לא רוב טובה ולא רוב פורענות ואין מרבין עליו ואין מדקדקין עליו
they are not able to receive either an abundance of good nor an abundance of calamities, since the primary place for reward and punishment is in the World-to-Come. And they do not overwhelm him with threats, and they are not exacting with him about the details of the mitzvot.
קיבל מלין אותו מיד נשתיירו בו ציצין המעכבין את המילה חוזרים ומלין אותו שניה נתרפא מטבילין אותו מיד ושני ת"ח עומדים על גביו ומודיעין אותו מקצת מצות קלות ומקצת מצות חמורות טבל ועלה הרי הוא כישראל לכל דבריו
If he accepts upon himself all of these ramifications, then they circumcise him immediately. If there still remain on him shreds of flesh from the foreskin that invalidate the circumcision, they circumcise him again a second time to remove them. When he is healed from the circumcision, they immerse him immediately, and two Torah scholars stand over him at the time of his immersion and inform him of some of the lenient mitzvot and some of the stringent mitzvot. Once he has immersed and emerged, he is like a born Jew in every sense.
אשה נשים מושיבות אותה במים עד צוארה ושני ת"ח עומדים לה מבחוץ ומודיעין אותה מקצת מצות קלות ומקצת מצות חמורות
For the immersion of a woman: Women appointed by the court seat her in the water of the ritual bath up to her neck, and two Torah scholars stand outside the bath house so as not to compromise her modesty, and from there they inform her of some of the lenient mitzvot and some of the stringent mitzvot.
אחד גר ואחד עבד משוחרר ובמקום שנדה טובלת שם גר ועבד משוחרר טובלין וכל דבר שחוצץ בטבילה חוצץ בגר ובעבד משוחרר ובנדה
The procedure applies for both a convert and an emancipated slave who, upon immersion at the time of his emancipation, becomes a Jew in every sense. And in the same place that a menstruating woman immerses, i.e., in a ritual bath of forty se’a of water, there a convert and an emancipated slave also immerse. And anything that interposes between one’s body and the water of the ritual bath with regard to immersion of a ritually impure person, in a manner that would invalidate the immersion, also interposes and invalidates the immersion for a convert, and for an emancipated slave, and for a menstruating woman.
אמר מר גר שבא להתגייר אומרים לו מה ראית שבאת להתגייר ומודיעים אותו מקצת מצות קלות ומקצת מצות חמורות מ"ט דאי פריש נפרוש דא"ר חלבו קשים גרים לישראל כספחת דכתיב (ישעיהו יד, א) ונלוה הגר עליהם ונספחו על בית יעקב:
The Gemara analyzes the baraita. The Master said in the baraita: With regard to a potential convert who comes to a court in order to convert, the judges of the court say to him: What did you see that motivated you to come to convert? And they inform him of some of the lenient mitzvot and some of the stringent mitzvot. The Gemara asks: What is the reason to say this to him? It is so that if he is going to withdraw from the conversion process, let him withdraw already at this stage. He should not be convinced to continue, as Rabbi Ḥelbo said: Converts are as harmful to the Jewish people as a leprous scab [sappaḥat] on the skin, as it is written: “And the convert shall join himself with them, and they shall cleave [venispeḥu] to the house of Jacob” (Isaiah 14:1). This alludes to the fact that the cleaving of the convert to the Jewish people is like a scab.
ומודיעים אותו עון לקט שכחה ופאה ומעשר עני: מ"ט א"ר חייא בר אבא א"ר יוחנן בן נח נהרג על פחות משוה פרוטה ולא ניתן להשבון
The baraita continues: And they inform him of the sin of neglecting the mitzva to allow the poor to take gleanings, forgotten sheaves, and produce in the corner of one’s field, and about the poor man’s tithe. The Gemara asks: What is the reason to specifically mention these mitzvot? Rabbi Ḥiyya bar Abba said that Rabbi Yoḥanan said: Because a gentile is executed even on account of stealing less than the value of a peruta, since gentiles are particular about even such a small loss, and an item that a gentile steals is not subject to being returned, i.e., he is not obligated to return it to its owner. Since gentiles are unwilling to separate even from items of little value, a potential convert must be made aware that he if converts, he will be required to relinquish some of his property to others.
