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Bava Metzia 62

BAVA METZIA 62 (10 Shevat) - Dedicated by ýHagaon Rav Yosef Pearlman of London, England, in memory of his father in law, Harav Yeshayah ben Rav David Chaim Goldberg Z"L, who passed away on 10 Shevat 5738.


(a) (Rav Nachman bar Yitzchak): R. Elazar learns from "Va'Chai Achicha Imach" - return it, in order that the borrower will live.
(b) Question: What does R. Yochanan learn from this verse?
(c) Answer (Beraisa - ben Petura): Two people were in a wilderness, one had a flask of water sufficient to enable one of them to return to civilization; if they share it, both will die. It is best that they share the water, neither should see the other die;
(d) R. Akiva: "V'Chei Achicha Imach" - your own life takes precedence over another's life.
(e) Question (against R. Yochanan - Beraisa): A man died, leaving his orphans money he collected as usury - even though they know this, they need not return it.
1. Inference: They need not return it - but their father would have to return it!
(f) Answer: Really, even their father is exempt; the Beraisa spoke of the children for parallel structure to the end of the Beraisa.
1. (End of the Beraisa): If their father left them a cow, garment or any specific item, they must return it because of the honor of their father.
(g) Question: Why should they have to return it for the honor of their father?!
1. "Do not curse a Nasi of your people" - one who acts as your people (but we are not concerned for honor of the wicked)!
(h) Answer: As Rav Pinchas answered (elsewhere) - the case is, the father repented.
1. Question: If he repented, he should have returned it!
2. Answer: He died before he was able to.
(i) Question (Beraisa): Thieves or people that lent on usury - even if they collected, they return it.
1. Question: The language 'collected' does not apply to thieves!
i. If they stole - they stole!
ii. If they did not steal - why are they called thieves?
2. Answer: 'Thieves' means people that lent on usury, even if they collected, they return.
(j) Answer: Tana'im argue whether it must be returned.
1. (Beraisa - R. Nechemyah and R. Eliezer ben Yakov): The lender and cosigner do not transgress a Lav and they are not lashed because they can correct their sin through a Mitzvas Aseh.
2. Suggestion: The Aseh is returning the usury; Chachamim argue, they say there is no such Aseh.
(k) Rejection: No - the Aseh is to tear the loan document.
(l) Question: Do R. Nechemyah and R. Eliezer ben Yakov hold that we consider a document as if it was already collected (because it puts a lien on the borrower's land)?
1. If yes - the lender and cosigner already transgressed when they wrote the document, and they must tear the document;
i. Similarly, it the usury was paid, they must return the money!
2. If we do not consider a document as if it was already collected, they did not transgress anything - why do Chachamim argue?
(m) Answer: They consider a document as if it was already collected; Chachamim obligate for Shuma (setting usury upon the borrower).
(n) Support (Mishnah): The following transgress a Lav: the lender, the borrower, the cosigner and the witnesses.
1. Question: The first three did an action - but what did the witnesses transgress?
2. Answer: We conclude that they are liable for Shuma.
(o) (Rav Safra): Any case in which the courts of Nochrim force the borrower to pay the lender, we make the lender return to the borrower; when they do not force the borrower to pay, we do not make the lender return it.
(p) Question (Abaye): But they force the borrower to pay by a loan of a Se'ah of produce on condition to return a Se'ah, and we don't force the lender to return it!
(q) Answer (Rav Yosef): They consider that return of a deposit - Rav Safra refers to what they collect as usury.
(r) Question (Ravina): But one who takes land as collateral and eats the produce without deducting from the loan - they force the borrower to pay (if he took some of the produce), and we do not make the lender return it!

(s) Answer (Rav Ashi): They considered that a sale (the lender bought the land, the borrower may redeem it).
(t) Question: What Chidush did Rav Safra come to teach?
(u) Answer: Any case in which Nochrim force the borrower to pay - fixed usury - we make the lender return it, i.e. R. Elazar's law;
1. What they do not force the borrower to pay - usury before or after the loan - we do not make the lender return it.
(a) (Mishnah): Reuven bought a Kor of wheat from Shimon for 25 Dinarim, which was the going rate...(if Shimon has no wine, it is forbidden).
(b) Question: Even if Shimon has no wine, it should be permitted!
1. (Beraisa): We may not contract to supply produce for a set price until there is a set price in the market; when there is a set price, we may contract - even if this seller does not have, others have (and the seller could buy and supply the produce now).
(c) Answer #1 (Rabah): In our Mishnah, Reuven never gave money, he bought on credit (so we cannot say that Shimon could have supplied the wine with Reuven's money).
1. Support (Beraisa): Yehudah told Levi 'Give me the Maneh you owe me so I can buy wheat'; Levi answered 'I accept to supply to you a Maneh's worth of wheat (at today's price) over the course of the year' - this is forbidden (even though Levi has wheat), for it is unlike giving money (for then, Levi could have supplied the wheat with Yehudah's money).
(d) Rejection (Abaye): If Reuven never gave money, the Mishnah should forbid this even if Shimon has wine!
(e) Answer #2 (Abaye): Our Mishnah is as Rav Safra taught.
1. (Rav Safra): Some things are permitted (letter of the law), but forbidden because they look like usury. For example, Yehudah asked to borrow 100 (Dinarim); Levi said, 'I don't have money - take that value of my wheat'. Levi bought it back for 96 - (letter of the law) this is permitted, but it is forbidden because it looks like usury.
2. Also in our Mishnah, Reuven asked to borrow 30 Sela'im; Shimon said, 'I don't have money - take that value of my wheat'; Shimon bought it back for 25;
3. If Shimon has wine - this is as a sale, it is permitted; if he has no wine, it is forbidden to take their value in money, for this looks like usury.
(f) Question (Rava): If so, the Mishnah should not say 'Give me my wheat', rather, 'Give me the money for my wheat'!
(g) Answer: Indeed, that is the correct text.
(h) Question (Rava): The Mishnah should not say 'That I want to sell', rather, 'That I sold to you'!
(i) Answer: Indeed, that is the correct text.
(j) Question (Rava): If so, why does the Mishnah say 'I consider your wheat as 30' - that is what he gave him!
(k) Answer: He means, 'As payment for the wheat which you took from me in place of 30 Dinarim'.
(l) Objection (Rava): How can the Mishnah say ''You now have that value of wine by me', and Shimon really has no wine' - it said that he bought a Kor of wheat for 25, that was the price!
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