web analytics
January 26, 2015 / 6 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Daf Yomi


Daf-Yomi-logo

Beware Big Brother!
‘All The Defects Which Come About By Man…’
(Bechoros 35a-b)

Our daf serves as an example of how poskim determine halachos by learning sugyos that seemingly have no connection with the questions they are trying to answer. The Chacham Tzvi had a great difficulty with our gemara and because of it reached a conclusion with far-reaching applications.

Our sugya discusses defects in a firstborn kosher animal and the possibility that someone would intentionally cause a defect for monetary profit. (If the animal has a defect, a kohen can slaughter it anywhere and does not have to bother bringing it to the Beit Hamikdash.) One of the cases discussed concerns an unlearned kohen serving as a shepherd of an animal that developed a defect. The gemara says that we need not suspect that he caused the defect since he had nothing to gain thereby; he assumes the owner will prefer giving it to a learned kohen.

Makirei Kehunah

A well-known rule concerning gifts to kohanim is that if someone “adopted” a kohen – i.e., he always gives him the priestly gifts – that kohen becomes a makirei kehunah and the owner cannot give his gifts to any other kohen (see Bava Basra 123b). Therefore, if the shepherd kohen is the owner’s makirei kehunah, he surely anticipates that the firstborn will ultimately be his (even though he is unlearned) and hence should be suspected of causing a defect in the animal. Why, then, does the gemara not state clearly that the unlearned shepherd is not a makirei kehunah? It must be, argues the Chacham Tzvi (Responsa 70), that one is allowed to neglect his makirei kehunah and give his firstborn instead to a different kohen if that kohen is a talmid chacham.

The Disputed Bris

We now proceed to the case the Chacham Tzvi was trying to resolve. A certain person had all his sons circumcised by a certain mohel. While his wife was pregnant he died. She gave birth to a boy. As the bris approached, the usual mohel wanted to circumcise the newborn orphan boy. However, the baby’s big brother declared that he wanted to perform the circumcision. The mohel claimed that he is similar to a makirei kehunah who has a right on all future gifts. However, the son contended that since his father is no longer alive, the mohel no longer has this right. The Chacham Tzvi agreed with the son. The halacha of makirei kehunah, he said, is based on the verse, “The remnant of Israel will not do iniquity and will not speak a lie” (Tzefanyah 3:13). A person must not change his statements, and consistently giving priestly gifts to a certain kohen is like a promise which cannot be violated (see Tosfos, Bava Basra, according to the gemara in Bava Metzia 49a). Therefore, the father who chose this mohel must continue to fulfill his “promise”; no one else, though (including his son) has to.

The Theory Of Relative Relationships

The Chacham Tzvi adds that there’s another reason to support the brother. If a relative and a talmid chacham approach someone for charity – who has priority? The Rambam asserts (Hilchos Matnos Aniyim 7:13) that a “poor person who is his relative takes precedence over everyone else.” The Chacham Tzvi contends that the Rambam meant that a relative also takes precedence over a talmid chacham. Let us link these facts. If, as we learned, it is permitted to bypass makirei kehunah in favor of a talmid chacham, how come a relative receives tzedakah before a talmid chacham? Nonetheless, the Rambam rules that he does. We thus see, the Chacham Tzvi concludes, that a relative takes precedence over everyone else. Hence, even if the father were alive, the mohel might not have performed the bris. The father would have had the right to appoint his son as the mohel – relative stake precedence – and would not be regarded as someone who “speaks a lie and does iniquity” (see Shulchan Aruch, Y.D. 264:1, and the Taz, 5).

Meoros Hadaf Hayomi Newsletters are published by the Sochachover Kollel of Bnei Brak, led by Rabbi Chaim Dovid Kovalsky. Meoros Hadaf Hayomi Newsletters in Hebrew and/or English, are available for simcha dedications as well as for memorials such as yahrzeit, shloshim, etc., and are distributed by e-mail, dafyomi@hadaf-yomi.com.

About the Author: RABBI YAAKOV KLASS, rav of Congregation K’hal Bnei Matisyahu in Flatbush, Brooklyn, is Torah Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at yklass@jewishpress.com. RABBI GERSHON TANNENBAUM, rav of Congregation Bnai Israel of Linden Heights, Boro Park, Brooklyn, is the Director of Igud HaRabbanim – The Rabbinical Alliance of America.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Daf Yomi”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Hassnain Aliamin , one of four Muslim teenagers who attacked a Jew in Gateshead.
‘Let’s Go Jew-Bashing’ Muslims Hauled into British Court
Latest Judaism Stories
Tissot_The_Waters_Are_Divided

Leading by example must be visible, regarding where, when and how-like Nachshon entering the Red Sea

Torah-Hakehillah-121914

Rabbi Yaakov Nagen, a Ram at Yeshivat Otniel, notes that the verse is suggesting that retelling the story of the Exodus is so important that Hashem is performing ever-greater miracles specifically so that parents can tell their stories to future generations.

Parshat Bo

Before performing the 10th plague God makes a fundamental argument about the ultimate nature of justice.

Daf-Yomi-logo

Life Before The Printed Word
‘A Revi’is Of Blood’
(Yevamos 114a-b)

How is it possible that the clothing was more valuable to them than gold or silver?

Question: If Abraham was commanded to circumcise his descendants on the eighth day, why do Arabs – who claim to descend from Abraham through Yishmael – wait until their children are 13 to circumcise them? I am aware that this is a matter of little consequence to our people. Nevertheless, this inconsistency is one that piques my curiosity.

M. Goldman
(Via E-mail)

“It means that the disqualification of relatives as witnesses is a procedural issue, not a question of honesty,” explained Rabbi Dayan.

Property ownership is an extremely important and fundamental right and principle according to the Torah.

The tenderest description of the husband/wife relationship is “re’im v’ahuvim/loving, kind friends”

And if a person can take steps to perform the mitzvah, he should do so (even if he won’t be held accountable for not performing it due to circumstances beyond his control).

Suddenly, she turns to me and says, “B’emet, I need to thank you, you made me excited to come back to Israel.”

Pesach is called “zikaron,” a Biblical term used describing an object eliciting a certain memory

Recouping $ and assets from Germans and Swiss for their Holocaust actions is rooted in the Exodus

Pharaoh perverted symbols of life (the Nile and midwives) into agents of death.

I think that we have to follow the approach of the Tannaim and Amoraim. They followed the latest scientific developments of their time.

More Articles from Rabbi Yaakov Klass and Rabbi Gershon Tannenbaum
Daf-Yomi-logo

Life Before The Printed Word
‘A Revi’is Of Blood’
(Yevamos 114a-b)

Daf-Yomi-logo

Mitzvah Or Kinyan?
‘Both Shall Have Intention At The Same Time’
(Yevamos 102b)

A Kohen Of Choice
‘A Deaf-Mute, A Mentally Challenged Person, A Minor…’
(Yevamos 99b)

A Posted Picture Saves The Day
‘In Order To Avoid Igun…’
(Yevamos 88a)

Reward And Punishment
‘Masser Rishon For The levi’im’
(Yevamos 86a)

Fetal Immersion?
‘The Fetus Is A Limb Of Its Mother’
(Yevamos 78a)

No Fault Lines
‘…His Father And Mother Were In Prison…’
(Yevamos 71b)

The Daughters Are Mine, The Sons Are Mine
‘Grandchildren Are like Children’
(Yevamos 62b)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/daf-yomi-3/2011/12/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: