משנה שְׁתֵּי לְשָׁכוֹת הָיוּ בַּמִּקְדָּשׁ אַחַת לִשְׁכַּת חֲשָׁאִים וְאַחַת לִשְׁכַּת הַכֵּלִים. לִשְׁכַּת חֲשָׁאִים יְִרֵיאֵי חֵטְ נוֹתְנִים לְתוֹכָהּ בַּחֲשַׁאי וַעֲנִיִּים בְּנֵי טוֹבִים מִתְפַּרְנְסִין מִתּוֹכָהּ בַּחֲשַׁאי. Halakha 4 · MISHNA There were two special chambers in the Temple, one called the chamber of secret gifts and the other one called the chamber of vessels. The mishna explains the purpose of these chambers. In the chamber of secret gifts, sin-fearing people put money secretly and poor people of noble descent support themselves from it secretly.
לִשְׁכַּת הַכֵּלִים כָּל־מִי שֶׁהוּא מִתְנַדֵּב כֶּלִי זוֹרְקוֹ לְתוֹכָהּ. וְאַחַת לִשְׁלֹשִׁים יוֹם הַגִּיזְבָּרִין פּוֹתְחִין אוֹתָהּ. כְּלִי שֶׁמּוֹצְאִין בּוֹ צוֹרֶךְ לְבֶדֶק הַבַּיִת מַנִּיחִין אוֹתוֹ. וְהַשְּׁאָר נִמְכָּרִין וּדְמִיהֶן נוֹפְלִין לְלִשְׁכַּת בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת׃ With regard to the chamber of vessels, anyone who donates a vessel to the Temple drops it inside that chamber, and once every thirty days the treasurers open it. And any vessel that they found for it a use for Temple maintenance, they leave it for that purpose, and the rest are sold, and their monetary value is allocated to Temple maintenance.
הלכה רִבִּי יַעֲקֹב בַּר אִידִי וְרִבִּי יִצְחָק בַּר נַחְמָן הֲווֹן פַּרְנָסִין וַהֲווֹן יְהָבִין לְרִבִּי חָמָא אֲבוֹי דְרִבִּי הוֹשַׁעְיָה דֵינָר וְהוּא יְהִיב לֵיהּ לְחוֹרָנִין. GEMARA: Apropos the topic of charity given anonymously, the Gemara cites several stories on that theme and the mitzva of charity in general. Rabbi Ya’akov bar Idi and Rabbi Yitzḥak bar Naḥman were supporters of the indigent, i.e., they were responsible for a charity fund. And so as not to embarrass the poor, they would give a dinar to Rabbi Ḥama, father of Rabbi Yehoshaya, and he would give it to impoverished others surreptitiously, so that neither the givers nor the receivers were aware of one another’s identity.
רִבִּי זְכַרְיָה חַתְנֵיהּ דְּרִבִּי לִֵוי הָיוּ הַכֹּל מְלִיזִין עָלָיו. אָֽמְרִין דְּלָא צָרִיךְ וְהוּא נְסַב. מִן דִּדְמָךְ בָּֽדְקוֹן וְאַשְׁכְּחוֹן דַּהֲוָה מַפְלִיג לֵיהּ לְחוֹרָנִין. The Gemara similarly relates with regard to Rabbi Zekharya, son-in-law of Rabbi Levi, that everyone would malign him. They would say that he does not need charity, and yet he takes money from the charity fund. After he died, they investigated and found that he had discreetly been distributing all the charity money he received to others in actual need.
רִבִּי חִינְנָא בַּר פַּפָּא הֲוָה מַפְלִיג מִצְוָה בַלַּיְלִיָא. חַד זְמַן פְּגַע בֵּיהּ רַבְּהוֹן דְּרוּחַייָא. אֲמַר לֵיהּ. לֹא כֵן אַלְפָּן רִבִּי. לֹ֤א תַסִּיג֙ גְּב֣וּל רֵֽעֲךָ֔. Rabbi Ḥinnana bar Pappa would distribute mitzva money, i.e., charity, at night. Once the leader of the evil spirits encountered him. The evil spirit said to him: Didn’t the rabbi, i.e., you, teach that the verse: “You shall not trespass upon your neighbor’s border” (Deuteronomy 19:14) indicates that one should not enter the domain of another, and the night belongs to evil spirits?
