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Jerusalem - Charedim Find Gentile Chametz Buyer Has Taken It!

Published on: April 22, 2011 11:40 AM
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Jerusalem - A gentile man taught a Jerusalem haredi community an important lesson when he acted on his right to take their leavened products bestowed upon him ahead of Pessah in what was obviously more than just a symbolic act.

The tradition of selling one’s hametz to a non-Jew is what allows observant Jews to keep in their possession various products which are not kosher for Pessah. Normally, after the holiday, the non-Jew will sell the goods back.

As reported by haredi media outlets, members of the Mishkenot Yaakov community in the capital’s Ramat Shlomo neighborhood were encouraged by their Rabbi Simcha Rabinowitz to take the tradition one step further, and rather than selling the hametz, actually give it to the non-Jew, who would presumably return it after the holiday.

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Many people chose to put their products – including expensive alcoholic beverages – in the room destined for the hametz, believing that such an act would be a higher degree of observing the holiday’s prohibition of not owning leavened products.

After the transaction took place and shortly before the holiday began, however, the gentile arrived with his vehicle and proceeded to take the goods, which were legally his. Objecting to his actions was not an option, since that would prove that the deal was not sincere, which would mean that the hametz would have belonged to the Jews.


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Read Comments (37)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Apr 22, 2011 at 12:56 PM Balaboos Says:

LOL...

2

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:02 PM pbalaw Says:

Li'chaim

3

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:13 PM frum with a twist Says:

that's what happens when you try to outdo everybody else with frum shtick...
nobody asked them to try and be more machmir than generations of ehrliche yorei shomayim who followed our gedolim.

4

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:17 PM MazelKGH Says:

That's why I sell my chometz to a rabbi and not to a gentile. It costs more but they are more honest. Many of my friends sell their chometz online and give a fake address to avoid such problems.

5

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:27 PM Anon Ibid Opcit Says:

Reply to #4  
MazelKGH Says:

That's why I sell my chometz to a rabbi and not to a gentile. It costs more but they are more honest. Many of my friends sell their chometz online and give a fake address to avoid such problems.

In other words, your friends are liars and cheats who recognize that this is a convenient fiction.

Good for the Gentile in question. He had every right to take possession of the good he bought.

6

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:27 PM Anonymous Says:

Selling to a local rav, like our grandparent did in the alte heim is the correct hashkafah. The rav will most likely resell the chometz to a goy he knows will play along with the "sale" an "repurchase" after yom tov. There is never a fear that a rav would c'v come to your house and take posession of all your shnaps.

7

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:32 PM The_Truth Says:

Reply to #4  
MazelKGH Says:

That's why I sell my chometz to a rabbi and not to a gentile. It costs more but they are more honest. Many of my friends sell their chometz online and give a fake address to avoid such problems.

If you really do "sell" your chometz to a Rabbi - then he is the one with a problem of owning chometz over pesach and you will have a problem getting them back after pesach as you can not buy chometz that was owned by a jew over pesach!

As for the cost - surely SELLING your chometz should not cost you!

If you are going to sell your chometz (and presumably buy them back after pesach), the smart thing to do is to do it with a proper, valid sale document through your Rabbi as a shliach, who will sell yours (and the entire communitys) chometz to a non-Jew for pesach & buy it back after pesach. This should not cost you anything.

8

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:44 PM The_Truth Says:

This happeneds every so often every generation. There are classic stories with the gedolim of how they tried to get the goy to stop drinking all the beer/liquor he bought legally (sending him on a job on chold hamoed to another rov in another town - paying him for this "job", thereby saving the local merchants parnassa) etc.
I remember as a kid, a local shuls Chometz was sold to the janitor - who found it contained liquor and promptly drunk it all first night seder!
This happens. It legal. Zull zein a kappora!

9

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:44 PM seagul47 Says:

this is funny. (maybe not for the people who sold the chometz)

this also happened to a North American yeshiva, which sold all the chometz including the whiskey to the janitor. comes motzoei yom tov--they found out he had a great party and all the liquor was gone.

still laugh years later.

10

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:51 PM Brainstorm Says:

When you sell the chometz to a Rov, he doesn't keep it. Or he would be over the same as you would. He resells it to a gentile, knowing all the dinim and laws on how to do it properly.

If selling was good enough for the previous generations why do "talmidei chachamim" of todays generation try to outsmart them.

