web analytics
August 29, 2015 / 14 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Ransom Loan

Business-Halacha-logo

Moshe and Yosef were vacationing in Mexico. One morning Yosef went out to buy some food while Moshe remained in the hotel. “I’ll be back in an hour,” Yosef said. “Later today we can go touring.”

An hour later, Moshe received a frantic call from Yosef. “I was kidnapped!” he cried. “They’re demanding that you transfer $250,000 by midnight to a foreign account, or else… I’m texting the account details.”

Moshe alerted the authorities and waited tensely, hoping that this was just a hoax. He tried contacting Yosef again in the afternoon, but the phone was disconnected. As the day wore on and Yosef did not return, Moshe grew increasingly concerned about Yosef’s life. He considered how he could get the ransom money. He approached a wealthy Mexican Jewish businessman.

“I will lend you the money,” replied the businessman, “but I want you to sign that you will repay.”

The frantic sound of Yosef’s voice was still ringing in Moshe’s ears. “Whatever I have to do,” he said. He signed a loan form for the stated sum, and the businessman transferred the $250,000 for the ransom that evening.

Moshe could not sleep all night, waiting to hear the sound of Yosef knocking on the door.

At 6 a.m., Moshe finally heard a knock. He jumped to the door, “Who is it?” he asked.

“It’s me, Yosef!” was the reply. “I’m back!”

Moshe opened the door and embraced Yosef. “I’m so relieved to see you alive!” he said.

“So am I!” replied Yosef, still in a daze. “I’ve never been so terrified in my life!”

After he calmed down a little, Yosef asked, “Where did you get the ransom money from?”

“I was able to borrow it from a local Jewish businessman,” said Moshe. “He made me sign that I would pay him back.”

“I feel I should pay,” said Yosef, “but I don’t have anything like that sum. My family also is in debt.”

“I was assuming you’d somehow cover the loan,” said Moshe. “If you can’t pay – I’m in trouble!”

“Maybe you don’t have to repay the loan,” suggested Yosef, “since you only borrowed the money to save my life.”

“We need to contact Rabbi Dayan,” said Moshe.

Moshe called Rabbi Dayan and related the unfortunate details. “Do I have to repay the loan?” he asked. “Does Yosef have to reimburse me? What if doesn’t have that sum, does he owe me in the future?”

“You are liable for the loan and Yosef is required to reimburse you,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “If he doesn’t have that sum, there is a dispute whether he owes you in the future.”

“Can you please elaborate?” asked Moshe.

“Rav Moshe Feinstein was asked about the Bobover Rebbe who borrowed money during the Holocaust to save European Jewry,” replied Rabbi Dayan. “He ruled that he is liable to repay the loan, even though it was to save the lives of others.”(Igros Moshe C.M. 2:63)

“What about Yosef’s liability to reimburse me?” asked Moshe.

“The Gemara [Sanhedrin 73a] derives from the verse lo sa’amod al dam rei’echa – you shall not stand by while your brother’s blood is shed – that one is required to lay out money to rescue his fellow Jew,” said Rabbi Dayan. “The Rosh, cited by the Tur [C.M. 426], adds that the rescued person has to reimburse him, since one is not obligated to save another with his own money when the rescued person is able to pay. The Rama similarly writes regarding pidyon shevuyim [redeeming captives] that the captive has to reimburse if he has funds.” (Y.D. 252:12)

“What if he does not have funds at that time?” asked Yosef. “Is he required to pay later?”

About the Author: Rabbi Meir Orlian is a faculty member of the Business Halacha Institute, headed by HaRav Chaim Kohn, a noted dayan. To receive BHI’s free newsletter, Business Weekly, send an e-mail to subscribe@businesshalacha.com. For questions regarding business halacha issues, or to bring a BHI lecturer to your business or shul, call the confidential hotline at 877-845-8455 or e-mail ask@businesshalacha.com.


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 “Ransom Loan”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Swiss Amb. to Iran Giulo Haas presents his credentials to Iranian Pres. Rouhani
‘US and Iranian Cartoon Doves’ Shown Defecating on Bibi by Swiss Amb to Iran
Latest Judaism Stories
Torat-Hakehillah-logo-NEW

The common translation of the opening words of this week’s parsha, Ki Seitzei, is: “When you go out to war against your enemy.” Actually the text reads “al oyvecha” upon your enemy. The Torah is saying that when Israel goes out to war, they will be over and above their enemy. The reason why Bnei […]

Rabbi Avi Weiss

The love between Gd & Israel is deeper than marriage; beyond the infinite love of parent for child

Q-A-Klass-logo

Question: When a stranger approaches a congregant in shul asking for tzedakah, should the congregant verify that the person’s need is genuine? Furthermore, what constitutes tzedakah? Is a donation to a synagogue, yeshiva, or hospital considered tzedakah?

Zvi Kirschner
(Via E-Mail)

Taste-of-Lomdus-logo

Since giving the machatzis hashekel will not change his financial situation, he is obligated to do so even though it is more than a fifth of his income.

Today, few people fast during the Days of Selichot, but the custom is to rise early to recite Selichot.

Each month is associated with a particular tribe. The month of Elul is matched up with Gad. What makes Gad unique?

Sanctions and indictment of the Jew, holding him to a higher standard, is as common and misplaced as ever.

To allow for free will, there are times when Hashem will allow a person the “opportunity to be the messenger.”

“There is a mitzvah to pay the worker on that day,” answered Mr. Lerner.

Be happy. Be grateful. God knows what he is doing. It is all happening for a reason.

We get so busy living our lives, handling our day-to-day little crises that we forget to go that one step deeper and appreciate our lives.

The promise for long life only comes from 2 commandments; What’s the connection between them?

Mighty Amalek deliberately attacked enemy’s weakest members, despicable even by ancient standards

If we parents fail to honor responsibilities then society’s children will pay the price for our sins

Consider how our Heavenly Father feels when He sees His children adopting all other parents but Him

More Articles from Rabbi Meir Orlian
Business-Halacha-NEW

“There is a mitzvah to pay the worker on that day,” answered Mr. Lerner.

Business-Halacha-NEW

Mr. Steinberg ran downstairs to the ground floor. He saw that the table had fallen onto one of the cars sitting in the parking lot below.

“I don’t understand, though,” objected Mr. Weiss. “If the Torah states that the loan should be remitted, how can Hillel institute that the creditor can collect, against Torah law?”

“So there’s no way to lend past the shemittah year?” asked Eli.

The director picked up the phone to Rabbi Dayan. “One of our counselors lost his check,” he said. “Do we have to issue a new one or is it his loss?”

The two decided to approach Rabbi Dayan. “What is the halachic status of conquered territory?” asked Shalom.

“Does that mean a person can simply renege after payment was made?” asked Benjy incredulously.

“But I’m already dwelling in the apartment,” said Mr. Gold. “Shouldn’t that count? I’m no worse than a neighbor!”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/halacha-hashkafa/ransom-loan/2014/08/07/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: