With regard to the halakha that if one sells his slave to a Jew outside of Eretz Yisrael it is the purchaser who loses his money, Abaye said to Rav Yosef: What did you see to cause you to say that we apply the penalty to the purchaser, in that he is required to emancipate the slave and loses his money; we should apply the penalty to the seller, and he should be required to return the money. Rav Yosef answered Abaye with a parable and said to him: It is not the mouse that steals, but the hole that steals. In other words, a mouse cannot steal anything unless he has a hole for hiding the stolen items. Here too, the slave would not have been sold without the help of the purchaser. The Gemara questions this logic: But if not for the mouse, from where would the hole have the stolen item; since they both contribute to the prohibited act, each of them is deserving of being penalized. Rav Yosef responded to him: It stands to reason that anywhere that the forbidden item, i.e., the slave, is, in this case, with the purchaser, there we should penalize. § The Gemara relates: There was a certain slave who fled from his master from outside of Eretz Yisrael to Eretz Yisrael. His master followed him to Eretz Yisrael and came before Rabbi Ami. Rabbi Ami said to the master: We will write a promissory note for his value for you, and you should write a bill of manumission for him. And if you do not do this, I will remove him from you entirely, since he does not have to return to outside of Eretz Yisrael, based on the statement of Rabbi Aḥai, son of Rabbi Yoshiya. As it is taught in a baraita: The verse states with regard to the residents of the Land of Canaan: “They shall not dwell in your land lest they make you to sin against Me, for you will serve their gods; for they will be a snare to you” (Exodus 23:33). One might have thought that the verse is also speaking of a gentile who accepted upon himself not to engage in idol worship, and is teaching that such a gentile may not dwell in Eretz Yisrael as well; therefore the verse states: “You shall not deliver to his master a slave who escaped to you from his master” (Deuteronomy 23:16). The baraita understands that the verse is speaking in metaphoric terms about a gentile who has come to Eretz Yisrael, escaping his idolatrous past. The baraita continues: What is this gentile’s remedy? “He shall dwell with you in your midst” (Deuteronomy 23:17). This teaches that as long as he accepts upon himself not to engage in idol worship, he may remain in Eretz Yisrael. And the explanation of the verse in the baraita is difficult for Rabbi Yoshiya: This expression employed in the verse: “From his master,” is imprecise if it is speaking about a gentile who abandons idol worship, as it should have stated: From his father, as a father is a more apt metaphor for the religion in which one was raised. Rather, Rabbi Yoshiya explains differently and says: The verse is speaking of one who sells his slave to a Jew who lives outside of Eretz Yisrael, and the continuation of the verse: “He shall dwell with you,” means that he does not go to his new master outside of Eretz Yisrael, but is emancipated and remains in Eretz Yisrael. And the explanation of Rabbi Yoshiya is difficult for Rabbi Aḥai, son of Rabbi Yoshiya: If it is referring to a slave who is sold to one outside of Eretz Yisrael, then this expression: “Who escaped to you,” is not accurate, as he is leaving from Eretz Yisrael, not escaping to Eretz Yisrael. According to Rabbi Yoshiya’s explanation, it should have stated: Who escaped from you. Rather, Rabbi Aḥai, son of Rabbi Yoshiya, said: The verse is speaking of a slave who escaped from outside of Eretz Yisrael to Eretz Yisrael, which indicates that in such a case he may dwell there and is not returned to his master. Based on this statement of Rabbi Aḥai, son of Rabbi Yoshiya, Rabbi Ami told the master that the slave will in any case be emancipated. It is taught in another baraita: The verse states: “You shall not deliver to his master a slave” (Deuteronomy 23:16); Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi says: The verse is speaking of one who acquires a slave in order to emancipate him. The court may not deliver him to this master, because he is not his slave and he may not treat him as such. The Gemara asks: What are the circumstances of this case? Rav Naḥman bar Yitzḥak said: For example, when he wrote to the slave like this: When I will purchase you, you are hereby acquired to yourself from now. The new master does not take possession of the slave, as he is emancipated immediately upon being purchased. The Gemara relates that Rav Ḥisda’s slave escaped to Bei Kutai, a place where Samaritans lived. He sent a request to the residents of that place: Return him to me. They sent a response to him: The verse states: “You shall not deliver to his master a slave,” so we will not return this slave to you. He sent a response to them: The verse also states with regard to lost items: “And you shall restore it to him…and so you shall do for his donkey and so you shall do for his garment and so you shall do for anything your brother has lost” (Deuteronomy 22:2–3). They sent a response to him again: But isn’t it written: “You shall not deliver to his master a slave”? Rav Ḥisda sent a response to them: That verse is referring to a slave who escaped from outside of Eretz Yisrael to Eretz Yisrael, and in accordance with the explanation of Rabbi Aḥai, son of Rabbi Yoshiya, and my slave escaped from one location outside of Eretz Yisrael to another location outside of Eretz Yisrael. The Gemara asks: And what is different about this case that led him to send a response to them specifically in accordance with the explanation of Rabbi Aḥai, son of Rabbi Yoshiya, and not in accordance with any other interpretation of the verse? The Gemara answers: Because that is how the Samaritans would understand the verse. Samaritans did not generally accept the explanations of the Sages, and this explanation accords with the straightforward reading of the verse, while the other explanations do not.