Punishments

Big 3 Cardinal Sins - I am intrigued by which of the "Big 3 mitzvahs" a Jew is expected to give his life for rather than transgress. What exactly are they, and where do they come from? More »
Children Punished for Sins of Parents - How do we understand verses such as Exodus 20:5 (in the Ten Commandments) that God punishes not only sinners, but their descendants till four generations? How is it possibly fair to punish children for that which they... More »
Cruelty of Capital Punishment - I have heard people claim that the death penalty of the Torah was barbaric, and man has progressed since that time, which is why it is no longer done. It doesn’t sound right to me that laws of the Torah should fall out... More »
Egyptian Children Punished for Parents' Sins? - In the Book of Exodus, God indicates that He will slay all the Egyptian first-borns if Pharaoh will not allow the Israelites to leave. Why should the son suffer for the sins of the father? This contradicts the normal... More »
Eye for an Eye - I recently heard a talk explaining "an eye for an eye" in the Torah. As society has become less barbaric, the rabbis reinterpreted the verse to mean one pays the damages for the eye, instead of actually taking out the... More »
Hitler's Level of Accountability - I have been wondering about the status of someone like Hitler who did not actually kill the 6 million with his own hands, but ordered it done by his emissaries. Does murder by his agents put him into the category of a... More »

Due to limited resources, the Ask the Rabbi service is intended for Jews of little background with nowhere else to turn. People with questions in Jewish law should consult their local rabbi. For genealogy questions try JewishGen.org. Note also that this is not a homework service!

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