Andrew Greene (530nm330hz) wrote,
Andrew Greene

Seeking a source for a disprovable assertion about the Torah

I have often heard it said, but without a source, that "there are only two mitzvot for which the Torah specifies a reward: honor your parents and send away the mother bird before gathering her eggs." I'd like to track this back to an original source, if I can. Here's why:

The problem is that this is demonstrably untrue; for example, "A perfect and just weight shalt thou have; a perfect and just measure shalt thou have; that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee." (Deut. 25:15)

So where did we get this idea that there are only two? Is it a garbled version of the story of Elisha ben Avuyah witnessing a lad who fatally fell off a ladder while shooing away a mother hen to fetch eggs for his father?

I have been unable to find any citation for this incorrect assertion, yet when I talk to people about it, everyone seems to have heard it. So I'm casting my net to, well, the Net: Have any of you ever seen this assertion in print? Preferably with a source?
Tags: ask lj, judaism

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