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Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld

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Kidushin 40

KIDUSHIN 36-40 - sponsored by a generous grant from an anonymous donor. Kollel Iyun Hadaf is indebted to him for his encouragement and support and prays that Hashem will repay him in kind.


(a) Question (Rava - Mishnah): By the following Mitzvos, the principle reward is saved for the world to come, and a person enjoys 'fruits' of the Mitzvos in this world: honoring parents; bestowing Chesed; making peace between people; Torah is equivalent to all of them.
1. "In order that your days will be lengthened and it will be good for you" - this teaches honoring parents;
2. "One who pursues Tzedakah and Chesed will find life, Tzedakah and honor" - this teaches bestowing Chesed;
3. (R. Avahu): We learn a Gezeirah Shavah "Redifah-Redifah" to "Seek peace and pursue it" - this teaches making peace between people;
4. "It is your life and the length of your days" - this teaches Torah.
(b) Question: By sending the mother bird, it also says "In order that it will be good for you and your days will be lengthened" - why isn't this listed?
(c) Answer #1: The Tana omitted some Mitzvos.
1. Objection: He said "These Mitzvos" - he did not omit any!
(d) Answer #2 (Rava): "A good Tzadik...will eat the fruits of his deeds" - are there Tzadikim that are not good?!
1. Rather, a Tzadik that is good towards Hash-m and people, is a good Tzadik; a Tzadik that is good towards Hash-m but bad to people is not a good Tzadik.
2. Similarly: "Woe to an evil Rasha, he will be paid as his actions" - aren't all Resha'im evil?!
i. Rather, one who is evil to Hash-m and people is an evil Rasha; one who is evil to Hash-m but not to people is not an evil Rasha.
(e) Merit has principle and fruits - "A good Tzadik...";
1. Sins have principle (for punishment) but not fruits - "Woe to the Rasha..."
2. Question: But it says, "They will eat the fruits of their ways, and will be satiated from their (evil) counsel"!
3. Answer: Sins that have fruits (that cause others to sin), the punishment for them has fruits.
(f) One is rewarded for a good intention.
1. (Rav Asi): "U'Lechoshevei His name" - one who Chashav (thought) to do a Mitzvah, but was unable, the verse considers him to have done it.
(g) Hash-m does not punish for a bad intention - "If I saw sin in my heart, Hash-m will not hear".
(h) Question: But it says "I will bring to this nation evil, the fruits of their thoughts"!
(i) Answer: Hash-m only punishes (additionally) for a bad intention that is fulfilled.
(j) Question: But it says "In order to trap Benei Yisrael in their hearts"!
(k) Answer #1 (Rav Acha bar Yakov): That is written by idolatry.
1. Idolatry is severe - one who denies idolatry is as one who admits to the entire Torah.
(l) Answer #2 (Ula): Hash-m punishes for intention to repeat a sin.
1. (Rav Huna): Once a person sins and repeats the sin, it becomes permitted to him.
2. Objection That cannot be!
3. Answer: Rather, he views it as being permitted.
(a) (R. Avahu): It is better to sin privately, and not to profane Hash-m's name in public - "Let each man serve his idols...do not profane my Holy name."
(b) (R. Eliezer ha'Zaken): If a person feels his evil inclination overpowering him, he should go to a place where people don't recognize him, cover himself in black, and do as his heart desires - this way, he will not profane Hash-m's name.
(c) Question (Beraisa): Anyone that is not concerned for the Creator's honor, he should not have come to the world.
1. (Rabah): This is one who gazes at a rainbow.
2. (Rav Yosef): This is one who sins in private.
(d) Answer: Rav Yosef speaks of one who could have overcome his inclination; R. Eliezer speaks of one who was unable.
(e) Question (Mishnah): 'Hash-m is not Makif (regarding profanation of his name, whether unintentionally or intentionally)' - what does this mean?
(f) Answer #1 (Mar Zutra): Hash-m does not extend credit (rather, he punishes right away).
(g) Answer #2 (Mar brei d'Ravna): If merits and sins are equal, this sin makes the sins prevail.
(h) (Beraisa): A person should view himself as if his merits and sins weigh equally;

