Even though it says in the mishna that a court is made up of three judges, exceptions are made. An expert can judge on one’s own. Rabbi Abahu and Shmuel debate if 2 judges ruled in a case, would their judgment be effective? in what cases does a judge who makes a mistake, need to pay out of pocket to fix the mistake? When mediation is done, how many people are needed to mediate? Is mediation looked upon as a favorable solution or not?
According to Rabbi Yochanan there are five rabbis who all hold that when there is a contradiction between the way the text is read/pronounced and the way it is written, we follow the way it is pronounced. Each case where is it said is brought and explained. Then the gemara questions whether or not anyone holds differently than that – doesn’t everyone follow the pronunciation (proof from cooking milk in meat – it is read as milk – chalev – and not forbidden fat – cheilev). This assumption is disproven and a different explanation is brought to explain why everyone agrees in the milk/meat verse.
Three different reading of the mishna are brought regarding the first 6 words of the mishna – monetary laws are judged by 3, theft and injuries by 3. All conclude the same bottom line law – that for loans and admissions you would need 3 regular people and for theft and injuries you would need 3 judges. However how they read this into the words of the mishna and what the original Torah laws and how the Rabbis changed it and why is a subject of debate. What are damages and half damages listed separately – why isn’t it included in injuries? From where do we derive that courts should be 3 judges? There is a debate between Rabbi Yoshia and Rabbi Yonatan – is there debate just about the derivation or do they have a different understanding of how judgments are decided?
This shiur includes an introduction to Masechet Sanhedrin. The mishnayot of the first perek explain both what issues are brought to which size courts and how the number of judges in each court can be derived from the Torah. The gemara starts to deal with the first item on the list – robbery and damages to a person. The assumption is that loans and admissions are excluded – why and what are they excluded from?
Today’s shiur was sponsored by Ilana Kurshan and Daniel Feldman in honor of the siyum.
What are the differences between a loan with a contract and a loan with an oral agreement? If a guarantor signs after the loan takes place, can one collect from the guarantor? An interesting exchange between Rabbi Yishmael and ben Nanas may shed light on the masechet as a whole.
Daniel Mann, Esq. speaks about how halacha in modern times grapples with the issue of wills. He begins with the halacha in the Torah which dictates how property should be distributed and how it developed in the mishna/gemara and through to the shulchan aruch and Rema and then to modern day poskim. What rabbinic attempts were made to find solutions to create a system that better matches common law? What are the advantages/disadvantages of each solution?
More discussions regarding different types of guarantors for different types of situations. In which cases do we assume the guarantor will have to pay and in which do we not assume? Do we take into consideration whether or not the debtor had money at the time of the transaction? If one says on one’s deathbed that money is owed to someone – is that statement believed or should we assume that the person was only trying to make it look like his/her sons don’t have a lot of money. Would the same apply in a case where all the money was dedicated to the temple rather than to his sons? Another law is brought regarding the inheritor’s ability to claim that the bequeather may have said he/she owed someone money but then said that they had paid them back – in what case are they believed and in what case are they not believed.
Laws regarding a guarantor of a loan are discussed. When can one collect from a guarantor?
If a property is left to siblings and they disagree about whether to keep the property, rent it out or sell, can one force the other to implement his position? If there are two people with the same name, can they collect loans from others, can others collect loans from them and can they collect a loan one loaned to the other. There is a three-way debate regarding these issues between our mishna and 2 other braitot. The logic behind each of the opinions is discussed.
If one pays back part of a loan, what should be done? Three opinions are brought and discussed. The connection between whether or not one can write a receipt and whether or not one can post date a contract is discussed.