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Today's Daf Yomi

September 10, 2017 | י״ט באלול תשע״ז

  • This month's learning is sponsored by Joanna Rom and Steven Goldberg in loving memory of Steve's mother Shirley "Nana" Goldberg (Sura Tema bat Chaim v'Hanka)

Sanhedrin 56

Study Guide Sanhedrin 56. Under what circumstances is one obligated the death penalty for cursing God?  Cursing God is also one of the Noachide laws.  What are the Noachide laws? There are several different opinions regarding which commandments they are obligated to keep.  Not all agree that there are seven.

בכל יום דנין את העדים בכינוי יכה יוסי את יוסי

On every day of a blasphemer’s trial, when the judges judge the witnesses, i.e., interrogate the witnesses, they ask the witnesses to use an appellation for the name of God, so that they do not utter a curse of God’s name. Specifically, the witnesses would say: Let Yosei smite Yosei, as the name Yosei has four letters in Hebrew, as does the Tetragrammaton.

נגמר הדין לא הורגין בכינוי אלא מוציאין כל אדם לחוץ שואלין את הגדול שביניהן ואומר לו אמור מה ששמעת בפירוש והוא אומר והדיינין עומדין על רגליהן וקורעין ולא מאחין

When the judgment is over, and the court votes to deem the defendant guilty, they do not sentence him to death based on the testimony of the witnesses in which they used an appellation for the name of God, without having ever heard the exact wording of the curse. Rather, they remove all the people who are not required to be there from the court, so that the curse is not heard publicly, and the judges interrogate the eldest of the witnesses, and say to him: Say what you heard explicitly. And he says exactly what he heard. And the judges stand on their feet and make a tear in their garments, as an act of mourning for the desecration of the honor of God. And they do not ever fully stitch it back together again.

והשני אומר אף אני כמוהו והשלישי אומר אף אני כמוהו

And the second witness says: I too heard as he did, but he does not repeat the curse explicitly. And the third witness, in the event that there is one, says: I too heard as he did. In this manner, the repetition of the invective sentence is limited to what is absolutely necessary.

גמ׳ תנא עד שיברך שם בשם

GEMARA: The Sage taught in a baraita: A blasphemer is not liable unless he blesses, a euphemism for curses, the name of God with the name of God, e.g., by saying: Let such and such a name strike such and such a name.

מנהני מילי אמר שמואל דאמר קרא ונוקב שם וגו׳ בנקבו שם יומת

The Gemara asks: From where is this matter derived? Shmuel says: It is derived from that which the verse states: “And he who blasphemes [venokev] the name of the Lord shall be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him; the convert as well as the homeborn, when he blasphemes [benokvo] the name, he shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16). It is derived from the repetition of the phrase “blasphemes the name” that the reference is to cursing the name of God with the name of God.

ממאי דהאי נוקב לישנא דברוכי הוא מה אקב לא קבה אל ואזהרתיה מהכא אלהים לא תקלל

The Gemara asks: From where is it derived that this word nokev is a term for blessing, i.e., cursing? The Gemara answers that it is derived from the statement of Balaam, who was sent by Balak to curse the Jewish people: “How shall I curse [ekkov] whom God has not cursed?” (Numbers 23:8). And the prohibition against cursing God is derived from here: “You shall not curse God” (Exodus 22:27).

ואימא מיברז הוא דכתיב ויקב חר בדלתו ואזהרתיה מהכא ואבדתם את שמם לא תעשון כן לה׳ אלהיכם

The Gemara asks: But say that perhaps the meaning of nokev is not cursing, but rather making a hole, as it is written: “And made a hole [vayyikkov] in its lid” (II Kings 12:10). According to this, the word nokev is referring to one who makes a hole and damages the written name of God. And the prohibition against doing so is derived from here: “And you shall destroy their name out of that place. You shall not do so to the Lord your God” (Deuteronomy 12:3–4).

בעינא שם בשם וליכא

The Gemara answers: It is derived from the repetition of nokev that for one to be liable, it is necessary that his transgression involve the name of God with the name of God, and such a transgression is not possible if the reference is to making a hole.

ואימא דמנח שני שמות אהדדי ובזע להו ההוא נוקב וחוזר ונוקב הוא ואימא דחייק שם אפומא דסכינא ובזע בה ההוא חורפא דסכינא הוא דקא בזע

The Gemara challenges: But say that such a transgression is possible, as one can place two written names of God, one on top of the other, and tear through them at once. The Gemara explains: That would be defined as making a hole and again making a hole, not making a hole in one name by means of another name. The Gemara asks: But say that one can etch the name of God on the point of a knife and cut through another name with it. The Gemara answers: In that case, it is the point of the knife that is cutting, not the name of God.

אימא פרושי שמיה הוא דכתיב ויקח משה ואהרן את האנשים האלה אשר נקבו בשמות ואזהרתיה מהכא את ה׳ אלהיך תירא

The Gemara asks: Say that nokev means the utterance of the ineffable name of God. As it is written: “And Moses and Aaron took these men that are pointed out [nikkevu] by name” (Numbers 1:17). And the prohibition to do so is derived from here: “You shall fear the Lord, your God” (Deuteronomy 6:13).

חדא דבעינא שם בשם וליכא ועוד הויא ליה אזהרת עשה ואזהרת עשה לא שמה אזהרה

The Gemara answers: One answer is that for one to be liable, it is necessary that his transgression involve the name of God with the name of God, and such a transgression is not possible if the reference is to uttering the ineffable name of God. Furthermore, the prohibition derived from the verse “You shall fear the Lord, your God” is a prohibition stated as a positive mitzva, and a prohibition stated as a positive mitzva is not considered a prohibition.

ואיבעית אימא אמר קרא ויקב ויקלל למימרא דנוקב קללה הוא

The Gemara presents an alternative proof that nokev is referring to cursing: And if you wish, say instead that the verse states: “And the son of the Israelite woman blasphemed [vayyikkov] the name and cursed” (Leviticus 24:11). That is to say that the meaning of nokev is to curse.

ודילמא עד דעבד תרוייהו לא סלקא דעתך דכתיב הוצא את המקלל ולא כתיב הוצא את הנקב והמקלל שמע מינה חדא היא

The Gemara asks: But perhaps this verse does not prove that the meaning of nokev is to curse; rather, it indicates that one is not liable to be executed unless he does both, i.e., both nokev and cursing God? The Gemara answers: This shall not enter your mind, as it is written: “Bring forth the one who cursed…and stone him” (Leviticus 24:14), and it is not written: Bring forth the nokev and one who cursed. Conclude from it that it is one act and not two.

