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21

I'd bet that sign was referencing the theoretical punishment that a Jewish court could have administered, during Temple times, under Jewish self-rule, when such events were exceedingly rare and shocking, and with overwhelming evidence: Male-to-male sex is punishable by death by stoning. Murder is punishable by decapitation. The Talmud states that of those ...


19

הבא להורגך השכם להורגו That means that if you know that someone wants to kill you, you must precede and kill him before he kills you. Otherwise, "Thou shall not murder" applies. More info could be found on Hebrew wiki page about this topic.


14

According to http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~uzwiak/AnatPhys/Cardiovascular_System.html the heart touches the chest wall between the 5th and 6th ribs. So if this passage means that he literally stabbed him at the 5th rib, it would have been a very efficient and quick kill.


11

Interestingly, Daas Zekeinim and Kli Yakar (to Gen. 32:8) say that when Yaakov heard that Eisav was planning to attack, he was distressed thinking that this must mean that indeed Yitzchak was already dead and that Eisav therefore feels free to kill him. Rashbam (to 32:7) suggests that indeed Eisav meant well in coming out towards Yaakov with his 400 men - ...


9

There is no question that war, self-defense, official executions and certain other cases of para-Halachic killings are either sanctioned, required, or otherwise allowed after the fact (and even rewarded). The questions as to why are not answered in a generality; there has been much discussion about each case, with separate explanations for each. As to your ...


9

M'tzudos quotes Rabi Yochanan as saying that that spot is particularly dangerous because of the presence there of the liver and gallbladder.


9

The Mishnah in Sotah 45b cites a dispute between R' Eliezer, R' Akiva and R' Eliezer ben Yaakov as to whether the measurement is done from the corspe's navel, from his nose, or from his neck. The halachah follows R' Akiva, that the measurement is done from the nose. For further details, see R' Chaim Kanievsky's comprehensive Nachal Aysan, siman 5 #5.


9

Sifri states that the Cities of Refuge also serve people who live outside of the Land of Israel. According to Kesef Mishneh's first explanation, that means exactly what it sounds like: an accidental murderer from another country would have to run away to the nearest City of Refuge in Israel (or Transjordan), and until he does so he would be subject to attack ...


8

I know that one (perhaps the foremost one) urging that the Allies bomb the tracks was R' Michael Dov Weissmandl zt"l. If I recall correctly, he also urged that the camps themselves be bombed too; if that's true, then there you'd have a notable halachic authority who would permit (indeed advocate) this course of action.


8

Lord Sacks addressed this in his weekly message not long ago. The Talmud explains that the Cohen Gadol bears some minute amount of responsibility; "as he should have begged for compassion." The simple explanation is that G-d gives people the free will and ability to do evil things, but this case concerns a mistake. Had the Cohen Gadol prayed more, perhaps ...


8

Although one might think to conclude that homosexuality is worse than murder based on the specific punishments court can impose upon them (stoning for homosexuality and decapitation for murder), this simplistic understanding is not borne out upon further investigation. I know I shouldn't just quote on this site, but no one says it better than the Rambam ...


8

I see several question in your post, I'll try to answer them one-by-one. what does, "Thou shall not murder" mean anyway? It means that human life is holy, and Torah prohibits taking any human life. Pretty similar to how most people generally think about killing. The Torah seems to allow many instances of killing Original question author didn't ask about ...


8

The Rambam rules (Rotzeiach 7:5 (English)) that one who is in exile in an Ir Miklat and kills unintentionally inside his Ir Miklat, is 'exiled' to a different neighborhood in that city, where presumably he is safe from threats. A Levi who lives in an Ir Miklat ordinarily who kills unintentionally is exiled to a different Ir Miklat.


7

Me'am Loez says (citing Zohar Chadash, Eichah) that R. Eliezer is counted among these ten Sages. He was arrested and nearly sentenced to death, but was miraculously spared (Avodah Zarah 16b-17a); he thus corresponds to Reuven, who played a part in the whole drama but wasn't actually involved in the sale.


7

As heard from Rabbi Weiner, a student of Rabbi Elyashiv and a bio-halachist: When the morning-after pill is administered, we do not know if there is an embryo present. Hence it is permissible in the case of a rape. (He wouldn't go so far as to give it carte blanche for, say, the happily-married couple who are trying to space their pregnancies a bit better.) ...


7

I see no reason why it should be any different than the general discussion about abortion. Until an embryo is implanted: of no halachic significance. You couldn't break shabbos to save a frozen embryo, for instance. From implantation till 40 days: Rabbi Moshe Feinstein vociferously opposed in virtually all circumstances, unless this baby is seriously ...


