Torah Riddles Test #80

  1. Question: Why can a Jewish tax collector hire a non-Jew to do his job on Shabbos but a Jew who owns a laundromat cannot hire a non-Jew to do his job on Shabbos?


A. The Rema (244:6) says that if a Jew bought the right to be the government’s tax collector he can give that right to the non-Jew on Shabbos under the condition the non-Jew gets a cut of the amount he earned for the Jew on that day because he’s working for himself and there would be a big loss, sacrificing the whole job if he took off a day. He can rent the honor of collecting taxes to a non-Jew on Shabboses for the same reason, that the non-Jew is really just doing it for his own gain.

B. If a Jew owns a laundromat it must be closed on Shabbos and he can’t even rent the rights of owning it to a non-Jew on Shabbos with the non-Jew getting full profit of what was earned on Shabbos because it looks like the Jew’s store is open on Shabbos and he’s doing business.

C. Why isn’t the loss of money by the laundromat considered a significant loss?

Answer: See Dirshu (243:1:2,4) that the laundromat is only not making a profit for that day even if it is the busiest day of the week but the tax collecting job is a big loss because he will lose his job altogether.