Watchman Willie Martin Archive

We need to note here, that the Babylonian Talmud is the textbook of modern Rabbinism and is the "hearts blood" of the Jewish religion. According to their own leaders, it supersedes any other religious writing.

Rabbi Louis Finkelstein, one of the leading authorities on Judaism asserted:

"Phariseeism became Talmudism, Talmudism became Medieval Rabbinism, and Medieval Rabbinism became Modern Rabbinism. But throughout these changes of name...THE SPIRIT OF THE ANCIENT PHARISEE SURVIVES UNALTERED."

We would also remind you that it was to these Pharisees Jesus Christ, the Son of God, directed His sternest denunciations.

In John 10:26, speaking directly to these religious frauds of His day, He said:

"But ye (Pharisees) believe not, BECAUSE YE ARE NOT OF MY SHEEP..."

That should be clear to anyone who is a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ; that the Jews are not Israelites!

In a serially produced installment of a best-seller by Jewish author Herman Wouk, we find the heading "The Talmudic Heart's Blood of the Jewish Faith." He says:

"The Talmud is to this day the circulating heart's blood of the Jewish religion. Whatever laws, customs, or ceremonies we observe, whether we are Orthodox, Conservative, Reformed or merely spasmodic sentimentalists, we follow the Talmud. It is our Common Law!"

The beginning of Talmudic literature dates back to the time of the Babylonian exile in the 6th Century B.C...a thousand years later, in Alexandria, Egypt, these traditions of men were finally set down in codified form. When all the frills and mystery is removed from the Talmud, it boils down to the "traditions of the elders," which Jesus so venomously denounced in His ministry. (Matthew 15:3,6,9; Mark 7:6-19,13)

The Talmud, did not appear in writing form until centuries after the Christian world came into existence. The Talmud comes from Mishaic Hebrew and means "learning, teaching, instruction."

It was at first passed on by word of mouth. By the time it appeared in written form about 500 A.D. it contained much which was viciously anti-Christ and anti-Christian. This has resulted in what today is known erroneously as "anti-Semitism." We say "erroneous," since the vast majority of those people who call themselves Jews, are of Turco-Mongolian (Khazars), rather than Semitic in origin.

The Talmud tale is told that, because of talking to a Christian Disciple of Jesus, a rabbi is suspected of being pro-Christian, which makes him deeply ashamed. He tells the lie that Jesus taught that the hire of a harlot may be used to build a privy for the high priest. (Abodah Zarah 16b-17a)

This last pleased the rabbi very much. This filthy and false story to defame Christ is used in a typical Pharisee lie by Rabbi Louis Finklestein in his publication "The Pharisees." (See pages xv-xvi of the Foreword) Rodkinson (M. Levi Frumkin), who made the first English translation of the Babylonian Talmud, asks, in the section on the History of the Talmud:

"Is the literature that Jesus was familiar with in his early years yet in existence in the world? Is it possible for us to get at it?...To such inquiries the learned class of Jewish rabbis answer by holding up the Talmud... THE TALMUS then, IS THE WRITTEN FORM OF THAT WHICH, IN THE TIME OF JESUS, WAS CALLED THE TRADITIONS OF THE ELDERS, and to which he makes frequent allusions."

The Talmud and Mary, Mother of Jesus, she is called;

"Miriam, a dresser of women's hair." She "committed adultery." (Sanhedrin 69a) "She played the harlot with carpenters." (Sanhedrin 106a-106b)

All the rabbinical sources ascribe to Jesus,

"illegitimate birth...the seducer was a soldier by the name of Panthera [also called Pandira, and stada and Ba’al or Baalim]."

"Pappus [husband of Mary] has nothing to do with the story of Jesus, and was only connected with it because his wife happened to be called 'Miriam' [Mary] and was known to be an adulteress."

All the life of Jesus (Toledot Yeshu),

"editions contain a similar story of a dispute which Jesus carried on with the scribes who on the ground of that dispute declared him to be a bastard." (Jewish Encyclopedia, "Jesus.")

Christ is referred to as "Balaam" in the most lewd Talmud passages concerning Him. Proof that Jesus is called "Balaam" is found in the Jewish Encyclopedia (under "Balaam") which, after enumerating His alleged loathsome qualities, states:

"Hence...the pseudonym 'Balaam' given to Jesus in Sanhedrin 106a and Gittin 57a."

In the same article, we are told that the Talmud likens the Gospel Christians and Christ to Baal sex-worshippers because of whose abominations 24,000 Israelites died of plague at the time of Balaam. (Numbers 25:1-9)

Because Balaam had been asked to curse the Israelites but instead did not foretold the coming Messiah, (Numbers 24:17) the flimsy pretext is made that Jesus was a curse like Balaam.

"He (Christ) is pictured as blind in one eye and lame in one foot and his disciples distinguished by three morally corrupt qualities..."

He is called "one that ruined a people," and His churches are likened to nudist Baal worship.


"this hostility against his memory finds it climax in the dictum that whenever one discovers a feature of wickedness or disgrace in his life, one should preach about it." (Sanhedrin 106b)

Jesus, as stated in both the Talmud and Jewish Encyclopedia, gets "four legal methods of execution" and is Crucified as well, as a blasphemer of Pharisee Judaism.

Jesus stoned, then "hanged" or crucified (Sanhedrin 43a-45b; 67a); where under another phony name (Ben Stada). (Jewish Encyclopedia) Jesus crucified as a "blasphemer," (Sanhedrin 46a; Jewish Encyclopedia) Jesus burned (Sanhedrin 52a); manner of burning, (Yebamoth 6b) verified by Jewish Encyclopedia under "Balaam." He (Christ) is;

"lowered into dung up to his armpits then a hard cloth was placed within a soft one, wound round his neck and the two loose ends pulled in opposite directions forcing him to open his mouth. A wick was then lit, and thrown into his mouth so that it descended into his body and burnt his bowels...his mouth was forced open with pincers against his wishes." (Sanhedrin 52a)


"The death penalty of 'burning' was executed by pouring molten lead through the condemned man's mouth into his body, burning his internal organs." (Yebamoth 12b)

Jesus strangled:

"He was lowered into dung up to his armpits then a hard cloth was placed within a soft one, wound round his neck, and the two ends pulled in opposite directions until he was dead." (Sanhedrin 52a; 106a. Jewish Encyclopedia)

Jesus in hell where His punishment is "boiling in hot semen." (Gittin 57a) The subject is identified as Jesus in a footnote, also in the Jewish Encyclopedia under "Balaam." Jesus "committed bestiality," "corrupted the people," is "turned into hell." (Sanhedrin 105a) Jesus "limped on one foot' and 'was blind in one eye.'" "he practiced enchantment by means of his membrum," "he committed bestiality with his ass," he was a fool who "did not even know his beats's mind." (Sanhedrin 105a-105b)

The ridiculous and foul misuse of Judges 5:27 about Sisera's dying convulsions meaning sexual intercourse is here applied to Jesus, with a footnote "explanation" of Judges 5:27: "This is taken to mean sexual intercourse..."

Jesus attempts to seduce women, is excommunicated by a rabbi and then worships a brick, was a seducer of Israel, and practiced magic. (Sanhedrin 107b; Jewish Encyclopedia) Jesus is cited in the index of the Sanhedrin portion of the Talmud, "chief repository of the criminal law of the Talmud," which shows the page numbers where he is denounced.

Jesus' resurrection is cured:

"Woe unto him who maketh himself alive by the name of God." (Sanhedrin 106a)

The trial of Jesus:

"It was the action of the priests that Jesus was sent before Pontius Pilate."

The Sanhedrin priests; "had the most reason to be offended with Jesus' action in cleansing the Temple," the probable place of His trial, according to the Talmud. His cry:

"My god, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?...was in all its implications itself a disproof of the exaggerated claims made for him. The very form of his punishment would disprove these claims in Jewish eyes. No Messiah that Jews could recognize could suffer such a death; for 'He that is hanged is accursed of God'. (Deuteronomy 21:23) This refers to an 'evil son' and Talmudist Rashi adds 'an insult to God.'" (Jewish Encyclopedia under "Jesus.")

Other foul charges against Jesus and His mother, His being a "bastard," and the like, follow.

Of course the Talmud does not mention Jesus by name, but the footnotes and context clearly show He is the one they are referring to. The Jewish Encyclopedia states that Jewish legends regarding Jesus are found in three sources (In Jewish Legend: The Jewish legends in regard to Jesus are found in three sources, each independent of the others (1) New Testament apocrypha and Christian polemical works, (2) in the Talmud and the Midrash, and (3) in the life of Jesus ("Toledot Yeshu'") that originated in the Middle Ages.

It is the tendency of all these sources to belittle the person of Jesus by ascribing in him illegitimate birth, magic, and a shameful death. In view of their general character they are called indiscriminately legends. Some of the statements, as that referring to magic, are found among pagan writers and Christian heretics: and as the Ebolonites, or Judeo-Christians who for a long time lived together with the Jews, are also classed as heretics, conclusions may be drawn from this as to the origin of these legends.

It ought also to be added that many of the legends have a theological background. For polemical purposes, it was necessary for the Jews to insists on the illegitimacy of Jesus as against the David descent claimed by the Christian church. Magic may have been ascribed him over against the miracles recorded in the Gospels; and the degrading fate both on earth and hereafter of which the legends speak may be simply directed against the ideas of the assumption and the resurrection of Jesus.

The Jewish legends relating to Jesus appear less inimical in character when compared with the parallel passages which more especially as such legends are fixed and frequently occurring themes of folk-lore; and imaginations must have been especially excited by the historical importance which the figure of Jesus came to have for the Jews.

The earliest authenticated passage ascribing illegitimate birth to Jesus as that in Yeb. iv.8. The mysterious phrase ("that man") cited in this passage as occurring in a family register which R. Simeon ben Azza is said to have found seems to indicate that it refers to Jesus, and here occur also the two expressions so often applied to Jesus in later literature ("that anonymous one," the name of Jesus being avoided") and (-"bastard": for which in later times was used). Such a family register may have been preserved at Jerusalem in the Judeo-Christian community.

“The Jews, who are represented as inimical to Jesus in the canonical Gospels also, took him to be legitimate and born in an entirely pastoral manner. A contrary statement as to their attitude is expressed for the first time in the "Acts of Pilate" ("Gospel of Nicodemus,") Celaus makes the same statement in another passage, where he refers to a written source, adding that the seducer was a soldier by the name of Panthera.

The name "Panthera" occurs here for the first time; two centuries later it occurs in Epiphanius, who ascribes the surname "Panther" to Jacob, an ancestor of Jesus; and John of Damascus...includes the names "Panther" and "Barpanther" in the genealogy of Mary. It is certain, in any case, that the rabbinical sources also regard Jesus as the "son of Pandera." Although it is noteworthy that he is called also "Ben Stada."

It appears from this passage that, aside from Pandera and Stada, the couple Pappus b. Judah and Miriam the hairdresser were taken to be the parents of Jesus. Pappus has nothing to do with the story of Jesus, and was only connected with it because his wife happened to be cited "Miriam" (="Mary"), and was known to be an adulteress.

The one statement in which all these confused legends agree is that relating to the birth of Jesus. Although this is ascribed only to the Jews, even in Celsus, the Jews need not necessarily be regarded as its authors, for it is possible that it originated among heretics inimical to Jesus, as the Ophites and Cainites, of whom Origen says "they uttered such hateful accusations against Jesus as Celsus himself did" ("Contra Celsum,"). it is probable, furthermore, that the accusation of illegitimacy was not originally considered so serious; it was ascribed to the most prominent personages, and is a standing motive in folk-lore (Krause, "Leben Jesu,").

The incident of Jesus concerning the dispute with the Scribes was copied by the rabbinical sources (Kallah 18b). All the "Toledot" editions contain a similar story of a dispute which Jesus carried on with the Scribes who on the ground of that dispute, declared him to be a bastard. Analogous to this story are numerous tales of predictions by precocious boys.

The sojourn of Jesus in Egypt is an essential part of the story of his youth. According to the Gospels he was in that country in his early infancy, but Celsus says that he was in service there and learned magic; hence he was there in early manhood. R. Joshus b. Perahyah is said to have fled with his pupil Jesus to Alexandria in order to escape the persecutions of the Jewish king Yannal (103-76 B.C.); on their return Jesus made a remark on the spot faultless beauty of their hostess, whereupon R. Joshua excommunicated him: and when Jesus approached him again and was not received he set up a brick for his god, and led all Israel into Apostasy (Sanh. 107b; Sotah 47a; Yer. Hag. 77d).

This account is supplemented by the statement, made on the assumption that Ben Stada is identical with Ben Pandera, that Ben Stada brought magic from Egypt (Sanhadren 104b).

The story that Joshua b. Persbyah, a contemporary of Simeon b. Sheta, was the teacher of Jesus, is not clearly stated in the various "Toledot:' it is said merely that Jesus was named after this brother of his mother.

The assumption that Oshua b. Perahyah was the uncle of Jesus is confirmed by Kirkisani, who wrote about 987 a history of Jewish sects...The references to Yannai, Salome Alexandra, and Joshua b. Perabyah indicate that according to the Jewish legends the advent of Jesus took place just one century before the actual historical date; and some medieval apologists for Judaism, as Nahmanides and Salman Zebi, based on this fact their assertion that the "Yeshu'" mentioned in the Talmud was not identical with Jesus; this however, is merely a subterfuge.

According to Celsus and to the Talmud (Sanhedrin 104b), Jesus learned magic in Egypt and performed his miracles by means of it; the latter work in addition, states that he cut the magic formulas into his skin. It does not mention, however, the nature of his magic performances (Tosef. Shab. xi.4; Yer. Shab. 18d); but as it states that the disciples of Jesus healed the sick "in the name of Jesus Pandera." (Yer. Shab. 14d; Ab. Zarah 27b; Eccl. R. i.8) it may be assumed that its author held the miracles of Jesus also to have been miraculous cures.

Different in nature is the witchcraft attributed to Jesus in the "Toledot." When Jesus was expelled form the circle of scholars, he is said to have returned secretly from Galilee to Jerusalem, where he inserted a parchment containing the "declared name of God" ("Shem ha-Meforash"), which was guarded in the Temple, into his skin, carried it away, and then, taking it out of his skin, he performed his miracles by its means.

This magic formula then had to be recovered from him, and Judah the Gardener (a personate of the "Toledot" corresponding to Judas Iscariot) offered to do it; he and Jesus then engaged in an aerial battle (borrowed from the legend of Simon Magus), in which Judah remained victor and Jesus fled.

The accusation of magic is frequently brought against Jesus. Jerome mentions it, quoting the Jews: "Magum vocant et Judel Dominum Meum"; Marcus, of the sect of the Valentinians, was, according to Jerome, a native of Egypt, and was accused of being, like Jesus, a magician.

There were even Christian heretics who looked upon the founder of their religion as a magician, and public opinion at Rome accused all Christians of magic (W.M. Ramsay, "The Church in the Roman Empire Before A.D. 170,"). The Apostles were regarded in the same light ("Acts Petri et Andreae,").

Neither this accusation nor that concerning the birth of Jesus is found in the canonical Gospels, but it occurs in the apocryphal account...(The Jewish Encyclopedia, pp. 170-171)) and all these sources tend to belittle Him by ascribing to Him illegitimate birth, the use of magic and the shameful death of a common criminal. It goes on to say that His mother, the Virgin Mary, was seduced by a Roman soldier from the garrison at Nazareth, named Panthera; and Jesus was the result of that union.

After referring to a Talmudic source regarding a dispute between Jesus and the scribes (lawyers), the Jewish Encyclopedia states:

"All the Toledon editions contain a similar story of a dispute which Jesus carried on with the scribes on the grounds that they declared Him to be a bastard." (John 8:44) They said, "We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God."

And Jesus rebutted them in vs. 42-43 by saying:

"If God were your Father, ye would love me; for I proceeded forth and came form God: neither came I of myself but He sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word."

Again, according to the Talmud, Jesus was supposed to have, as we have shown in a footnote, learned magic while He was in Egypt and the Jewish leaders accused Him of performing His miracles by these means and through the power of Satan. It goes on to say that His disciples healed the sick in the "name of Jesus Pandera."

In Matthew 12:24 we read where the Pharisees on seeing His miracles said:

"...This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub, the prince of devils."

Jesus refuted their claim, by saying, vs. 26:

"If Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then shall his Kingdom stand?"

And they could not answer Him.

The Talmudic story of the trial, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus is completely at odds with the Biblical account. The Jewish account denies His resurrection, just as Matthew 28:11-15 explains. How when the Jewish authorities heard about His resurrection, they paid large amounts of bribe money to the Roman soldiers who had been guarding the grave, and told them to tell the governor, Pontius Pilate, that while they slept, the disciples came and stone His body. It is interesting to note that vs. 15 says:

"...and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day."

The Jewish report stinks to high heaven for the simple reason that the Romans were very strict about a soldier going to sleep while on guard duty. The penalty was death.

Yet the Jewish leaders were said to have bribed Pilate to overlook the dereliction of his soldiers. This was extremely unlikely. Which proves that the guards were the Temple guards of the Jews, and not the Romans after all.

According to Talmudic teachings, Jesus is now in hell. It says:

"...son of Titus' sister desired to embrace Judaism and called up from hell by magic, first Titus (a Roman General), then Baalam, and finally Jesus, who were taken together to be the worse enemies of Judaism." (Titus was the Roman General who completely destroyed Jerusalem in 70 A.D)

When Jesus was asked; "Who is esteemed in the world?" According to the Talmud He was supposed to have replied:

"'The Jews. Further, their well-being; do nothing to their detriment; whoever touches them, touches the apple of God's eye.'"

This is the same story the televangelists like the so-called Baptist Jack Van Impe, Jerry Falwell, and Pentecostalist Jimmy Swaggart preach. Why do the well-know televangelists of the fundamental and charismatic crowds support the State of the Israeli, no matter what they do?

The answer is that they have swallowed Jewish propaganda "hook, line, and sinker," and do look on the Jews as the "apple of God's eye." Jerry Falwell has said: "The reason God has been good to America and blessed her, is because she has been good to the Jews." This is an incredible and observable lie, for the fact prove differently.

The time of America's greatest debacle in every way, economic, political, moral, militarily and spiritually, has been since 1948, when we recognized that "little bastard state in Palestine called the Israeli." It has been "down-hill" for us ever since. We often wonder if these Judeo-Christian preaches have ever bothered to read 2 Chronicles 19:2 which states:

"...shouldest thou help the ungodly, and love them that hate the Lord? therefore is wrath upon thee from before the Lord."

Talmud ‑ Mas. Avodah Zarah 22a

 — R. Simeon b. Eleazar has not in mind the metayage principle at all; but the reason why he permits in the case of an idolater is because, if he is told [to abstain from work on forbidden days] he obeys. But a Cuthean, too, if told would surely obey! — A Cuthean would not obey; he would say: ‘I am more learned than thou!’ If that is so, why then mention the objection of the field being called by the owner's name; he could have given the reason of not placing a stumbling block before the blind?1 — He mentions that reason as an additional one, as if to say: There is the one reason of [not placing a stumbling block] before the blind, and there is also the objection of its being called by his name.

     Two2 saffron‑growers, [one of whom was] a heathen who took charge of the field on the Sabbath, and [the other] an Israelite who did so on the Sunday, came before Raba; he declared the partnership as permissible. Rabina, however, cited the following in refutation of Raba's ruling: If an Israelite and a heathen leased a field in partnership, the Israelite must not say subsequently to the heathen, Take as thy share the profit in respect of the Sabbath, and I will take as mine that in respect of a week‑day;3 only when such a condition was made originally is it permitted. [Likewise] if they just calculate the profit4 it is forbidden! Whereupon he [Raba] blushed. Subsequently, the fact came to light that the partners had indeed laid down that condition originally.

     R. Gabiha of Be‑Kathil5 said: That was a case of ‘orlah6 plants, the produce of which the heathen was to eat during the forbidden years and the Israelite during [a corresponding number of] permitted years, and they came before Raba who permitted it.7 But did not Rabina cite a statement in objection to Raba's ruling? — [No,] it was in order to support it.8 Then why did Raba blush? — That never occurred at all.

     The question was asked: What if no arrangements at all were made? — Come and hear [the above passage]: ‘Only when such a condition was made originally is it permitted,’ hence, if there was no arrangement it is forbidden. Continue, then, with the next part: ‘If they calculated the profit it is forbidden,’ which implies that, if there was no arrangement it is permitted! — The fact is, no answer can be deduced from this passage.




(1) Lev. XIX, 14. V. supra. 6a.

(2) Lit., ‘these’.

(3) As the partnership was entered into unconditionally, the duty of working the field devolved equally on both partners. The work carried out by the heathen on the Sabbath is therefore done by him, in respect of one half thereof, as the agent of the Israelite.

(4) If the Israelite apportions the profits in respect of the Sabbath to the heathen even without telling him explicitly to work on the Sabbath it is likewise forbidden, as in the absence of specific conditions, the assumption is that the heathen is to work on behalf of the Jew on the Sabbath — which is in direct opposition to Raba's ruling.

(5) [On the Tigris, north of Bagdad (Obermeyer, op. cit. p. 147).]

(6) Lit., uncircumcised’, newly‑planted trees, the produce of which is forbidden during the first three years. V. Lev. XIX, 23.

(7) This is quite in order since even during the forbidden years, the Israelite is only forbidden to eat of the produce, but is permitted to do the work. There is therefore no objection to the heathen's working even though he does so as the Israelite's agent.

(8) The statement in Rabina's citation, that where the prohibition does not extend to the work — as in the case of laying down the conditions originally — the arrangement is permitted, distinctly supports Raba's ruling in regard to produce of ‘orlah trees.

(9) (On the ill‑repute of the Greek and Roman inns, v. Elmslie a.l.]

Talmud ‑ Mas. Avodah Zarah 22b

GEMARA. The following was cited in contradiction: One may buy of them cattle for a sacrifice, and it need not be feared lest it committed, or had been used for, an immoral act, or had been designated as an offering to idols, or had been worshipped.1 Now we are quite right not to fear about its having been designated as an offering to idols or having been made an object of worship, since if it had been so designated or worshipped, its owner would not have sold it; but we surely ought to fear as to committing an immoral act!2 — Said R. Tahlifa in the name of R. Shila b. Abina in the name of Rab: A heathen would have regard for his cattle, lest it becomes barren.3 This would indeed hold good in the case of female cattle but what answer would you give in the case of males? — Said R. Kahana: Because it has a deteriorating effect on their flesh. Then what about that [Baraitha] which has been taught: ‘One may buy cattle of any heathen shepherd’; ought we not to fear lest he used it for an immoral purpose?4 — The heathen shepherd would be afraid of forfeiting his fee. What then about this [other Baraitha] which has been taught: ‘One should not entrust cattle to a heathen shepherd’;5 why not assume that the heathen shepherd would be afraid of forfeiting his fee? — They fear detection by one another since they know a good deal about it, but they are not afraid of us who do not know much about it. Rabbah said: This is what the popular proverb says. ‘As the stylus penetrates the stone so one cunning mind detects another.’ In that case, neither should we buy male cattle6 from women, for fear of their having used them for immoral practice! — She would be afraid of being followed about by the animal. What then about this which R. Joseph learnt: ‘A widow should not rear dogs, nor accommodate a student as a guest’? Now it is quite right in the case of a student, as she might reckon on his modesty,7 but in the case of a dog why not say that she would be afraid of being followed about by it? — Since it would follow about on being thrown a piece of meat, people will say that it is because of being given such pieces that it follows her. Why then should we not leave female animals alone with female heathens?8 — Said Mar ‘Ukba b. Hama: Because heathens frequent their neighbours’ wives, and should one by chance not find her in, and find the cattle there, he might use it immorally. You may also say that even if he should find her in he might use the animal, as a Master has said:9 Heathens prefer the cattle of Israelites to their own wives, for R. Johanan said: When the serpent came unto Eve he infused filthy lust into her.10 If that be so [the same should apply] also to Israel! — When Israel stood at Sinai that lust was eliminated, but the lust of idolaters, who did not stand at Sinai, did not cease.

     The question was asked: How about fowls?11 — Come and hear: Rab Judah said in the name of Samuel on behalf of R. Hanina: I saw a heathen buy a goose in the market, use it immorally, and then strangle it, roast, and eat it. Also R. Jeremiah of Difti12 said: I saw an Arab who bought a side [of meat], pierced it for the purpose of an immoral act, after which act he roasted and ate it.


(1) Any of which uses would disqualify it for the purpose of sacrifice (Tosef. ‘A.Z. II). V. B.K. 40b.

(2) The Baraitha which rules out such possibility is therefore in conflict with our Mishnah.

(3) Hence the Baraitha does not suspect immoral practice in the case of the heathen's own cattle, while our Mishnah, which deals with other people's cattle left in a heathen's inn, does suspect it.

(4) As the cattle does not belong to him.

(5) Supra 15b, Tosef. A.Z. III.

(6) For sacrifices.

