Rambam Summaries: Erechin Vecharamim Chapter 8

Chapter 8

1.      The date that the Beis Din collects the dues of the different Hekdeishos and Charamim:

  • On the 15th of the month of Adar, the Beis Din goes out to check the needs of the public and collects all the dues of Hekdeish and Cherems, as well as the half shekel. [Halacha 1]

2.      Appraising the value of items of Hekdish:

  • The value of movable items as well as animals is appraised by three experts. [Halacha 2]
  • Land is appraised by 10 experts. [Halacha 2]
  • The value of a person is appraised by 10 experts. [Halacha 2]

3.      How the bidding takes place:

  • The law if the highest bidder retracted his bid: Then he must pay the excess amount that will now be lost to Hekdish, and the same applies for every subsequent bidder. [Halacha 3]
  • The law if a group of the highest bidders all retracted. [Halacha 4]
  • Outbidding the owner: The owners have first dibs on the bid, being that they add an additional fifth, and hence if they did an equal amount to someone else, they receive the item. However, if someone outbid them even by a small amount than they receive the item. [Halacha 5-7]

4.      The law of making something Hekdish in today’s times and doing Erechin and Charamim:

  • In today’s times we no longer make things Hekdish, nor do we do Erechin and Charamim, being that we no longer have a temple that needs to be supported with the funds. [Halacha 8]
  • The laws if one made something Hekdish today: If one went ahead and sanctified an animal today, then it is to be locked in a room until it dies. If it is fruits or vessels then it is likewise left alone till it deteriorates. If it is money or items made of metal, than it is to be thrown to the city. [Halacha 8] If it is a slave, then he is to be redeemed and the redemption mony is to be thrown into the sea. [Halacha 9]
  • Redeeming Hekdish in today’s time: In today’s times, Hekdish may be redeemed for even less than its value and even a single Peruta suffices, which is subsequently thrown into the sea as explained above. Nonetheless, the sages established and should be redeemed with the value of four Zuzim. [Halacha 10]
  • The laws if one made something Cherem today: If one went ahead and made an item Cherem today, then it is to be given to the Cohanim that are found in his area. If, however, he did this to land, then in the land of Israel it is not valid while in the Diaspora the land is to be given to the Kohanim. [Halacha 11]

5.      No requirement to make something Hekdish or perform Erechin or Charamim:

  • Although it is a mitzvah to do the above, and it is thus proper for a person to do so in order to not be stingy and subjugate his inclination and honor God, nonetheless, it is not obligatory and one who does not do so carries no sin. [Halacha 12]

6.      Sanctifying all of one’s property:

  • One should never sanctify all of his property, and one who does so transgresses Scripture, and is considered to do an act of foolishness as he causes himself to now be in need of public assistance. Rather, one should never dedicate more than 1/5 of his property, and only dedicate that which he can afford. [Halacha 13]

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