תנו רבנן ׳איש׳ מה תלמוד לומר ׳איש איש׳ לרבות את הנכרים שמוזהרין על ברכת השם כישראל ואינן נהרגין אלא בסייף שכל מיתה האמורה בבני נח אינה אלא בסייף

§ The Sages taught in a baraita with regard to the verse: “Anyone who curses his God shall bear his sin” (Leviticus 24:15), that the verse could have stated: One [ish] who curses his God. Why must the verse state: “Anyone [ish ish]”? It is to include the gentiles, who are prohibited from blessing, i.e., cursing, the name of God, just like Jews are. And they are executed for this transgression by the sword alone, as all death penalties stated with regard to the descendants of Noah are by the sword alone.

והא מהכא נפקא מהתם נפקא ה׳ זו ברכת השם

The Gemara asks: But is this halakha derived from here? Rather, it is derived from there: “And the Lord God commanded the man” (Genesis 2:16), as is stated in a baraita that will soon be quoted at length: “The Lord,” this is referring to the blessing, i.e., cursing, of the name of God. This verse concerns Adam, the first man, and is therefore binding on all of humanity.

אמר רבי יצחק נפחא לא נצרכא אלא לרבות את הכינויין ואליבא דרבי מאיר

Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa says: The verse “anyone who curses his God” is necessary only to include gentiles who curse God using the appellations for the name of God, rather than mentioning the ineffable name, and this is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Meir.

דתניא ׳איש איש כי יקלל אלהיו ונשא חטאו׳ מה תלמוד לומר והלא כבר נאמר ׳ונקב שם ה׳ מות יומת׳ לפי שנאמר ׳ונקב שם מות יומת׳ יכול לא יהא חייב אלא על שם המיוחד בלבד מניין לרבות כל הכינויין תלמוד לומר ׳איש כי יקלל אלהיו׳ מכל מקום דברי רבי מאיר

As it is taught in a baraita: Why must the verse state: “Anyone who curses his God shall bear his sin”? But isn’t it already stated: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16)? Rather, since it is stated: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord shall be put to death,” one might have thought that one will be liable only for cursing the ineffable name of God. From where is it derived that the verse includes one who curses any of the appellations as well? The verse states: “Anyone who curses his God,” to indicate that one is liable to be executed in any case. This is the statement of Rabbi Meir.

וחכמים אומרים על שם המיוחד במיתה ועל הכינויין באזהרה

And the Rabbis say: For cursing the ineffable name of God, one is punished by death, and for cursing the appellations, one is liable to receive lashes for violating a prohibition.

ופליגא דרבי מיישא דאמר רבי מיישא בן נח שבירך את השם בכינויים לרבנן חייב

The Gemara comments: And Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa, who holds that according to the Rabbis, gentiles are not liable for cursing appellations for the name of God, disagrees with the opinion of Rav Meyasha. As Rav Meyasha says: A descendant of Noah who blessed God by one of the appellations is liable to be executed even according to the opinion of the Rabbis.

מאי טעמא דאמר קרא כגר כאזרח גר ואזרח הוא דבעינן בנקבו שם אבל נכרי אפילו בכינוי

What is the reason? It is because the verse states: “The convert as well as the homeborn, when he blasphemes the name, he shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16), from which it is derived that it is only in the case of a convert or a homeborn Jew that we require the condition: “When he blasphemes the name,” i.e., he is liable to be executed only if he curses the ineffable name. But a gentile is liable to be executed even due to merely cursing an appellation.

ורבי מאיר האי כגר כאזרח מאי עביד ליה גר ואזרח בסקילה אבל נכרי בסייף סלקא דעתך אמינא הואיל ואיתרבו איתרבו קא משמע לן

The Gemara asks: And what does Rabbi Meir do with this part of the verse: “The convert as well as the homeborn”? What does he derive from it? The Gemara answers: Rabbi Meir derives that a convert or a homeborn Jew is liable to be executed by stoning for this transgression, but a gentile is executed by the sword. This exclusion is necessary as otherwise it might enter your mind to say that since gentiles are included in the halakhot of this verse, they are included in all the halakhot of blasphemy. Therefore the verse teaches us that they are not stoned.

ורבי יצחק נפחא אליבא דרבנן האי כגר כאזרח מאי עביד ליה גר ואזרח הוא דבעינן שם בשם אבל נכרי לא בעינן שם בשם

The Gemara asks: And what does Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa do with this part of the verse: “The convert as well as the homeborn,” according to the opinion of the Rabbis, since Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa holds that the Rabbis do not deem either a Jew or a gentile liable for cursing an appellation of God’s name? The Gemara answers: He derives that it is specifically with regard to a convert and a homeborn Jew that we require the condition that he curse a name of God by a name of God; but with regard to a gentile, we do not require that he curse a name of God by a name of God in order for him to be liable.

איש איש למה לי דיברה תורה כלשון בני אדם

The Gemara asks: Why do I need the inclusive term “anyone who curses his God,” according to the opinions that do not derive from it that a gentile is liable for cursing an appellation of God’s name? The Gemara answers: No halakha is derived from it; it is not a superfluous term, as the Torah spoke in the language of people.

תנו רבנן שבע מצות נצטוו בני נח דינין וברכת השם עבודה זרה גילוי עריות ושפיכות דמים וגזל ואבר מן החי

§ Since the halakhot of the descendants of Noah have been mentioned, a full discussion of the Noahide mitzvot is presented. The Sages taught in a baraita: The descendants of Noah, i.e., all of humanity, were commanded to observe seven mitzvot: The mitzva of establishing courts of judgment; and the prohibition against blessing, i.e., cursing, the name of God; and the prohibition of idol worship; and the prohibition against forbidden sexual relations; and the prohibition of bloodshed; and the prohibition of robbery; and the prohibition against eating a limb from a living animal.

רבי חנניה בן גמלא אומר אף על הדם מן החי רבי חידקא אומר אף על הסירוס רבי שמעון אומר אף על הכישוף

Rabbi Ḥananya ben Gamla says: The descendants of Noah are also commanded concerning the prohibition against consuming the blood from a living animal. Rabbi Ḥideka says: They are also commanded concerning castration, i.e., they are prohibited to castrate any living animal. Rabbi Shimon says: They are also commanded concerning the prohibition against engaging in sorcery.

