The Torah Method of Rebuke-First Be a Friend

Everyone knows that there is a mitzvah to rebuke someone when there are transgressing the Torah. Today’s daf in Tamid tells us that giving rebuke is a praiseworthy endeavor. This is very hard understand. On the samet daf, Rabbi Yochananan sneaks in word which illustrates the proper method of giving rebuke. Rabbi Yochanan states: “those who give rebuke to a “friend” merit heaven. The key to this thought is “Friend.” Rashi adds, this means that the person receiving the rebuke accepts it. There is a relationship between the two people involved.

The message is clear. Before one can rebuke, one must show compassion, mercy, concern and be a true friend.
It is only within the framework of friendship, fellowship and concern for one’s fellow man that rebuke is effective.

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