Gemara Review, Masechet Sanhedrin
By Ari Gilder, 3-201א
Well, I’ve decided to write this review for the final. I hope you make use of it properly and distribute it freely among whoever needs it. I wish everyone the best of luck on the final! Please note…this is not a direct translation from the Gemara, but only an outline of how the Gemara is structured. Don’t use this without your notes to study. And don’t take advantage of this review.
I. Daf Lamed Zayin, Amud Alef
1. How do they threaten witnesses before a trial?
2. Witnesses can’t testify based on suspicion/circumstantial evidence (=omed) or rumor even from another witness or a loyal person.
3. Witnesses will be interrogated about the actual case and minute details.
4. Life & death trials are not like monetary trials.
5. An entire world is dependant upon every individual.
a) Kayin and Hevel: “” – plural, to say that his and his blood and his descendants’. (Also that the blood was all over the place)
6. This is why Man was created alone:
a) A person is worth a world – if you kill a person, you kill a world, and if you save a person to save a world.
b) Peace between people – so people won’t say “my father’s better than yours”
c) So apikorsim (minim) won’t say that there are many gods (if 2 men were created, they would say there are 2 gods).
d) To greaten Hashem’s glory – man uses one mold to fashion a coin, but Hashem uses one man to fashion the human race.
7. Because of all this, a person must say “Bishvili nivra ha’olam” – the world was created for me.
8. In case the witnesses say “why should we bother with his issue?” it says in the Torah that they must testify.
9. If they’re content not to testify because they don’t want to be responsible for a man’s death, they should remember the pasuk “.”
1. What is omed? If he saw someone chasing another person, and he followed them, and he the murderer with a knife in his hand dripping blood and the corpse dead on the floor – it’s as if he saw nothing.
2. R’ Shimon ben Shetach had this happen to him once, and he said to the murderer “Evil one! Either you or I killed him, and I don’t have the power to convict you for murder (Tosafot: There was a second witness with him, and R’ Shimon ben Shetach’s testimony would not qualify, and you need 2 witnesses, therefore he could not convict him, and the second person wasn’t mentioned because of R’ Shimon’s honor). Hashem will pay back the murderer for his action.” They didn’t move until a snake came and bit the murderer and killed him.
3. Why a snake? Isn’t a murderer liable to be killed by sword?
4. Because according to Rav Yosef: after the Beit HaMikdash was destroyed, the actual 4 punishments of a court were not in effect, but the verdict that he deserved was.
a) Whoever deserved stoning had an animal trample him or fell from the roof.
b) Whoever deserved burning fell into a fire or was bit by a snake.
c) Whoever deserved death by sword was given over to the government or was attacked by bandits.
d) Whoever deserved hanging either drowned or choked to death.
5. Why a snake, doesn’t he deserve the equivalent of a sword (and not of burning)? Because he did a previous sin which made him liable for burning, and when you have two death penalties, you get the more severe.
II. Daf Ayin Bet, Amud Alef
1. Whoever comes to rob in secrecy is judged according to what he wishes to do (i.e. you can kill him because he would end up killing you).
2. If he came in secrecy and broke a barrel, he must pay if “ain lo damim” (=he is considered dead already) but not if “damim lo” (=he isn’t considered dead, and you may not kill him).
1. What do we need this for? So that if the owner stands silently on the side thinking “if I try to stop him, he’s going to kill me” – the owner should know that he’s allowed to kill the robber.
C. Gemara from “Tanu Rabanan Ain lo damim”
1. Breita I: You can kill only if you’re positive the robber intends to kill you. If you have any doubts, don’t kill him.
2. Breita II: You can’t kill him if you’re positive that he does not intend to kill you. If you have any doubts, you can kill him.
3. Contradiction: what happens if he doubts? Does he kill him or not?
4. Answer: Breita I talks about a father robbing his son (don’t kill him unless you’re positive he’s come to kill you) and Breita II talks about a son (or a stranger) robbing his father (you can kill him unless you’re positive he won’t kill you).
5. Rav said: anyone who comes in secrecy, you should kill except for R’ Chanina bar Shila, because he is a tzaddik, and if he were to rob me, I would know that he has mercy on me like a father on his son.
