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10-18-2007
Title:
Mitzvah #38a

Message:
Sefer Ha’mitzvos Ha’Katzar (The concise book of mitzvos)
By the Chofetz Chaim

This book lists the Torah mitzvos that can be observed today

First Section – the Positive Commandments

38. It is a positive commandment to give charity to the poor of Israel

As it says in Devarim (Deuteronomy) 15:8, "Open, you shall surely open your hand..." Our Sages of blessed memory (in Sifri) interpret "Open, you shal surely open" meaning even if it means many times. Furthermore, it is stated in Vayikra (Leviticus) 25:35, "You shall strengthen the stranger and sojourner (which is a non-Jewish person that accepts upon themselves the seven Noahide laws - that we have a duty to sustain him), that he may live with you." It is also written in Vayikra 25:36, "That your brother may live with you."

One is obligated to give to him what is fitting for the poor man according to what he is lacking - if he is lacking clothing, he is to be clothed and other things that he needs. If the giver does not have enough means to provide for him, he is still to give as much as he possibly can. Even a poor person who is sustained by charity must give charity to other poor people.

TO BE CONTINUED NEXT WEEK (with Hashem's help)

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