Sanhedrin 6b:2סנהדרין ו׳ ב:ב
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6bו׳ ב

נגמר הדין אי אתה רשאי לבצוע:

Once the verdict of the judgment has been issued, it is not permitted for you to mediate a dispute.

סרמ"ש בנק"ש סימן: ר"א בנו של רבי יוסי הגלילי אומר אסור לבצוע וכל הבוצע ה"ז חוטא וכל המברך את הבוצע הרי זה מנאץ ועל זה נאמר (תהלים י, ג) בוצע ברך נאץ ה'

The Gemara presents a mnemonic device alluding to the names of tanna’im in the coming discussion: Samekh, reish, mem, shin; beit, nun, kuf, shin. The Tosefta cites several statements of tanna’im related to compromise and the term botze’a. Rabbi Eliezer, son of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, says: It is prohibited to mediate a dispute; and anyone who mediates [habotze’a] a dispute is a sinner; and anyone who blesses the mediator is cursing God. And of this, it is stated: “And the covetous [botze’a] blesses himself, though he despises the Lord” (Psalms 10:3).

אלא יקוב הדין את ההר שנאמר (דברים א, יז) כי המשפט לאלהים הוא וכן משה היה אומר יקוב הדין את ההר אבל אהרן אוהב שלום ורודף שלום ומשים שלום בין אדם לחבירו שנאמר (מלאכי ב, ו) תורת אמת היתה בפיהו ועולה לא נמצא בשפתיו בשלום ובמישור הלך אתי ורבים השיב מעון

Rather, the judge must assure that the true judgment will prevail at all costs and metaphorically pierce the mountain, as it is stated: “For the judgment is God’s” (Deuteronomy 1:17). And similarly, Moses would say: Let the judgment pierce the mountain. But by contrast, Aaron, whose role was not that of a judge, was a lover of peace and a pursuer of peace, and he would apply peace between one person and the other, as it is stated: “The law of truth was in his mouth, and unrighteousness was not found in his lips; he walked with Me in peace and uprightness, and turned many away from iniquity” (Malachi 2:6).

ר' אליעזר אומר הרי שגזל סאה של חטים וטחנה ואפאה והפריש ממנה חלה כיצד מברך אין זה מברך אלא מנאץ ועל זה נאמר ובוצע ברך נאץ ה'

The Tosefta cites several other interpretations of the above-mentioned verse from Psalms. Rabbi Eliezer says: If one stole a se’a of wheat and ground it and baked it and separated ḥalla from it, i.e., separated the portion of the dough that must be given to the priests, how can he possibly recite the blessing on the mitzva of ḥalla? He is not blessing; rather, he is cursing God. And of this offense it is stated: “And the covetous [uvotze’a] blesses himself, though he despises the Lord,” interpreted homiletically as: And whoever blesses upon breaking [botze’a] the bread despises the Lord.

רבי מאיר אומר לא נאמר בוצע אלא כנגד יהודה שנאמר (בראשית לז, כו) ויאמר יהודה אל אחיו מה בצע כי נהרוג את אחינו וכל המברך את יהודה הרי זה מנאץ ועל זה נאמר ובוצע ברך נאץ ה'

Rabbi Meir says: The term botze’a employed in that verse was stated only with regard to Judah, as it is stated: “And Judah said to his brothers: What profit [betza] is it if we slay our brother and conceal his blood? Come, and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites” (Genesis 37:26–27). And consequently, anyone who blesses Judah for this act is cursing God, and of this it is stated: “And the covetous [uvotze’a] blesses himself, though he despises the Lord,” interpreted homiletically as: “And whoever blesses the profiteer [botze’a] despises the Lord.”

רבי יהושע בן קרחה אומר מצוה לבצוע שנאמר (זכריה ח, טז) אמת ומשפט שלום שפטו בשעריכם והלא במקום שיש משפט אין שלום ובמקום שיש שלום אין משפט אלא איזהו משפט שיש בו שלום הוי אומר זה ביצוע

Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa says: It is a mitzva to mediate a dispute, as it is stated: “Execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates” (Zechariah 8:16). Is it not that in the place where there is strict judgment there is no true peace, and in a place where there is true peace, there is no strict judgment? Rather, which is the judgment that has peace within it? You must say: This is mediation, as both sides are satisfied with the result.