(ומודיעים אותו עון שכחה ופאה): ואין מרבים עליו ואין מדקדקים עליו: אמר רבי אלעזר מאי קראה דכתיב (רות א, יח) ותרא כי מתאמצת היא ללכת אתה ותחדל לדבר אליה
The baraita continues: And they inform him of the sin of neglecting the mitzva to allow the poor to take gleanings, forgotten sheaves, and produce in the corner of one’s field. And they do not overwhelm him with threats, and they are not exacting with him about the details of the mitzvot, i.e., the court should not overly dissuade the convert from converting. Rabbi Elazar said: What is the verse from which this ruling is derived? As it is written: “And when she saw that she was steadfastly minded to go with her, she left off speaking with her” (Ruth 1:18). When Naomi set out to return to Eretz Yisrael, Ruth insisted on joining her. The Gemara understands this to mean that Ruth wished to convert. Naomi attempted to dissuade her, but Ruth persisted. The verse states that once Naomi saw Ruth’s resolve to convert, she desisted from her attempts to dissuade her. The Gemara infers from here that the same approach should be taken by a court in all cases of conversion.
אמרה לה אסיר לן תחום שבת (רות א, טז) באשר תלכי אלך אסיר לן יחוד (רות א, טז) באשר תליני אלין
The Gemara reconstructs the original dialogue in which Naomi attempted to dissuade Ruth from converting: Naomi said to her: On Shabbat, it is prohibited for us to go beyond the Shabbat limit. Ruth responded: “Where you go, I shall go” (Ruth 1:16), and no further. Naomi said to her: It is forbidden for us to be alone together with a man with whom it is forbidden to engage in relations. Ruth responded: “Where you lodge, I shall lodge” (Ruth 1:16), and in the same manner.
מפקדינן שש מאות וי"ג מצות (רות א, טז) עמך עמי אסיר לן עבודת כוכבים (רות א, טז) ואלהיך אלהי ארבע מיתות נמסרו לב"ד (רות א, יז) באשר תמותי אמות ב' קברים נמסרו לב"ד (רות א, יז) ושם אקבר
Naomi said to her: We are commanded to observe six hundred and thirteen mitzvot. Ruth responded: “Your people are my people” (Ruth 1:16). Naomi said to her: Idolatrous worship is forbidden to us. Ruth responded: “Your God is my God” (Ruth 1:16). Naomi said to her: Four types of capital punishment were handed over to a court with which to punish those who transgress the mitzvot. Ruth responded: “Where you die, I shall die” (Ruth 1:17). Naomi said to her: Two burial grounds were handed over to the court, one for those executed for more severe crimes and another for those executed for less severe crimes. Ruth responded: “And there I shall be buried” (Ruth 1:17).
מיד ותרא כי מתאמצת היא וגו':
Immediately following this dialogue, the verse states: “And when she saw that she was steadfastly minded she left off speaking with her” (Ruth 1:18). Once Naomi saw Ruth’s resolve to convert, she desisted from her attempts to dissuade her.
קיבל מלין אותו מיד: מ"ט שהויי מצוה לא משהינן:
The baraita continues: If he accepts upon himself all of these ramifications, then they circumcise him immediately. The Gemara asks: What is the reason to act immediately? It is that we do not delay the performance of a mitzva.
נשתיירו בו ציצין המעכבין המילה וכו': כדתנן אלו הן ציצין המעכבין המילה בשר החופה את רוב העטרה ואינו אוכל בתרומה וא"ר ירמיה בר אבא אמר רב בשר החופה רוב גובהה של עטרה:
The baraita continues: If there still remain on him shreds of flesh from the foreskin that invalidate the circumcision, he is circumcised a second time to remove them. The Gemara explains: This is as we learned in a mishna (Shabbat 137a): These are the shreds of flesh that invalidate the circumcision if they are not cut: Any fragments of the flesh that cover the greater part of the corona. If such shreds remain, the child is considered uncircumcised, and he may not partake of teruma. And in explanation of this mishna, Rav Yirmeya bar Abba said that Rav said: This also includes the flesh that covers the greater part of the height of the corona.