רבי יוסי אומר כל האמור בפרשת כישוף בן נח מוזהר עליו ׳לא ימצא בך מעביר בנו ובתו באש קסם קסמים מעונן ומנחש ומכשף וחבר חבר ושאל אוב וידעני ודרש אל המתים וגו׳ ובגלל התועבת האלה ה׳ אלהיך מוריש אותם מפניך׳ ולא ענש אלא אם כן הזהיר

Rabbi Yosei says: With regard to every type of sorcery that is stated in the passage about sorcery, it is prohibited for a descendant of Noah to engage in it. This is derived from the verses: “When you come into the land that the Lord your God gives you, you shall not learn to do like the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you one who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, a diviner, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a warlock, or a charmer, or one who consults a necromancer and a sorcerer, or directs inquiries to the dead. For whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord; and because of these abominations, the Lord your God is driving them out from before you” (Deuteronomy 18:9–12). Evidently, the Canaanites were punished for these practices; and since God would not have punished them for an action unless He first prohibited it, these practices are clearly prohibited to gentiles.

רבי אלעזר אומר אף על הכלאים מותרין בני נח ללבוש כלאים ולזרוע כלאים ואין אסורין אלא בהרבעת בהמה ובהרכבת האילן

Rabbi Elazar says: The descendants of Noah were also commanded concerning the prohibition of diverse kinds. Nevertheless, it is permitted for the descendants of Noah to wear diverse kinds of wool and linen and to sow diverse kinds of seeds together, and they are prohibited only with regard to breeding diverse species of animals and grafting diverse species of trees.

מנהני מילי אמר רבי יוחנן דאמר קרא ויצו ה׳ אלהים על האדם לאמר מכל עץ הגן אכל תאכל

§ The Gemara asks: From where are these matters, the Noahide mitzvot, derived? Rabbi Yoḥanan says: It is from that which the verse states: “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying: Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat from it, for on the day that you eat from it, you shall die” (Genesis 2:16–17).

ויצו אלו הדינין וכן הוא אומר כי ידעתיו למען אשר יצוה את בניו וגו׳

The verse is interpreted homiletically as follows: With regard to the term “and…commanded,” these are the courts of judgment; and so it states in another verse: “For I have known him, to the end that he may command his children and his household after him, that they may keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice” (Genesis 18:19).

ה׳ זו ברכת השם וכן הוא אומר ונקב שם ה׳ מות יומת אלהים זו עבודה זרה וכן הוא אומר לא יהיה לך אלהים אחרים על האדם זו שפיכות דמים וכן הוא אומר שפך דם האדם וגו׳

With regard to the term “the Lord,” this alludes to blessing the name of God; and so it states in another verse: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord…shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16). “God,” this alludes to idol worship; and so it states: “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:2). “The man,” this alludes to bloodshed; and so it states: “One who sheds the blood of man, by man his blood shall be shed” (Genesis 9:6).

לאמר זו גילוי עריות וכן הוא אומר לאמר הן ישלח איש את אשתו והלכה מאתו והיתה לאיש אחר מכל עץ הגן ולא גזל אכל תאכל ולא אבר מן החי

With regard to the term “saying,” this alludes to forbidden sexual relations; and so it states: “Saying, if a man sends his wife, and she goes from him and becomes another man’s…will that land not be greatly polluted? But you have played the harlot with many lovers” (Jeremiah 3:1). “Of every tree of the garden” alludes to the fact that one may partake only of items that are permitted to him, as they belong to him, and he may not partake of stolen items. “You may freely eat” alludes to the fact that one may eat fruit, but not a limb from a living animal.

כי אתא רבי יצחק תני איפכא ׳ויצו׳ זו עבודה זרה ׳אלהים׳ זו דינין

When Rav Yitzḥak came from Eretz Yisrael to Babylonia, he taught two of the expositions in the opposite order: “And…commanded,” this alludes to idol worship. “God,” this alludes to courts of judgment.

בשלמא אלהים זו דינין דכתיב ונקרב בעל הבית אל האלהים אלא ויצו זו עבודה זרה מאי משמע

The Gemara asks: Granted, the source for the exposition: “God [Elohim],” this alludes to courts of judgment, is clear; as it is written: “Then the master of the house shall come near the judges [ha’elohim]” (Exodus 22:7). Evidently, judges are called elohim. But with regard to the exposition: “And…commanded,” this alludes to idol worship, from where is this inferred?

רב חסדא ורב יצחק בר אבדימי חד אמר סרו מהר מן הדרך אשר צויתם עשו להם וגו׳ וחד אמר עשוק אפרים רצוץ משפט כי הואיל הלך אחרי צו

Rav Ḥisda and Rav Yitzḥak bar Avdimi both give answers to this question. One of them says that it is inferred from the verse: “They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them; they have made them a molten calf” (Exodus 32:8). The word “commanded” is mentioned here in the context of idol worship. And the other one says that it is inferred from the verse: “Ephraim is oppressed, crushed in justice, because he willingly went after filth [tzav]” (Hosea 5:11). The word tzav, used in this context in reference to idol worship, is the same Hebrew word used in the phrase: “And…commanded [vaytzav].”

מאי בינייהו איכא בינייהו נכרי שעשה עבודה זרה ולא השתחוה לה למאן דאמר עשו משעת עשייה מחייב למאן דאמר כי הואיל הלך עד דאזיל בתרה ופלח לה

The Gemara asks: What is the difference between these two sources? The Gemara answers: The practical difference between them is in the case of a gentile who fashioned an idol but did not bow to it, i.e., he has not yet worshipped it. According to the one who says that the proof is from the verse: “They have made them a molten calf,” he is rendered liable from the time of fashioning it. According to the one who says that the proof is from the verse: “Because he willingly went after filth,” he is not liable until he goes after it and worships it.

אמר רבא ומי איכא למאן דאמר נכרי שעשאה עבודה זרה ולא השתחוה לה חייב והתניא בעבודה זרה דברים שבית דין של ישראל ממיתין עליהן בן נח מוזהר עליהן אין בית דין של ישראל ממיתין עליהן אין בן נח מוזהר עליהן למעוטי מאי לאו למעוטי נכרי שעשה עבודה זרה ולא השתחוה לה

Rava says: And is there anyone who says that a gentile who fashioned an idol but did not bow to it is liable? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: With regard to idol worship, matters, i.e., transgressions, for which a Jewish court executes a Jew who commits one of them, are prohibited to a descendant of Noah. But with regard to transgressions for which a Jewish court does not execute a Jew who commits one of them, a descendant of Noah is not prohibited from doing them. To exclude what transgressions, i.e., to determine that they do not apply to gentiles, is this stated? Is it not to exclude the case of a gentile who fashioned an idol but did not bow to it? Since Jews are not executed for this transgression, gentiles should not be liable for this act either.

אמר רב פפא לא למעוטי גיפוף ונישוק

Rav Pappa says: No, it is possible that it is stated to exclude embracing and kissing the idol; neither a Jew nor a gentile who embraces or kisses an idol is liable. No proof can be brought from here with regard to a gentile who fashions an idol but does not worship it.

