59 Such is the procedure for eruptive affections of cloth, woolen or linen, in warp or in woof, or of any article of skin, for pronouncing it clean or unclean.
ZOT to-RAT ne-ga tza-RA-at BE-ged ha-TZE-mer O ha-pish-TEEM O ha-sh’-TEE O ha-AY-rev O kol k’-lee OR l’-ta-ha-RO O l’-ta-m’-O
נט זֹאת תּוֹרַת נֶגַע־צָרַעַת בֶּגֶד הַצֶּמֶר אוֹ הַפִּשְׁתִּים אוֹ הַשְּׁתִי אוֹ הָעֵרֶב אוֹ כָּל־כְּלִי־עוֹר לְטַהֲרוֹ אוֹ לְטַמְּאוֹ׃
13:59 Such is the procedure for eruptive affections
This chapter details with the spiritual disease known as tzaraat (צרעת), similar in presentation to leprosy, and the subsequent process of purification from this ailment. Tzaraat is understood to be a punishment for a number of sins, most famously the sin of lashon hara (לשון הרע), or ‘slander.’ Tzaraat could appear on a person’s skin, clothing or home. Ramban emphasizes that it is absolutely supernatural for inanimate objects to display signs of illness. Although lashon hara is a sin not restricted to the Land of Israel, the miraculous spiritual malady of tzaraat could occur only in the land where God’s presence is manifest so clearly. This demonstrates that the spiritual stakes are higher for those who live in the Holy Land. We must always remember that one is held more accountable, and one’s actions have greater significance, in Eretz Yisrael.