More Discussions for this daf
1. Kidushin of a Giyores Ketanah 2. MUKAS ETZ 3. Gerim

Aaron Gal asked:

Shalom Harav,

My question is: if eved kenani that is released by Israel, has a choise not to be a Jewish.

My understanding is, that if a Goy work for Israel 7 year, in the 7th years he is released, and become "CHARURI". Actually he is a Jew, Geir.

In page yud alef amud beit, the gemara says that "Hagiyoret Vehashvuya Vehashifcha Shenitgayru" that if they are less than 3 years they can "Limchot" .

Therefore I am not sure now if an "Eved Kenani", adult, can refuse being a jew right when he releases.

Thank you,

Aaron Gal, Fair Lawn, New Jersey USA

The Kollel replies:

No, an Eved Kenani that is released by a Yisrael automatically becomes a Jew. He had the choice not to become a Jew before he became an Eved Kenani, as one cannot become an Eved Kenani against his will (see Shulchan Aruch YD 267:3-5). Once he agrees to become an Eved Kenani, he has a Bris Milah and goes to the Mikvah with the intent of becoming an Eved Kenani. If he is freed, he cannot protest against becoming a full-fledged Jew (see Aruch Hashulchan YD 267:15). [This is different than the minor talked about in our Mishnah.]

All the best,

Yaakov Montrose

Aaron Gal responded:


Thank you for the reply. When I read my email I noticed some mistakes that I made.

As for your answer, you said "He had the choice not to become a Jew before he became an Eved Kenani, as one cannot become an Eved Kenani against his will".

What are his options? If an Israel bought a Goy to be an Eved, and the Eved does not want to be an Eved Kenani, does he has a diffeent status, still Eved, but will not be called Eved Kenani? Can Israel keeps a Goy Eved that does not wants to be an Eved Kenani? If not, what Israel do with him, does he have to sell him to a Goy?

Bechavod Rav,


The Kollel replies:

The Shulchan Aruch (YD 267:4) states: "If a person bought an adult slave from idol worshippers, and the slave did not want to undergo a circumcision, he has twelve months to convince him to do so. More than that length of time it is forbidden to keep him if he is still uncircumcised, but rather he must sell him back to idol worshippers." [See the Rema there who talks about other cases which may be exceptions to the rule.]

All the best,

Yaakov Montrose

Shlomo Shulman responded:

L'kavod HaRabanim HaChashuvim:

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't the children of a Jew's avadim kenani'im also avadim kenani'im? Then this would be an example where the eved kenani has no say in the matter whether to become a Jew. Presumably, the majority of avadi'im kenani'im at any time would be these children of other avadim, since we have an issur asei not to release avadim kenani'im, so their numbers would only add up. Maybe I'm missing something.

Tizku l'mitzvos for your incredible harbatzos Torah l'rabim. I can't describe how much I have gained from your e-mails.

Shlomo Shulman

The Kollel replies:

The questioner above was referring to new Avadim Kenanim. Children who are born into being Avadim Kenanim would indeed not have a choice, just as the children of a Giyores (born after the conversion) do not have a choice of whether or not they should become Jewish.

All the best,

Yaakov Montrose