ignorance of what nezirut entails
- When one nazir cuts the hair of the other
- The mystery of which woman the agent betroth for his sender
- Aspects of shlichut (agency)
- A vow to offer half of the sacrifices required of a nazir
- A vow based on condition he will have a son
- Successive periods of nezirut
- A vow in connection with the birthday of Moshe
- Some of the laws of mourning and spiritual contamination as a result of an emission
"It's a Boy"
- Nazir 13a
One who makes a vow to be a nazir when a son will be born to him is not obligated to fulfill this vow if a daughter is born instead.
This ruling in the mishna seems rather obvious and the question is raised in our gemara as to why it was necessary to mention it.
The answer lies in the Hebrew word for son – "ben". This word appears in the Torah in a similar form with a different meaning. When the childless Matriarch Rachel suggested to her husband Yaakov to go to her handmaid her objective was that through Bilha bearing a child it would be considered as Rachel herself "being built through her".
When Rachel spoke of "being built" her hopes would have been fulfilled with Bilha bearing even a daughter. We might therefore assume that when one makes a vow to be a nazir if he is blessed with a "ben" that his intention is "being built" and that a daughter satisfies this condition. It is therefore necessary for the mishna to inform us that when one says "ben" he means a son only.
What the Sages Say
"It may be assumed with certainty that an agent carried out his mission."
- Rabbi Yochanan - Nazir 12a