נתרפא מטבילין אותו מיד: נתרפא אין לא נתרפא לא מאי טעמא משום דמיא מרזו מכה:
The baraita continues: When he is healed from the circumcision, they immerse him immediately. The Gemara infers from the precise formulation of the baraita that when he has healed, then yes, he is immersed, but as long as he has not healed, then no, he is not. What is the reason for this? It is because water agitates a wound.
ושני ת"ח עומדים על גביו: והא א"ר חייא א"ר יוחנן גר צריך שלשה הא א"ר יוחנן לתנא תני שלשה:
The baraita continues: And two Torah scholars stand over him at the time of his immersion. The Gemara asks: But didn’t Rabbi Ḥiyya say that Rabbi Yoḥanan said that a convert requires a court of three to be present at his conversion? The Gemara answers: In fact, Rabbi Yoḥanan said to the tanna reciting the mishna: Do not teach that there are two Torah scholars; rather, teach that there are three.
טבל ועלה הרי הוא כישראל לכל דבריו: למאי הלכתא דאי הדר ביה ומקדש בת ישראל ישראל מומר קרינא ביה וקידושיו קידושין:
The baraita continues: Once he has immersed and emerged he is a Jew in every sense. The Gemara asks: With regard to what halakha is this said? It is that if he reverts back to behaving as a gentile, he nevertheless remains Jewish, and so if he betroths a Jewish woman, although he is considered to be an apostate Jew, his betrothal is a valid betrothal.
אחד גר ואחד עבד משוחרר: קסלקא דעתך לקבל עליו עול מצות ורמינהו במה דברים אמורים בגר אבל בעבד משוחרר אין צריך לקבל
The baraita continues: This applies both for a convert and for an emancipated slave. The Gemara considers the meaning of this clause: If it enters your mind to interpret the baraita to mean that a convert and an emancipated slave are the same with regard to accepting upon oneself the yoke of mitzvot, then one could raise a contradiction from that which is taught in another baraita: In what case is this statement that there is a need to accept the yoke of mitzvot said? It is with respect to a convert; however, an emancipated slave does not need to accept upon himself the yoke of mitzvot when he immerses for the sake of emancipation. Rather, the immersion alone is sufficient to emancipate him and thereby render him a Jew.
אמר רב ששת לא קשיא הא ר"ש בן אלעזר הא רבנן
Rav Sheshet said: This is not difficult, as this baraita that states that an emancipated slave is not required to accept the yoke of mitzvot is in accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Shimon ben Elazar, whereas that baraita that implies he is required to do so is in accordance with the opinion of the Rabbis, the first tanna of the following baraita.
דתניא (דברים כא, יג) ובכתה את אביה ואת אמה וגו' בד"א שלא קבלה עליה אבל קבלה עליה מטבילה ומותר בה מיד
As it is taught in a baraita: The Torah permits a Jewish soldier to take a beautiful female prisoner of war out of her captivity in order to marry her. Before he may do so, she must first undergo the process that the Torah describes: “And she shall shave her head, and do her nails; and she shall remove the raiment of her captivity from upon her, and she shall remain in your house and bewail her father and her mother a month of days” (Deuteronomy 21:12–13). She may then be immersed for the sake of conversion, even though she does not accept upon herself the yoke of mitzvot. At that point it is permitted to marry her. The baraita asks: Under what circumstance are these matters stated? It is when she did not accept upon herself the yoke of mitzvot; however, if she willingly accepted upon herself the yoke of mitzvot, he may immerse her for the sake of conversion, and he is permitted to marry her immediately without the need for her to undergo the process described in the Torah.
ר"ש בן אלעזר אומר אע"פ שלא קבלה עליה כופה ומטבילה לשם שפחות וחוזר ומטבילה לשם שחרור ומשחררה
Rabbi Shimon ben Elazar says: Even if she did not accept upon herself the yoke of mitzvot, the need for the process can still be circumvented if he forces her and immerses her for the sake of slavery, and then he again immerses her for the sake of emancipation and thereby emancipates her, rendering her a Jewess. Rabbi Shimon ben Elazar holds that the immersion of a slave for the sake of emancipation is effective even if the slave does not accept upon himself the yoke of mitzvot.