D. Gemara from “Tanu Rabanan Damim lo” (Ayin Bet, Amud Bet)
1. “Damim lo” (=don’t kill him) applies both on weekday and Shabbat.
2. “Ain lo damim” (=kill him) applies both on weekday and Shabbat.
3. The “ain lo damim” chiddush we need, because we would have thought that since the Beit Din doesn’t kill on Shabbat, maybe we can’t kill him on Shabbat, therefore we need this breita.
4. What do we need the “damim lo” breita for though? Isn’t it obvious you wouldn’t kill him on Shabbat?
5. Rav Sheshet: You don’t need it, except to teach that if the wall falls on him, you have to move it and save him even on Shabbat.
E. Gemara from “Tanu Rabanan Vehuka Vamet”
1. “Vehuka” applies to every person.
2. “Vamet” applies to any type of death.
3. “Vehuka” makes sense because you would have thought that since only the owner would defend his property, and should be the only one allowed to kill him, therefore we learn that anyone can kill him.
4. Why “Vamet?” Why can’t we just learn from rotzeach from the pasuk “?” (= we learn from that pasuk that if you can’t give him the death he deserves, i.e. by a sword, you are allowed kill him any way you want).
5. Because we can’t – rotzeach and goel hadam are , and we cannot learn from them.
F. Gemara from “Tanu Rabanan Machteret”
1. Breita I: Where do we learn that if you find the robber in your yard or roof that you’re allowed to kill him? From the words “Im yimatzeh haganav.” Then what do we need “machteret” for? Because most robbers come in secrecy.
2. Breita II: Same thing, except it says we need “machteret” to say that his act of doing it in secrecy is his halachic warning (Rashi: because he actively tries with his full intent, he knows that what he is doing is wrong, and that is his warning).
3. Rav Huna said: If there are complications during childbirth and the baby is causing them (baby = rodef), you can kill the baby because a rodef doesn’t require a halachic warning (you usually need a warning before you can punish/kill them), and it doesn’t matter if it’s a young child or an adult.
4. Rav Chisda asked Rav Huna: Why does it say in another breita that if the baby stuck his head out, you can’t kill him because you don’t kill one life to save another? Isn’t the baby a rodef?
5. Answer: The baby itself is not a rodef, but the mother is [as if she is] being chased by Shamayim.
6. Attempted proof by a Breita for Rav Huna: Whoever is chasing a murderer should say to him “Beware, he is a Jew and the Torah said that whoever kills a person will be killed himself and I have a right to save the victim by your blood.” This Breita does not indicate any kabalah (=acknowledgement) of the halachic warning, therefore we would say it corresponds to what Rav Huna said, that a rodef does not need a real halachic warning (that needs to be acknowledged).
7. Disproof: This Breita is according to Rav Yossi ben Yehuda, who says that nothing (not Shabbat, not rodef, not anything) needs a halachic warning with any acknowledgement as long as he is a Jew (because a Jew knows what he is doing is wrong), but he only needs an advisory warning (meaning, just to tell him not to do it) without any acknowledgement.
8. Breita against Rav Huna: If a person is chasing a murder and says to him “Beware, he is a Jew and the Torah said that whoever kills a person will be killed himself and I have a right to save the victim by your blood,” if the murderer says “I know,” then the murderer is not liable for death. If he said “I know, and I’m doing so anyway,” he is liable for death. This appears as an acknowledgement to a [halachic] warning for a rodef, therefore should it not go against what Rav Huna said?
9. Disproof I: This Breita was said in a case when the person chasing isn’t able to kill the murderer, for example the murderer was across the river, and the only reason he is giving him this warning is not so that he can kill the murderer, but so he can bring the murderer to a Beit Din and have them kill him, and for that he does require a halachic warning with acknowledgement.
10. Disproof II: Or, you can say that this Breita goes according to the person who says “machteret” is writing because his secrecy is his warning (see #2).
III. Daf Ayin Gimel, Amud Alef
1. These are who we save with their lives: a person chasing after someone to kill him, or after a male (to rape him), or after an enagaged woman (to rape her).