(7) Which would deter him from making it known.

(8) V. supra, 15b.

(9) Git. 38a.

(10) Shab. 146a; Yeb. 103b.

(11) Does the suspicion connected with animals apply to them?

(12) [Identified with Dibtha below the Tigris, S.E. Babylon, Obermeyer, op. cit. p. 197.]

Talmud ‑ Mas. Avodah Zarah 15b

And whence can it be deduced that one may so assume in a case of this kind? — From [the Mishnah which we learnt:]1 ‘Beth Shammai say: One should not sell a ploughing‑cow during the Sabbatical Year;2 but Beth Hillel permit it, because he may possibly slay it.’3 Said Raba:4 How can the two be compared: In that other case, one is not commanded to let one's cattle rest on the Sabbatical year,5 whereas in our case, one is commanded to let one's cattle rest on the Sabbath!6 Said Abaye to him: Are we to take it then that when one is commanded [concerning a thing] he is forbidden [to sell it to one who may disregard the command]? Take then the case of a field — for one is commanded to let his field lie fallow on the Sabbatical Year. Yet it has been taught: Beth Shammai say: One may not sell a ploughed field on the Sabbatical year, but Beth Hillel permit it, because it is possible that he will let it lie fallow [during that year]!7

     R. Ashi objected: Are we, on the other hand, to take it that a thing concerning which there is no direct command may be sold to one who is likely to use it contrary to that command? Take then the case of implements — for no one is commanded to let one's implements be idle in the Sabbatical year. Yet we have learnt: Following are the implements which one is not allowed to sell in the Sabbatical year: the plough and all its accessory vessels, the yoke, the winnowing‑fan and the mattock!8 But, continued R. Ashi, where there is reason for the assumption [that proper use will be made] we assume it,9 even though a command is involved, and where there is no reason for such assumption,10 we do not assume it, even where there is no command involved.

     Rabbah once sold an ass11 to an Israelite who was suspected of selling it to an idolater. Said Abaye to him: ‘Wherefore have you acted thus?’ said he, ‘It is to an Israelite that I have sold it.’ ‘But,’ he retorted, ‘he will go and sell it to an idolater!’ ‘Why’ — [argued the other] ‘should he sell it to an idolater and not sell it to an Israelite?’12 He [Abaye] objected to him [from the following Baraitha]: In a place where it is the custom to sell small cattle to Cutheans,13 such sale is permitted, but where they usually do not sell, such sale is not permitted. Now, what is the reason [for the prohibition]? Shall we say because they are suspected of immoral practices? But are they to be suspected? Has it not been taught: One may not place cattle in inns kept by idolaters even male‑cattle with male persons and female‑cattle with female persons, and it is needless to say that female‑cattle with male persons and male‑cattle with female persons [are forbidden]; nor may one hand over cattle to one of their shepherds; nor may one be alone with them;14 nor may one entrust a child to them to be educated, or to be taught a trade.15 One may however place cattle in inns kept by Cutheans even male‑cattle with female persons and female‑cattle with male persons, and it goes without saying that males with males and females with females are permitted; so also may one hand over cattle to one of their shepherds and be alone with them, or hand over a child to them to be educated or to be taught a trade.16 This shows indeed that they are not to be suspected.17 And it has further been taught: One should not sell them either weapons or accessories of weapons, nor should one grind any weapon for them, not may one sell them either stocks or neck‑chains or ropes, or iron chains — neither to idolaters nor Cutheans.18 Now, what is the reason?19 Shall we say because they are suspected of murder? But are they suspect, seeing we have just said that one may be alone with them! Hence it is only because he might sell it to an idolater.20 Should you, moreover, say that whereas a Cuthean will not repent an Israelite will repent?21 Surely R. Nahman said in the name of Raba b. Abbuha: Just as it was said that it is forbidden to sell to an idolater, so is it forbidden to sell to an Israelite who is suspected of selling it to an idolater! He [Rabbah] thereupon ran three parasangs22 after the buyer (some say one parasang along a sand‑mount) but failed to overtake him.

     R. Dimi b. Abba said: Just as it is forbidden to sell23 to an idolater, so it is forbidden to sell to a robber who is an Israelite. What are the circumstances? If he is suspected of murder, then it is quite plain; he is the same as an idolater! If [on the other hand] he has never committed murder, why not [sell them to him]? — It refers indeed to one who has not committed murder; but we may be dealing here with a cowardly thief who is apt at times [when caught] to save himself [by committing murder].

     Our Rabbis taught: It is forbidden to sell them shields; some say, however, that shields may be sold to them. What is the reason [for this prohibition]? Shall we say, Because they protect them? In that case even wheat or barley should likewise not [be sold to them].24 — Said Rab:


(1) Sheb. V, 8.

(2) To a fellow‑Jew who is suspected of tilling his fields on that year contrary to the Biblical prohibition, as he thereby ‘places a stumbling‑block before the blind’.

(3) R. Hunah's action has therefore the ruling of the Hillelites as its authority.

(4) [So Ms. M. Cur. edd. ‘Rabbah’, v. p. 77 n. 7.]