7

A person who killed accidentally had to stay in the City of Refuge until the Cohen Gadol died. This could be 1 day or 80 years. If a person killed on purpose or in a completely faultless manner (Onnes), he does not have to stay in the City of Refuge until the Cohen Gadol dies. (Rambam Hilchot Rotzeach 6:3) Killing someone on purpose is black and white, ...


6

Sefer Hachinuch (mitzvah 410) explains as follows: Murder is an extremely severe sin, since it destroys the fabric of society. So one who killed, even accidentally, deserves the death penalty for having committed such a terrible act. Instead, though, the Torah commutes his sentence to exile, the pain of which is almost as harsh as that of death: it means a ...


6

Judicial execution is not the same as murder. The same torah that says "do not murder" also calls for the death penalty for certain transgressions, so there must be a difference. Tractate Sanhedrin discusses capital punishment in a fair bit of detail. There are strict rules, but nonetheless a death sentence is possible and does not violate lo tirtzach.


6

The Ramban on the story quotes the Rambam as saying that the inhabitants of Shechem were required to judge (the person) Shechem and did not. As such, they did not fulfill the obligation of the descendants of Noach to judge justly. A descendant of Noach that fails to fulfill one if his 7 obligations (namely 1. belief in the creator, 2. prohibition of incest, ...


6

Chemdas Yisroel (R' Meir Dan Plozky Zatzal) 42 says that in such a case the convert would not be executed.


6

Madanei Asher page 168 discusses this question and answers as follows. Shaalos U'Tshuvis Radbaz - Volume 2 #772 says that a Jewish king is not judged and therefore would not go to exile. Regarding prior to the time of Yanai Hamelech when Jewish kings were judged he says even there a Jewish king would not be exiled based on the Gemara - Makos 10a that a ...


5

Lethal force is only authorized for the civilian bystander to prevent a rape or a murder. Not property damage. This assumes that whoever's attacking my property has a big sign on his forehead that says I'm here just to damage property and I definitely won't hurt any people. The reason that we acquit someone who kills a home intruder is we assume the robber ...


5

I think the general view is that is forbidden to flip a switch to cause the death of 1 person to prevent 5 other people from dying. Judaism does not just take the utilitarian view to just look at the ends and ignore the means involved, especially when dealing with committing a sin such as murder. (See Does the end justify the means.) Therefore it would be ...


5

See Rabbi Michael Broyde's excellent essay (entitled, in various versions, either "Only the Good Die Young" or "Judaism is Not a Suicide Pact!") here. An excerpt: It is clear to me that the vast majority of contemporary poseqim agree with R. Shaul Yisraeli, and for that reason, even as there are numerous sefarim that deal with religious life in ...


5

Rambam addresses this (Melachim 6:4): "And do not kill women or children". This is talking about a case where the women and children are not part of the war - as opposed to cases where children and women are part of the war effort, for instance, by being soldiers themselves, or the nations which we are commanded to annihilate. Sifri (page קפז) says ...


5

To begin with, Saul only ordered the execution of Achimelekh's Beit Av( Samuel I 22:16): ויאמר המלך, מות תמות אחימלך: אתה, וכל-בית אביך And the king said: 'Thou shalt surely die, Ahimelech, thou, and all thy father's house.' The massacre at Nov was Doeg's own initiative( ibid. 22:18-19): ויאמר המלך, לדויג (לדואג), סב אתה, ופגע בכהנים; ויסב דויג ...


5

Getting divorced would NOT serve as any halachic basis for an abortion. Life is something of the greatest value and should not be looked upon lightly at all. It is exceedingly important that no one misinterpret halacha to try and "allow" for an abortion when it's forbidden (and a major sin). The baby - who is unable to speak and defend himself - is the true ...


4

Exodus Rabbah 1:26 brings this midrash: one day when Moshe was a child he grabbed Paro's crown and the court magicians counselled Paro to have him killed lest he usurp the throne. Ultimately a test was proposed and Moshe passed (with Gavriel's help), so he was allowed to live. But it's not unreasonable to think that the magicians would continue to caution ...


4

No source, but something I thought of when we learned the portion this year. It was because Datan and Aviram publicized it that Pharaoh needed to take action. Once word got out that a public servant had been murdered while/for doing his job, there would have been a call for justice from the rest of Pharaoh's court. Pharaoh gave into the public pressure and ...



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