וכן בדוד הוא אומר (שמואל ב ח, טו) ויהי דוד עושה משפט וצדקה והלא כל מקום שיש משפט אין צדקה וצדקה אין משפט אלא איזהו משפט שיש בו צדקה הוי אומר זה ביצוע

And similarly, with regard to David, it says: “And David executed justice and charity to all his people” (II Samuel 8:15). And is it not that wherever there is strict justice, there is no charity, and wherever there is charity, there is no strict justice? Rather, which is the justice that has within it charity? You must say: This is mediation.

אתאן לת"ק דן את הדין זיכה את הזכאי וחייב את החייב וראה שנתחייב עני ממון ושלם לו מתוך ביתו זה משפט וצדקה

The Gemara cites an alternative interpretation of David’s method of judgment, in which we come to the opinion of the first tanna, i.e., Rabbi Eliezer, son of Rabbi Yosei HaGelili, who says that it is prohibited to mediate a dispute: If a judge adjudicated a case of monetary law, and he correctly exonerated the party who was exempt from payment and deemed liable the party who was liable to pay, if he then saw that due to his ruling a poor person became liable to pay an amount of money that is beyond his means and therefore the judge himself paid for him from his own house, this is justice and also charity.

משפט לזה וצדקה לזה משפט לזה שהחזיר לו ממון וצדקה לזה ששילם לו מתוך ביתו (וכן בדוד הוא אומר ויהי דוד עושה משפט וצדקה לכל עמו משפט לזה שהחזיר לו את ממונו וצדקה לזה ששילם לו מתוך ביתו)

The Gemara continues: It is justice for this one and charity for that one: It is justice for this one, because the judge restored his money to him; and it is charity for that poor person, because the judge paid for him from his own house. And similarly, with regard to David, it says: “And David executed justice and charity to all his people” (II Samuel 8:15). He executed justice for this one, because he restored his money to him, and charity for that one, because he paid for him from his own house.

קשיא ליה לרבי האי לכל עמו לעניים מיבעי ליה אלא (רבי אומר) אע"פ שלא שילם מתוך ביתו זהו משפט וצדקה משפט לזה וצדקה לזה משפט לזה שהחזיר לו ממונו וצדקה לזה שהוציא גזילה מתחת ידו

This interpretation of the verse is difficult for Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi. If the word “charity” is meant to demonstrate that David supported the poor defendants, this term: “To all his people,” is incorrect. If the interpretation is correct, it should have stated: Charity to the poor people. Rather, Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi says: Although he did not pay from his own house, it is still justice and charity. It is justice for this one and charity for that one. It is justice for this one, because the judge restored his money to him, and charity for that one, because the judge removed the stolen item from his possession. By adjudicating the case correctly and compelling the liable party to pay his debt, the judge thereby ensures that the liable party does not illegitimately maintain property to which he is not entitled.

רבי שמעון בן מנסיא אומר שנים שבאו לפניך לדין עד שלא תשמע דבריהן או משתשמע דבריהן ואי אתה יודע להיכן דין נוטה אתה רשאי לומר להן צאו ובצעו משתשמע דבריהן ואתה יודע להיכן הדין נוטה אי אתה רשאי לומר להן צאו ובצעו שנאמר (משלי יז, יד) פוטר מים ראשית מדון ולפני התגלע הריב נטוש קודם שנתגלע הריב אתה יכול לנטשו משנתגלע הריב אי אתה יכול יכול לנטשו

Rabbi Shimon ben Menasya says: If two litigants come before you for a judgment, before you hear their respective statements and claims; or after you hear their statements but you do not yet know where the judgment is leaning, meaning that it is not yet clear to the judge which party is in the right, you are permitted to say to them: Go out and mediate. But after you hear their statements and you know where the judgment is leaning, you are not permitted to say to them: Go out and mediate, as it is stated: “The beginning of strife is as when one releases water; therefore leave off contention before the quarrel breaks out” (Proverbs 17:14). Rabbi Shimon ben Menasya interprets the verse to mean: Before the resolution of the contention is revealed, you can cast it off. Once the resolution of the contention is revealed, you cannot cast it off.

