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Sukkat Shalom B'nei Noach




  1. Liturgy, Yigdal
He bestows kindness upon a person in accordance with his [the person’s] deeds, and gives evil to the wicked in accordance with his [the person’s] wickedness.גּומֵל לְאִישׁ חֶסֶד כְּמִפְעָלו, נותֵן לְרָשָׁע רַע כְּרִשְׁעָתו

2. Rambam, Commentary on the Mishna, Sanhedrin 10:1

The eleventh principle is that G-d, may He be blessed gives reward to the one who does the commandments of the Torah and punishes the one who transgresses its prohibitions and that the great reward is the world to come and that the strong punishment is being cut off. And we have already said about this matter that which will suffice. And the verse that indicates this principle is that which is stated (Exodus 32:32), “And now, if You will lift up their sin; but if not, erase me please,” and G-d, may He be blessed, answered him (Exodus 32:33), “The one who sins against Me, I will erase from My book” – this is a proof that that He knows the servant and the sinner to give reward to this [one] and punishment to that [one].היסוד אחד עשר
כי הוא הש”י נותן שכר למי שעושה מצות התורה ויעניש למי שעובר על אזהרותיה וכי השכר הגדול העולם הבא והעונש החזק הכרת וכבר אמרנו בזה הענין מה שיספיק והמקרא המורה על היסוד הזה מה שנא’ (שמות ל״ב:ל״ב) ועתה אם תשא חטאתם ואם אין מחני נא והשיב לו הש”י מי אשר חטא לי אמחנו מספרי ראיה שיודע העובר והחוטא לתת שכר לזה ועונש לזה

3. Liturgy, Ani Ma’amin

I believe with complete faith that the Holy One, Blessed is He, bestows goodness on those who guard His mitzvot, and punishes those who transgress His mitzvot.אֲנִי מַאֲמִין בֶּאֱמוּנָה שְׁלֵמָה שֶׁהַבּוֹרֵא יִתְבָּרַךְ שְׁמוֹ גּוֹמֵל טוֹב לְשׁוֹמְ֒רֵי מִצְוֹתָיו וּמַעֲנִישׁ לְעוֹבְ֒רֵי מִצְוֹתָיו

4. Exodus 32:32

And now, if You will bear their sin, and if not, please erase me from the book which You have written. But the L-rd said to Moses, “he who has sinned against Me, I will erase him from My book”.וְעַתָּ֖ה אִם־תִּשָּׂ֣א חַטָּאתָ֑ם וְאִם־אַ֕יִן מְחֵ֣נִי נָ֔א מִֽסִּפְרְךָ֖ אֲשֶׁ֥ר כָּתָֽבְתָּ׃ וַיֹּ֥אמֶר ה’ אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֑ה מִ֚י אֲשֶׁ֣ר חָֽטָא־לִ֔י אֶמְחֶ֖נּוּ מִסִּפְרִֽי׃

5. Malbim, loc. cit.

“But the L-rd said, “he who has sinned against Me”: in other words, I do not accept the offering of one person to remove the sin of another, or the death of the righteous as a proxy for the wicked, rather only, “he who has sinned, him I will erase from My book”ויאמר ה’ מי אשר חטא, ר”ל אני איני מקבל כופר נפש תחת נפש וצדיק תחת רשע, רק מי שתמא אותו אמחה מספרי

6. Ramban, loc. cit.

In my opinion, when Moses said, “and now, if you will forgive their sin in Your Mercy [well and good], and if not, please erase me”, i.e., from the book of life, “and let me bear their sin”, similar to that which is written, (Isaiah 53:5) “And he was wounded because of our iniquities, he bore the chastisement for our peace, and through his wounds we were healed”. And the Holy One, Blessed be He, answered, “the sinner will I erase from My book, but not you, for you have not sinned”.ולפי דעתי, כי משה אמר ועתה אם תשא חטאתם, ברחמיך, ואם אין מחני נא תחתם מספר החיים ואסבול אני ענשם, כענין שאמר הכתוב (ישעיה נג ה) והוא מחולל מפשעינו מדוכא מעונותינו מוסר שלומנו עליו ובחבורתו נרפא לנו, והקב”ה השיבו, החוטא אמחה מספרי, ולא אותך שלא חטאת

7. Rashi on Isaiah 53:3

“He was despised and shunned by others”: i.e., he was. It is the manner of the prophet Isaiah to refer to the entirety of Israel as if he was referring to a single person. For example, “do not fear, My servant Jacob” (44:2); “and now, listen, My servant Jacob” (44:1); even in this instance, concerning the House of Jacob, “My servant shall prosper” (52:13)נבזה וחדל אישים. היה, כן דרך הנביא הזה מזכיר כל ישראל כאיש אחד אל תירא עבדי יעקב ואף כאן הנה ישכיל עבדי בבית יעקב אמר ישכיל ל’ הצלחה הוא כמו ויהי דוד לכל דרכיו משכיל (שמואל א י״ח:י״ד)

