6

In Niddah 34a, the gemara says that the sages decreed tumah on non-Jews like that of a zav (translation edited from Soncino):

‮(ויקרא טו) דבר אל בני ישראל ואמרת אליהם איש איש כי יהיה זב בני ישראל מטמאין בזיבה ואין <העובדי כוכבים> {הנכרים} מטמאין בזיבה אבל גזרו עליהן שיהו כזבין לכל דבריהם

"Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them, when any man has an issue" (Lev 15); only the children of Israel convey uncleanness by zivah and idolaters do not convey uncleanness by zivah, but a preventive measure has been enacted against them that they should be regarded as zavim in all respects.

However, in mishna Keilim 1:8 we see that zavim and non-Jews have different laws with respect to how far in the the Temple area they may enter (translation from Sefaria):

‮הר הבית, מקודש ממנו, שאין זבים וזבות נידות ויולדות נכנסין לשם. החיל, מקודש ממנו, שאין גויים וטמא מת נכנסין לשם.

The Temple Mount has greater sanctity, because men and women with discharges, menstruating women, and women who have given birth may not enter there. The Cheil [a low fence around the Temple, which served as a boundary, beyond which entry to those impure was prohibited] has higher sanctity, because gentiles and people contaminated with corpse impurity may not enter there.

Am I understanding correctly that there's a tension between these two sources? Why does the mishna treat non-Jews differently than zavim in something tumah-related?

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .