The Talmud asks the question we could certainly anticipate—why teach the same dispute twice? The answer begins by explaining what would have happened if it taught the dispute only about kiddushin. We might have thought that only in this case does R. Huna say that the kiddushin takes effect immediately. Since the husband is drawing her near, he would want to draw her near as soon as possible. However, in the case of divorce we might have thought that he would agree with R. Judah. She is divorced only once she gives the money.
If we had taught the dispute only in relation to divorce, I might have said that in that case she is divorced immediately according to R. Huna because we can be sure that the husband will ask the money from her. Since they are divorced, he will not be ashamed. But we might have thought that in the case of kiddushin he agrees with R. Judah that she is betrothed only when he gives her the money since the woman might be ashamed to ask the money. In that case, R. Huna might agree that since we’re not sure she’ll get the money, she is not betrothed until she gets it. To correct both these errors, we need to teach the dispute in both the context of divorce and betrothal.
R. Yehudah holds that if the man says that he will divorce her on condition that she give him 200 zuz she is not divorced until she gives the money. Our sugya begins with a difficulty on this position.
According to the baraita, the divorce occurs immediately upon the giving of the get, even before she gives the money. Thus if the get is torn or lost before she gives the money she is still divorced. This is a direct contradiction against R. Yehudah.
In this baraita, the man again makes the divorce dependent on her giving him 200 zuz. He then dies. If she gave the money she is a divorcee and not liable for yibbum. But if she did not give the money, she is a widow. According to the first opinion, she cannot give it to his heirs. According to R. Shimon b. Gamaliel she can give it to his heirs. Tje only dispute is about whether she can give the money to the heirs. All would hold that she is divorced immediately as long as at some point she gives the money (according to the first opinion, she simply will never have such an opportunity). Thus this is again a difficulty against R. Yehudah.
R. Yehudah could answer you that this baraita accords only with Rabbi [Yehudah Hanasi] according to whom when one says “On condition” the statement takes effect immediately. But R. Yehudah (the amora) holds like the other rabbis, according to whom “On condition” is a stipulation and the statement won’t take effect until the condition is fulfilled. This is a common way of solving difficulties—ascribe the tannaitic source to a minority position and then claim that the majority disagreeץ
The Talmud now turns its attention to Rabbi’s statement that anyone who says “on condition” it is as if he says “from now.” Meaning his statement takes effect immediately, even before the condition is fulfilled.
R. Zera, upon reaching Israel, learns that everyone agrees with Rabbi Yehudah Hanasi—saying “on condition” is like saying “from now.” What they disagree about is whether when one says “from today and after death” he is making a condition, in which case the divorce is valid, or a retraction, in which case it is not.
According to the sages, we don’t know what “from today and after death” means—is it a condition or a retraction. Therefore, she is doubtfully divorced. According to Rabbi this statement is a condition—“From today if I die” and therefore when he dies, she is considered to be divorced from the time the get was given.
R. Yehudah, as we learned earlier, holds that there is also a tannaitic dispute over the meaning of “on condition [that I die].” Only Rabbi holds that this is equivalent to “from now.” The other sages would say that this is also ambivalent and thus she is only doubtfully divorced. So then, the Talmud asks, why don’t we have a baraita in which the tannaim disagree over this subject, and from that dispute we could learn that all the more so they disagree over “from today and after death.”
The dispute is placed in case of “from today and after death” to let you know that even in this case Rabbi considers it a condition and therefore she is divorced. Had we taught the dispute in the case of “on condition” we might have thought that only in that case does Rabbi hold that she is divorced, but not in a case of “from today and after death.”
The Talmud asks why not teach the dispute in the case of “on condition” and from here we could learn that even in this case the rabbis are not sure what he means and therefore she is only doubtfully divorced. All the more so we would know that in their opinion she is doubtfully divorced if he says “from today and after death.”
The answer is that it is better to frame the dispute in a way that we can see just how lenient Rabbi is—in both cases we hold that she is divorced. It is better to teach a leniency because it takes greater halakhic boldness to teach leniencies than stringencies.
The Talmud continues to deal with the mishnah.
The Mishnah seems to teach something too obvious—if he says “on condition that I give it to you from now until thirty days” she is betrothed if he gives it to her within thirty days. Why would we ever have thought otherwise?
I might have thought that he is only saying that as a way to hurry himself up and that he does not really mean to make his betrothal conditional. Therefore, the mishnah needed to teach us that this is indeed a condition. The betrothal is not effective unless he gives her the monety within thirty days.
The Mishnah rules that if he says “on condition that I possess two hundred zuz” she is betrothed only if he does possess it. But how can we ever be sure that someone does not own two hundred zuz? Maybe he does and we, or even he, does not know about it.
The answer is that if we do not know that he has 200 zuz, she is only doubtfully betrothed. If we know that he has 200 zuz, she is certainly betrothed.
He must show her his won money for she did not agree to simply see money belonging to someone else.
The mishnah again seems to teach something obvious—if he just shows her money on the table she is not betrothed.
The Talmud resolves this by saying that even if this is money someone gave him to invest, she is not betrothed. The money needs to be his, not just given to him to use as an investment.
Today’s sugya continues with the next mishnah, one very similar to the previous mishnah.
A “bet kor” is the amount of land it takes to grow a kor of produce. In modern terms it is about 17,000 sq. meters, a rather large piece of land. This clause is nearly the same as the end of the previous mishnah.
Land value differs from place to place. It seems here that the woman wants to know that he owns good land, and not a worthless piece of land.
This is nearly the same as the final section of the previous mishnah. Showing it to her in “the plain” means that he shows her land that is not his. This is not what she thought he meant by his “showing her a bet kor.”
This is word for word the same comments we read on the previous mishnah concerning money. Here the topic is land.
The mishnah and baraita needed to teach the same clause about land and money because if it had taught only the clause about money I would have thought that only in that case would we be uncertain if she is betrothed or not. If he does not show her 200 zuz, she is doubtfully betrothed. But in the case of land, if he has it, we would know and therefore if he does not show it to her, she is not even doubtfully betrothed. Therefore it teaches that even in the case of land, she is still doubtfully betrothed if he does not show her the land.
Were it not for the mishnah, I might have thought that it is not important that he possess land in that specific place. After all, if she wants the produce, he can bring it to her from wherever his land is. Therefore, we need the mishnah to teach us that he does need to possess the land in that specific place. Otherwise she is not betrothed.
Again, when he says “I will show you” he must show her something belonging to him.
If she shows her a field that he is working as a sharecropper she is still not betrothed. He must actually own the field.
Since the mishnah dealt with sizes of fields, the Talmud brings in other material relevant to the subject.
The topic of this mishnah is one who dedicates his field to the Temple. What counts as his field such that he would have to pay 50 silver shekels for each area?