11

 Apr 22, 2011 at 01:54 PM bigwheeel Says:

Reply to #3  
frum with a twist Says:

that's what happens when you try to outdo everybody else with frum shtick...
nobody asked them to try and be more machmir than generations of ehrliche yorei shomayim who followed our gedolim.

I agree with you 100%. This what happens when someone wants to be more machmir and more frum than all the Gedolei Yisroel. They didn't sell their Chametz, they gave it away. This type of mentality has more in common with OCD. It may be a good lesson for the next time.

12

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:00 PM sasregener Says:

Reply to #6  
Anonymous Says:

Selling to a local rav, like our grandparent did in the alte heim is the correct hashkafah. The rav will most likely resell the chometz to a goy he knows will play along with the "sale" an "repurchase" after yom tov. There is never a fear that a rav would c'v come to your house and take posession of all your shnaps.

you are missing the whole point. you dont sell the chamets to the rav. what you do is designate the rav as a shliach to sell your chometz to a goy. i cant believe that people im this day an age think they are selling the chometz to the rav. your rav should explain this to all that come to him. you bpeoplke bhaqve no cluen as far as pgiving a fake addrress. this meansd that the sale3 is invalid and the people who gave the false addresses actualy still own their chometz and are in violation every second of pesach for this. so they by trying to be clever and lie have done themselves more harm then they realize. idiots!

13

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:02 PM sasregener Says:

Reply to #6  
Anonymous Says:

Selling to a local rav, like our grandparent did in the alte heim is the correct hashkafah. The rav will most likely resell the chometz to a goy he knows will play along with the "sale" an "repurchase" after yom tov. There is never a fear that a rav would c'v come to your house and take posession of all your shnaps.

your an idiot the chametz is not actualy sold to the rav you bmake the rav a messenger to sell the chametz to the rav. i cant believe you dont know this

14

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:12 PM Anonymous Says:

The level of am horatzus displayed by commenters 3,4,5 & 6 is scary.


BTW, it does not appear that anyone protested what the gentile did. They were fully aware that it was his and he can do so. the JP was just trying to use innuendo to insinuate that these people were less the sincere when they sold the chometz, and it is just the opposite.

15

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:32 PM shvigger Says:

The goy actually owes the sellers money now, because the money he paid was merely a deposit.

16

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:35 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to No. 12

You are the one missing the point. If everyone sells their chometz to the local Rav, we assume he knows the halacha regarding whether or not he needs to resell that chometz to a goy. If he is concerned that the goy might renege on the agreement and either take custody of the chometz or refuse to sell it back to the rightful owners, the Rav would presumably retain control over the chometz to prevent the loss of property to the tzibur.

17

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:36 PM StevenWright Says:

As the Midrash says: "Talmid chacham she'in bo daas. . .. ."

18

 Apr 22, 2011 at 02:59 PM clear-thinker Says:

Reply to #15  
shvigger Says:

The goy actually owes the sellers money now, because the money he paid was merely a deposit.

Ah, but what did the sellers say the items were worth? If they followed the practice of saying that the whiskey is $100 they are in for a surprise. These sales a contracts and as such are enforceable. As to giving fake addresses: it is amazing what some people will do to avoid issues, while falsely claiming to follow halacha.

19

 Apr 22, 2011 at 03:01 PM joseph Says:

That's the last time he'll be the buyer!

20

 Apr 22, 2011 at 03:29 PM KAHANAwasRIGHT Says:

It happaned to my father too. I rememeber when I was a little kid, we were in the middle of the second seder, when a Goy knocked on our door, he said he came to see his chometz that he bought.

Well you couldn't make my father happier if you gave him a Million Dolllars. My father had a very expensive liquer collection, he was so happy he told him to come right in and showed him where it was.

He couldn't stop talking about it for years. He said that, that year he felt like he really sold the chometz.

21

 Apr 22, 2011 at 03:36 PM rescue Says:

Reply to #18  
clear-thinker Says:

Ah, but what did the sellers say the items were worth? If they followed the practice of saying that the whiskey is $100 they are in for a surprise. These sales a contracts and as such are enforceable. As to giving fake addresses: it is amazing what some people will do to avoid issues, while falsely claiming to follow halacha.

