Shabbat Nugget: Parashat Emor

In week’s Torah portion we learn about the holidays and the type of sacrifices that should be brought to the Temple for each holiday.  In midst of the laws regarding the holiday and its sacrifices a verse that tells us that when a person reaps his field he should not reap the corner of the field but, he should leave it for the poor, similarly, if some of the harvest falls out of your hand, you should not pick it up but, leave it for the poor to come and take.

Rashi, on his commentary of these verses brings a teaching from Rabbi Avardimas who states; “Why did the verse place the laws of reaping of the field in midst of the laws of the sacrifices of holidays? To teach you that whomever gives charity from the harvest of his field, the Torah counts it as if he built the temple and offered sacrifices.

The Lubavitcher Rebbe explains that the reason this teaching is taught exclusively about the charity of the harvest of the field and not in regards to charity in general such as the charity of giving tithes is because  the charity from the harvest was the higher form of charity than the tithes. When one gave tithes to the poor or the priest he had the right to choose which particular poor person or priest he would like to give the tithes, however, regarding the harvest of the field the Torah says he has to leave it to any poor person who wishes to come and take it.  Therefore this form of charity is especially dear to G-d since the person gives the charity fully without receiving any form of benefit from it.

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About Rabbi Pesach Scheiner

Rabbi Pesach Scheiner is the Rabbi of Boulder County Center for Judaism. In addition, he teaches extensively throughout Boulder County and is the author of "Finding the Joy in Everyday Living," a book of short chapters explaining the ways to access happiness through appreciation, gratitude, and a sense of purpose.

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