POINT BY POINT OUTLINE
prepared by Rabbi P. Feldman of Kollel Iyun Hadaf, Yerushalayim
Rosh Kollel: Rabbi Mordecai Kornfeld
1) SHARING THE PAYMENT
(a) (Mishnah): Edim Zomemim divide among themselves the payment of money that they tried to make the Nidon pay. They do not divide lashes:
1. If they testified that Ploni must pay 200 Zuz, all together the witnesses pay 200;
2. If they testified that Ploni must receive 40 lashes, each receives 40 lashes.
(b) Question: What is the source of this?
(c) Answer #1 (Abaye): We learn from a Gezerah Shavah "Rasha- Rasha" from Chayavei Misos:
1. Just like half-Misah is not (possible to be) given, half-sets of lashes are not given.
(d) Answer #2 (Rava): If the lashes would be divided, this is not "Ka'asher Zamam La'asos l'Achiv."
(e) Question: If so, also when money is divided, this is not "Ka'asher Zamam"!
(f) Answer: Money joins (Ploni receives what they sought to make him lose), but lashes do not join.
2) IN WHAT CASES DO WITNESSES BECOME ZOMEMIM?
(a) (Mishnah): Edim become Zomemim only if the Mezimim contradict what the first ones implicitly said about themselves (i.e. that they were at the scene of what they testified about).
1. If two witnesses testified that Ploni killed Shimon, and other witnesses (David and Moshe) say 'that is impossible. That day, Ploni (or Shimon) was with us somewhere else!', the first witnesses are not Zomemim;
2. However, if David and Moshe say 'How can you testify about this? That day, you were with us in a different place', the first witnesses are Zomemim. They are killed based on the testimony of David and Moshe.
(b) If more witnesses testified, and they were Huzam, and more witnesses testified, and they were Huzam, all the Zomemim are killed; (Rashi - each new pair testified about Ploni, and David and Moshe were Mezim them. R. Chananel - the third pair was Mezim David and Moshe, the fourth pair was Mezim the third... The last pair to testify is believed, and also the pairs 2, 4, 6... before them. The pair before the last are Zomemim, and also the pairs 3, 5, 7... before the last. They are killed.)
(c) R. Yehudah says, this is a conspiracy (to be Mezim anyone who will testify)! Only the first witnesses are killed (this will be explained).
(d) (Gemara) Question: What is the source of the first law of the Mishnah?
(e) Answer #1 (Rav Ada): "V'Hinei Ed Sheker ha'Ed Sheker Onah" - they must establish the witnesses themselves to be false (i.e. what they implicitly said about themselves).
(f) Answer #2 (Tana d'Vei R. Yishmael): "La'anos Bo Sarah" - the witnesses themselves must be Husru (removed, i.e. we learn that they were not there).
(g) (Rava): If two witnesses said 'Ploni killed someone to the east of the building', and others said '(at that time,) you were with us to the west of the building', we check;
1. If someone to the west can see what is happening to the east, they are not Zomemim. If not, they are Zomemim.
(h) Question: This is obvious!
(i) Answer: One might have thought that we suspect that the witnesses have better eyesight than normal people. The Mishnah teaches that this is not so.
(j) (Rava): If two witnesses said 'Sunday morning in Sura, Ploni killed someone', and others said 'Sunday afternoon, you were with us in Neharde'a', we check:
1. If someone can travel from Sura to Neharde'a in that amount of time, they are not Zomemim. If not, they are Zomemim.
(k) Question: This is obvious!
(l) Answer: One might have thought that we suspect that the witnesses found camels that run much faster than normal. The Mishnah teaches that this is not so.
(m) (Rava): If two witnesses said 'on Sunday, Ploni killed someone (in a certain place)', and others said 'on Sunday, you were with us elsewhere. On Monday, he killed someone', the first two (and Ploni) are killed;
1. Even if they said that Ploni had killed on Erev Shabbos, the first witnesses are killed, because at the time the first ones testified about Ploni, he was not yet sentenced to die.
(n) Question: We already learn this from a Mishnah (6b, about two Kitos (pairs of witnesses who testified about a murder, and one of them was Huzam);
1. (Mishnah): Therefore (when they are considered two Kitos (sets of witnesses), if one Kat was Huzam, they and the murderer are killed, the other Kat is exempt.
(o) Answer: Indeed, Rava's Chidush was the continuation of his words, which we do not learn from the Mishnah.
