Pisqa’ 263

Pisqa’ 2631


“You may, rather, exact from the foreigner [unfair terms];

but you must not exact [unfair terms] from your brother” (Dt.23:21).

Exact from the . . . foreigner”—

this is a prescriptive commandment.

“But you must not exact from . . . your brother”—

this is a proscriptive commandment.


Rabban Gamliel says:

Why does the Teaching state—

“you must not exact [unfair terms] from your brother” (Dt.23:21)?

Now hasn’t Scripture already stated:

Do not exact from your brother unfair terms” (Dt.23:20)?

Actually, [the redundancy teaches that]

there is interest-before-the-fact,

and interest-after-the-fact.

How does this work?

[If] he had in mind to borrow from someone,

and sent him a gift, saying:

[Accept this gift] so that you’ll lend to me—

this is interest-before-the-fact.


[I] he borrowed from someone and returned the money,

and then he sent some [more money], saying:

this is for [your] money that was idle in my possession—

this is interest-after-the-fact.2


“So that HASHEM your God may bless you in all you set your hand to do” (Dt.23:21)—

the verse calls a blessing upon whatever his hands do.3

“On the Land which you are coming to possess” (Dt.23:21)—

as reward for coming, you will take possession.4

  1. H:260;JN2:195-196.
  2. =M. BM. 5:10.
  3. Cf. the use of this trope at Pisqa’ 64.2
  4. This trope also appears earlier in Sifre at Pisqa’ 55.3.