Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Do Not Steal1 Part 16

Up to this point, we have focused on various forms of stealing. There is a different but connected prohibition to take an item against the owner's will and pay for it. Even though the person paid the money, he transgressed the prohibition known as 'chamas' in hebrew.

For example, a person aggressively bargained with his friend to sell him an item[2] . The friend refused to sell, so the person grabbed the item and put the money on the table. Since the owner did not agree to sell at that price, the grabber was guilty of chamas.

However, if the owner in some way demonstrated that he agreed to the sale, then there is no transgression of chamas. For example, if he gave the buyer change for the money he put out, then he shows that he has consented to the transaction.

Another prohibition relating to other people's money and property is to not cheat buyers by giving short weights or measures. One who does so, not only transgresses the commandment not to steal, but also the specific command not to cheat with weights and measures[3]. Accordingly, retail store owners should be careful to tell their sales help to properly operate their scales, and on how to set the tare to deduct the weight of the bag, wrappers or container.[4]

It should be noted that this prohibition applies to non-Jews as well as Jews, and applies to stealing very small percentages of the weight or measure.


[1] Much of the information for this essay is taken from "Halachos of Other People's Money" by Rabbi Yisroel Pinchos Bodner.
[2] We will see in a future article that, this form of bargaining is often forbidden in and of itself.
[3] Vayikra, 19:35-6.
[4] Bodner, p.76.


Text Copyright 2009 by Rabbi Yehonasan Gefen and Torah.org

Visit Rabbi Gefen's new blog at rabbiygefen.blogspot.com.

Rabbi Gefen's new book, The Guiding Light, is now available! To order, please contact Rabbi Gefen at Gefen123@smile.net.il or 00972 52 761 9935.


 






ARTICLES ON KI SEITZEI AND ELUL / ROSH HASHANAH:

View Complete List

A Breath of Air
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5769

Diminishing Returns
Rabbi Mordechai Kamenetzky - 5756

Judge Me Tender, Judge Me Sweet
Rabbi Dovid Green - 5760

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Past, Present, and Future
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5763

The Value Inherent in Kindness
Rabbi Shlomo Jarcaig - 5761

Close Only Counts in Horse-Shoes
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5773

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Molded Future
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5757

So It Is Written
Rabbi Label Lam - 5765

Giving in to the Dictates of One's Heart
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5759

ArtScroll

Parshas Ki Seitzei: Volume 26, No. 44
Shlomo Katz - 5772

Guardian of the Mouth
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5759

War On Three Fronts
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5763

> Don't Take Advantage of People's Compassion
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5764

We're Our Own Enemy
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5761

You Can
- 5773

Elul Its All Relative
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5769



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information