BabylonianTalmud, Baba Metzia 71a


תלמוד בבלי, בבא מציעא עא.

Original Text:

דתני רב יוסף (שמות כ"ב) אם כסף תלוה את עמי את העני עמך, עמי ונכרי - עמי קודם, עני ועשיר - עני קודם, ענייך ועניי עירך - ענייך קודמין, עניי עירך ועניי עיר אחרת - עניי עירך קודמין.


R. Joseph learnt: "If you lend money to any of my people that are poor with you" [this teaches, if the choice lies between] a Jew and a non-Jew, a Jew has preference; the poor or the rich the poor takes precedence; your poor [i.e. your relatives] and the [general] poor of your town, your poor come first; the poor of your city and the poor of another town the poor of your own town have prior rights.
[Soncino translation]

Suggested Discussion Questions:

1. What causes us to attend to the needs of some over the needs of others?
2. How do both acknowledge that we prioritize our giving and at the same time work to end all hardship?

Time Period:
Related Texts:
Related Sourcesheets:Civil Rights: What Should I Do?, Dei Machsoro, Koach Lunch and Learn-Maryland Hillel, Urban Tzedakah Values, Rabbi Aaron Levy (Part 1 of 2), Concentric Circles of Tzedekah, Tzedakah Priorities, Thoughtful Tzedakah, On Jews Giving Tzedakah to non-Jews, Rabbi Dianne Cohler-Esses, Dimensions of the Universe of Obligation , Tzedakah Priorities (Limmud 2010), What are our obligations to help someone else? Does it matter who they are or where they are?, Dresher Havurah 30 October 2010, Our Universe of Obligation, 'Just' Giving, Universe of Obligation, Prioritizing Our Giving, The Universe of Obligation, Sinai and Our Universe of Obligation, The Jewish Response to Poverty, Human Responsibility Towards the Environment, Women in Jewish texts, tzedekah: to whom we give and why, Introduction to AJWS' Rabbinical Student Delegation Service Learning, "What would you do with $100? Conversations about tzedakah decision making", Clone of Concentric Circles of Tzedekah

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