For instance, if one thought of murdering a certain someone, but the only thing stopping him was the lack of an opportunity, would he be liable to a punishment equal to that of a murderer, or something lesser? Is there no punishment at all?

Is there a difference between an individual who would commit the sin of his thoughts versus one who wouldn't?

This question came to mind after the subject of freedom of choice came up on Shabbat at the synagogue. If someone were to wish, like Hitler, that they could wipe out all the Jews, but the only thing stopping them is a lack of opportunity, would their punishment be equal to his (whatever it is)?

  • מחשבה רעה אין הקדוש ברוך הוא מצרפה למעשה ~Kiddushin 40 – MTL Sep 20 '15 at 17:22
  • @Shokhet I can read Hebrew and I understand the title of the link for the most part, but I'd have some trouble understanding a whole page of it unfortunately. (edit - thanks for the additon of the reference) – Echad-Ani-Yodeya Sep 20 '15 at 17:24
  • Some people are able to act on their intentions; others, when the moment to act comes, suddenly find a desire to give up their evil intentions. Are the latter part of your question? – chrysanthemum Sep 20 '15 at 17:32
  • That's why it's a comment, not an answer :) (also, it's not Hebrew -- it's more Aramaic) ...basically, the idea is that even though God rewards people for thoughts related to good acts, He does not do the same for bad thoughts. – MTL Sep 20 '15 at 17:32
  • 1
    I don't understand your (current) second paragraph – MTL Sep 20 '15 at 17:33

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