2. We do not save a person going to rape an animal, or someone going to be mechalel Shabbat, or a person who worships idols.
Rashi: “Save with their lives” – this means save the person chasing (rodef) from doing the sin.
Tosafot: The Mishnah makes it sound like we save the victim from the rodef, but it’s not possible to use that explanation for an animal or Shabbat – we don’t “save the Shabbat” from the person. Therefore, we should explain it that we’re saving the rodef from committing the sin. However, there is a question why with an engaged woman, it says “lehatizlah b’nafsha” (i.e. saving her, not the rodef).
1. Where do we learn that you can save a person chasing after another to kill him with his life?
a) From the pasuk “”
b) Disproof: That’s not what the pasuk is for. It’s for the breita that says “a person who sees his friend drowning or an animal dragging him must save his friend.”
c) From a kal vachomer: if with an engaged woman where the rodef comes to violate her, the matzil is allowed to kill the rodef, obviously with a murderer, who comes to do the ultimate violation of killing him, the matzil should be allowed to kill the rodef.
d) Disproof: we don’t give any punishments from kal vachomers.
e) From a heikesh between naarah meorasah (engaged woman) and rotzeach (murderer) in the pasuk: . The case of the engaged woman teaches that a you can kill a person chasing to murder. (The case of murderer teaches that you should die instead of sinning with an engaged woman).
Tosafot: If you were to say we don’t need this heikesh, but we can learn it from “Vehuka bekol adam” (II.E.1.), there it is only a permission to kill the rodef, but here it is a requirement.
2. Where do we learn that you can save a rodef after an engaged woman? From the pasuk “”. If there is a savior (=moshia), he has to save her even by the life of the rodef.
3. Why do we learn the breita “a person who sees his friend drowning or an animal dragging him must save his friend,” from the pasuk ? Can’t we learn from Aveidat Gufo (literally, “he lost his body” – which is the case here) from where it says - meaning that you have to help him out if he’s drowning?
4. Because if we learned it from there, we would just know that a person himself has to save the victim. But from “lo taamod” we learn that he has to actively spend money and do all that he can to save him.
Tosafot: We need both – one we learn that it’s a mitzvat aseh, the other is a mitzvat lo ta’aseh.
5. A Breita adds to the Mishnah: you can save anyone who deserves death by Beit Din or karet by their lives. However, a Cohen or Cohen Gadol who runs to rape one of the women he is not allowed to marry (widow, divorced, etc.) we do not save by his life. If the rape was committed already, you don’t kill him. If the woman says not to kill him (because she is afraid of the man), you don’t kill him.
IV. Daf Ayin Daled, Amud Alef
A. Question on Ayin Gimel, Amud Bet (underlined)
1. We learn from a Breita that a person who comes to rape his sister must still pay the fee that one must pay if he rapes any unmarried woman. But we know that he is liable for death! Shouldn’t he be exempt from paying because of (=K.L.B.M), meaning doesn’t he have to get the more strict punishment only?
B. Gemara, Ayin Daled, Amud Alef, from “Abayei Amar”
1. Abayei says that this is in a case where the matzil can save the rodef by injuring him, and not killing him.
a) This is due to R’ Yonatan ben Shaul, who says that if you can save the rodef by injuring him, but instead you kill him, you are a murderer.
b) R’ Yonatan’s reasoning is from the pasuk (which R’ Elazar says is a ‘fight to the death,’ and even if no one is killed, he still has to pay for the baby).
c) If we were to say that you aren’t permitted to kill him if you can just injure him, there isn’t any violation of K.L.B.M. here, and he can pay the fee with no problem.
d) But, if you say that you can kill him no matter what, even though he didn’t, there is a problem because of , which means that if you did something by accident, which if you would have done on purpose would have landed you the death penalty or karet (but you aren’t because you did it by accident), you don’t have to pay any penalty fees.
e) Therefore R’ Yonatan must be right.
2. What if the only reason that he gets both death and pays the fee is because he’s liable for death because of one person, but liable for the fee to the pregnant woman? Maybe K.L.B.M. only applies when the death and fee are because of the same person/thing?
