Since the 1970s, the phrase lifnim mi-shurat ha-din (lit. “within the line of the law”) has been at the center of debates over whether Jewish ethics is part of Jewish law (halakhah) or independent from it. Through an examination of classical rabbinic sources, this article proposes that lifnim mi-shurat ha-din is best understood not as a legal or ethical concept, but as a model of decision-making. Furthermore, it argues that this model of decision-making impacts both ethics and law, and therefore cannot clearly delineate the relationship between them. Instead, it suggests that reframing debates about ethics and law around the question of decision-making would allow scholars to more thickly describe rabbinic normativity and its significance for contemporary Jewish life.
Skip Nav Destination
Research Article| December 01 2019
Ethics and Halakhah: Reframing the Question
Journal of Jewish Ethics (2019) 5 (2): 180–206.
Deborah Barer; Ethics and Halakhah: Reframing the Question. Journal of Jewish Ethics 1 December 2019; 5 (2): 180–206. doi: https://doi.org/10.5325/jjewiethi.5.2.0180
Download citation file:
Don't already have an account? Register
You could not be signed in. Please check your email address / username and password and try again.
Could not validate captcha. Please try again.
Sign in via your InstitutionSign In
Total Views 27
8 PDF Downloads
Citing articles via
Homosexuality and the “Aqedah Theology”: A Comparison of Modern Orthodoxy and the Conservative Movement