(p) (Rava): The law is different regarding the final verdict:
1. (Rava): If two witnesses said (on Tuesday) 'on Sunday, Ploni was sentenced to die (in a certain Beis Din)', and others said 'on Sunday, you were with us elsewhere. On Erev Shabbos he was sentenced', the first two are exempt;
2. Even if they said that Ploni was sentenced on Monday, the first witnesses are exempt, because at the time they testified, Ploni was already sentenced to die, so he was (according to Halachah) dead.
(q) The same applies to paying a Kenas;
1. If two witnesses said 'on Sunday, Ploni stole (flock or cattle) and slaughtered or sold (for which he pays a Kenas of three or four times the value (in addition to the principal (the value of the stolen animal, which is not a Kenas))', and others said 'on Sunday, you were with us elsewhere. On Monday, he stole and slaughtered or sold', the first two pay the fine (to Ploni, and he pays the full four or five);
2. Even if they said that Ploni had stolen and slaughtered or sold on Erev Shabbos, the first witnesses pay the fine, because at the time they testified about Ploni, he was not yet obligated to pay the fine (perhaps he would have admitted, and been exempt).
3. If two witnesses said (on Tuesday) 'on Sunday, a certain Beis Din obligated Ploni to pay Kenas (four or five, because he stole and slaughtered or sold)', and others said 'On Sunday, you were with us elsewhere; on Erev Shabbos, Beis Din obligated him to pay Kenas', the first two are exempt;
4. Even if they said that Beis Din obligated Ploni on Monday, the first witnesses are exempt, because at the time they testified about Ploni, he was already obligated to pay the Kenas.
3) WHEN ARE WITNESSES HUCHZEKU TO BE LIARS?
(a) (Mishnah - R. Yehudah): This is a conspiracy...
(b) Question: If it is a conspiracy, also the first witnesses should not be killed!
(c) Answer #1 (R. Avahu): The case is, the first witnesses were already killed.
(d) Question: If so (the Mishnah does not teach that they should be killed,) why does it mention that they were killed? (Obviously we kill Edim Zomemim if we do not know that witnesses wil later be MEzim the Mezimim!)
(e) Answer #2 (Rava): The Mishnah teaches, if there was only one Kat (that testified and was Huzam), the Kat is killed. If there are more than one Kat, they are not killed.
(f) Question: It says 'only the first Kat is killed!'
(g) This is left difficult
(h) A woman brought witnesses, and they were found to be liars. She brought more witnesses, and they were found to be liars. She brought more witnesses, and they were not found to be liars.
1. Reish Lakish: She is Muchzekes to bring false witnesses!
2. R. Elazar: Even if she is Muchzekes to (try to) bring false witnesses, Yisraelim are not Muchzakim to agree to lie.
(i) A similar case occurred when R. Yochanan was there. Reish Lakish said like he did above, and R. Yochanan said like R. Elazar had said.
1. Reish Lakish was angry at R. Elazar. 'You heard the law from R. Yochanan. Why didn't you say it in his name?!'
(j) Suggestion: Reish Lakish holds like R. Yehudah, and R. Yochanan holds like Chachamim.
(k) Rejection #1: Reish Lakish can hold even like Chachamim:
1. Chachamim believe the Mezimim because we do not see someone bringing them to Beis Din to Mezim the witnesses, but here she is bringing false witnesses!
(l) Rejection #2: R. Yochanan can even hold like R. Yehudah:
1. R. Yehudah does not believe the Mezimim because it is unreasonable that everyone who comes to testify was with them. Here, perhaps the first witnesses did not see the testimony, but the latter ones did!
4) WHEN ARE EDIM ZOMEMIM KILLED?
(a) (Mishnah): Edim Zomemim are killed only if there was a final verdict to kill the defendant;
(b) The Tzedukim say, they are not killed unless the Nidon was killed, for it says "Nefesh Tachas Nafesh";
1. Chachamim: "Va'Asisem Lo Ka'asher Zamam La'asos l'Achiv" connotes that the Nidon is still alive!
2. Question: Why does it say "Nefesh Tachas Nafesh"
3. Answer - Suggestion: Perhaps Edim Zomemim are liable once they testified!
i. Rejection: "Nefesh Tachas Nafesh" - they are killed only if there was a final verdict.
