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Daily Mitzvah

Negative Commandment 241, 242

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Negative Commandment 241 (Digest)
Taking Collateral from a Widow

"Nor shall you take a widow's garment as security"Deuteronomy 24:17.

It is forbidden for a creditor to take collateral for a debt from a widow—whether she is wealthy or poor.

Negative Commandment 242 (Digest)
Taking Food Preparation Utensils as Collateral

"One shall not take the upper or lower millstone for a pledge, for he is taking a life as a pledge"Deuteronomy 24:6.

It is forbidden for a creditor to take food preparation utensils – e.g., grinders, kneading bowls, pots, and knives – as collateral for a debt.


Translation of (the unabridged text of) Sefer Hamitzvot by Rabbi Berel Bell, member of the Rabbinical Court of Montreal and director of Teacher Training for the Jewish Learning Institute.

From "Sefer Hamitzvot in English," published by Sichos in English.
Daily Quote
Moses received the Torah from Sinai and gave it over to Joshua. Joshua gave it over to the Elders, the Elders to the Prophets, and the Prophets gave it over to the Men of the Great Assembly. They would say three things: Be cautious in judgement; establish many pupils; make a safety fence around the Torah...
  –Ethics of the Fathers 1:1
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