3. This can’t be because Rava says that if a rodef was running and he broke the furniture of the victim or of any other stranger (i.e. a second uninvolved person), he doesn’t have to pay because of K.L.B.M.
a) If the victim broke the rodef’s stuff, he doesn’t have to pay so that he shouldn’t have to worry about paying for it after he saves himself from the rodef.
b) If the victim broke a stranger’s stuff, he has to pay because he’s using someone else’s things to save himself.
c) If the matzil/savior broke either a stranger’s, the victim’s or the rodef’s stuff, he doesn’t have to pay only so that people won’t be discouraged from saving their friends because they might have to pay.
4. R’ Shimon bar Yochai learns that a person you may save going to worship idols by his life from a kal vachomer: in the case of an engaged woman where you can save the rodef and there is only a simple violation, shouldn’t you obviously be able to save him in avodah zarah which is the ultimate violation of the soul.
5. But don’t we not give punishments based on kal vachomers? R’ Shimon believed that we do.
6. R’ Elazar, R’ Shimon’s son, says that you can save a person who is going to be mechalel Shabbat by his life, because Shabbat is connected to avodah zarah by a g’zeirah shavah, and he followed his father’s opinion that you do give punishments based on kal vachomers (i.e. the one between avodah zarah and engaged woman).
V. Daf Ayin Daled, Amud Bet
A. Gemara from “Bau Mineih m’Rav Ami”
1. Does a non-Jew (who has to keep 7 mitzvot Bnei Noach) have to give his life and not sin in one of the 7 mitzvot? (the 7 are: ever min hachai, beit din, murder, adultery, robbery, birkat Hashem, idol worship)
a) Abayei: No – they were only given 7 mitzvot, and if they had to, it would be considered and 8th mitzvah.
b) Rava: Yes – it wouldn’t be considered an 8th mitzvah, but just an “accessory” or addendum to the mitzvah (avizeraiyhu).
2. Rav Ada bar Ahava: When Na’aman (who was a ger toshav – accepts upon himself the 7 mitzvot Bnei Noach) was telling Elisha that he would be forced to worship avodah zarah along with the king, otherwise they would kill him, Elisha told him “lech l’shalom” – go in peace – but if Na’aman was supposed to die and not sin, why did Elisha tell him to go in peace? This is a proof for Abayei, that he isn’t required to die.
3. Answer: Because Na’aman was going to worship idols in private, i.e. in front of other non-Jews, but the requirement of giving your life instead of sinning only applies when it’s in public, i.e. in front of Jews.
Tosafot: Maybe you would say the pasuk “” (where we learn that we don’t give your life for a sin) only applies to Jews, and if this pasuk wasn’t there, Jews would have to die for any sin, even something like kashrut. So with non-Jews, where they don’t have the pasuk for them, obviously they have to die for any sin. However, this can’t be right because the only we need the pasuk for is not to teach us that you don’t give your life – that’s a logical thing – but we need it to teach us that you do give your life instead of murder, giluy arayot and avodah zarah. Therefore, the logical argument applies to the non-Jews as well. Or, perhaps you may say that it doesn’t because a non-Jew has less opportunities to do mitzvot, and therefore needs more opportunities to show his loyalty to Hashem, i.e. die instead of sin.
4. There was a case of a man who saw a woman and became sick, and they asked the doctors what to do. The doctors told them that he won’t live unless he sleeps with the woman. They asked the Rabbis what to do, and they said that he should die rather than sleep with her, or even see her naked or speak with her privately.
5. R’ Yaakov bar Idi and R’ Shmuel bar Nachmani disagree about the details of this case.
a) One says that she was a married woman – it makes sense if she was married, because he is dying rather than sinning with giluy arayot.
b) The other says that she was a single woman – which is difficult to understand, because why should he have to die if there’s no real sin?
i. R’ Papa says so that there won’t be any damage to her and her family’s reputation.
ii. R’ Acha bar R’ Eika says that so there won’t be a situation of comfort where any guy can just feel sick and demand that he sleep with a girl that he wants.
