Almsgiving in Second Temple Judaism

Reading Acts

Pirqe Abot 5:10 E “What’s mine is yours and what’s yours is yours”—this is a truly pious man.

Pirqe Abot 5:13 A–E There are four traits among people who give charity: (1) he who wants to give but does not want others to give—he begrudges what belongs to others; (2) he wants others to give, but he does not want to give—he begrudges what belongs to himself; (3) he will give and he wants others to give—he is truly pious;  (4) he will not give and does not want others to give—he is truly wicked.

Care for the poor was considered virtuous in Second Temple period Judaism.The Law had provision for the poor in Israel. For example, Leviticus 19:9-10 commanded farmers to leave food behind for the poor (the gleaning law, recall the story of Ruth in Boaz’s field). The prophets regularly condemn both Israel and Judah for failing to…

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About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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