1. If he does 1 Mitzvah - he is now mostly a Tzadik!
2. If he does 1 sin - he is mostly evil!
i. "One Chotei (sinner) can ruin much good" - one can lose many good things because of 1 Chet,
(i) (R. Elazar b'Rebbi Shimon): The world is judged by its majority, and individuals are judged by their majority.
1. By doing 1 Mitzvah, one can make himself a Tzadik, and change the judgment of the world to merit!
2. By doing 1 sin, one can make himself a Rasha, and change the judgment of the world to liability!
(j) (R. Shimon bar Yochai): Even one who was a Tzadik his whole life, if he rebels at the end, he loses all his merits - "The righteousness of the Tzadik will not save him on the day of his transgression".
1. Even one who was a Rasha his whole life, if he repents at the end, his sins are not mentioned - "The Rasha will not stumble in his evil on the day he repents from it."
(k) Question: One who sins at the end - why is he not as one who is half-meritorious?
(l) Answer (Reish Lakish): One who regrets his merits, he is not rewarded for them.
(a) (Mishnah): One who learns (written) Torah and Mishnah, and acts properly - he is not likely to sin - "A 3-stranded rope is not quick to become untied";
(b) One who does not learn Torah or Mishnah, and acts improperly - he is not civilized.
(c) (Gemara - Beraisa - R. R. Elazar ben Tzadok): Tzadikim in this world are compared to a tree that stands in a Tahor place, and its foliage is in a Tamei place;
1. If the foliage is cut, it is then entirely in a Tahor place.
2. Similarly, Hash-m brings afflictions on Tzadikim in this world, in order that they will inherit the world to come - "Your beginning will be small, your end will be very exalted."
(d) Resha'im in this world are as a tree that stands in a Tamei place, and its foliage is in a Tahor place;
1. If the foliage is cut, it is then entirely in a Tamei place.
2. Similarly, Hash-m bestows good on Resha'im in this world, in order that they will descend to the lowest level - "There is a path, straight in the eyes of men, and its end are ways of death."
(e) Question: Which is greater - learning Torah or doing Mitzvos?
(f) Answer #1 (R. Tarfon): Doing Mitzvos is greater.
(g) Answer #2 (R. Akiva): Learning Torah is greater.
(h) (Rabanan): Learning Torah is greater, for learning leads one to do the Mitzvos.
(i) (Beraisa - R. Yosi): Learning Torah is great, for it applied 40 years before Chalah, 54 years before Terumah and Ma'aser, 61 years before Shemitah, and 103 years before Yovel.
(j) Question: It should be 104 years before Yovel (since the fiftieth year is Yovel)!
(k) Answer: R. Yosi holds that land returns at the beginning of the fiftieth year.
1. Just as Torah applied before other Mitzvos, also the judgment on Torah comes before judgment on other Mitzvos.
2. (Rav Hamnuna): "One who lets go of water, this is the beginning of his judgment" - a person is first judged on Torah.
3. Just as the judgment on Torah precedes that of other Mitzvos, also the reward for Torah - "He gave them lands...because they guard His statutes and Torah".
(l) (Mishnah): Whoever does not learn written Torah or Mishnah...
(m) (R. Yochanan): Such a person cannot be a witness.
(n) (Beraisa): One who eats in the market - he is as a dog;
1. Some say, he cannot be a witness.
2. (Rav Idi bar Avin): The law is as this opinion.
(o) (Bar Kapara): An angry person - he gains nothing from his anger, it only harms him;
1. Hash-m gives a Tzadik a taste of the reward for his deeds;
2. Anyone who does not learn written Torah or Mishnah and does not behave properly - one should vow not to benefit from him.
i. "In the gathering of scoffers he did not sit" - he is as a scoffer.
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