If Melachah was performed on Shabbath, but it was not necessary for the enjoyment of the product of the Melachah, can that product be enjoyed? What if the Melachah was the result of some other Melachah that made the later performance of Melachah necessary for enjoyment of the product?

For example, someone had a catered affair at Shul. Someone then took the leftovers home to eat, opting to drive, even though he could easily have walked. Can that food be eaten? What if it was first brought to someone else's house for a very short while, and now it definitely can not be easily brought to the second home by foot?


The concept you are refering to is "yackhol b'derekh heter" it was accomplishable in a permitted way. This is usually used a justification for benefiting melakha done by a non-jew for the exclusive benefit of a Jew on shabbat. For example if I knocked on a door and a non jew pushed an electronic unlock button when he could have walked over and pushed open the door I can enter the door because the person opening it could have done so without violating the shabbat (I am sorry, I dont have the source right now).

To answer your actual question. The GR"A (vilna gaon) holds that if a person violates shabbat then another jew can derive benefit from that action if there is some need. For example in your case if that was the food for the third shabbat meal then it could be used. if however there was no real need there was other food etc. you can eat the food immediately after shabbat.

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  • A citation to the G'ra would be helpful. – msh210 Mar 18 '12 at 16:48
  • I will look. It is where he deals with "Maaseh shabbat" – Eytan Yammer Mar 18 '12 at 17:21
  • I think that you can find it in Orah Haim שיח it may be quoted in the mishnah berura there as well. Two other considerations are whether one considers those who violate the shabbat to be shogegim or meizidim (purposeful or accidental transgressors) I was using the tinok sh'nishba argument to say that they are shogegim. Also there are those who say (I think the ritva but I dont know if I could dig up the citation) that if there is no transformation to body of the item then there is no issue of maaseh shabbat. – Eytan Yammer Mar 18 '12 at 17:34
  • @EytanYammer Per your final comment: it's the chayei adam quoted in the biur halacha to OC 318:1 – Double AA Mar 18 '12 at 18:14
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    @EytanYammer You always have your Mishna Berurah in front of you: hebrewbooks.org/49625 Consider including in-post citations to online sefarim to help make your answers better. – Double AA Mar 20 '12 at 3:51

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