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Babylonian Talmud: Tractate Shabbath
and when ye shall err, and not observe all these commandments;1 and it is written, And the soul that doeth aught with a high hand … [that soul shall be cut off]: thus they are all assimilated to idolatry: just as there it is something for the wilful transgression of which kareth2 is incurred, and for the unwitting transgression a sin-offering is incurred,3 so for everything the wilful transgression of which involves kareth, its unwitting transgression involves a sin-offering.4
But according to Monabaz, wherein lies his non-wilfulness?5 E.g., if he was ignorant in respect of the sacrifice.6 But the Rabbis hold that ignorance in respect of the sacrifice does not constitute ignorance.
Now according to the Rabbis, in respect to what is ignorance [required]? R. Johanan said: As long as one errs in respect to kareth, even if he wilfully sins in respect of the negative command;7 while Resh Lakish maintained: He must offend unwittingly in respect of the negative injunction and kareth. Raba said, What is R. Simeon b. Lakish's reason? Scripture saith, [And if any one of the common people sin unwittingly, in doing any of the things which the Lord hath commanded] not to be done, and be guilty:8 hence he must err both as to the negative injunction and its attendant kareth.9 And R. Johanan: how does he employ this verse adduced by R. Simeon b. Lakish? — He utilizes it for what was taught: [And if any one] of the common people: this excludes a mumar.10 R. Simeon b. Eleazar said on the authority of R. Simeon:11 [… sin unwittingly in doing any of the things which the Lord hath commanded] not to be done, and be guilty: he who would refrain12 on account of his knowledge, brings a sacrifice for his unwitting offence; but he who would not refrain on account of his knowledge cannot bring a sacrifice for his unwitting offence.13
We learnt: The primary forms of labour are forty less one.14 Now we pondered thereon, Why state the number?15 And R. Johanan replied: [To teach] that if one performs all of them in a single state of unawareness,16 he is liable [to a sin-offering] for each. Now, how is this possible? [Surely only] where he is aware of the Sabbath but unconscious of [the forbidden nature of] his labours.17 As for R. Johanan, who maintained that since he is ignorant in respect of kareth, though fully aware of the negative injunction, [his offence is unwitting], it is well: it is conceivable e.g., where he knew [that labour is forbidden on] the Sabbath by a negative injunction. But according to R. Simeon b. Lakish, who maintained that he must be unaware of the negative injunction and of kareth, wherein did he know of the Sabbath?18 — He knew of [the law of] boundaries,19 this being in accordance with R. Akiba.20
Who is the authority for the following which was taught by the Rabbis: If one is unaware of both,21 he is the erring sinner mentioned in the Torah;22 if one wilfully transgresses in respect of both, he is the presumptuous offender mentioned in the Torah. If one is unaware of the Sabbath but conscious of [the forbidden character of] his labours or the reverse, or if he declares, 'I knew that this labour is forbidden, but not whether it entails a sacrifice or not, he is culpable? With whom does this agree? With Monabaz.23
Abaye said: All agree in respect to an 'oath of utterance'24 that a sacrifice is not incurred on account thereof unless one is unaware of its interdict.25 'All agree': who is that? R. Johanan?26 But that is obvious! When did R. Johanan say [otherwise], where there is [the penalty of] kareth; but here [in the case of an 'oath of utterance'] that there is no [penalty of] kareth, he did not state [his ruling]? — One might argue: Since liability to a sacrifice [here] is an anomaly,27 for we do not find in the whole Torah that for a [mere] negative injunction28 one must bring a sacrifice, whilst here it is brought; hence even if he is unaware of the [liability to a] sacrifice, he is culpable:29
hence he [Abaye] informs us [otherwise].
An objection is raised: What is an unwitting offence in respect of an 'oath of utterance' relating to the past?1 Where one says, 'I know that this oath is forbidden,2 but I do not know whether it entails a sacrifice or not,' he is culpable?3 — This agrees with Monabaz. (Another version: Who is the authority for this? Shall we say, Monabaz? But then it is obvious! seeing that in the whole Torah, where it [liability to a sacrifice] is not an anomaly, Monabaz rules that unawareness of the sacrifice constitutes unawareness, how much more so here that it is an anomaly!4 Hence it must surely be the Rabbis, and this refutation of Abaye is indeed a refutation.)5
Abaye also said: All agree in respect to terumah that one is not liable to [the addition of] a fifth unless he is unaware of its interdict.6 'All agree': who is that? R. Johanan: But that is obvious: when did R. Johanan say [otherwise], where there is the penalty of kareth, but here that there is no penalty of kareth, he did not state [his ruling]? — You might argue: death stands in the place of kareth,7 and therefore if one is ignorant of [this penalty of] death, he is culpable; hence he informs us [otherwise]. Raba said: Death stands in the place of kareth, and the fifth stands in the place of a sacrifice.8
R. Huna said: If one is travelling on a road or9 in the wilderness and does not know when it is the Sabbath, he must count six days and observe one.10 Hiyya b. Rab said: He must observe one11 and count six [weekdays]. Wherein do they differ? One Master holds that it is as the world's Creation;12 the other Master holds that it is like [the case of] Adam.13
An objection is raised: If one is travelling on a road and does not know when it is the Sabbath, he must observe one day for six. — Surely that means that he counts six days and observes one? No: he keeps one day and counts six. If so, [instead of] 'he must observe one day for six,' he should state, 'he must observe one day and count six'? Moreover, it was taught: If one is travelling on a road or in a wilderness and does not know when it is the Sabbath, he must count six and observe one day.' This refutation of Hiyya b. Rab is indeed a refutation.
Raba said: Every day he does sufficient for his requirements [only],14 except on that day. And on that day he is to die? — He prepared double his requirements on the previous day. But perhaps the previous day was the Sabbath? But every day he does sufficient for his requirements, and even on that day. Then wherein may that day be recognized? By kiddush and habdalah.15
Raba said: If he recognizes the relationship to the day of his departure,16 he may do work the whole of that day.17 But that is obvious? — You might say, Since he did not set out on the Sabbath, he did not set out on the eve of the Sabbath either;18 hence this man, even if he set out on Thursday. it shall be permitted him to do work on two days. Hence he informs us that sometimes one may come across a company and chance to set out [on a Friday].
HE WHO KNOWS THE ESSENTIAL LAW OF THE SABBATH. How do we know it? — Said R. Nahman in the name of Rabbah b. Abbuha, Two texts are written: Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath;19 and it is written, and ye shall keep my Sabbaths.20 How is this to be explained?21 'Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath' [implies] one observance for many Sabbaths;22 [whereas] 'and ye shall keep my Sabbaths' [implies] one observance for each separate Sabbath.23 R. Nahman b. Isaac demurred: On the contrary, the logic is the reverse: Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath [implies] one observance for each separate Sabbath; [whereas] 'and ye shall keep my Sabbaths' [implies] one observance for many Sabbaths.24
HE WHO KNOWS THAT IT IS THE SABBATH.
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