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BAVA KAMA 114

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SUMMARY

If a Jewish person goes to Din with a non-Jew in a non-Jewish court it is forbidden for one Jewish witness to testify in favor of the non-Jew. (1)
 
If the non-Jewish court is a government court which doesn’t take money on the basis of the testimony of one witness and only is Mechayev a Shvuah it is permitted for the witness to testify.
 
It is a Safek if a prominent Jew may testify even in a government court because maybe since he is prominent the judges will rely on him to take money even if there are no other witnesses.
 
If a Yisra’el sells land to a non-Jew which borders the land of his fellow Jew he is excommunicated until he promises to compensate the Yisra’el for any damages that he incurs from the non-Jew.
 
If someone buys or sells land to a non-Jew the laws of Bar Mitzra of not apply. (2)
 
If custom officials or bandits took a person’s donkey or garment and replaced it with a donkey or garment that they stole from someone else the person may keep it because he is Koneh it with Yi’ush and Shinuy Reshus.
 
If someone saves an object from being flooded or from non-Jewish bandits if the owner was Meyaesh it belongs to him.
 
If someone saves a swarm of bees even though the Kinyan that the owner has on bees is only d'Rabbanan he only may keep it if the owner was Meyaesh
 
R. Yochanan Ben Beroka says that a woman or a Katan is believed to testify that a swarm of bees came from a certain person’s property. (3)
 
If he saves an object from Jewish bandits even if he doesn’t know if the owner was Meyaesh it belongs to him because when a Jew steals something we assume that the owner was Meyaesh. (4)
 
A person may enter a his friend’s property in order to save his swarm if bees and if he causes damage in the process he must pay, however he may not cut off a branch from a tree in order to save his bees.
 
R. Yishma’el Ben R. Yochanan Ben Beroka says that he even may cut off a branch of his friend’s tree in order to save his bees as long as he pays for it.
 
If a Ba’al ha’Bayis decides to use a hide for a purpose that doesn’t require nay further processing e it immediately becomes susceptible to Tumah. (5)
 
If a tanner decides to use a hide for a purpose that doesn’t require any further processing it is not yet susceptible to Tumah because maybe he will sell it to someone who plans on processing it further.
 
If a Gazlan steals a hide his decision to use the hide doesn't make it susceptible to Tumah because the owner may not have been Meyaesh, but if a Ganav steals a hide his decision makes it susceptible according to the Tana Kama. (6)
 
R. Shimon says the opposite is true, if a Gazlan steals a hide his decision to use the hide makes it susceptible to Tumah because the owner was Meyaesh, but the decision of a Gazlan doesn’t make the hide susceptible. (7)
 
Rebbe holds that whether a Ganav or a Gazaln steal something we assume the owner is Meyaesh
 
Ula says that if know for a fact that the owner was Meyaesh everyone agrees that the Yi’ush is effective both with regards to a Gazlan and a Ganav.
 
Rabah says even if we know for a fact that the owner was Meyaesh the Machlokes between the Tana Kama and R. Shimon still applies.
 
If a Ganav or a Gazlan steals and he is Makdish the stolen item or separates Terumah or Ma’aser from stolen produce it is effective.
 
A person who testifies offhandedly is not believed to testify on something that is d'Oraysah with the exception to testimony that a woman’s husband dies and she is free to remarry.
 
A person is believed to testify offhandedly with regards to something that is a Kinyan d'Rabbanan or Terumah d'Rabbanan or regarding a woman who was captured by non-Jews that she is Tahorah and is permitted to a Kohen. (8)
 
R. Yishma’el Ben R. Yochanan Ben Berokah says it is a Tnai Bais Din that if a jar of honey cracks that another person shall spill out his wine in order to save his friend’s honey and he takes the value of his wine from the honey of his friend.
 
It is a Tnai Bais Din that if a donkey carrying flax dies another person shall unload the wood from his donkey and place the flax on his donkey and take the value of his wood from the flax of his friend. (9)
 

 
If guest dug a tunnel under his host’s house and everyone is saying that his books were stolen if he recognizes his books in his friend’s possession who bought them from the Ganav the buyer shall swear how much he paid for them and the owner shall pay him that amount.
 
If someone digs a tunnel and breaks into someone’s house and steals his utensil he is Koneh the utensils since he is Chayav Misah.

A BIT MORE

1. Because a non-Jewish court will take money from a person on the basis of the testimony of one witness and therefore the witness who testifies is being Motzi money from a Jewish person unlawfully.
 
2. The law of Bar Mitzra means that if someone is selling land the person who owns the neighboring land is given the opportunity to buy the land before anyone else.
 
3. Even though a Katan and woman may not testify however if the owner is running after the bees and the woman or Katan say offhandedly that the bees came from a certain property they are believed.
 
4. It is difficult to recover a stolen object in a Jewish Bais Din because Bais Din only rules upon the testimony of witnesses and not on circumstantial evidence, while if a non-Jew steals something a person may not be Meyaesh because it is not as difficult to recover a stolen object in a non-Jewish court since they make rulings based on circumstantial evidence.
 
5. A Kli only becomes susceptible to Tumah when all of the work that is needed to make it a finished Kli is completed.
 
6 If a Gazlan steals something we don’t assume the owner is Meyaesh because he knows who stole it, but if a Ganav steals something we assume the owner is Meyaesh because he doesn’t know who stole it and therefore he doesn’t believe he will ever get it back.
 
7. R. Shimon holds that when a Gazlan steals something we assume the owner was Meyaesh even though he knows who stole it because the owner thinks if the Gazlan was powerful enough to steal it in the first place it will be impossible to recover the stolen item, however when a Ganav steals something he doesn’t give up hope on finding out who stole it and recovering the stolen object.
 
8. A woman who is captured is only forbidden to a Kohen m’Safek and therefore a person is believed to testify offhandedly that she is permitted.
 
9. The reason for the Tnai Bais Din because Yehoshuah Bin Nun gave Eretz Yisra’el as an inheritance to Klal Yisra'el Al Tnai that Klal Yisrael agree to his conditions.

BRIEF INSIGHT

TESTIFYING FOR A NON-JEW
 
If a Jewish person goes to Din with a non-Jew in a non-Jewish court it is forbidden for one Jewish witness to testify in favor of the non-Jew. The Ra'avad says that this only applies if it is possible that the person he is testifying against has some claim why he doesn’t owe the money. However, if he admits that he owes the money and he begs the witness not to testify and offers him money in return for refusing to testify it is a Chilul Hashem for the witness to refrain from testifying and he should testify against him even though he is an only witness.

QUICK HALACHAH

BAR MITZRA
 
If someone buys a field from a non-Jew the neighbor doesn’t have a right to take the land from him. If someone sells a field to a non-Jew the Din of Bar Mitzra doesn’t apply. If someone buys a field next to a non-Jewish field according to some opinions the neighbor on the other side of the non-Jewish field doesn’t have a right to take the land from him, while other opinions disagree. If someone sells or rents a field to a non-Jew we excommunicate him until he takes upon himself to pay for any Ones that may occur from the non-Jew until the non-Jew agrees to act with his neighbor in accordance with Dinei Yisra’el. (Shulchan Aruch CM 175:39, 40)

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