Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks wrote: “Tzedakah [charity] lies at the heart of Judaism’s understanding of mitzvot bein adam le-chavero, interpersonal duties. An idea going back 4,000 years, it remains challenging today.” Given the state of today’s economy, it is more challenging than ever.
‘What does God ask of you, only to revere the Lord your God and to walk in all of His ways; to love Him and to serve God with all your heart and with all your soul; to observe the commandments of the Lord and His statutes for your good” [Deuteronomy 10:11-13].
Like most Jews, I grew up with memories of events that I never experienced. I remember being a slave in Egypt. I remember the Holocaust. I remember my family’s immigration journey to America. I remember the founding of the State of Israel.
c begins with the saga of the spies’ report about the land of Israel. On the eve of the Jewish people’s preparation to enter Eretz Yisrael, 12 spies, each representing a tribe, were sent to survey the land. Upon their return, ten of the twelve deliver very negative news: It will be impossible for the Jewish people to overcome and conquer the land from the nations living there.