Thursday, May 17, 2012

Quotes that matter- Helping the poor

“Fortunate is the lot of one who wisely helps the poor”  (Tehillim 41:2)

The parsha continues to discuss the Torah obligation to put a needy Jew back on his feet. The Torah says,

“And if your brother becomes poor and his means fail him with you, you shall support him, even if he be a convert or a gair toshav (a non-Jew who follows the seven Noachide laws) so that he may live with you” (Vayikra 25:35).

In other words, it is clear to see how this verse is teaching us that we are obligated to help those in financial need, by means of giving or loaning the person in need with money (without interest) so that he may conduct business and sustain himself.  As soon as one begins to tumble, we must lift him up.

Moreover, the Torah continues to teach us that when we give charity, ‘the pauper gives his benefactor more than the benefactor gives the pauper.’  When one gives charity, one is gaining spiritual merits that by far surpass the material amount he has given.

Hashem created this world so that there should always be those who are needy. Without those people, what initiative would others have to give? For our own lives, we should all look to give to those in need, but we should give to them in simcha-joy. We should recognize that Hashem has given us what we have in order for us to develop ourselves as individuals and learn to have giving hearts.

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