גיפוף ונישוק דמאי אילימא כדרכה בר קטלא הוא אלא למעוטי שלא כדרכה

The Gemara asks: Embracing and kissing an idol in what manner? If we say that he did so in its standard manner of worship, i.e., that embracing and kissing is the standard method of worshipping this idol, certainly he is liable to receive the death penalty. Rather, it is stated to exclude a case where he did not do so in its standard manner of worship.

דינין בני נח איפקוד והתניא עשר מצות נצטוו ישראל במרה שבע שקיבלו עליהן בני נח והוסיפו עליהן דינין ושבת וכיבוד אב ואם

§ The Gemara asks with regard to the list of the Noahide mitzvot: Were the descendants of Noah commanded to establish courts of judgment? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: The Jewish people were commanded to observe ten mitzvot when they were in Marah: Seven that the descendants of Noah accepted upon themselves, and God added to them the following mitzvot: Judgment, and Shabbat, and honoring one’s father and mother.

דינין דכתיב שם שם לו חק ומשפט שבת וכיבוד אב ואם דכתיב כאשר צוך ה׳ אלהיך ואמר רב יהודה כאשר צוך במרה

The mitzva of judgment was given at Marah, as it is written with regard to Marah: “There He made for them a statute and an ordinance” (Exodus 15:25). Shabbat and honoring one’s father and mother were given at Marah, as it is written concerning them in the Ten Commandments: “Observe the day of Shabbat to keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you” (Deuteronomy 5:11), and similarly: “Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God commanded you” (Deuteronomy 5:16). The phrase “as the Lord your God commanded you” indicates that they had already been commanded to observe these mitzvot previously. And Rav Yehuda says: “As the Lord your God commanded you” in Marah. Apparently, the mitzva of establishing courts is not included in the seven Noahide mitzvot.

אמר רב נחמן אמר רבה בר אבוה לא נצרכה אלא לעדה ועדים והתראה

Rav Naḥman says that Rabba bar Avuh says: Establishing courts is a Noahide mitzva. The additional mitzva that was given in Marah was necessary only with regard to the details of the halakhot of the justice system, e.g., that a defendant in a capital case is punished only by a full panel of twenty-three judges of the Sanhedrin, and only if there are two witnesses who testify concerning him, and only if he was issued a forewarning before his transgression.

אי הכי מאי והוסיפו עליהן דינין

The Gemara asks: If so, and the mitzva given at Marah is a specification of the halakhot of the justice system, what is the meaning of the sentence: And God added to them: Judgment? The details of a preexisting mitzva would not be referred to as an added mitzva.

אלא אמר רבא לא נצרכה אלא לדיני קנסות אכתי והוסיפו בדינין מיבעי ליה

Rather, Rava says: The mitzva given at Marah was necessary only with regard to the halakhot of fines. Since these are not halakhot that pertain to the basic performance of justice, but rather concern an additional fine for the guilty party, they were not given to the descendants of Noah. The Gemara asks: According to this interpretation, the language of the baraita is still inaccurate, as it should have stated: And God added to them more halakhot of judgment.

אלא אמר רב אחא בר יעקב לא נצרכה אלא להושיב בית דין בכל פלך ופלך ובכל עיר ועיר והא בני נח לא איפקוד והתניא כשם שנצטוו ישראל להושיב בתי דינין בכל פלך ופלך ובכל עיר ועיר כך נצטוו בני נח להושיב בתי דינין בכל פלך ופלך ובכל עיר ועיר

Rather, Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov says: It was necessary only for the additional requirement to establish a court in each and every province and in each and every city. The Gemara asks: And were the descendants of Noah not commanded with regard to this matter? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: Just as the Jewish people were commanded to establish courts in each and every province and in each and every city, so too, the descendants of Noah were commanded to establish courts in each and every province and in each and every city?

אלא אמר רבא האי תנא תנא דבי מנשה הוא דמפיק דך ועייל סך

Rather, Rava says: This tanna, who holds that the mitzva of establishing courts of judgment is not included in the Noahide mitzvot, is the tanna of the school of Menashe, who removes from the list of the Noahide mitzvot two mitzvot whose mnemonic is dalet, kaf, which stands for judgment [dinim] and blessing the name of God [birkat Hashem], and inserts in their place two mitzvot whose mnemonic is samekh, kaf, standing for castration [seirus] and diverse kinds [kilayim].

דתנא דבי מנשה שבע מצות נצטוו בני נח עבודה זרה וגילוי עריות ושפיכות דמים גזל ואבר מן החי סירוס וכלאים

As the school of Menashe taught: The descendants of Noah were commanded to observe seven mitzvot: The prohibitions of idol worship, and forbidden sexual relations, and blood-shed, and robbery, and eating a limb from a living animal, and castration, and diverse kinds.

רבי יהודה אומר אדם הראשון לא נצטווה אלא על עבודה זרה בלבד שנאמר ׳ויצו ה׳ אלהים על האדם׳ רבי יהודה בן בתירה אומר אף על ברכת השם ויש אומרים אף על הדינים

Rabbi Yehuda says: Adam, the first man, was commanded only with regard to the prohibition of idol worship, as it is stated: “And the Lord God commanded the man” (Genesis 2:16). Rabbi Yehuda ben Beteira says: He was also commanded concerning blessing the name of God. And some say that he was also commanded concerning establishing courts of judgment.

כמאן אזלא הא דאמר רב יהודה אמר רב אלהים אני לא תקללוני אלהים אני לא תמירוני אלהים אני יהא מוראי עליכם כמאן כיש אומרים

The Gemara asks: In accordance with whose opinion is that which Rav Yehuda says that Rav says, in interpretation of the aforementioned verse: Since I am “God,” do not curse Me; since I am “God,” do not exchange Me with another god; since I am “God,” My fear shall be upon you? The Gemara answers: In accordance with whose opinion? It is in accordance with what some say, i.e., that the phrase “and the Lord God commanded the man” includes the prohibitions against cursing God’s name and idol worship, as well as the mitzva of establishing a system of law and justice, so that the fear of God will be upon the people.

תנא דבי מנשה אי דריש ויצו אפילו הנך נמי אי לא דריש ויצו הני מנא ליה

The Gemara challenges: If the tanna of the school of Menashe interprets the verse “and the Lord God commanded” homiletically, even these mitzvot, cursing the name of God and establishing courts, should be included. And if he does not interpret the verse “and the Lord God commanded” homiletically, from where does he derive these seven mitzvot in his list?

לעולם לא דריש ויצו הני כל חדא וחדא באפי נפשיה כתיבא עבודה זרה וגילוי עריות

The Gemara answers: Actually, he does not interpret the verse “and the Lord God commanded” homiletically, but with regard to these mitzvot in his list, each and every one of them is written separately in the Torah. The prohibitions of idol worship and forbidden sexual relations are stated,

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Sanhedrin 56

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Sanhedrin 56

בכל יום דנין את העדים בכינוי יכה יוסי את יוסי

On every day of a blasphemer’s trial, when the judges judge the witnesses, i.e., interrogate the witnesses, they ask the witnesses to use an appellation for the name of God, so that they do not utter a curse of God’s name. Specifically, the witnesses would say: Let Yosei smite Yosei, as the name Yosei has four letters in Hebrew, as does the Tetragrammaton.

נגמר הדין לא הורגין בכינוי אלא מוציאין כל אדם לחוץ שואלין את הגדול שביניהן ואומר לו אמור מה ששמעת בפירוש והוא אומר והדיינין עומדין על רגליהן וקורעין ולא מאחין

When the judgment is over, and the court votes to deem the defendant guilty, they do not sentence him to death based on the testimony of the witnesses in which they used an appellation for the name of God, without having ever heard the exact wording of the curse. Rather, they remove all the people who are not required to be there from the court, so that the curse is not heard publicly, and the judges interrogate the eldest of the witnesses, and say to him: Say what you heard explicitly. And he says exactly what he heard. And the judges stand on their feet and make a tear in their garments, as an act of mourning for the desecration of the honor of God. And they do not ever fully stitch it back together again.

והשני אומר אף אני כמוהו והשלישי אומר אף אני כמוהו

And the second witness says: I too heard as he did, but he does not repeat the curse explicitly. And the third witness, in the event that there is one, says: I too heard as he did. In this manner, the repetition of the invective sentence is limited to what is absolutely necessary.

גמ׳ תנא עד שיברך שם בשם

GEMARA: The Sage taught in a baraita: A blasphemer is not liable unless he blesses, a euphemism for curses, the name of God with the name of God, e.g., by saying: Let such and such a name strike such and such a name.

מנהני מילי אמר שמואל דאמר קרא ונוקב שם וגו׳ בנקבו שם יומת

The Gemara asks: From where is this matter derived? Shmuel says: It is derived from that which the verse states: “And he who blasphemes [venokev] the name of the Lord shall be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him; the convert as well as the homeborn, when he blasphemes [benokvo] the name, he shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16). It is derived from the repetition of the phrase “blasphemes the name” that the reference is to cursing the name of God with the name of God.

ממאי דהאי נוקב לישנא דברוכי הוא מה אקב לא קבה אל ואזהרתיה מהכא אלהים לא תקלל

The Gemara asks: From where is it derived that this word nokev is a term for blessing, i.e., cursing? The Gemara answers that it is derived from the statement of Balaam, who was sent by Balak to curse the Jewish people: “How shall I curse [ekkov] whom God has not cursed?” (Numbers 23:8). And the prohibition against cursing God is derived from here: “You shall not curse God” (Exodus 22:27).

ואימא מיברז הוא דכתיב ויקב חר בדלתו ואזהרתיה מהכא ואבדתם את שמם לא תעשון כן לה׳ אלהיכם

The Gemara asks: But say that perhaps the meaning of nokev is not cursing, but rather making a hole, as it is written: “And made a hole [vayyikkov] in its lid” (II Kings 12:10). According to this, the word nokev is referring to one who makes a hole and damages the written name of God. And the prohibition against doing so is derived from here: “And you shall destroy their name out of that place. You shall not do so to the Lord your God” (Deuteronomy 12:3–4).

בעינא שם בשם וליכא

The Gemara answers: It is derived from the repetition of nokev that for one to be liable, it is necessary that his transgression involve the name of God with the name of God, and such a transgression is not possible if the reference is to making a hole.

ואימא דמנח שני שמות אהדדי ובזע להו ההוא נוקב וחוזר ונוקב הוא ואימא דחייק שם אפומא דסכינא ובזע בה ההוא חורפא דסכינא הוא דקא בזע

The Gemara challenges: But say that such a transgression is possible, as one can place two written names of God, one on top of the other, and tear through them at once. The Gemara explains: That would be defined as making a hole and again making a hole, not making a hole in one name by means of another name. The Gemara asks: But say that one can etch the name of God on the point of a knife and cut through another name with it. The Gemara answers: In that case, it is the point of the knife that is cutting, not the name of God.

אימא פרושי שמיה הוא דכתיב ויקח משה ואהרן את האנשים האלה אשר נקבו בשמות ואזהרתיה מהכא את ה׳ אלהיך תירא

The Gemara asks: Say that nokev means the utterance of the ineffable name of God. As it is written: “And Moses and Aaron took these men that are pointed out [nikkevu] by name” (Numbers 1:17). And the prohibition to do so is derived from here: “You shall fear the Lord, your God” (Deuteronomy 6:13).

חדא דבעינא שם בשם וליכא ועוד הויא ליה אזהרת עשה ואזהרת עשה לא שמה אזהרה

The Gemara answers: One answer is that for one to be liable, it is necessary that his transgression involve the name of God with the name of God, and such a transgression is not possible if the reference is to uttering the ineffable name of God. Furthermore, the prohibition derived from the verse “You shall fear the Lord, your God” is a prohibition stated as a positive mitzva, and a prohibition stated as a positive mitzva is not considered a prohibition.

ואיבעית אימא אמר קרא ויקב ויקלל למימרא דנוקב קללה הוא

The Gemara presents an alternative proof that nokev is referring to cursing: And if you wish, say instead that the verse states: “And the son of the Israelite woman blasphemed [vayyikkov] the name and cursed” (Leviticus 24:11). That is to say that the meaning of nokev is to curse.

ודילמא עד דעבד תרוייהו לא סלקא דעתך דכתיב הוצא את המקלל ולא כתיב הוצא את הנקב והמקלל שמע מינה חדא היא

The Gemara asks: But perhaps this verse does not prove that the meaning of nokev is to curse; rather, it indicates that one is not liable to be executed unless he does both, i.e., both nokev and cursing God? The Gemara answers: This shall not enter your mind, as it is written: “Bring forth the one who cursed…and stone him” (Leviticus 24:14), and it is not written: Bring forth the nokev and one who cursed. Conclude from it that it is one act and not two.

תנו רבנן ׳איש׳ מה תלמוד לומר ׳איש איש׳ לרבות את הנכרים שמוזהרין על ברכת השם כישראל ואינן נהרגין אלא בסייף שכל מיתה האמורה בבני נח אינה אלא בסייף

§ The Sages taught in a baraita with regard to the verse: “Anyone who curses his God shall bear his sin” (Leviticus 24:15), that the verse could have stated: One [ish] who curses his God. Why must the verse state: “Anyone [ish ish]”? It is to include the gentiles, who are prohibited from blessing, i.e., cursing, the name of God, just like Jews are. And they are executed for this transgression by the sword alone, as all death penalties stated with regard to the descendants of Noah are by the sword alone.