אֲמַר לֵיהּ. לֹא כֵן כְּתִיב מַתָּ֣ן בַּ֭סֵּתֶר יִכְפֶּה־אָ֑ף. וַהֲוָה מִיסְתָּפֵי מִינֵּיהּ וַעֲרַק מִן קוֹמוֹי. Rabbi Ḥinnana, said to him: And isn’t it written elsewhere: “A gift in secret pacifies anger” (Proverbs 21:14)? Since I am busy giving secret charity, I have no fear that the Divine Wrath will permit evil spirits to harm me. And upon hearing this, the evil spirit grew afraid of him and fled from his presence.
אָמַר רִבִּי יוֹנָה. אַשְׁרֵי נוֹתֵן לַדָּל אֵין כָּתוּב כָּאן אֶלָּא אַ֭שְׁרֵי מַשְׂכִּ֣יל אֶל־דָּ֑ל. זֶה שֶׁהוּא מִסְתַּכֵּל בַּמִּצְוָה הֵיאַךְ לַעֲשׂוֹתָהּ. Rabbi Yona said: Happy is he who gives to the poor, is not written here; rather: “Happy is he who considers the poor” (Psalms 41:2) is written, which indicates that one must consider his actions carefully and act wisely in giving charity. This is referring to one who scrutinizes the mitzva of charity and considers how to perform it in the most appropriate manner to avoid embarrassing the poor.
כֵּיצַד הָיָה רִבִּי יוֹנָה עוֹשֶׂה. כְּשֶׁהָיָה רוֹאֶה בֶן טוֹבִים שֶׁיָּרַד מִנְּכָסָיו הָיָה אוֹמֵר לוֹ. בְּנִי. בִּשְׁבִיל שֶׁשָּׁמַעְתִּי שֶׁנָּֽפְלָה לָךְ יְרוּשָׁה מִמָּקוֹם אַחֵר. טוֹל וְאַתְּ פּוֹרֵעַ. מִן דַּהֲיָה נְסִיב הֲוָה אֲמַר לֵיהּ. מַתָּנָה. How would Rabbi Yona himself behave when he would see a poor person of noble descent, who was once wealthy but had lost his assets? Rabbi Yona wanted to assist him but feared he would be too ashamed to accept charity. He would say to him: My son, since I heard that you have come into an inheritance in another place, take this money now and you can pay it back when you receive the inheritance. When the poor person would take the money from him he would tell him: This money is a gift to you, and you do not have to repay it.
אָמַר רִבִּי חִייָה בַּר אָדָא. אִית הֲוָה סַבִּין בְּיוֹמֵינָן. מָאן דַּהֲוָה יְהִיב לוֹן מִבֵּין רֵישׁ שָׁתָּא לְצוֹמָא רַבָּא הֲווּן נָֽסְבִין. מִן בָּתָר כֵּן לָא הֲווּן נָֽסְבִין. אָֽמְרִין דְּשֻׁתָן גַּבָּן. The Gemara cites a story involving people who did not want to receive charity from others, but preferred to rely on God’s bounty. Ḥiyya bar Adda related: In our days, there were some elderly people who acted as follows. If someone would give them charity between Rosh HaShana and the Great Fast, i.e., Yom Kippur, they would accept it, but after that period they would not accept it. They would say: The money that is for this year is already with us, i.e., our income for the entire year has already been decreed between Rosh HaShana and Yom Kippur (see Beitza 16a).
נְחֶמְיָה אִישׁ שִׁיחִין פָּגַע בּוֹ יְרוּשׁלְמִי אֶחָד. אֲמַר לֵיהּ. זְכֵה עִימִּי חָדָא תַּרְנְגוֹלָא. אֲמַר לֵיהּ. הֵא לָךְ טִימִיתֵיהּ קוּפָּד. וּזְבַן קוּפָּד וְאָכַל וָמִית. וַהֲוָה צְווַח וְאָמַר. בּוֹאוּ וְסִפְדּוּ לָהֲרוּגוֹ שֶׁלְנְחֶמְיָה. Neḥemya the well digger encountered a certain Jerusalemite, who said to him: Give me one chicken as charity. Neḥemya said to him: Here is the monetary value of a piece of meat for you, as meat was cheaper than chicken. And the beggar bought meat with the money he accepted from Neḥemya, and ate it, and died because his constitution was extremely sensitive to meat. And Neḥemya cried out and said: Come and eulogize the one killed by Neḥemya, as he felt guilty over the beggar’s demise.
נָחוּם אִשׁ גִּמזוֹ הָיָה מוֹלִיךְ דּוֹרוֹן לְבֵית חָמִיו. פָּגַע בּוֹ מוּכֵּי שְׁחִין אֶחָד. אֲמַר לֵיהּ. זְכֵה עִימִּי מִמָּה דְאִית גַּבָּךְ. אֲמַר לֵיהּ. מִיחְזָר. חֲזַר וְאַשְׁכְּחֵיהּ מִית. Naḥum of Gam Zo was bringing a gift to his father-in-law’s house when a man afflicted with boils met him on the way. He said to Naḥum: Give me charity from that which you have brought with you. Naḥum said to him: When I return, I will give you something. After visiting his father-in-law’s house, Naḥum returned and found the man dead. He realized that when he had first met him, this boil-afflicted man must have been on the verge of death from starvation.
וַהֲוָה אֲמַר לְקִיבְּלֵיהּ. עֵיינֵיהּ דַּחֲמִינָךְ וְלָא יְהָבוֹן לָךְ יִסְתַּמְייָן. יָדַייָא דְלָא פָֽשְׁטָן מִיתֵּן לָךְ יִתְקַטְּעָן. רַגְלַייָא דְּלָא רָהֲטָן לְמִיתֵּן לָךְ יְתַבְּרָן. וּמַטְּתֵיהּ כֵּן. And in his guilt over failing to provide immediate relief for his hunger, Naḥum said about the boil-afflicted man: The eyes that saw you, i.e., my own eyes, and did not give you food should be blinded; the hands that did not stretch forth to give you food should be cut off; the feet that did not run to give you food should be broken. And later all of these calamities actually befell him.
סְלִיק לְגַבֵּיהּ רִבִּי עֲקִיבָה. אָמַר לֵיהּ. אִי לִי שֶׁאֲנִי רוֹאֶה אוֹתָךְ כֵּן. אָמַר לֵיהּ. אִי לִי שֶׁאֵין אֲנִי רוֹאֶה אוֹתָךְ כֵּן. אָמַר לֵיהּ. מָה אַתְּ מְקַלְלֵינִי. אָמַר לֵיהּ. וּמָה אַתְּ מְבָעֵט בַּיִּיסוּרִין. Rabbi Akiva, Naḥum’s disciple, came to visit and console him. Rabbi Akiva said to him: Woe is me, that I see you like this. Naḥum said to him: Woe is me, that I do not see you like this. Rabbi Akiva said to him: Why do you curse me? Naḥum said to him: And why do you reject suffering? You should not do so, as the Sages have said that suffering atones for sins like the sacrifice of offerings (Mekhilta of Rabbi Yishmael).
