Siman 3 ג׳
1 א

דין בן שהוא ספק לכהונה ובו ט סעיפים:
מי שבא בזמן הזה ואמר כהן אני אינו נאמן ואין מעלין אותו לכהונה על פי עצמו ולא יקרא בתורה ראשון ולא ישא את כפיו: הגה וי"א דנאמן לקרות בתורה ראשון ולישא את כפיו בזמן הזה שאין לנו תרומה דאורייתא שנחוש שמא יעלו אותו לתרומה (ב"י בשם הרמ"ך) וכן נוהגין האידנא בכל מקום שאין נוהגין בתרומה בזמן הזה וליכא למיחש למידי: ולא יאכל בקדשי הגבול עד שיהיה לו עד אחד אבל אוסר עצמו בגרושה וזונה וחללה ואינו מטמא למתים ואם נשא או נטמא לוקה והנבעלת (לו אם היא פסולי כהונה) ספק חללה ואם היה מסיח לפי תומו נאמן כיצד מעשה באחד שהיה מסיח לפי תומו ואמר זכור אני כשהייתי תינוק והייתי מורכב על כתפו של אבא הוציאני מבית הספר הפשיטוני את כתנתי והטבילוני לאכול תרומה לערב וחבירי בדילים ממני והיו קורין אותי יוחנן אוכל חלות והעלהו רבינו הקדוש לכהונה ע"פ עצמו:

Someone who comes in our time and says, "I am a Cohen," we don't believe him and we don't raise him to Priesthood by his own word and he does not read (the) first (Aliyah) from the Torah and he does not raise his hands (for the Priestly blessing of the congregation). [Rama: But there are those who say that he is believed in order to read first from the Torah and to raise his hands (for the blessing) in our time since we don't have tithing from the Torah, about which we should be concerned that perhaps they would raise him (inappropriately) to (one who accepts holy) tithings. Thus, it is established as our universal custom not to accept tithings in our time and thus, we have no concern for this practice (of allowing him to read first from the Torah and raising his hands)] And we do not feed him from the kodshim of Israel unless there is at least one witness (that his is in fact a Priest). Nonetheless, he would make himself Assur to marry a divorcee a harlot or a Hallal and he would not be allowed to Metamei himself by the dead, but if he did marry or become tamei, he would suffer whiplashes and the woman whom he married (improperly) [who is for him pasula for Cohanim] a safek H'llala. If he was questioned in a way as to not reveal the purpose of the discussion (L'fi Tumo and reveals that he knows for sure that he is a Cohen) he would be believed. How is it possible to question him in a way that does not reveal the intent of the question? Ask him to recall the time when he was a child that "I would ride on my father's shoulders and he would remove me from school take off my clothes and Tovel me in the mikveh so I would eat Trumot after sunset and my friends who were greater than me would bow down to me and prepare us to eat Challot," Here, our holy sages would raise him to priesthood status by himself.

2 ב

היה עד אחד מעיד עליו נאמן להאכילו בתרומה בזמן הזה ולקרות בתורה ראשון ולישא את כפיו ואפי' אביו נאמן עליו ואפי' משטרות מעלין לכהונה בזמן הזה כיצד הרי שהיה כתוב בשטר פלוני כהן לוה מפלוני מנה ועדים חתומים עליו ה"ז בחזקת כהן ככהני זמן זה וכן מעלין מנשיאות כפים ומקריאה בתורה ראשון להיות כהן ככהני זמן זה: וי"א דאם חתם עצמו אני פלוני כהן עד מהני בזמן הזה (הר"ן פרק ב' דכתובות):

If there was one witness that testified (that he is a Cohen), he is believed in order to feed him (the Cohen) tithes in these times, and he can read the first Aliyah from the Torah and to raise his hands (for the congregation). Even his father is believed for him and even a local officer (police) can raise him to priesthood in these times; how is this done? he (the officer) may show a document that was written with his name, Ploni Cohen borrowed from Ploni so much money and witnesses signed this document, thus, he will have the Hazaka of priesthood (on account of the document) like the Cohanim of this time. Hence, he may raise his hands and read First from the Torah and to be a priest like the priests of this time. [Rama: And there are those who say that even if he signed the document himself "I am Ploni the Cohen" this counts as a witness in these times.]

3 ג

אם יעיד אחד מהאנוסים שאחד מהם מוחזק בכהונה מעלין אותו לקרות בתורה ואין חוששין שמא אמו כותית:

If one of the "Anusim" (Jews who were forced to convert) bears witness that one of them is Muchzak (known by Hazaka) in priesthood, he may be raised to read (First Aliyah) from the Torah and we are not concerned that he is a Kuti (goy).

4 ד

אפילו באו שנים וכל אחד מעיד על חבירו שהוא כהן נאמנים ולא חיישינן לגומלין:

Even if two came and they each give witness to the other as being a priest, they are believed and we are not concerned that they are acting together to reward each other.

5 ה

נאמן הגדול לומר זכורני כשהייתי תינוק שראיתי לפלוני טובל ואוכל תרומה ומעלין אותו על פיו להיות כהן ככהני זמן זה:

We believe an adult who says "I remember when I was a child that I saw this Ploni (guy) immerse (in a mikveh) and eat tithings," we raise him to read first from the Torah by his words and he will be a Cohen (priest) like other Cohanim of our time.

