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December 21, 2014 / 29 Kislev, 5775
 
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Charity Saves From Death


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Yehudah Hensusi was very thankful, and he blessed G-d for rescuing him from this grave peril. He swore that from that day onward he would always give charity and a poor man would never leave his house empty-handed.

The Poor Jewish Tailor In Rome

Once, a poor Jewish tailor who lived in Rome went to the market to buy a fish for Shabbos. When he arrived, there was only one fish left, and as he approached the stand to buy it, a servant of one of the city’s consuls arrived.

The salesman, seeing two customers competing for the fish, saw an opportunity to make a better profit, and increased the price. However, both of his customers were willing to pay it.

He raised the price still higher, but both were still ready to pay it. The tailor and the servant bid for the fish, and at last, the tailor outbid the other by offering a sum of 12 dinarim, an exorbitant sum.

Returns Home Empty-Handed

At noon, when the servant served the consul his meal, the consul asked him why he had not prepared a fish for him as he had ordered. The servant told the master what had happened.

The consul became angry. “What did you say?! A poor Jewish tailor outbid you. Certainly not. He is probably a very rich Jew, and I will see to it that his riches are confiscated by our government. I suppose you remember the man; let a search be made for him and order him to appear before me.”

Appears Before The Consul

After some time, the Jew appeared before the consul. “What is your profession?” asked the consul.

“I am a tailor, and thus I am known in my quarter of the city where I mend clothing,” replied the Jew.

“I am ready to believe that you are a tailor, but tell me, how could a poor tailor afforded to buy a fish for 12 dinarim, and why would you do such a thing?” the consul asked him.

The tailor replied: “My master, the Almighty blessed me this week with a large order. How could I not show my gratitude by preparing a hearty meal for the Sabbath?”

The consul was satisfied with the answer and dismissed the tailor.

G-d rewarded this poor tailor for his piety. When he opened the fish, he found therein a precious pearl. He sold it and from the money he received, lived the rest of his life in ease and comfort.

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It’s a special one. Some sort of family heirloom.

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The man was overjoyed to see his benefactor and gave them food and water besides shelter and safety.

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Because of this I wandered about and found friends in similar situations who were also unhappy and I began to hang out with them.

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Time passed and Zemira gave birth to a son but not even this could awaken Avinadav from his melancholy.

Yonadav was greatly impressed at the vast sums of money the young man had in his possessions.

“I do nothing worthwhile,” he modestly replied and refused to discuss any of his deeds. For the man was a very modest and humble person.

While he slept, he dreamed of Eliyahu HaNavi, who was trying to awaken him from his sleep.

“I’ll pay you whether you cure her or kill her,” shouted the loyal husband.

He lacked for nothing materialistic and could have lived the rest of his life, had he chosen to, in the luxury and laziness that dominated the Roman upper class life.

When the soldiers heard this they exclaimed happily: “You mean this is the sacred Jewish fruit? Hurry, get on the horse. You are coming with us to the palace.”

Now let me ask you, what would happen to an infantryman if he deserted his regiment and went to serve in the cavalry? He would be court-martialed, wouldn’t he?”

Dug out beneath his bunk was a little chest which he guarded with his very life. It contained a small Sefer Torah, miniature size, but kosher, and a shofar.

So began a marvelous period of good fortune. He invested the twenty-four gold pieces in many types of businesses and everything his hand touched turned to gold.

Pressing close to the cage, the Ibn Ezra shouted the words, “Shema Yisrael…”

“You can have your choice,” said the wise king. “You can choose to take this gold, 100 pieces each, or I can give you each three pieces of advice.”

“It isn’t the work,” said Eliezer. “I want to learn our holy Torah.”

More Articles from Rabbi Sholom Klass
Tales-of-The-Midrash-logo

The man was overjoyed to see his benefactor and gave them food and water besides shelter and safety.

Tales-of-The-Midrash-logo

Because of this I wandered about and found friends in similar situations who were also unhappy and I began to hang out with them.

Time passed and Zemira gave birth to a son but not even this could awaken Avinadav from his melancholy.

Yonadav was greatly impressed at the vast sums of money the young man had in his possessions.

“I do nothing worthwhile,” he modestly replied and refused to discuss any of his deeds. For the man was a very modest and humble person.

While he slept, he dreamed of Eliyahu HaNavi, who was trying to awaken him from his sleep.

“I’ll pay you whether you cure her or kill her,” shouted the loyal husband.

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