(By Rabbi Yair Hoffman for 5TJT.com)
The Talmud Yerushalmi in Kiddushin 4:1 states that a Kiddush Hashem is greater than a Chillul Hashem. It is clear, however, that the simple meaning of this expression is too obvious a statement to be an insight of the Talmud Yerushalmi.
Rather, the meaning of this passage reflects the idea that when both a chillul Hashem and a Kiddush hashem are present in the same action, the Kiddush Hashem outweighs the Chillul hashem.
A few hours ago, in Eretz Yisroel three separate Chareidi Batei Dinim, after 18 months of (two of them) meticulously collecting evidence and testimony, issued a devastating ruling and declaration against R. Eliezer Berland. One such Beis Din was Zichron Meir Tzedek (Rav Shmuel Vosner’s Beis Din) which included Rabbi Shriel Rosenberg. Rabbi Shmuel Eliezer Stern, and Rabbi Yehuda Fisher, from the Eida HaChareidis Beis Din in Yerushalayim.
The Batei Dinim described the content of the testimonies that they had heard as “untoward acts” and “very serious behaviors.” They concluded that according to the opinion of our of holy Torah everyone must stay away from
After describing the content of the testimonies in plain language as “acts that are not done and most serious acts”, the judges state: “It is clear that according to the opinion of our holy teachings, anyone who violates the three cardinal sins and their derivatives, someone who values his soul must stay away from him and one is obligated to act in this way.”
The second Beis Din was Rabbi Yitzchak Tuvia Weiss, the head of the Eida Chareidis, Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch, and Rabbi Chaim Meir Halevi Vozner. The third Beis Din that signed onto the conclusions of the other two were Rabbi Shevach Tzvi Rosenblatt, Rabbi Yehuda Silman, and Rabbi Menachem Mendel Lubin.
They further accused Berland’s followers of heresy for claiming in public and in writing that the crimes and sins he committed were permitted.
In the past, Rav Chaim Kanievsky advised people that Rabbi Berland was a rasha. Berland has also told cancer patients not to proceed with medical treatment and that if they donate vast amounts of money to him and take certain pills (later found to be Mentos) they will be cured.
Translation of ruling:
Special Beis Din
Authorized by the Central Batei Dinim in Our Holy Land
BS”D Wednesday, 26 Iyar 5780
At the request of many, a special Beis Din was convened to investigate the rumors that have come out against the leader of the Shuvu Bonim community. In its proceedings explicit testimony was collected and proofs to actions that must never be done, some of them of the most serious nature. It is clear that according to our holy Torah a person who does not observe matters of the three cardinal sins and their derivatives – someone who is concerned about his soul must stay away from him and we are obligated to observe this.
The matter is very serious since some of his students and followers have Heaven forbid rationized that it is permitted for a Tzaddik to perform any matter of sin, and this has even been publicized in published works. These matters are to considered complete heresy in the fundamentals of our religion. We must uproot and remove this apikorsus from within us.
Doing so will fulfill the verse (Shmos 18:23), “and all this people also shall go to their place in peace.”
Rabbi Shriel Rosenberg. Rabbi Shmuel Eliezer Stern, Rabbi Yehuda Fisher, Rabbi Yitzchak Tuvia Weiss, the head of the Eida Chareidis, Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch, and Rabbi Chaim Meir Halevi Vozner, Rabbi Shevach Tzvi Rosenblatt, Rabbi Yehuda Silman, and Rabbi Menachem Mendel Lubin.