רִבִּי הוֹשַׁעְיָה רַבָּה הֲוָה רַבֵּיהּ דִּבְרֵיהּ חַד דְּסַגִּי נְהוּרָא וַהֲוָה יְלִיף אֲכִיל עִימֵּיהּ בְּכָל־יוֹם. חַד זְמַן הֲוָה לֵיהּ אוֹרְחִין וְלָא מְטָא מֵיכוֹל עִימֵּיהּ. בְּרוּמְשָׁא סְלִיק לְגַבֵּיהּ. אָמַר לֵיהּ. לֹא יִכְעוֹס מָרִי עָלַײ. בְּגִין דַּהֲוָה לִי אוֹרְחִין יוֹמָא דֵין. [דְּאָֽמְרִית דְּלָא לִיבְזוּי בִּיקָרָא דְמָרִי יוֹמָא דֵין בְּגִין לֹא אָֽכְלִית עִם מָרִי יוֹמָא דֵין.] Rabbi Hoshaya the Great was the master, i.e., the teacher, of the son of a certain blind man and was accustomed to eat with the blind man every day. Once Rabbi Hoshaya had guests, and he did not invite the blind man to eat with him. In the evening, Rabbi Hoshaya went up to visit the blind man and said to him: I request that my master, i.e., you, not be angry with me, as I had guests today. I therefore said to myself that I will not invite you today, so as not to demean my master’s dignity. You sometimes spill food on yourself and they might have mocked you. For this reason, I did not eat with my master today.
אַמַר לֵיהּ. אַתָּה פִּײַסְתָּה לְמָאן דְּמִיתְחֲמֵי וְלָא חֲמִי. דֵּין דַּחֲמִי וְלָא מִיתְחֲמֵי יְקַבֵּל פִּיּוּסָךְ. אַמַר לֵיהּ. הָדָא מְנָא לָךְ. אַמַר לֵיהּ. מֵרִבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר בֶּן יַעֲקֹב. The blind man said to him: Since you appeased one who is seen but does not see, that Holy One, Who sees but is not seen, should accept your appeasement, i.e., God should accept your prayers. Rabbi Hoshaya said to him: From where did you hear that metaphorical statement? The blind man replied: I learned that idea from a story involving Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov and a blind man.
[דְּ]רִבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר בֶּן יַעֲקֹב עָאַל חַד דְּסַגִּי נְהוּרָה לְקַרְתֵּיהּ. יְתַב לֵיהּ רִבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר בֶּן יַעֲקֹב לְרַע מִינֵּיהּ. דְּיֵימְרוּן דְּאִילוּלֵי דְּהוּא בַּר נַשָּׁא רַבָּא לָא יְתַב לֵיהּ רִבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר בֶּן יַעֲקֹב לְרַע מִינֵּיהּ. עַבְדּוּן לֵיהּ פַּרְנָסָה דְאִיקָר. As it is told of Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov that a blind man once came to his city, and Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov sat below him, so that the people of the city would say that if he, i.e., the blind man, were not a great man, Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov would not have sat below him. When the people of the city saw this, they gave the blind man a very respectable livelihood.
אֲמַר לוֹן. מָהוּ הָכֵין. אָֽמְרוֹן לֵיהּ. רִבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר בֶּן יַעֲקֹב יְתִיב לְרַע מִינָּךְ. וּצְלוֹי עֲלוֹי הָדָא צְלוּתָא. אַתָּה גָמַלְתָּה חֶסֶד לְמָאן דְּמִיתְחֲמֵי וְלָא חֲמִי. דֵּין דַּחֲמִי וְלָא מִיתְחֲמֵי יִגְמוֹל יָתָךְ חֶסֶד. The blind man asked them: What is this situation? Why are you paying me such a high salary? They said to him: Since Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov sat below you, we honor you. And the blind man prayed this prayer with regard to Rabbi Eliezer ben Ya’akov: You rendered kindness to one who is seen but does not see. Therefore, that Holy One, Who sees but is not seen, should render kindness to you.
