Crime and Punishment in Jewish Law: Essays and Responsa

By Walter Jacob; Moshe Zemer | Go to book overview

An Unworthy Man Called to Torah

Current Reform Responsa ( Cincinnati, 1969), ♯167

Solomon B. Freehof

QUESTION: At the regular Sabbath service, it is the custom of the congregation to call up two men to recite the blessings over the Torah reading. One Sabbath morning after the service, an officer of the congregation protested the fact that a certain man had been called up to the Torah that day. He said that the man (who was a lawyer) did not have a good reputation in his professional career. Is it justified to debar a man from being called up to the Torah because his character is open to question? Or is his reputation or character irrelevant to his being called to perform this religious function? (Prom C.G.B., Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)

ANSWER: The question asked is of considerable importance because the answer given to it might well be applied to various other religious functions for which people are called up to the bima. The subject has been discussed sporadically in the literature. Simon ben Zemach Duran ( fourteenth-fifteenth century, Tashbetz II:261) was asked whether unmarried youths may be prohibited from reading the Torah, either because the honor of the Torah requires only mature married adults to be called or because an unmarried youth could not remain clean-minded. He answered that according to the law, a young man is permitted to be called up to the Torah, and adds that even sinners are not forbidden to be called to the Torah; but, nevertheless, if the congregation, in order to make "a fence against evil," desires to forbid certain groups to come up, the congregation is always permitted to do.

Duran is cited in a recent volume of responsa, Mispar HaSofer, by Isaac Zvi Sofer ( Jerusalem, 1961, Responsum 5) not with regard to the calling up of young unmarried men, but with regard to the more characteristically modern question as to whether a public violator of the Sabbath may be called up to the Torah. Sofer follows the decision of Duran, namely, that whatever be the actual rights of the individual in this matter, the congre-

-132-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Crime and Punishment in Jewish Law: Essays and Responsa
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 142

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.