"...for transgressions between a person and God, Yom Kippur atones; however, for transgressions between a person and another, Yom Kippur does not atone until he appeases the other person." Mishnah_Yoma.8.9

IIRC the Torah does not make any distinction between Mitzvot.

  • What is the origin of the division between interpersonal (בין אדם לחבירו) and God-related (בין אדם למקום) Mitzvot?
  • What are the criteria for the division?
  • Did anybody attempt to systematically classify the 613 Mitzvot by those criteria?

Please assume the question is not self-evident, for example, murder, physically hurting others, honoring parents, Tzedakka, etc.

  • 1
    You want to know where Chazal got that distinction? Seems like it's part of the Oral Torah....
    – robev
    Mar 9 at 17:59
  • 4
    "What is the origin of the division" You quoted a Mishnah where that distinction is mentioned, you're not going to find much sources earlier than that. Mar 9 at 20:41
  • It would be interesting to have a list of places in Tanach where someone asks mechilah from another person, and see if any of those instances can be seen as evidence that they would have suffered divine punishment otherwise.
    – Derdeer
    Sep 10 at 9:46

I don't know the first source that explicitly makes that distinction, but generally speaking the first place where that distinction is noted in the commentaries is the two luchos containing the Ten Commandments. The first tablet has five commandments that are between man and G-d, and the second has five commandments that are between man and his fellow man. (Honoring one's parents is considered a commandment between man and G-d because the parents are partners with G-d in creating the person.)

It is important to note that a law that is בין אדם לחבירו is also בין אדם למקום, because it is G-d's commandment. As the Gemara in Yoma says, a violation of interpersonal laws needs forgiveness from both the offended party and G-d.

There is a kuntres by the Mabit called Iggeres Derech Hashem that divides the mitzvos between those two categories. It was published with a commentary Derech Moshe. I received a copy as a gift, so I don't know where it is available, if it is.

  • 1
    You can access it on Hebrewbooks -hebrewbooks.org/52558 and the newer version with the Derech Moshe commentary is available in any good sefer store eg - seforimsets.com/index.php?route=product/…
    – Dov
    Mar 12 at 8:30
  • @Dov I downloaded it but it's very short and I don't see anything that gets us any closer to an answer.
    – Al Berko
    Mar 12 at 10:14
  • 1
    @AlBerko I was just following up his point of him not knowing anything about the sefer's availability, in the hope that it would be helpful...
    – Dov
    Mar 12 at 10:49
  • 1
    It answers the last bit about if anyone classified the mitzvos by these criteria. It is short, but the mitzvos are divided into two parts.
    – N.T.
    Mar 12 at 12:13

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