דְּלֹמָא. רִבִּי חָמָא בַּר חֲנִינָה ורִבִּי הוֹשַׁעְיָה הֲווּן מְטַייְלִין בְּאִילֵּין כְּנִישְׁתָּא דְּלוֹד. אָמַר רִבִּי חָמָא בַּר חֲנִינָה לְרִבִּי הוֹשַׁעְיָה. כַּמָּה מָמוֹן שִׁיקְּעוּ אֲבוֹתַײ כָאן. אָמַר לֵיהּ. כַּמָּה נְפָשׁוֹת שִׁיקְּעוּ אֲבוֹתֶיךָ כָאן. לָא הֲווָה אִית בְּנֵי נַשׁ דְּיִלְעוּן בְּאוּרַיְתָא. רִבִּי אָבוּן עֲבַד אִילֵּין תַּרְעַייָה [דף טו:] דְּסִידְרָא רַבָּא. אֲתָא רִבִּי מָנָא לְגַבֵּיהּ. אַמַר לֵיהּ. חֲמִי מָה עַבְדִּית. אַמַר לֵיהּ. וַיִּשְׁכַּ֨ח יִשְׂרָאֵ֜ל אֶת־עֹשֵׂ֗הוּ וַיִּ֨בֶן֙ הֵֽיכָל֔וֹת. לָא הֲוָה בְּנֵי נַשׁ דְּיִלְעוּן בְּאוֹרַיְתָא. Rabbi Ḥama bar Ḥanina and Rabbi Hoshaya were once touring the synagogues of Lod. Rabbi Ḥama bar Ḥanina said to Rabbi Hoshaya: How much money my forefathers invested in building synagogues here! Rabbi Hoshaya said to him: How many souls your forefathers invested in building synagogues here! The money they spent actually harmed people spiritually rather than helping them. Rabbi Hoshaya explained his comment: Weren’t there people who would have exerted themselves in the study of Torah if only the money used for the construction of these buildings had been donated to them instead? In another case, Rabbi Avun donated money for building the gates [15b] of the great study hall. When Rabbi Mana came to visit him, Rabbi Avun, proud of his donation for this building, said to him: Look at what I did and the greatness of my contribution. Rabbi Mana said to him: Your attitude reminds me of the verse: “For Israel has forgotten his Maker, and built palaces” (Hosea 8:14). How could you focus upon the gates? Weren’t there people who would have exerted themselves in the study of Torah if they only had the money? You could have given them that money instead of using it to build structures.
תַּנֵּי. קָדְשֵׁי הַמִּזְבֵּחַ מוֹצִיאִין אֶת הָרָאוּי לָהֶן מִקָּדְשֵׁי בֶדֶק הַבַּיִת. § With regard to the vessels donated for the Temple maintenance, which are mentioned in the mishna, the Gemara cites a baraita in which it was taught: If the shekels collected for the purchase of articles consecrated for the altar, i.e., communal offerings, are not enough to purchase them and the items that accompanied them, e.g., their libations, the funds required for purchasing the remainder are taken from the funds consecrated for Temple maintenance.
אֵין קָדְשֵׁי בֶדֶק הַבַּיִת מוֹצִיאִין אֶת הָרָאוּי לָהֶן מִקָּדְשֵׁי הַמִּזְבֵּחַ. However, the converse is not the case: If there is a need for funds consecrated to Temple maintenance, that which is required for it is not taken from funds consecrated for the altar. The reason for this difference is that an item may be changed from a lesser to a greater sanctity, but not vice versa.
וְהָא תַנִּינָן כְּלִי שֶׁמָּֽצְאוּ בּוֹ צוֹרֶךְ לְבֶדֶק הַבַּיִת מַנִּיחִין אוֹתוֹ. וְהַשְּׁאָר נִמְכָּרִין וּדְמִיהֶן נוֹפְלִין לְלִשְׁכַּת בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת: The Gemara notes an apparent contradiction. But didn’t we learn in the mishna: A vessel that they found for it a use for Temple maintenance, they leave it for that purpose; and the rest are sold, and their monetary value is allocated to Temple maintenance. This statement indicates that this money could be used only for Temple maintenance, not for items consecrated for the altar. This contradicts the baraita cited above.
אָמַר רִבִּי חִזְקִיָּה. כֵּינִי מַתְנִיתָה. לְצוֹרֶךְ לִשְׁכַּת בֶּדֶק הַבַּיִת. In resolution of this contradiction, Rabbi Ḥizkiya said: This is the intent of the mishna: Donated items and, likewise, any money received as payment for sale of an item are physically taken to the chamber for the Temple maintenance. From there they may be removed for any Temple purpose, either for the maintenance of the Temple or for articles consecrated for the altar.
הדרן עלך פרק אלו הן הממונין