Advice and Implementation



In Shemot 18:24, the Torah tells us that Moshe listened to Yitro and implemented all of his advice:

So Moshe listened to the voice of his father-in-law, and did all that he had said.

And, in fact, Moshe appoints rulers of thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens, exactly as Yitro had recommended. However, with regard to the qualifications of the appointees, Moshe appears to veer from Yitro's advice. While Yitro proposed (18:21) that Moshe choose judges who were "capable men, God fearing, men of truth, who hate unjust gain" (אַנְשֵׁי חַיִל יִרְאֵי אֱ-לֹהִים אַנְשֵׁי אֱמֶת שֹׂנְאֵי בָצַע), the Torah (18:25) tells us only that Moshe's selections were "capable men" (אַנְשֵׁי חַיִל), without mentioning any of the other attributes – see Table. Why are these other job qualifications omitted?1

Similarly, in Devarim 1:13,2 Moshe asks the nation to find men who are חֲכָמִים וּנְבֹנִים וִידֻעִים ("wise, understanding, and well known"3). In the continuation, however, men who are only חֲכָמִים וִידֻעִים ("wise and well known") are selected while the trait of "understanding" is absent – see Table. Why, here too, is there a difference between the criteria being sought and those that were actually found?