Does the Christian Bible have Kedushah? It does have the entire Tanach in it, just with an additional part. Does this make it lose its Kedushah? I'm asking about a single-volume printing.

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    are you asking because: a) it also has the gospels b) it was written by/for non-Jews or c) it is in English
    – rosends
    Aug 18, 2016 at 11:59
  • @Danno yes, that is what I'm asking.
    – M. Broder
    Aug 18, 2016 at 13:33
  • Does a copy of the Torah in English, for the purposes of spreading a non-Jewish religion, printed by a non-Jew have kedusha? IIRC, even a Torah scroll itself written by a mumar (Jewish heretic, roughly) wouldn't have kedusha. I can't imagine one written by an akum would... Aug 18, 2016 at 13:50

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A related question asks what to do with a sefer torah written by a heretic. An answer there quotes the Rambam (Laws of Tefilin, Mezuzah, and Sefer Torah 1:13) thus:

יג ספר תורה תפילין ומזוזות שכתבן מין, יישרפו. כתבן גוי, או ישראל משומד, או מוסר, או עבד, או אישה, או קטן--הרי אלו פסולין וייגנזו: שנאמר "וקשרתם . . . וכתבתם" (דברים ו,ח-ט; דברים יא,יח-כ)--כל שמוזהר על הקשירה ומאמין בה, הוא שכותב. נמצאו ביד מין ואין ידוע מי כתבן, ייגנזו; נמצאו ביד גוי, כשרים. ואין לוקחין ספרים תפילין ומזוזות מן הגויים ביתר על דמיהן, שלא להרגיל אותם לגונבם ולגוזלם.‏

A Torah scroll, Tefillin, or Mezuzah written by a heretic -- burn it!... If you find one in the possession of a heretic and don't know who wrote it, bury it; if in the possession of a non-Jew, assume it's kosher.

If we destroy a heretic-written sefer torah, then it seems that that particular sefer torah didn't have kedusha even though sifrei torah usually do. Similarly, even though a Tanakh has kedusha in general, I would argue (from the sefer torah) that it doesn't when written by a heretic (min, in the Rambam passage). So we must ask: is a Christian bible the product of a heretic?

There is some ambiguity about the definition of heresy:

In talmudic literature a number of terms are used to refer to heretics, min, apikoros, kofer, and mumar, each of which also has other meanings. Min is the most common term and the one that appeared originally in the 12th petition of the daily *Amidah. Some identify the talmudic minim with the Judeo-Christians, others with unspecified groups who denied rabbinic authority and/or the belief in the coming of the Messiah. There is an early tradition that there were 24 groups of minim as early as the destruction of the Second Temple (TJ, Sanh. 10:29c). Among the errors of the minim, the Talmud lists denial of God's unity; belief in an independent divinity of evil; the portrayal of God as a cruel jester (Sanh. 38b–39a); and the denial of Israel's chosenness (Sanh. 99a), physical resurrection, and the coming of the Messiah (Sanh. 91a). *Maimonides identified minut with atheism, with the denial of God's unity and incorporeality, with the denial of creation ex nihilo, and with the belief in a power intermediary between God and man (Yad, Teshuvah 3:7). (source)

According to the talmud minim include those who deny God's unity or believe in an independent, divine evil being. Both of those are core tenets of Christianity. What is not clear, though, is whether the talmud refers only to Jews; can a non-Jew be a min at all?

According to this ruling attributed to R' Riskin, a missionary bible should be burned (all parts), and a bible written on a heretical basis is not sacred. So bibles that are produced or distributed withe purpose of evangelizing Jews can (and according to this should) be destroyed, including the Tanakh passages.

A further complication: the text in a Christian translation of the Tanakh has been altered. This is widely known but the practice continues. I would think that this would also affect any kedusha it might have had, though I can't bring a source.

Putting all this together:

  • a Christian Tanakh text written by apostate Jews would certainly not have kedusha (it's like the sefer torah)

  • a Christian Tanakh text written by gentiles with an intent to evangelize has no kedusha according to R' Riskin

  • any other Christian Tanakh text probably doesn't have kedusha, unless they've actually reprinted the original Hebrew and not a translation

For a practical ruling you should consult your rabbi.

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    However, can a non-Jew be a heretic in the classic sense? Furthermore, every early siddur I've seen uses משומדים rather than מינים in the beracha in the Amidah, unlike your source's claim. Aug 18, 2016 at 16:31
  • @NoachMiFrankfurt oh, so you're asking if a non-Jew could even be a min in the first place, even with the beliefs listed in the talmud? Aug 18, 2016 at 16:35
  • @NoachMiFrankfurt What source discusses the Amida and why does that matter? Even if that beracha opens with Meshummadim, 'Min' is still a category. Rambam's Siddur has both groups in that blessing למשומדים אל תהי תקווה, כל המינים כרגע יאבדו
    – Double AA
    Aug 18, 2016 at 17:14
  • @DoubleAA, yes, but the source implies that it opened thus, the way I read it. The formulations in Rasa"g and in Rishonei Ashkenaz also mention both, but they and the Ramba"m all open with meshumadim. I feel it necessary to disclaim a source for propegating information of dubious reliability on one factor, even if it only has tangential bearing on the main text. Aug 18, 2016 at 17:26
  • @NoachMiFrankfurt Tangential?? Of what bearing at all is this? The site doesn't even imply what you say it does ("the Amidah of the liturgy was changed to include malshinim" because it wasn't originally 'malshinim'). I don't see any constructive purpose to this post of these comments.
    – Double AA
    Aug 18, 2016 at 17:29

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