והא מהכא נפקא מהתם נפקא ה׳ זו ברכת השם

The Gemara asks: But is this halakha derived from here? Rather, it is derived from there: “And the Lord God commanded the man” (Genesis 2:16), as is stated in a baraita that will soon be quoted at length: “The Lord,” this is referring to the blessing, i.e., cursing, of the name of God. This verse concerns Adam, the first man, and is therefore binding on all of humanity.

אמר רבי יצחק נפחא לא נצרכא אלא לרבות את הכינויין ואליבא דרבי מאיר

Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa says: The verse “anyone who curses his God” is necessary only to include gentiles who curse God using the appellations for the name of God, rather than mentioning the ineffable name, and this is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Meir.

דתניא ׳איש איש כי יקלל אלהיו ונשא חטאו׳ מה תלמוד לומר והלא כבר נאמר ׳ונקב שם ה׳ מות יומת׳ לפי שנאמר ׳ונקב שם מות יומת׳ יכול לא יהא חייב אלא על שם המיוחד בלבד מניין לרבות כל הכינויין תלמוד לומר ׳איש כי יקלל אלהיו׳ מכל מקום דברי רבי מאיר

As it is taught in a baraita: Why must the verse state: “Anyone who curses his God shall bear his sin”? But isn’t it already stated: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16)? Rather, since it is stated: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord shall be put to death,” one might have thought that one will be liable only for cursing the ineffable name of God. From where is it derived that the verse includes one who curses any of the appellations as well? The verse states: “Anyone who curses his God,” to indicate that one is liable to be executed in any case. This is the statement of Rabbi Meir.

וחכמים אומרים על שם המיוחד במיתה ועל הכינויין באזהרה

And the Rabbis say: For cursing the ineffable name of God, one is punished by death, and for cursing the appellations, one is liable to receive lashes for violating a prohibition.

ופליגא דרבי מיישא דאמר רבי מיישא בן נח שבירך את השם בכינויים לרבנן חייב

The Gemara comments: And Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa, who holds that according to the Rabbis, gentiles are not liable for cursing appellations for the name of God, disagrees with the opinion of Rav Meyasha. As Rav Meyasha says: A descendant of Noah who blessed God by one of the appellations is liable to be executed even according to the opinion of the Rabbis.

מאי טעמא דאמר קרא כגר כאזרח גר ואזרח הוא דבעינן בנקבו שם אבל נכרי אפילו בכינוי

What is the reason? It is because the verse states: “The convert as well as the homeborn, when he blasphemes the name, he shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16), from which it is derived that it is only in the case of a convert or a homeborn Jew that we require the condition: “When he blasphemes the name,” i.e., he is liable to be executed only if he curses the ineffable name. But a gentile is liable to be executed even due to merely cursing an appellation.

ורבי מאיר האי כגר כאזרח מאי עביד ליה גר ואזרח בסקילה אבל נכרי בסייף סלקא דעתך אמינא הואיל ואיתרבו איתרבו קא משמע לן

The Gemara asks: And what does Rabbi Meir do with this part of the verse: “The convert as well as the homeborn”? What does he derive from it? The Gemara answers: Rabbi Meir derives that a convert or a homeborn Jew is liable to be executed by stoning for this transgression, but a gentile is executed by the sword. This exclusion is necessary as otherwise it might enter your mind to say that since gentiles are included in the halakhot of this verse, they are included in all the halakhot of blasphemy. Therefore the verse teaches us that they are not stoned.

ורבי יצחק נפחא אליבא דרבנן האי כגר כאזרח מאי עביד ליה גר ואזרח הוא דבעינן שם בשם אבל נכרי לא בעינן שם בשם

The Gemara asks: And what does Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa do with this part of the verse: “The convert as well as the homeborn,” according to the opinion of the Rabbis, since Rav Yitzḥak Nappaḥa holds that the Rabbis do not deem either a Jew or a gentile liable for cursing an appellation of God’s name? The Gemara answers: He derives that it is specifically with regard to a convert and a homeborn Jew that we require the condition that he curse a name of God by a name of God; but with regard to a gentile, we do not require that he curse a name of God by a name of God in order for him to be liable.

איש איש למה לי דיברה תורה כלשון בני אדם

The Gemara asks: Why do I need the inclusive term “anyone who curses his God,” according to the opinions that do not derive from it that a gentile is liable for cursing an appellation of God’s name? The Gemara answers: No halakha is derived from it; it is not a superfluous term, as the Torah spoke in the language of people.

תנו רבנן שבע מצות נצטוו בני נח דינין וברכת השם עבודה זרה גילוי עריות ושפיכות דמים וגזל ואבר מן החי

§ Since the halakhot of the descendants of Noah have been mentioned, a full discussion of the Noahide mitzvot is presented. The Sages taught in a baraita: The descendants of Noah, i.e., all of humanity, were commanded to observe seven mitzvot: The mitzva of establishing courts of judgment; and the prohibition against blessing, i.e., cursing, the name of God; and the prohibition of idol worship; and the prohibition against forbidden sexual relations; and the prohibition of bloodshed; and the prohibition of robbery; and the prohibition against eating a limb from a living animal.

רבי חנניה בן גמלא אומר אף על הדם מן החי רבי חידקא אומר אף על הסירוס רבי שמעון אומר אף על הכישוף

Rabbi Ḥananya ben Gamla says: The descendants of Noah are also commanded concerning the prohibition against consuming the blood from a living animal. Rabbi Ḥideka says: They are also commanded concerning castration, i.e., they are prohibited to castrate any living animal. Rabbi Shimon says: They are also commanded concerning the prohibition against engaging in sorcery.

רבי יוסי אומר כל האמור בפרשת כישוף בן נח מוזהר עליו ׳לא ימצא בך מעביר בנו ובתו באש קסם קסמים מעונן ומנחש ומכשף וחבר חבר ושאל אוב וידעני ודרש אל המתים וגו׳ ובגלל התועבת האלה ה׳ אלהיך מוריש אותם מפניך׳ ולא ענש אלא אם כן הזהיר

Rabbi Yosei says: With regard to every type of sorcery that is stated in the passage about sorcery, it is prohibited for a descendant of Noah to engage in it. This is derived from the verses: “When you come into the land that the Lord your God gives you, you shall not learn to do like the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you one who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, a diviner, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a warlock, or a charmer, or one who consults a necromancer and a sorcerer, or directs inquiries to the dead. For whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord; and because of these abominations, the Lord your God is driving them out from before you” (Deuteronomy 18:9–12). Evidently, the Canaanites were punished for these practices; and since God would not have punished them for an action unless He first prohibited it, these practices are clearly prohibited to gentiles.

