Saturday, April 9, 2011

The Mitzvot of Pesach - Eliminating Chametz


The Torah presents two separate mitzvot – one to eliminate chametz we find before Pesach, and the other to make sure we do not own any chametz throughout Pesach. The Sefer haChinuch numbers these as biblical mitzvot #9 and #11. Both of these mitzvot remind us of the miracles HaShem performed for us in removing us from Egypt.

The latter mitzvah includes avoiding responsibility for chametz; we equate guardianship with ownership. This creates practical difficulties for a Jew who keeps a refrigerator in his work cubicle and allows non-Jews to keep their food in his refrigerator. Aside from avoiding any chance that he might accidentally consume the chametz, the Jew would also need to make clear to the chametz-owners that he takes no responsibility for the fate of their chametz. For more on this see Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim 340.

Have a great day,

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