Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3

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Mishnah 1

Akavia ben Mahalalel said:
Keep in mind three things,
And you will not come into the hands of sin:

Know:
From where you came,
And to where you are going,
And before Whom you will have to give an account and a reckoning.

From where did you come?
From a putrid drop.

And to where are you going?
To a place of dust, worms, and maggots.

And before Whom will you have to give an account and a reckoning?
Before the King of kings, the Holy One, Blessed be He.


Mishnah 2

Rabbi Chanina, the Deputy High Priest, said:
Pray for the welfare of the government,
For were it not for the fear of it,
One person would eat the other alive.

Rabbi Chanania ben Tradyon said:
[When] two sit together and there are no words of Torah [spoken] between them,
This is a session of scorners,
As it is said (in Psalm 1:1):
“[Happy is the man who has] not . . . sat in the seat of the scornful.”

But [when] two sit together and there are words of Torah [spoken] between them,
The Divine Presence rests with them,
As it is said (in Malachi 3:16):
“Then they who feared the Lord spoke one with another, and the Lord hearkened and heard, and a book of remembrance was written before Him, for them who feared the Lord and who thought upon His Name.”

[The Mishnah asks:] I have no [Scriptural support for the proposition that the Divine Presence rests with them] except [with] two.
From where [is there proof that] even [when there is only] one [person studying Torah],
The Holy One, Blessed be He, determines a reward for him?
As it is said (in Lamentations 3:28):
“Though he sits alone and [meditates] in silence, yet he takes [a reward] to himself.”


Mishnah 3 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/3

Mishnah 4 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/4

Mishnah 5 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/5

Mishnah 6

Rabbi Chalafta [ben Dosa] of Kfar Chananiah said:
[When] ten sit together and occupy themselves with Torah,
The Divine Presence rests among them,
As it is said (in Psalm 82:1):
“God stands in the congregation of God.”

And from where [can one learn that the Divine Presence rests] even [among] five?
As it is said (in Amos 9:6):
“And He has founded His band upon the earth.”

And from where [can one learn that the Divine Presence rests] even [among] three?
As it is said (in Psalm 82:1):
“In the midst of the judges He judges.”

And from where [can one learn that the Divine Presence rests] even [with] two?
As it is said (in Malachi 3:16):
“Then they who feared the Lord spoke one with another,
And the Lord hearkened, and heard.”

And from where [can one learn that the Divine Presence rests] even [with] one?
As it is said (in Exodus 20:20 (20:21 in NJPS)):
“In every place where I cause My Name to be mentioned I will come to you and bless you.”


Mishnah 7 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/7

Mishnah 8 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/8

Mishnah 9 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/9

Mishnah 10 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/10

Mishnah 11 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/11

Mishnah 12 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/12

Mishnah 13 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/13

Mishnah 14 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/14

Mishnah 15 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/15

Mishnah 16 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/16

Mishnah 17 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/17

Mishnah 18 Translation:Mishnah/Seder Nezikin/Tractate Avot/Chapter 3/18