רבי אלעזר אומר אף על הכלאים מותרין בני נח ללבוש כלאים ולזרוע כלאים ואין אסורין אלא בהרבעת בהמה ובהרכבת האילן

Rabbi Elazar says: The descendants of Noah were also commanded concerning the prohibition of diverse kinds. Nevertheless, it is permitted for the descendants of Noah to wear diverse kinds of wool and linen and to sow diverse kinds of seeds together, and they are prohibited only with regard to breeding diverse species of animals and grafting diverse species of trees.

מנהני מילי אמר רבי יוחנן דאמר קרא ויצו ה׳ אלהים על האדם לאמר מכל עץ הגן אכל תאכל

§ The Gemara asks: From where are these matters, the Noahide mitzvot, derived? Rabbi Yoḥanan says: It is from that which the verse states: “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying: Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat from it, for on the day that you eat from it, you shall die” (Genesis 2:16–17).

ויצו אלו הדינין וכן הוא אומר כי ידעתיו למען אשר יצוה את בניו וגו׳

The verse is interpreted homiletically as follows: With regard to the term “and…commanded,” these are the courts of judgment; and so it states in another verse: “For I have known him, to the end that he may command his children and his household after him, that they may keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice” (Genesis 18:19).

ה׳ זו ברכת השם וכן הוא אומר ונקב שם ה׳ מות יומת אלהים זו עבודה זרה וכן הוא אומר לא יהיה לך אלהים אחרים על האדם זו שפיכות דמים וכן הוא אומר שפך דם האדם וגו׳

With regard to the term “the Lord,” this alludes to blessing the name of God; and so it states in another verse: “And he who blasphemes the name of the Lord…shall be put to death” (Leviticus 24:16). “God,” this alludes to idol worship; and so it states: “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:2). “The man,” this alludes to bloodshed; and so it states: “One who sheds the blood of man, by man his blood shall be shed” (Genesis 9:6).

לאמר זו גילוי עריות וכן הוא אומר לאמר הן ישלח איש את אשתו והלכה מאתו והיתה לאיש אחר מכל עץ הגן ולא גזל אכל תאכל ולא אבר מן החי

With regard to the term “saying,” this alludes to forbidden sexual relations; and so it states: “Saying, if a man sends his wife, and she goes from him and becomes another man’s…will that land not be greatly polluted? But you have played the harlot with many lovers” (Jeremiah 3:1). “Of every tree of the garden” alludes to the fact that one may partake only of items that are permitted to him, as they belong to him, and he may not partake of stolen items. “You may freely eat” alludes to the fact that one may eat fruit, but not a limb from a living animal.

כי אתא רבי יצחק תני איפכא ׳ויצו׳ זו עבודה זרה ׳אלהים׳ זו דינין

When Rav Yitzḥak came from Eretz Yisrael to Babylonia, he taught two of the expositions in the opposite order: “And…commanded,” this alludes to idol worship. “God,” this alludes to courts of judgment.

בשלמא אלהים זו דינין דכתיב ונקרב בעל הבית אל האלהים אלא ויצו זו עבודה זרה מאי משמע

The Gemara asks: Granted, the source for the exposition: “God [Elohim],” this alludes to courts of judgment, is clear; as it is written: “Then the master of the house shall come near the judges [ha’elohim]” (Exodus 22:7). Evidently, judges are called elohim. But with regard to the exposition: “And…commanded,” this alludes to idol worship, from where is this inferred?

רב חסדא ורב יצחק בר אבדימי חד אמר סרו מהר מן הדרך אשר צויתם עשו להם וגו׳ וחד אמר עשוק אפרים רצוץ משפט כי הואיל הלך אחרי צו

Rav Ḥisda and Rav Yitzḥak bar Avdimi both give answers to this question. One of them says that it is inferred from the verse: “They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them; they have made them a molten calf” (Exodus 32:8). The word “commanded” is mentioned here in the context of idol worship. And the other one says that it is inferred from the verse: “Ephraim is oppressed, crushed in justice, because he willingly went after filth [tzav]” (Hosea 5:11). The word tzav, used in this context in reference to idol worship, is the same Hebrew word used in the phrase: “And…commanded [vaytzav].”

מאי בינייהו איכא בינייהו נכרי שעשה עבודה זרה ולא השתחוה לה למאן דאמר עשו משעת עשייה מחייב למאן דאמר כי הואיל הלך עד דאזיל בתרה ופלח לה

The Gemara asks: What is the difference between these two sources? The Gemara answers: The practical difference between them is in the case of a gentile who fashioned an idol but did not bow to it, i.e., he has not yet worshipped it. According to the one who says that the proof is from the verse: “They have made them a molten calf,” he is rendered liable from the time of fashioning it. According to the one who says that the proof is from the verse: “Because he willingly went after filth,” he is not liable until he goes after it and worships it.

אמר רבא ומי איכא למאן דאמר נכרי שעשאה עבודה זרה ולא השתחוה לה חייב והתניא בעבודה זרה דברים שבית דין של ישראל ממיתין עליהן בן נח מוזהר עליהן אין בית דין של ישראל ממיתין עליהן אין בן נח מוזהר עליהן למעוטי מאי לאו למעוטי נכרי שעשה עבודה זרה ולא השתחוה לה

Rava says: And is there anyone who says that a gentile who fashioned an idol but did not bow to it is liable? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: With regard to idol worship, matters, i.e., transgressions, for which a Jewish court executes a Jew who commits one of them, are prohibited to a descendant of Noah. But with regard to transgressions for which a Jewish court does not execute a Jew who commits one of them, a descendant of Noah is not prohibited from doing them. To exclude what transgressions, i.e., to determine that they do not apply to gentiles, is this stated? Is it not to exclude the case of a gentile who fashioned an idol but did not bow to it? Since Jews are not executed for this transgression, gentiles should not be liable for this act either.

אמר רב פפא לא למעוטי גיפוף ונישוק

Rav Pappa says: No, it is possible that it is stated to exclude embracing and kissing the idol; neither a Jew nor a gentile who embraces or kisses an idol is liable. No proof can be brought from here with regard to a gentile who fashions an idol but does not worship it.

גיפוף ונישוק דמאי אילימא כדרכה בר קטלא הוא אלא למעוטי שלא כדרכה

The Gemara asks: Embracing and kissing an idol in what manner? If we say that he did so in its standard manner of worship, i.e., that embracing and kissing is the standard method of worshipping this idol, certainly he is liable to receive the death penalty. Rather, it is stated to exclude a case where he did not do so in its standard manner of worship.

