Random Quote #39 topic: hebraic, Translations from the Talmud, Midrashim and Kabbala

"An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter the congregation of the Lord,
even to the tenth generation," etc. (Deut. xxiii. 4). One day Yehuda, an
Ammonite prophet, came into the academy and asked, "May I enter the
congregation (if I marry a Jewess)?" Rabban Gamliel said unto him, "Thou
art not at liberty to do so;" but Rabbi Joshua interposed and
maintained, "He is at liberty to do so." Then Rabban Gamliel appealed to
Scripture, which saith, "An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the
congregation of the Lord, even to the tenth generation." To this Rabbi
Joshua retorted and asked, "Are then these nations still in their own
native places? Did not Sennacherib, the king of Assyria, transplant the
nations? as it is said (Isa. x. 13), 'I have removed the bounds of the
people, and have robbed their treasures, and have put down the valor of
the inhabitants.'" Rabban Gamliel replied, "Scripture saith (Jer. xlix.
6), 'Afterward I will bring again the captivity of the children of
Ammon,' and so," he argued, "they must have already returned." Rabbi
Joshua then promptly rejoined, "Scripture saith (Jer. xxx. 3), 'I will
bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah,' and these have
not returned yet." And on this reasoning the proselyte was permitted to
enter the congregation.

THE TALMUD, _Yadayim_, chap. 4, mish. 4.


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