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  • Torah and Jewish Thought
  • Torah Teachings

Tanach and the Land

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Rabbi Chaim Tabasky

Sivan 27, 5768
Question
We learn from the story of Naboth’s vineyard - I Kings 21 that it is a forbidden to take land by force and money. Does that also apply to illegal outposts, in instances where the land is forcibly possessed?
Answer
The theft of Nevot's vineyard, which was accomplished by trumped up charges and false witnesses, was one of the most cruel and heinous episodes of the Tanach. The motivation was pure greed which led to murder and plunder. Those who side with expelling Jews from their homes in Israel are sometimes motivated by a desire for peace, and generally are not motivated by personal gain. Our arguement with those people is not based on the story of Nevot's vineyard, but rather on the conviction that Eretz Yisroel belongs to the entire Jewish people, and that even a government has no justification the forcibly remove Jews from their homes. It should also be kept in mind that not every great Rabbi or thinker agrees about this issue.
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