8. Deuteronomy 24:16

Parents will not be put to death for the sins of their children, and children will not be put to death for the sins of their parents. An individual will be put to death for his own sins.לֹֽא־יוּמְת֤וּ אָבוֹת֙ עַל־בָּנִ֔ים וּבָנִ֖ים לֹא־יוּמְת֣וּ עַל־אָב֑וֹת אִ֥ישׁ בְּחֶטְא֖וֹ יוּמָֽתוּ׃

9. Rashi, loc. cit.

“Parents shall not be put to death regarding their children”: because of their children’s testimony, and if you say that this refers to the sins of their children, [the end of the verse] already says, “an individual will be put to death for his own sins”. (Sifri; TB Sanhedrin 27b)לא יומתו אבות על בנים. בְּעֵדוּת בָּנִים, וְאִם תֹּאמַר בַּעֲוֹן בָּנִים, כְּבָר נֶאֱמַר איש בחטאו יומתו (ספרי; סנהדרין כ”ז)

10. Jeremiah 31:29-30

In those days, no one will say, “the parents have eaten sour grapes and their children’s teeth are blunted?!” Rather, a person will die for his own sins; any person who eats sour grapes will have his own teeth blunted.בַּיָּמִ֣ים הָהֵ֔ם לֹא־יֹאמְר֣וּ ע֔וֹד אָב֖וֹת אָ֣כְלוּ בֹ֑סֶר וְשִׁנֵּ֥י בָנִ֖ים תִּקְהֶֽינָה׃ כִּ֛י אִם־אִ֥ישׁ בַּעֲוֺנ֖וֹ יָמ֑וּת כׇּל־הָֽאָדָ֛ם הָאֹכֵ֥ל הַבֹּ֖סֶר תִּקְהֶ֥ינָה שִׁנָּֽיו׃

11. Metzudat David, loc. cit.

“It will no longer be said”: They will no longer protest, saying, “look, the parents have eaten sour grapes and their children’s teeth are blunted?! Isn’t it fitting that whomever eats sour grapes will have his own teeth blunted?!” In other words, if the parents sin, why should the children be punished? It is more fitting that the sinner should receive punishment for his own sins! Thus, the verse states, (Ezekiel 18:2) “What do you mean by quoting this proverb upon the soil of Israel, “Parents eat sour grapes and their children’s teeth are blunted”?לא יאמרו עוד. לא יתרעמו עוד לומר הנה האבות אכלו בוסר וכו׳ והלא הנכון מי שאכל הבוסר יקהו שיניו ר״ל האבות חטאו והנה הבנים מקבלים העונש הלא הנכון שהחוטא יקבל בעצמו העונש וכן נאמר שאמרו כמתרעמים אבות יאכלו בוסר וכו׳ (יחזקאל י״ח:ב׳)

12. Deuteronomy 30:19

I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day: I have put before you life and death, blessing and curse. Choose life—in order for you and your offspring to live—הַעִדֹ֨תִי בָכֶ֣ם הַיּוֹם֮ אֶת־הַשָּׁמַ֣יִם וְאֶת־הָאָ֒רֶץ֒ הַחַיִּ֤ים וְהַמָּ֙וֶת֙ נָתַ֣תִּי לְפָנֶ֔יךָ הַבְּרָכָ֖ה וְהַקְּלָלָ֑ה וּבָֽחַרְתָּ֙ בַּחַיִּ֔ים לְמַ֥עַן תִּֽחְיֶ֖ה אַתָּ֥ה וְזַרְעֶֽךָ׃

13. Devarim Rabbah 4:3

Another interpretation, ‘Behold, I have set before you’ – Rabbi Elazar said: Since the Holy One, blessed be He, uttered this statement at Sinai, at that very moment, it is as it’s written in Lamentations 3:38: ‘Do not both evil and good come from the mouth of the Most High?’ It means, only from Him does adversity come upon those who commit wrong, and prosperity comes upon those who perform good deeds. Another interpretation, Rabbi Haggai said: Not only have I given you two paths, but I have gone beyond the strict line of judgment and said to you, as in Deuteronomy 30:19: ‘and you shall choose life.’דָּבָר אַחֵר, רְאֵה אָנֹכִי אָמַר רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר מִשֶּׁאָמַר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא הַדָּבָר הַזֶּה בְּסִינַי, בְּאוֹתָהּ שָׁעָה (איכה ג, לח): מִפִּי עֶלְיוֹן לֹא תֵצֵא הָרָעוֹת וְהַטּוֹב, אֶלָּא מֵאֵלֶיהָ הָרָעָה בָּאָה עַל עוֹשֵׂי הָרָעָה, וְהַטּוֹבָה בָּאָה עַל עוֹשֵׂי הַטּוֹבָה. דָּבָר אַחֵר, אָמַר רַבִּי חַגַּי וְלֹא עוֹד שֶׁנָּתַתִּי לָכֶם שְׁתֵּי דְרָכִים, אֶלָּא שֶׁנִּכְנַסְתִּי לִפְנִים מִשּׁוּרַת הַדִּין וְאָמַרְתִּי לָכֶם (דברים ל, יט): וּבָחַרְתָּ בַּחַיִּים

By Rabbi Tani Burton

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