119. רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר שָׁאַל אֶת רַבִּי שִׁמְעוֹן אָבִיו, אָמַר לוֹ, הֲרֵי שָׁנִינוּ שֶׁעַל שְׁלֹשָׁה חֲטָאֵי הָעוֹלָם הָרָעָב בָּא לָעוֹלָם, וְכָל הַחֲטָאִים אֵינָם נִמְצָאִים אֶלָּא רַק בָּעֲשִׁירִים, מִשּׁוּם שֶׁלִּבָּם גַּס בָּהֶם, וְלֹא נִמְצָאִים בָּעֲנִיִּים. מָה הַדִּין? שֶׁהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא יַהֲרֹג אֶת הָעֲנִיִּים וְיַעֲמִיד אֶת הָעֲשִׁירִים?! שֶׁהֲרֵי מֵעַכְשָׁו יוֹסִיפוּ לַחֲטֹא לְפָנָיו! אָמַר לוֹ, יָפֶה שָׁאַלְתָּ, וַהֲרֵי פֵּרְשׁוּהָ הַחֲבֵרִים וְאָמְרוּ, כְּשֶׁרוֹצֶה הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְהִפָּרַע מֵהָרְשָׁעִים וּלְאַבְּדָם מִן הָעוֹלָם, אֲזַי נוֹתֵן לָהֶם שָׁלוֹם וּמַשְׁלִים לָהֶם בַּכֹּל.
Rabbi Elazar says that the sacrifices brought according to the person’s wealth. The sin of a rich person that sometimes has high pride requires a bull sacrifice. A person in the middle brings sacrifice from the flock because his heart is not so full of pride. A poor person that his spirit is low brings sacrifice from the birds. The Holy One Blessed be He knows the level of each person, and what size sacrifice he needs to make to remove judgments from coming to cleanse his sins.
Rabbi Elazar asks his father, Rabbi Shimon, we learned that famine comes to the world because of three sins; which are not giving Terumah (money for sacred purpose), Tithe, and Challah. All these sins are found in rich people because their hearts are full of pride. But these sins are not common among poor people. The question is why the Holy One Blessed be He let poor people die and not the rich? The rich would continue to sin because they don’t get hurt.
Rabbi Shimon praised the question and said that the friends already explained this. The Holy One Blessed be He wants to get rid of the wicked and lose them from the world to come, then He gives them peace in this world, and gives them fulfillment in this world.
In the next study, the Zohar explains why famine comes to the world. Many rich people have pride in their success and ignore the ways of the Torah, forgetting that all blessings and sustenance come from above. The best way for all to enjoy blessings in this world and earn merits for the next life and the Final Redemption is by following the Torah and sharing the blessings we receive.
Fear of losing when giving tithe draws limitation in receiving. Hashem sees and knows everything we have and expects us to share from the blessings he gives us.
The sages teach us that even a poor person that depends only on charity needs to give a tithe.
The root word for ‘giving’ ‘נתינה’ is ‘נתן’, which is a palindrome to teach us that when we give Hashem gives, and we receive.