For the week ending 16 October 2010 / 7 Heshvan 5771

Avodah Zarah 65 - 71

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
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  • Definition of a geir toshav
  • The Sage Rava and the indulging Bar Sheishech
  • Benefiting from transporting of forbidden wine
  • Forbidden wine falling on fruit or grain
  • Selling to a non-Jew something forbidden to Jews
  • When a forbidden matter is mixed with permitted one
  • The status of odors from forbidden matter
  • Forbidden matter absorbed in vessels
  • The rodent in the vat of beer
  • When a non-Jew is not suspected of touching wine
  • Troops that enter a city and their impact on its wine
  • When is ownership finalized by a non-Jewish buyer

The Hol(e)y Grapes

  • Avodah Zara 65b

Although our study of the Weekly Daf is limited to the Babylonian Talmud, we find that our commentaries will occasionally cite something from the Jerusalem Talmud as clarification.

A case in point is the ruling of the mishna regarding wine, prohibited for use because of its contact with a non-Jew, which fell upon grapes. If the grapes were whole there is no fear that they absorbed any of the wine and they can be simply rinsed in order to permit them for consumption. If, however, they have splits in them, they are forbidden for use by a Jew because we assume that they absorbed some forbidden wine.

Tosefot cites the Jerusalem Talmud, which limits this ruling to grapes which are still part of a cluster. If they have been removed from the cluster, the holes created by the removal of their stems makes them vulnerable to the absorption of the forbidden wine.

What the Sages Say

"In response to Bar Sheishech's taunt that Jews have no pleasures comparable to that of non-Jews, the response should have been the passage in Yeshayahu (64:3): "The eye has not seen what any deity beside You shall do for 'he who waits for Him’."
  • Rav Papi - Avodah Zarah 65a

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