If I create something with a certain purpose, and it's used for another purpose (good or bad), do I have a share in the mitzvot or averot people made with my creation? I'll give three examples to make my question more understandable:

  1. Let's say I create a company that produces cars. And these cars, for some reason, become popular among the reform, liberal and more secular Jewish communities. If they use this car on Shabbat, would I have any share with their Averah?
  2. What if my company creates kitchen knives, and in one occasion a band of criminals used my knives to kill a lot of innocent people. Would I be Halachically considered as being part of this crime?
  3. Now let's go to the other part of the spectrum. What if I create and sell a snack that's tasty and also very nutritious, with the purpose of making me rich. If my product is donated by multiple charities to poor people, and it ends up saving hundreds of lives, would I get a reward for saving these lives even though it wasn't my choice?

2 Answers 2


Deuteronomy 24:19 -- “When you reap your harvest in your field, and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow..."

“If a coin falls out of one’s hand and a poor man finds it and supports himself by it, one will be blessed on that account.” - Sifre on the above pasuk.

From here we see that if property belonging to you, accidentally helps do something good, then you do receive a reward. However, all the cases of the OP occur after the object belongs to someone else. Furthermore, the someone else was the sole influence on what happened next. Therefore, it would seem that it does not apply.


If you are the source of good and evil, and that good or evil is extrapolated, then you have a connection to the extrapolation.

See for example the Ramban who explains that when Hashem promised Avraham he would lie with his fathers in peace, referring to Terach, although Terach was an idolator, since Terach bore Avraham he was elevated by Avraham.

Or conversely, see the gemara in the first perek of Bava Basra that if you give tzedaka to unworthy people, although your intentions are good, your reward is limited because the expected good did not materialise.

However if you engage in an action which is a reshus, it does not seem the poel yotze of your actions have any connection to you.

  • I've been taught that the fact that Abraham was buried with his fathers teaches us that his fathers did teshuvah.
    – Gabriel12
    Feb 16, 2016 at 2:24

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