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October 23, 2014 / 29 Tishri, 5775
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The Curse Of A Great Man


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Refuses The Reprieve

When Rabi Shimon heard this he ordered the officials to stop the execution and to return his son to the court for a retrial.

But the son turned to his father and to the judges gathered around him and said, “My worthy father and judges! You well know that according to the law a witness must not be believed when after convicting a man he recants his testimony.”

Then turning to his father, he said, “Father, if you desire that the welfare of Israel be strengthened by your hand, then consider me as a threshold upon which you may step without regret. Fulfill your duty and do not lower the respect for the Torah.”

Fulfills The Verdict

The father began to cry with bitter tears as he gave the order to the executioner to proceed with his duties. The falsely accused man was accordingly executed. Rabi Shimon never consoled himself after this tragic event and he then issued his famous edict, “Be thorough in the interrogation of witnesses and be careful in thy words, lest from them they learn falsehood” (Avot 1:9). (Never rely on evidence alone until it is too late to refute it.)

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When the soldiers heard this they exclaimed happily: “You mean this is the sacred Jewish fruit? Hurry, get on the horse. You are coming with us to the palace.”

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Tales-of-The-Midrash-logo

When the soldiers heard this they exclaimed happily: “You mean this is the sacred Jewish fruit? Hurry, get on the horse. You are coming with us to the palace.”

Tales of the Gaonim-logo

Now let me ask you, what would happen to an infantryman if he deserted his regiment and went to serve in the cavalry? He would be court-martialed, wouldn’t he?”

Dug out beneath his bunk was a little chest which he guarded with his very life. It contained a small Sefer Torah, miniature size, but kosher, and a shofar.

So began a marvelous period of good fortune. He invested the twenty-four gold pieces in many types of businesses and everything his hand touched turned to gold.

Pressing close to the cage, the Ibn Ezra shouted the words, “Shema Yisrael…”

“You can have your choice,” said the wise king. “You can choose to take this gold, 100 pieces each, or I can give you each three pieces of advice.”

“It isn’t the work,” said Eliezer. “I want to learn our holy Torah.”

He followed her advice and, before departing, the rabbanim offered him a bracha. “Aba Yudin, may the Lord return your wealth, for all the kind deeds you do.”

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