(c) (Gemara - Beraisa - Beribi (a Tana)): If they did not kill, they are killed. If they killed, they are not killed.
1. Beribi's father: If when they did not kill they are killed, all the more so if they killed they should be killed!
2. Beribi: You taught us that we do not punish based on a Kal va'Chomer!
i. (Beraisa) Suggestion: Perhaps "v'Ish Asher Yikach Es Achoso Bas Aviv Oh Vas Imo" obligates only for a paternal or maternal sister, but one is exempt for a sister from both parents!
ii. Rejection: "Ervas Achoso Gilah."
iii. Question: Since one is liable for a half sister, and all the more so he should be liable for a full sister. Why is the verse needed?
iv. Answer: This teaches that we do not punish based on a Kal va'Chomer.
(d) Question: What is the source that a Lav cannot be derived from a Kal va'Chomer?
(e) Answer - Question: "Ervas Achoscha Bas Avicha Oh Vas Imecha (Lo Segaleh)" forbids a half sister. What Lav forbids Bi'ah with a full sister?
1. Answer: "Ervas Bas Eshes Avicha Moledes Avicha Achoscha Hi (Lo Segaleh Ervasah)";
2. Question: Since a half sister is forbidden, and all the more a full sister is! Why is the verse needed?
3. Answer: This teaches that we do not derive a Lav from a Kal va'Chomer.
(f) Question: What is the source regarding lashes (that Edim Zomemim who tried to obligate lashes are punished only if there was a final verdict)?
(g) Answer: We learn a Gezerah Shavah "Rasha-Rasha" from Chayavei Misos.
(h) Question: What is the source for Galus?
(i) Answer: We learn a Gezerah Shavah "Rotze'ach-Rotze'ach" from Chayavei Misos.
(j) (Beraisa - R. Yehudah ben Tabai): I should see consolation (for the death of my son; alternatively, this is a euphemism for 'I should not see consolation) if I did not kill an Ed Zomem to refute the Tzedukim, who say that Edim Zomemim are killed only if the Nidon was killed.
1. Shimon ben Shetach: I should see consolation if you did not spill innocent blood! We do not kill or lash witnesses unless both are Huzmu!
2. R. Yehudah ben Tabai immediately resolved that he would give rulings only in front of Shimon ben Shetach. The rest of his days, he prostrated in front of the grave of the man he killed. People heard a voice. They assumed it was the victim's.
3. R. Yehudah ben Tabai: No, it is my voice. You will see that after I die, you will not hear it!
(k) Question (Rav Acha brei d'Rava): Perhaps it was the victim's voice. It ceased after R. Yehudah ben Tabai died, because he had a judgment with his victim, or appeased him!
5) THREE WITNESSES ARE LIKE TWO
(a) (Mishnah) Question: "Al Pi Shnayim Edim Oh Sheloshah Edim Yumas ha'Mes" - if the testimony of two witnesses is valid, and all the more so testimony of three witnesses!
(b) Answer #1: The Torah equates the testimony of two witnesses with that of three witnesses:
1. Just like three witnesses can be Mezim two, also two witnesses can be Mezim three.
2. Question: What is the source that two can be Mezim even 100?
3. Answer: It says "Edim". (This is extra, to teach that two can be Mezim four. Since they can be Mezim two pairs of witnesses, they can be Mezim even 100.)
(c) Answer #2 (R. Shimon): Just like two witnesses are not killed unless both are Huzmu, also three are not killed unless all are Huzmu.
1. Question: What is the source that this applies even to 100?
2. Answer: It says "Edim".
(d) Answer #3 (R. Akiva): The Torah did not mention a third witness to teach a leniency, rather, to be stringent. It equates his law to the first two (he is also killed):
1. (Even though the testimony of the first two sufficed to kill the Nidon without him,) for joining the wicked he is punished like the wicked themselves;
2. All the more so, the Torah will reward those who join people doing a Mitzvah like those who did the Mitzvah (because Hash-m's Midah to reward is much greater than His Midah to punish).
(e) Answer #4 (R. Akiva): Regarding two witnesses, if one of them was found to be a relative (to a party in the case or the other witness) or Pasul (invalid witness), the remaining testimony is invalid. Likewise, if one of three witnesses (of a Kat) was found to be a relative or Pasul, the remaining testimony is invalid.
1. Question: What is the source that this applies even to 100?
2. Answer: It says "Edim".