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We know that one is not yotzeh if he hears Zachor read from a non-kosher Sefer Torah. What is the process of kashering the Sefer Torah so it will be usable? Must one do hag'alah? Does hag'alah work, or do we compare it with earthenware? Furthermore, if it was only used in in a cold setting, is hadacha enough?

(As always, please CYLOR if this is applicable to you in any way.)


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closed as too localized by Baal Shemot Tovot, Isaac Moses Mar 12 '12 at 5:11

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2 Answers

A sefer Tora that is not kosher should be put in an earthenware vessel (M'gila 26:2). However, Rava said any Torah scholar whose inside is not like his outside is no Torah scholar at all, and a fortiori a sefer Tora is no sefer Tora unless its inside is like its outside, namely like the earthenware it is in. Thus, a non-kosher sefer Tora is like an earthenware vessel.

However, Raban Gamliel, who said only that a Torah scholar whose outside is not like his inside cannot enter the bes midrash, would hold that a non-kosher sefer Tora merely cannot be used in shul, but could be used in, e.g., a shiv'a house, lo alenu. As is evident from the g'mara there, we do not hold like Raban Gamliel in this regard.

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The words of Torah are compared to glass, because they're easily lost like glass vessels, and because a Torah scholar who sinned can still do teshuvah, like glass that can be resmelted (Chagigah 15a).

Glass can (in some cases) be kashered using מילוי ועירוי - filling and pouring. A non-kosher sefer Torah, then, can be kashered in the same way: the sofer fills his pen with ink and pours it out onto the parchment in the proper places.

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