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Mishpatim: Helping The Hated: Mitzvah 68 – Concept 496

“If you see the donkey of someone you hate crouching under its burden, would you refrain from helping him? You shall help repeatedly with him.” (Exodus 23:5) We must help another remove the load from his beast that can no longer carry it. (Rambam, Hilchot Rotzeiach U’shmirat Nefesh – The Laws of Murder and The Preservation of Life)

“Someone you hate,” refers to someone you are obligated to hate such as an intentional public sinner, and yet, we are still obligated to help him! The “hatred” must be focused only  on his sinful behavior, not the man himself.

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