(5) The question of hiring, lending or trying, mentioned in connection with selling cattle to a heathen does not therefore arise; and the comparatively minor objection of ‘placing a stumbling‑block before the blind’ is waived by the assumption that the animal may have been intended for slaughter.

(6) The objections mentioned before therefore do apply.

(7) Tosef. Sheb. III.

(8) Sheb. V, 6.

(9) In the case of a field, for example, the fact that it is not often procurable may serve as ground for the assumption that the buyer availed himself of the opportunity of purchasing it, even though he does not intend tilling it till the following year.

(10) As, for instance, in the case of the ‘implements’.

(11) To which case the assumption of buying for slaughter cannot be applied.

(12) We have a right to assume that he will sell it to an Israelite, so that there is no objection to its being sold to him. [This is contrary to the view expressed above by Rabbah (v. p. 76, n. 9), and supports the reading ‘Raba’, v. Tosaf. s.v.vcr.]

(13) Members of the Samaritan sect.

(14) As his life would be endangered.

(15) Lest he be taught idolatry.

(16) Tosef. A.S. III.

(17) Since, however, the sale of small cattle only is governed by custom, it is obvious that big cattle may not be sold in any case to a Cuthean; and as the suspicion of immorality does not exist, the reason for the prohibition can only be the probability of his selling it to an idolater, which is contrary to the view of Raba.

(18) Tosef. ibid.

(19) For forbidding the sale of these articles to a Cuthean.

(20) Who might use them for assailing an Israelite, which refutes Rabbah's view.

(21) So that even though he had been addicted to this wrongdoing, he might be taken to have recanted, and this justifies Rabbah's action.

(22) Persian miles.

(23) The aforementioned articles.

(24) Since they protect them against hunger.

Talmud ‑ Mas. Eiruvin 21b

that are first‑ripe, and the other basket had very bad figs, which could not be eaten, they were so bad?1 ‘Good figs’ are an allusion to those who are righteous in every respect; ‘bad figs’ are an allusion to those who are wicked in every respect. But in case you should imagine that their hope is lost and their prospect is frustrated, it was explicitly stated: The baskets2 give forth fragrance,3 both4 will in time to come give forth fragrance.

     Raba made the following exposition: The Scriptural text:5 The mandrakes give forth fragrance3 is an allusion to the young men of Israel who never felt the taste of sin; and at our doors are all manner of precious fruits3 is an allusion to the daughters of Israel who tell their husbands about their doors.6 Another reading: Who close7 their doors for their husbands.8 New and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved;3 the congregation of Israel said to the Holy One, blessed be He, ‘Lord of the universe: I have imposed upon myself more restrictions than Thou hast imposed upon me, and I have observed them.’

     R. Hisda asked one of the young Rabbis who was reciting aggadoth in his presence in a certain order: ‘Did you hear what [was the purport of the expression,] ‘New and old’?9 — ‘The former’10 the other replied: ‘are the minor, and the latter10 are the major commandments’. ‘Was then the Torah,’ the former asked: ‘given on two different occasions?11 But the latter12 [are those derived] from the words of the Torah while the former are those derived from the words of the Scribes.’

     Raba made the following exposition: What is the purport of the Scriptural text: And, furthermore my son, be admonished: Of making many books etc.?13 My son, be more careful14 in [the observance of] the words of the Scribes than in the words of the Torah, for in the laws of the Torah there are positive and negative precepts;15 but, AS TO THE LAWS OF THE SCRIBES, WHOEVER TRANSGRESSES ANY OF THE ENACTMENTS OF THE SCRIBES INCURS THE PENALTY OF DEATH. In case you should object: If they are of real value why were they not recorded [in the Torah]? Scripture stated: ‘Of making many books there is no end’.13

     And much study is a weariness of flesh.13 R. Papa son of R. Aha b. Adda stated in the name of R. Aha b. Ulla: THIS16 TEACHES THAT HE WHO SCOFFS AT THE WORDS OF THE SAGES WILL BE CONDEMNED TO BOILING EXCREMENTS. Raba demurred: Is it written: ‘scoffing’? The expression is ‘study’!17 Rather this is the exposition: He who studies them feels the taste of meat.18

     Our Rabbis taught: R. Akiba was once confined in a prison‑house and R. Joshua the grits‑maker19 was attending on him. Every day, a certain quantity of water was brought in to him. On one occasion he20 was met by the prison keeper who said to him, ‘Your water to‑day is rather much; do you perhaps require it for undermining the prison?’ He poured out a half of it and handed to him the other half. When he21 came to R. Akiba the latter said to him, ‘Joshua, do you not know that I am an old man and my life depends on yours?’22 When the latter told him all that had happened [R. Akiba] said to him, ‘Give me some water to wash my hands’. ‘It will not suffice for drinking’, the other complained, ‘will it suffice for washing your hands?’ ‘What can I do’, the former replied: ‘when for [neglecting] the words of the Rabbis23 one deserves death? It is better that I myself should die than that I should transgress against the opinion of my colleagues’.24 It was related that he tasted nothing until the other had brought him water wherewith to wash his hands. When the Sages heard of this incident they remarked: ‘If he was so [scrupulous] in his old age how much more must he have been so in his youth; and if he so [behaved] in a prison‑house how much more [must he have behaved in such a manner] when not in a prison‑house’.