דינין בני נח איפקוד והתניא עשר מצות נצטוו ישראל במרה שבע שקיבלו עליהן בני נח והוסיפו עליהן דינין ושבת וכיבוד אב ואם

§ The Gemara asks with regard to the list of the Noahide mitzvot: Were the descendants of Noah commanded to establish courts of judgment? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: The Jewish people were commanded to observe ten mitzvot when they were in Marah: Seven that the descendants of Noah accepted upon themselves, and God added to them the following mitzvot: Judgment, and Shabbat, and honoring one’s father and mother.

דינין דכתיב שם שם לו חק ומשפט שבת וכיבוד אב ואם דכתיב כאשר צוך ה׳ אלהיך ואמר רב יהודה כאשר צוך במרה

The mitzva of judgment was given at Marah, as it is written with regard to Marah: “There He made for them a statute and an ordinance” (Exodus 15:25). Shabbat and honoring one’s father and mother were given at Marah, as it is written concerning them in the Ten Commandments: “Observe the day of Shabbat to keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you” (Deuteronomy 5:11), and similarly: “Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God commanded you” (Deuteronomy 5:16). The phrase “as the Lord your God commanded you” indicates that they had already been commanded to observe these mitzvot previously. And Rav Yehuda says: “As the Lord your God commanded you” in Marah. Apparently, the mitzva of establishing courts is not included in the seven Noahide mitzvot.

אמר רב נחמן אמר רבה בר אבוה לא נצרכה אלא לעדה ועדים והתראה

Rav Naḥman says that Rabba bar Avuh says: Establishing courts is a Noahide mitzva. The additional mitzva that was given in Marah was necessary only with regard to the details of the halakhot of the justice system, e.g., that a defendant in a capital case is punished only by a full panel of twenty-three judges of the Sanhedrin, and only if there are two witnesses who testify concerning him, and only if he was issued a forewarning before his transgression.

אי הכי מאי והוסיפו עליהן דינין

The Gemara asks: If so, and the mitzva given at Marah is a specification of the halakhot of the justice system, what is the meaning of the sentence: And God added to them: Judgment? The details of a preexisting mitzva would not be referred to as an added mitzva.

אלא אמר רבא לא נצרכה אלא לדיני קנסות אכתי והוסיפו בדינין מיבעי ליה

Rather, Rava says: The mitzva given at Marah was necessary only with regard to the halakhot of fines. Since these are not halakhot that pertain to the basic performance of justice, but rather concern an additional fine for the guilty party, they were not given to the descendants of Noah. The Gemara asks: According to this interpretation, the language of the baraita is still inaccurate, as it should have stated: And God added to them more halakhot of judgment.

אלא אמר רב אחא בר יעקב לא נצרכה אלא להושיב בית דין בכל פלך ופלך ובכל עיר ועיר והא בני נח לא איפקוד והתניא כשם שנצטוו ישראל להושיב בתי דינין בכל פלך ופלך ובכל עיר ועיר כך נצטוו בני נח להושיב בתי דינין בכל פלך ופלך ובכל עיר ועיר

Rather, Rav Aḥa bar Ya’akov says: It was necessary only for the additional requirement to establish a court in each and every province and in each and every city. The Gemara asks: And were the descendants of Noah not commanded with regard to this matter? But isn’t it taught in a baraita: Just as the Jewish people were commanded to establish courts in each and every province and in each and every city, so too, the descendants of Noah were commanded to establish courts in each and every province and in each and every city?

אלא אמר רבא האי תנא תנא דבי מנשה הוא דמפיק דך ועייל סך

Rather, Rava says: This tanna, who holds that the mitzva of establishing courts of judgment is not included in the Noahide mitzvot, is the tanna of the school of Menashe, who removes from the list of the Noahide mitzvot two mitzvot whose mnemonic is dalet, kaf, which stands for judgment [dinim] and blessing the name of God [birkat Hashem], and inserts in their place two mitzvot whose mnemonic is samekh, kaf, standing for castration [seirus] and diverse kinds [kilayim].

דתנא דבי מנשה שבע מצות נצטוו בני נח עבודה זרה וגילוי עריות ושפיכות דמים גזל ואבר מן החי סירוס וכלאים

As the school of Menashe taught: The descendants of Noah were commanded to observe seven mitzvot: The prohibitions of idol worship, and forbidden sexual relations, and blood-shed, and robbery, and eating a limb from a living animal, and castration, and diverse kinds.

רבי יהודה אומר אדם הראשון לא נצטווה אלא על עבודה זרה בלבד שנאמר ׳ויצו ה׳ אלהים על האדם׳ רבי יהודה בן בתירה אומר אף על ברכת השם ויש אומרים אף על הדינים

Rabbi Yehuda says: Adam, the first man, was commanded only with regard to the prohibition of idol worship, as it is stated: “And the Lord God commanded the man” (Genesis 2:16). Rabbi Yehuda ben Beteira says: He was also commanded concerning blessing the name of God. And some say that he was also commanded concerning establishing courts of judgment.

כמאן אזלא הא דאמר רב יהודה אמר רב אלהים אני לא תקללוני אלהים אני לא תמירוני אלהים אני יהא מוראי עליכם כמאן כיש אומרים

The Gemara asks: In accordance with whose opinion is that which Rav Yehuda says that Rav says, in interpretation of the aforementioned verse: Since I am “God,” do not curse Me; since I am “God,” do not exchange Me with another god; since I am “God,” My fear shall be upon you? The Gemara answers: In accordance with whose opinion? It is in accordance with what some say, i.e., that the phrase “and the Lord God commanded the man” includes the prohibitions against cursing God’s name and idol worship, as well as the mitzva of establishing a system of law and justice, so that the fear of God will be upon the people.

תנא דבי מנשה אי דריש ויצו אפילו הנך נמי אי לא דריש ויצו הני מנא ליה

The Gemara challenges: If the tanna of the school of Menashe interprets the verse “and the Lord God commanded” homiletically, even these mitzvot, cursing the name of God and establishing courts, should be included. And if he does not interpret the verse “and the Lord God commanded” homiletically, from where does he derive these seven mitzvot in his list?

לעולם לא דריש ויצו הני כל חדא וחדא באפי נפשיה כתיבא עבודה זרה וגילוי עריות

The Gemara answers: Actually, he does not interpret the verse “and the Lord God commanded” homiletically, but with regard to these mitzvot in his list, each and every one of them is written separately in the Torah. The prohibitions of idol worship and forbidden sexual relations are stated,

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