Administer Justice in the Morning

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517) Why did the Creator see fit to give the Dinim to Israel, meaning the portion Mishpatim [Ordinances], after the ten commandments? The Torah was given to Israel from the side of Gevura. For this reason, they must establish peace among them through judgments and ordinances, so that the Torah will be kept on all its sides. The world exists only on Din, for without the Din it would not exist. And for this reason, the world was created in Din and exists.

518) It is written, “Administer justice in the morning.” Is it only for the morning and not the entire day? “In the morning” means until the judges eat and drink, for anyone who sentences after he has eaten and drank, it is not a true judgment, as it is written, “You shall not eat with the blood.” This is a warning for judges not to eat prior to judging, for anyone who judges after he has eaten and drank, it is as though he convicts his friend’s blood and gives him to another, since he actually gives his blood to another by false judgment.

It is so with regard to money, and it is even more so with regard to capital offences. The judges must be careful to judge only before they have eaten and drank. It is written about that, “Administer justice in the morning,” and also, “I am the Lord who exercises mercy, justice, and righteousness on earth.”

519) One who lies in judging lies in the corrections of the King. The corrections of the King are those of which it is written, “Who exercises mercy, justice and righteousness on earth.” It is also written, “‘For I delight in these things,’ declares the Lord.” Everything, mercy, justice, and righteousness depend on one another. These are the corrections of the throne, Malchut, as it is written, “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne,” and it is written, “A throne will even be established in mercy.”

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