     Rab Judah stated in the name of Samuel: When Solomon ordained the laws of ‘erub25 and the washing of the hands a bath kol26 issued and proclaimed: My son, if thy heart be wise, my heart will be glad, even mine;27 and, furthermore, it is said in Scripture: My son, be wise, and make my heart glad, that I may answer him that taunteth me.28

     Raba made the following exposition: What [are the allusions] in the Scriptural text: Come, my beloved, let us go forth into the field; let us lodge in the villages, let its get up early to the vineyards; let us see whether the vine hath budded, whether the vine‑blossom be opened and the pomegranates be in flower; there will I give thee my love?29 ‘Come, my beloved, let its go forth in to the field’; the congregation of Israel spoke before the Holy One, blessed be He: Lord of the universe, do not judge me as [thou wouldst] those who reside in large towns who indulge in robbery, in adultery, and in vain and false oaths; ‘let us go forth into the field’, come, and I will show Thee scholars who study the Torah in poverty; ‘let us lodge in the villages’ read not, ‘in the villages’30 but ‘among the disbelievers’,31 come and I will show Thee those upon whom Thou hast bestowed much bounty and they disbelieve in Thee; ‘let us get up early in the vineyards’ is an allusion to the synagogues and schoolhouses; ‘let us see whether the vine hath budded’ is an allusion to the students of Scripture; ‘whether the vine‑blossom be opened’ alludes to the students of the Mishnah; ‘and the pomegranates be in flower’ alludes to the students of the Gemara; ‘there will I give thee my love’, I will show Thee my glory and my greatness, the praise of my sons and my daughters.

     R. Hamnuna said: What [are the allusions in what was written in Scripture: And he spoke three thousand proverbs; and his songs were a thousand and five?32 This teaches that Solomon uttered three thousand proverbs for every single word of the Torah and one thousand and five reasons for every single word of the Scribes.

     Raba made this exposition: What [are the implications of] what was written in Scripture: And besides that Koheleth was wise, he also taught the people knowledge; yea, he pondered, and sought out, and set in order many proverbs?33 ‘He [also] taught the people knowledge implies that he taught it with notes of accentuation and illustrated it by simile;34 ‘Yea, he pondered, and sought out, and set in order many proverbs’ [alludes to the fact], said Ulla in the name of R. Eleazar,35 that the Torah was at first like a basket which had no handles, and when36 Solomon came he affixed handles37 to it.

     His locks are curled.38 This, said R. Hisda in the name of Mar ‘Ukba, teaches that it is possible to pile up mounds of expositions on every single stroke [of the letters of the Torah];39 and black as a raven:38 With whom do you find these? With him


(1) Ibid. 2.

(2) ohtsusv an allusion to the ‘baskets’ htsus supra. E.V., mandrakes.

(3) Cant. VII, 14.

(4) Lit., ‘these and these’, the wicked as well as the righteous.

(5) Lit., ‘what is (the significance of) what is written’.

(6) Euphemism. They are thus enabled to abstain during the woman's menstrual periods.

(7) Lit., ‘bind’.

(8) Chastity. They are ever faithful.

(9) Cant. VII, 14.

(10) Lit., ‘these’.

(11) Lit., ‘twice, twice’, first the major (old) and then the minor (new) commandments?

(12) Lit., ‘those’, the ‘old’.

(13) Eccl. XII, 12.

(14) rvzv, the identical word used for ‘be admonished’.

(15) And the penalties vary.

(16) The expression dvk (‘study’) which is similar to that of dgk (‘scoffing’).

(17) dvk not dgk.

(18) ,ghdh (in rac ,ghdh ‘weariness of the flesh’) contains the letters ,g which, by transposition and interchange suggests ogy ‘taste’.

(19) Or ‘dealer’. Aliter: Of a place called Geres (Rashi).

(20) R. Joshua.

(21) R. Joshua.

(22) No one else was allowed, or able to bring him any food or drink.

(23) Lit., ‘them’.

(24) Who ordained the washing of the hands before meals.

(25) For courtyards.

(26) V. Glos.

(27) Prov. XXIII, 15.

(28) Ibid. XXVII, II.

(29) Cant. VII, 12f.

(30) ohrpfc.

(31) ohrpufc. ohrpuf is of the same rt. as ohrpf.

(32) I Kings V, 12.

(33) Eccl. XII, 9.

(34) V. Jast.

(35) So MS.M. Cur. edd. Eliezer.

(36) Lit., ‘until’.

(37) ohbzt sing. izt, ‘ear’ or ‘handle’. The Heb. for ‘he pondered’ izt is regarded as a denominative of izt ‘he made handles’, i.e., added restrictions. Cf. Yeb., Sonc. ed., p. 123, n. 13.

(38) Cant. V, 11.

(39) The word for ‘his locks’, uh,umuue, is regarded as coming from the same rt. as that of ‘stroke’ .ue (lit., ‘thorn’) and that of ‘curled’, ohk,k, as being identical with that of ‘mound’ k,, and the reduplication. ohk,k, is rendered, ‘many mounds or piles’.

Reference Materials