When a Rav sells chometz the contract and verbal language used is that there is a deposit being put down now, the actual value will be determined at a future date (motzei pesach) when the money will be due. The buyer can then back out motzei pesach and return it then, but the chometz belongs to him until then. Any choemtz which the buyer decides to eat, sell, keep etc. needs to be paid up at full market value at that point. The amounts that may be valued before pesach are only estimates.

22

 Apr 22, 2011 at 03:45 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #4  
MazelKGH Says:

That's why I sell my chometz to a rabbi and not to a gentile. It costs more but they are more honest. Many of my friends sell their chometz online and give a fake address to avoid such problems.

You don't sell your chametz to the rabbi, you make the rabbi a shliach or gove him permission to sell your chametz.

23

 Apr 22, 2011 at 05:21 PM menash Says:

Reply to #4  
MazelKGH Says:

That's why I sell my chometz to a rabbi and not to a gentile. It costs more but they are more honest. Many of my friends sell their chometz online and give a fake address to avoid such problems.

If you write your wrong address i don't think its a good sale

24

 Apr 22, 2011 at 06:03 PM Anon Ibid Opcit Says:

Reply to #23  
menash Says:

If you write your wrong address i don't think its a good sale

It's fraud. Fraud is a crime.

25

 Apr 22, 2011 at 06:37 PM basmelech Says:

That's the only reason the sale can be legit., That the goy has the right to take the chometz, otherwise how can it be a valid sale?

26

 Apr 22, 2011 at 06:49 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #22  
Anonymous Says:

You don't sell your chametz to the rabbi, you make the rabbi a shliach or gove him permission to sell your chametz.

A rav presumably will know whether it is necessary to resell the chometz to a goy, acting in his role as a "shalicah" or "agent" or to simply keep the chometz over yom tov. If he does the latter, you are still yotzeh on YOUR obligation to have gotten rid of your chometz and its the Rav's problem, not yours. There have been a number of cases over the years where the Rav has either forgotten or neglected to resell the chometz sold to him. Those who did sell to him as their shaliach were justifiably upset but were not responsible for his actions.

27

 Apr 22, 2011 at 07:00 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #26  
Anonymous Says:

A rav presumably will know whether it is necessary to resell the chometz to a goy, acting in his role as a "shalicah" or "agent" or to simply keep the chometz over yom tov. If he does the latter, you are still yotzeh on YOUR obligation to have gotten rid of your chometz and its the Rav's problem, not yours. There have been a number of cases over the years where the Rav has either forgotten or neglected to resell the chometz sold to him. Those who did sell to him as their shaliach were justifiably upset but were not responsible for his actions.

Where do you get your information from?
Such Na'arishkeit. If it was sold to a rov and not to goy, it becomes ossur because it is chometz sheovar alov hapesach.

28

 Apr 22, 2011 at 07:11 PM A Says:

Reply to #20  
KAHANAwasRIGHT Says:

It happaned to my father too. I rememeber when I was a little kid, we were in the middle of the second seder, when a Goy knocked on our door, he said he came to see his chometz that he bought.

Well you couldn't make my father happier if you gave him a Million Dolllars. My father had a very expensive liquer collection, he was so happy he told him to come right in and showed him where it was.

He couldn't stop talking about it for years. He said that, that year he felt like he really sold the chometz.

Good story, it made me smile.
Your father reminds me of mine, a"h. What a great generation.

29

 Apr 23, 2011 at 10:59 PM curious Says:

Reply to #26  
Anonymous Says:

A rav presumably will know whether it is necessary to resell the chometz to a goy, acting in his role as a "shalicah" or "agent" or to simply keep the chometz over yom tov. If he does the latter, you are still yotzeh on YOUR obligation to have gotten rid of your chometz and its the Rav's problem, not yours. There have been a number of cases over the years where the Rav has either forgotten or neglected to resell the chometz sold to him. Those who did sell to him as their shaliach were justifiably upset but were not responsible for his actions.

What do you mean by whether it is necessary? Of course it is. If your rav keeps it, he is over on it and it is then chometz sheover alav hapesach and is forever useless.

30

 Apr 24, 2011 at 01:31 AM Anonymous Says:

If the goy only made a down payment, he owes the rest of the money for whatever he bought and decided to keep/use

31

 Apr 24, 2011 at 01:33 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #13  
sasregener Says:

your an idiot the chametz is not actualy sold to the rav you bmake the rav a messenger to sell the chametz to the rav. i cant believe you dont know this

There are two ways, most people appoint the rov as a shliach. Some sell it to the rov with an arev kablan, which is an extra chumra

32

 Apr 24, 2011 at 04:41 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #5  
Anon Ibid Opcit Says:

In other words, your friends are liars and cheats who recognize that this is a convenient fiction.

