386. Idol worship: How do we know THAT DUE TO THAT CAUSE PLAGUES COME? Because it is written: "And when Moses saw that the people were in disorder; for Aaron had made them disorderly" (Shemot 32:25). What is the meaning of, "were in disorder?" It means that they were inflicted with leprosy. It is written here, "were in disorder (Heb. paru'a)" and it is written there, "And the diseased man in whom the plague is, his clothes shall be rent, and the hair of his head shall grow long (Heb. paru'a)..." (Vayikra 13:45). JUST LIKE IT MEANS LEPROSY THERE, HERE TOO IT IS LEPROSY. About cursing the name of Hashem, HOW DO WE KNOW? It is because it is written: "This day will Hashem deliver you (Heb. yesagercha) into my hand" (I Shmuel 17:46), MEANING THE PHILISTINE WHO WAS REVILING AND CURSING THE NAME. It is written ABOUT THE LEPER: "And the priest shall shut him up (Heb. hisgiro)" (Vayikra 13:5). WE UNDERSTAND FROM THIS COMPARISON BY ANALOGY. JUST LIKE IT WAS REGARDING LEPROSY THERE, HERE TOO IT HAS TO DO WITH LEPROSY.
387. Rabbi Aba said, This matter REGARDING THE PHILISTINE has not suited me, and I need to study it further. Rabbi Elazar said, It is definitely so. This Philistine was close to the lineage of David and was the son of Orpah. That is the meaning of what is written: "Out of the ranks (Heb. ma'arachot) of the Philistines" (I Shmuel 17:23). Do not pronounce "ma'arachot," but read 'from the caves (Heb. me'arot) of the Philistines,' because he caused shame to his mother, making her as a cave, because it is written: "And the Philistine cursed David by his Elohim" (Ibid. 43). David gazed at him with an evil eye and anywhere THAT DAVID was gazing with an evil eye, all kinds of leprosy flowed from the eyes of David. This is the way it was regarding Joab. As soon as David gazed at him with an evil eye, it is written: "And let the house of Joab never lack such as are afflicted with an issue, or with leprosy..." (II Shmuel 3:29).
388. Here with this Philistine, as soon as he cursed the Name, David looked at him with an evil eye and saw on his forehead that he became leprous. Immediately, "the stone buried itself in his forehead" (I Shmuel 17:49), because the leprosy was stuck to his forehead. All this was DUE TO the impression of the evil eye of the leprosy in his forehead, that this stone was actually sunk into his brow. IT IS definite that he was a leper.
391. HOW DO WE KNOW THAT THE PUNISHMENT for incest IS LEPROSY? It is written REGARDING INCEST: "Therefore Hashem will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion" (Yeshayah 3:17). It is written REGARDING LEPROSY: "And for a swelling, and for a scab..." (Vayikra 14:56). AS IT REFERS TO LEPROSY, HERE TOO IT REFERS TO LEPROSY. HOW DO WE KNOW THAT ONE CONTRACTS LEPROSY for thievery? Because it is written: "'I have now produced it,' says Hashem Tzva'ot, and it shall enter into the house of the thief...and shall consume it with the timber of it and the stones of it..." (Zecharyah 5:4). What is it that destroys timbers and stones - leprosy, as it is written: "And he shall break down the house, the stones of it, and its timber" (Vayikra 14:45).
392. HOW DO WE KNOW THAT ONE COONTRACTS LEPROSY for the evil tongue? Because it is written: "And Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses..." (Bemidbar 12:1) and it is written further: "And Aaron looked upon Miriam, and behold, she was leprous" (Ibid. 10). For false testimony, HOW DO WE KNOW THAT ONE CONTRACTS LEPROSY? We find that Yisrael testified falsely and said, "These are your Elohim, Yisrael" (Shemot 32:4) in a loud voice, as it is written: "There is a noise of war in the camp" (Ibid. 17). Thus, "they put out of the camp everyone with leprosy and everyone that has an issue..." (Bemidbar 5:2). BOTH CASES THE TERM OF "CAMP" IS USED TO INDICATE AN ANALOGY BETWEEN THEM.
393. About a judge who distorts justice, HOW DO WE KNOW THAT ONE CONTRACTS LEPROSY? Because it is written "As the fire devours the stubble, and as the chaff...and their blossom shall go up as dust ..." (Yeshayah 5:24). What is the reason? "Because they have cast away the Torah of Hashem Tzva'ot" (Ibid.). And 'blossom' means none other than leprosy, as it is written: "And if the leprosy breaks (lit. 'blossoms') out abroad" (Vayikra 13:12). If one infringes on boundary rights of his neighbor, HOW DO WE KNOW THAT ONE CONTRACTS LEPROSY? From Uzziah, who infringed on the rights of the priesthood, as it is written: "The leprosy broke out on his forehead" (II Divrei Hayamim 26:19). HOW DO WE KNOW THAT someone who incites strife among brothers CONTRACTS LEPROSY? Because it is written: "And Hashem plagued Pharaoh" (Beresheet 12:17), BECAUSE he caused quarrel between Abraham and Sarah. About an evil eye, HOW DO WE KNOW? This is as we already studied THAT DAVID'S EVIL EYE WAS INFLICTING WITH LEPROSY THOSE WHO DID NOT FEAR HASHEM, SO WE HAVE PROOF THAT THE EVIL EYE CAUSES LEPROSY. All this was applicable to the wicked Bilaam.