6 ו

מי שבא ואמר כהן אני ועד אחד מעיד שיודע באביו שהוא כהן אין מעלין אותו לכהונה על פיו שמא חלל הוא עד שיעיד שזה כהן הוא אבל אם הוחזק אביו כהן או שבאו שנים והעידו שאביו של זה כהן הוא ה"ז בחזקת אביו: (ובכל דבר הולכין אחר החזקה שהרי שורפין וסוקלין על החזקה):

Someone who comes and says "I am a Cohen" and a single witness testifies that he knows his father that he is a Cohen, we do not raise him to priesthood by his word lest he is really a Hallal (ineligible for Cahuna by his mother) until there is testimony (from at least one witness) that he (himself) is a Cohen. But, if his father is known by hazakah to be a priest or if two witnesses testify that his father is a priest, thus, that would suffice to make his father known as a priest. [Rama: In all instances, we follow the Hazakah, we even burn and stone based on (the principle of) Hazakah].

7 ז

מי שהוחזק אביו כהן ויצא עליו קול שהוא בן גרושה או בן חלוצה חוששין לו ומורידין אותו בא עד אחד אח"כ והעיד שהוא כשר מעלין אותו לכהונה על פיו באו ב' עדים אח"כ והעידו שהוא חלל מורידין אותו מכהונה בא עד אחד והעיד שהוא כשר מעלין אותו לכהונה שזה האחרון מצטרף לעד ראשון והרי שנים מעידים שהוא כשר ושנים מעידים שהוא פסול ידחו אלו ואלו וידחה הקול שהשנים כמאה וישאר כהן בחזקת אביו:

Someone who's father is established as a Cohen but some voice were raised that he is the son of a divorcee or the son of a Halitzah (so he would be passul for priesthood, even if his father was a priest), we are concerned for him and we take him down (to disallow him as a Cohen). If one witness came afterwards and testified that he is Kosher, we raise him up again to Priesthood by this testimony. If then 2 more witnesses came to testify together that he is a Hallal (disqualified) we take him down again. Then, if one more witness came to testify that he is Kosher, we raise him up once again since this last witness combines with the first witness and we have two witnesses that testify that he is Kosher versus two who testify that he is passul. These two witnesses (for Kashrut) push off two (who would passul him) and the voice against him since these two are like 100 and he remains a Cohen based on these two witnesses and the establishment of his father.

8 ח

אשה שלא שהתה שלשה חדשים אחר בעלה וילדה ואין ידוע אם בן ט' לראשון או בן שבעה לאחרון והיה אחד מהן כהן והשני ישראל ה"ז ספק כהן וכן אם נתערב ולד כהן בולד ישראל והגדילו התערובות כל אחד מהם ספק כהן ונותנים עליהם חומרי ישראל וחומרי כהנים נושאים נשים הראויות לכהונה ואין מטמאים למתים ולא אוכלים בתרומה ואם נשאו גרושה מוציאין ואין לוקים:

A woman who did not wait 3 full months after she was (last) with her husband and she gave birth and she does not know if the baby is a 9 month baby from the first husband or a 7 month baby from the second husband and the first one was a Cohen and the second was from Israel, this makes a Saffek (doubtful) Cohen. The same would be true for a baby Cohen who was confused with an Israel baby and they grew up, each of these are a Saffek Cohen and we impose on them the strictures of Cohanim and strictures of Israel; They can only marry a woman who is fit to marry a priest and they may not be Metamei from the dead and they can't eat Trumot (priestly tithes) and if he married a divorcee, he must divorce her but he does not get whiplashes for marrying her.

9 ט

שני כהנים שנתערבו ולדותיהם או אשת כהן שלא שהתה אחר בעלה ג' חדשים ונשאת לכהן אחר ואין ידוע אם בן ט' לראשון או בן שבעה לאחרון הרי זה כהן ונותנים על הולד חומרי שניהם הוא אונן עליהם והם אוננים עליו הוא אינו מטמא להם והם אינם מטמאים לו בד"א בזמן שבאים מכח נשואין אבל בזנות משתיקין אותו מדין כהונה הואיל ואין ידוע ודאי מי הוא אביו כיצד עשרה כהנים שפירש א' מהם ובעל אע"פ שהוא ודאי בן כהן ואם נטמא למת או נשא גרושה לוקה ואינו עובד ואינו אוכל בתרומה: הגה זנתה עם כהן אחד ובתוך שלשה נשאת לכהן אחר הולד פסול לכהונה (תולדות אדם וחוה נכ"ג) כהן הבא על הפנויה ומודה שהוא בנו הבן כהן לכל דבר ולא חיישינן שמא הפקירה נפשה לאחרים (תשובת הרא"ש כלל ל"ב):

Two Cohanim whos babies got mixed up or the wife of a Cohen who did not wait after her husband (died) 3 months before marrying another Cohen and we don't know if the baby is a 9 month baby from the first husband or a 7 month baby from the second husband, in any case, he is a Cohen and we impose on him the strictures of both fathers; he would be required to be an Onen for all the possible relatives (from both fathers' relatives when they die) and they would be in Onenus for him and he would not be allowed to be Metamei from either of the family members and they would not be allowed to be metamei for him. In which cases do these apply? where the marriage was proper, but if this was through harlotry (or another forbidden relation, but certainly with a Cohen) we silence him from the category of priesthood as we would do if we don't know for certain who is the father (but we are certain that he is a Cohen and not a Halal). What is this case? for example, there are 10 Cohanim out of which one of them and had relations with her (the widow or pnuya); even though he is certainly a priest, such that if he intentionally metameis himself with the dead or marries a divorcee, he would get whiplashes but he would not perform the holy services at the Temple or eat priestly tithings (since he does not know exactly who is his father). [Rama: If she was a penuya (a kosher single girl who is not a harlot by the Torah) who had relations with a Cohen and within 3 months married a different Cohen, the offspring is passul from the priesthood. Although, a Cohen who has carnal relations with a penuya and admits that the child is his son, the child is a Cohen for all things (including Trumot and Avoda) and we are not concerned that perhaps she is giving over her nefesh as a harlot.