6. And what about if he married her (assuming she is single), wouldn’t that take care of all the problems? No, because the guy wouldn’t be satisfied – because according to R’ Yitzchak, after the Beit HaMikdash was destroyed, a man doesn’t desire his wife so much due to worries, and the desire was given to people who sin with giluy arayot – meaning that the only reason he wants her, is because he can’t have her, and anything you can’t have always looks better than it is.
VI. Daf Ayin Vav, Amud Bet
1. People who are killed by sword: a murderer, the inhabitants of an Ir Nidachat, a murderer who used a stone or metal weapon, and a person who holds his friend underwater and he has no other way out, and if he dies, the murderer is liable for death.
2. If he pushed his friend into the water and his friend could get out, but didn’t and died, the person who pushed does not get death. If he sent a dog or snake to kill him, the sender doesn’t get death.
3. If he takes a snake and presses its fangs into the other guy’s arm, R’ Yehuda says he does get death, but the Rabbis say no.
1. Why doesn’t the first pasuk say the word “yad” (i.e. giving it a shiur, or a specific measurement to be considered a “kli barzel”) for metal?
2. Because a metal object is sharp and it can kill no matter the size, and therefore needs no shiur.
C. Gemara from “Reisha Rabuta”
1. What’s the difference between the two cases in the Mishnah, where he holds his friend underwater (A.1) and he pushes his friend in (A.2)?
2. You need the first case to teach us that even though he wasn’t the one he pushed the person into the water, and you might have thought that he isn’t liable for death, he is considered the murderer since his energy was used to kill him, and gets death (=metzamtzem).
3. You need the second case to teach us that even though he pushed him in, you may have thought that he would be liable for death, but instead he isn’t since the person was able to get out (=grama).
4. Where do we learn that the in first case he gets death (i.e. where do we know that metzamtzem is liable)? From the extra pasuk .
5. In the case of a person who tied his friend’s animal in the desert and the animal died from the sun, Ravina and Rav Acha bar Rav disagree.
a) Ravina says he must pay for the animal because of a kal vachomer – in rotzeach where the punishments for accident and on purpose are not the same, and metzamtzem is liable, all the more so shouldn’t he be liable in nezikin where the punishments for accident and on purpose are not the same?
i .What about the rule that we don’t punish based on kal vachomers? That only applies to issues with life & death, not monetary issues.
b) Rav Acha bar Rav says that the pasuk says “mot yumat hamakeh, rotzeach hu” – meaning that in rotzeach he is liable, but not in nezikin.
6. Rava says that if you tie up a person and he dies from hunger, you don’t get the death penalty.
Tosafot explains that even if he was hungry to begin with, the only reason he dies is because the hunger strengthens as time progresses and the hunger isn’t what kills him, but the lack of necessary nutrients at the instant before he dies is what kills him.
7. If you tie up a person under the
sun (like a desert) or in the cold (like
8. However, if you tied him in a place where the sun or the cold were going to come (but weren’t there yet) you don’t get death.
Tosafot: The Torah only spoke about the case of metzamtzem getting death in a case where the injury already started (i.e. the sun was already there). It appears that if he tied him inside a house and then brought him outside to a place where the sun is going to come, that he should be liable for death according to the person who says ‘isho mishum chitzav’ (sending fire is like sending your own arrow, as opposed to ‘isho mishum mamono’ which is like sending your animal to kill). There is no difference between sending fire to a person (which we know is liable) and bringing a person close to the fire. And if he were to tie a person near a body of water stopped by a dam, and the person is located far away from the water, he would be exempt from death even if he tied him in a house and brought him there, because the only thing that’s killing him is the force of the water pushing forward (koach sheni – as opposed to if he is right near the dam, the force of the water after the removal of the dam is what kills him, koach rishon, and the koach sheni is weaker because it’s sort of like a ‘chain reaction’). This is because it’s just like the case where you shoot an arrow at someone, and while the arrow is in midair, you remove their shield – which we know that he doesn’t die.
9. If you tie someone in front of a lion, you are exempt from death. If you tie him in front of mosquitoes and they kill him, you are liable for death. R’ Ashi says that even in the case of mosquitoes, he is exempt from death because it’s similar to the case of starvation – it’s not the mosquitoes in the beginning that kill him, but rather the last ones are what kills him (and in essence the last mosquitoes, the “murderer,” are not present yet).
