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Yevamos 22

YEVAMOS 22 & 23 - dedicated by Mrs. G. Turkel (Zurich/New York/Jerusalem), may she have a full and speedy recovery!


1) [line 2] V'LITAMEI LO
The Torah (Vayikra 21:1-4) forbids Kohanim from coming into contact with dead bodies while commanding them to come into contact with certain deceased relatives. Those relatives are his mother, father, son, daughter, brother, unmarried virgin sister from his father, and permitted wife.

2) [line 5] "LO YITAMA BA'AL B'AMAV L'HEICHALO." - "A husband may not defile himself for his wife whose marriage profanes him." (Vayikra 21:4)

*3*) [line 26] REBBI YOSI BEN YEHUDAH OMER, EINO CHAYAV ELA MISHUM ACHOSO BILVAD - that is, according to Rebbi Yosi ben Yehudah, the second verse ("Bas Eshes Avicha") was not written as a negative prohibition at all. Rather, it was written to limit the prohibition of "Achoso" only to certain sisters (as the Gemara concludes later on this page)

(a) A person is only liable to Malkos mid'Oraisa if he transgresses a *Lav* ("Azharah") of the Torah that is punishable by Malkos (e.g. that is not a Lav shebi'Chelalos, or a Lav she'Nitak l'Aseh, etc.). A prohibition that is implied by a positive commandment is never punishable by Malkos.
(b) Similarly, a person is only liable to the death penalty for an action that is prohibited by a negative commandment, as stated by Chazal, "Lo Anash Ela Im Ken Hizhir" (Yoma 81a).
(c) Even though a Kal va'Chomer (an a fortiori argument, also known as "Din" in the language of the Gemara) is one of the thirteen methods for extracting the Halachah from the verses of the Torah, the Halachos that are learned from them are not considered Azharos such that they may make a person liable to Malkos or the death penalty. An Azharah must be explicit in the Torah as a negative commandment or must be learned through a Hekesh or Gezerah Shavah. What is learned through these methods is considered as though it were explicitly mentioned (since they cannot be refuted based on logical grounds, like a Kal va'Chomer can.)

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