(וריש לקיש) אמר שנים שבאו לדין אחד רך ואחד קשה עד שלא תשמע דבריהן או משתשמע דבריהן ואי אתה יודע להיכן דין נוטה אתה רשאי לומר להם אין אני נזקק לכם שמא נתחייב חזק ונמצא חזק רודפו משתשמע דבריהן ואתה יודע להיכן הדין נוטה אי אתה יכול לומר להן איני נזקק לכם שנא' (דברים א, יז) לא תגורו מפני איש

And Reish Lakish says: If two litigants come for a judgment, and one is flexible and agreeable and one is rigid and contentious, before you hear their respective statements, or after you hear their statements but you do not yet know where the judgment is leaning, it is permitted for you to say to them: I will not submit to your request to judge you. The judge may refuse the case out of fear that perhaps the strong and contentious one will be found liable, and it will turn out that the strong one will pursue the judge with intent to harm him. But once you hear their statements and you know where the judgment is leaning, you may not say to them: I will not submit to your request to judge you, as it is stated: “You shall not be afraid before any man” (Deuteronomy 1:17).

ר' יהושע בן קרחה אומר מניין לתלמיד שיושב לפני רבו וראה זכות לעני וחובה לעשיר מניין שלא ישתוק שנאמר לא תגורו מפני איש רבי חנין אומר לא תכניס דבריך מפני איש ויהו עדים יודעים את מי הן מעידין ולפני מי הן מעידין ומי עתיד ליפרע מהן שנא' (דברים יט, יז) ועמדו שני האנשים אשר להם הריב לפני ה'

Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa says: From where is it derived that a student who is sitting before his teacher and he sees a point of merit for a poor person or liability for a wealthy person, from where is it derived that he should not be silent? As it is stated: “You shall not be afraid before any man”; he should fear neither his teacher nor the wealthy litigant. Rabbi Ḥanin says: The verse intimates: Do not suppress your statement before any man. And the witnesses should know about whom they are testifying, and before Whom they are testifying, and Who will ultimately exact payment from them, as it is stated: “Then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the Lord” (Deuteronomy 19:17).

ויהו הדיינין יודעין את מי הן דנין ולפני מי הן דנין ומי עתיד ליפרע מהן שנא' (תהלים פב, א) אלהים נצב בעדת אל וכן ביהושפט הוא אומר (דברי הימים ב יט, ו) ויאמר אל השופטים ראו מה אתם עושים כי לא לאדם תשפטו כי (אם) לה' שמא יאמר הדיין מה לי בצער הזה ת"ל עמכם בדבר משפט אין לו לדיין אלא מה שעיניו רואות

And the judges should know whom they are judging, and before Whom they are judging, and Who will ultimately exact payment from them, as it is stated: “God stands in the congregation of God” (Psalms 82:1). And similarly, with regard to Jehoshaphat it says: “And he said to the judges: Consider what you do; for you judge not for man, but for the Lord” (II Chronicles 19:6). And lest the judge say: What value is there for me with this suffering? Why should I engage in such a burdensome and difficult task? The verse states: “He is with you in giving judgment,” from which it is derived that in rendering his decision, a judge has only that which his eyes see. He is enjoined to render the best judgment possible based on the information he has available, and he is not accountable for anything else.

היכי דמי גמר דין אמר רב יהודה אמר רב איש פלוני אתה חייב איש פלוני אתה זכאי אמר רב הלכה כרבי יהושע בן קרחה איני והא רב הונא תלמידיה דרב הוה כי הוה אתו לקמיה דרב הונא אמר להו אי דינא בעיתו אי פשרה בעיתו מאי מצוה נמי דקאמר רבי יהושע בן קרחה

Earlier, the Tosefta stated that once the verdict has been issued, it is not permitted for the judge to arrange a compromise. The Gemara asks: What are the circumstances of a verdict, i.e., what is the formal action that signifies the conclusion of the case? Rav Yehuda says that Rav says: It is when the judge says: So-and-so, you are liable; so-and-so, you are exonerated. Rav says: The halakha is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa, who said it is a mitzva to mediate a dispute. The Gemara asks: Is that so? And was it not that Rav Huna was a student of Rav, and when litigants would come before Rav Huna he would say to them: Do you want a strict judgment, or do you want a compromise? Evidently, Rav’s student Rav Huna did not hold that it is a mitzva to specifically arrange a compromise. The Gemara clarifies: What does Rabbi Yehoshua ben Korḥa mean that he says it is a mitzva?