Rashi: In the case with the lion, he is exempt because your action of tying makes no difference – the person wouldn’t have been able to save himself from the lion even if he wasn’t tied.
Tosafot: The only difference between the case with the lion and the case with the mosquitoes is that the reason he is exempt with the lion, is because the injury hasn’t begun yet (see previous Tosafot), because if it began (i.e. the lion jumped on him already), he would not have been able to tie him down. However, the mosquitoes can begin to attack him already.
10. In the case of if a person traps his friend under a bathtub, and the friend dies from no air, or if he broke the roof and he died from cold, Rava and R’ Zeira disagree, one says he is exempt, the other says he is liable.
a) Maybe Rava says he is exempt because this case is similar to starvation (in which Rava says he is exempt) – it’s the lack of oxygen and the instant before death that kills him (i.e. the “murderer” is not present yet).
b) No, maybe it’s the opposite, maybe R’ Zeira says he is exempt, because R’ Zeira said that if you lock a person in a sealed marble house and you light a candle, you are liable, because the candle uses up the oxygen more quickly. However, if you don’t light a candle, you are exempt. This is similar because you aren’t lighting a candle when you hold the bathtub over him, but yet he dies from lack of oxygen.
c) The only reason R’ Zeira says he is exempt with no candle in a marble house is because the house is large and roomy, and has more space for air, and the cause of death doesn’t come for a while. However, under a bathtub, there is not much space, and therefore the cause of death comes quicker, and therefore you would be liable according to R’ Zeira and exempt according to Rava.
d) Because of this relationship, we would say that in the case of starvation, R’ Zeira would say that he is liable for death, against what Rava says.
VII. Daf Ayin Chet, Amud Alef
A. Gemara from “Tanu Rabanan Hikahu Asarah”
1. In a case where 10 people attacked a man and killed him, all 10 are exempt from death whether they attacked at the same time, or they each did it consecutively (one after another). R’ Yehuda ben Beteira says that if they did it consecutively, the last person is liable for death.
2. Rabanan and R’ Yehuda ben Beteira’s reasoning come from the same pasuk: – Rabanan say that “kol nefesh” literally means all of the nefesh. R’ Yehuda ben Beteira says that if you take any part of the nefesh you are liable.
3. Rava says that everyone agrees that if you kill a treifa (a person with a defect or deformity), you are exempt from death. Also, if you kill a person who is going to die naturally (gosses b’ydei shamayim), you are liable for death. The only question is what happens if you kill a person who is going to die because he was struck by a person (gosses b’ydei adam) – which is exactly our case.
a) Rabanan say that gosses b’ydei adam is similar to the case of treifa (and therefore exempt) because in gosses b’ydei adam, there isn’t any real ‘action’ considered to be done, but there is in the other two.
b) R’ Yehuda ben Beteira says that gosses b’ydei adam is similar to the case of gosses b’ydei shamayim (and therefore liable), because in treifa, there is a defect in the person’s organs, but there is none in the other two cases.
4. Breita: What do we need the pasuk for? Perhaps to say that if you struck a person lightly, so that it won’t kill him, and another person comes along and kills him, that person is liable for death? No, this can’t be, because it’s obvious! Rather, it comes to tell us that if you struck him so that it would end up killing him, and another person came and killed him before he died, that person is liable for death (i.e. gosses b’ydei adam). This breita has no name of who said it, and we know that most breitas with no name are according to R’ Yehuda ben Beteira.
5. Rava says: If a Beit Din saw a treifa kill a person, the treifa is liable for death, because if the Beit Din saw, they don’t need witnesses and they have to exterminate the evil from within the nation. But if the Beit Din did not see it, and they require witnesses, the treifa is exempt from death. Why? Because if the witnesses were to testify, their testimony would not qualify because it isn’t considered (testimony that if the witnesses were lying, we could punish them with the same punishment they intended to give to the defendant), and every testimony that is not is not considered testimony at all.
Rashi: It’s not considered testimony with which we could punish lying witnesses, because they wanted to kill a person who is already considered dead (the treifa), and we can’t kill him, therefore we wouldn’t be able to kill the witnesses.