Good for the Gentile in question. He had every right to take possession of the good he bought.

I am completely astounded at the discussion taking place between #4 and #5. Are you both really so ignorant, or just adding some humour to the story?
To #4: So you 'sell' you chometz to the rabbi? And what does he do with it? Eat it over Pesach? If your rabbi is not as ignorant as yourself, he would have explained that you only designate him as an agent to sell the chometz to a non-Jew. Moreover, your friends that give false addresses have most probably not sold their chometz at all, and are still in legal possession of it throughout Pesach. I'm sure their wives would be thrilled, knowing that after all their hard work cleaning the house etc, their skinflint husbands don't bother to sell their chometz. I would suggest that next year they refuse to clean the house at all, after all, getting rid of the chometz is the husband's responsibility.
To #5: You are right the they are liars and cheats, but that wrong to say that selling chometz is a convenient fiction. When it is done according to halochoh and the law of the land, it is a binding sale.

33

 Apr 24, 2011 at 07:23 AM 5TResident Says:

There was a story in Israel this year about a man who sold his entire house for Pesach, not just his chometz in the house, to a Gentile. He and his family went away for Yom Tov. Then the house burned to the ground over Yom Tov. The insurance company refused to pay for the loss, saying that the man had sold the house to someone else, so the homeowner's policy was automatically cancelled at the time of the sale. And the man could not argue that he didn't really sell his house, because that would be admitting that he kept his chometz. As someone who works in the insurance industry, I can tell you that this is a pretty compelling argument from a legal standpoint, although it is quite a dirty trick by the insurer. Moral of the story: be careful.

34

 Apr 24, 2011 at 10:04 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #33  
5TResident Says:

There was a story in Israel this year about a man who sold his entire house for Pesach, not just his chometz in the house, to a Gentile. He and his family went away for Yom Tov. Then the house burned to the ground over Yom Tov. The insurance company refused to pay for the loss, saying that the man had sold the house to someone else, so the homeowner's policy was automatically cancelled at the time of the sale. And the man could not argue that he didn't really sell his house, because that would be admitting that he kept his chometz. As someone who works in the insurance industry, I can tell you that this is a pretty compelling argument from a legal standpoint, although it is quite a dirty trick by the insurer. Moral of the story: be careful.

I doubt the story is true. And people do not sell their houses. They sell the chometz, they lease (or sub let) the houses or the place where the chometz is. Only people who own a house sell chometz? If they do not own the premises how can they sell? They just let the property to the goy for the period.

35

 Apr 24, 2011 at 10:31 AM stamm Says:

the article says they GAVE the chometz to a gentile. If there was no shtar mechira, and them thinking they would get back the chometz then Hashem actually did them a favor because when giving away something thiinking you would get it back makes the whole deal "posul" and would render the chometz forbidden after Pesach. when we sell thinking we get it back at least we go through all the technicalities through the shtar making it kosher v'yoshor.

secondly, the Rabbi trying to be machmir, sorry, i thought one is not permitted to give a gentile a gift just out of the blue(unless he services you in some way). Maybe he actually did, don't know for sure..

36

 Apr 24, 2011 at 12:31 PM shredready Says:

Reply to #4  
MazelKGH Says:

That's why I sell my chometz to a rabbi and not to a gentile. It costs more but they are more honest. Many of my friends sell their chometz online and give a fake address to avoid such problems.

if they did that then the sale was not truly a legal sale and the stuff would be assur after peseach.

so they committed an avera of fraud to make sure they do not committee an avra of chumatz

very strange world some people live in

37

 Apr 24, 2011 at 02:21 PM amoratzim! Says:

Reply to #36  
shredready Says:

if they did that then the sale was not truly a legal sale and the stuff would be assur after peseach.

so they committed an avera of fraud to make sure they do not committee an avra of chumatz

very strange world some people live in

what are you talking about? they didn't commit fraud, they just sold non-existent chometz. Their own chometz was never sold so they surely DID "committee" the avera of having and owning chometz on Pesach.

Why would anyone think that their chometz was sold if their address was never given as part of the transaction? why would they think the chometz at their address was sold in any way?

38

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