Tosafot: If the Beit Din saw the treifa murdering during the day, he is liable. But if they saw him at night, he is exempt because we don’t judge him right away at night, and if not, we need witnesses, but the witnesses’ testimony is not , therefore he is exempt from death.
B. Gemara from “Shisah bo et Hakelev”
1. Why is there a disagreement between R’ Yehuda and Rabanan about if he makes a snake bite his friend (see VI.A.3)?
a) R’ Yehuda claims that a snake’s venom is automatically injected once it sinks its fangs in. Therefore, the person holding the snake is considered a murderer and is killed by sword, and nothing happens to the snake.
b) Rabanan claim that a snake has to decide itself whether to inject the venom or not, therefore the person holding the snake is exempt from death (it’s a case of grama) and we stone the snake.
VIII. Daf Ayin Chet, Amud Bet
A. Mishnah on Ayin Chet Amud Alef
1. If you strike a person, and the doctors predicted that he would die, but instead he got better for a while, then it got worse and he died later, you are liable for death. R’ Nechemiah says you are exempt because he didn’t die because of you hitting him, because did he not get better?
1. R’ Nechemiah said: would you think that this pasuk is talking about a case where he got better right away, and then died later for some reason while walking in the market? Obviously he would be exempt (v’nika hamakeh)! Rather, this pasuk teaches us that if you struck him, and he got better, but then got worse and died, you are exempt from death.
2. What do Rabanan do with this pasuk? They use it to teach that if you struck him, you are sent to jail until the outcome (i.e. if he lives or dies) is determined (and consequently what punishment you get).
3. So where does R’ Nechemiah learn that you must be jailed?
a) Perhaps from the case of mekoshesh eitzim (gathering wood on Shabbat) – there they did not know how to punish him, so they put him in jail until they were told.
b) This can’t be where he gets it from because they knew that the mekoshesh eitzim was liable for death, they just did not know which death to kill him with.
c) Perhaps R’ Nechemiah learns it from megadef (insulting Hashem) where they did not know whether he was liable for death or not, and they jailed him until they found out.
d) This works because with mekoshesh eitzim it says - they didn’t know how to carry out the killing, but they did know he was liable death. But in megadef it only says - meaning they didn’t know how to punish him.
4. R’ Nechemiah learns two things from the pasuk above:
a) If the doctors predicted he would die, and he lived, even though we would have thought you (being the person who struck him) is liable for death, you aren’t and all you have to do is pay his medical bills and unemployment.
b) If the doctors predicted he would die, and his condition got better, but then he died, you are exempt from death.
c) Therefore, if the doctors predicted he would live, and he ended up dying, you are exempt from any punishment because of logic – you won the case in Beit Din, you came out free (because the doctors said he would live).
5. Rabanan also learn two things from the pasuk:
a) If the doctors predicted he would live, and he ended up dying, you are exempt (this is from the words “v’lo yamut”).
b) If the doctors predicted he would die, and he lived, you are released from prison.
c) Therefore, since there is no mention of it in the pasuk, if the doctors predicted he would die, but his condition got better, but still ended up dying, you are liable for death, just exactly like what the Mishnah says.
IX. Daf Mem Tet, Amud Alef
A. Gemara from “Atiyuh l’Yoav Dayanei”
1. Asael was chasing Avner, and Avner killed him. Yoav, Asael’s brother, killed Avner because he was Asael’s goel hadam.
2. The Gemara (as if) brings Yoav to court and asks him why he killed Avner.
3. Yoav replies: I was Asael’s goal hadam.
4. The Prosecutor: Asael was a rodef, he was trying to murder Avner. Avner had the right to kill Asael.
5. Yoav: Avner should have injured Asael, not killed him.
6. The Prosecutor: Avner couldn’t.
7. Yoav: What do you mean he couldn’t? Avner struck Asael in the fifth rib, and the fifth rib is where there are vital organs – obviously Avner knew where he was aiming, and even more so, he used the back of the spear – Avner was in complete control of the situation and could have injured Asael instead of killed him.
8. The Prosecutor: Yoav is free to go, let us ask Avner.
Well, that’s it, I hope this helps. Good luck!