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D''vrei Mordechai

by Reb Mordechai Rosen z"l
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What does Hashem Elokecha ask from you, but to fear Hashem Elokecha and to walk in His ways? (Devorim, Perek Yud, Pasuk Yud Gimmel)



"Ki Sisa Es Rosh Bnei Yisrael" (Perek Lamed Pasuk Yud Bais) In this Parsha Moshe is told to count Bnei Yisrael by asking each man to give 1/2 shekel. Rashi translates the word Sisa to mean counting. The Pasuk tells us "V'nasnu Eesh Kofer Nafsho" and each man should give a redemption for his soul.

The Baal HaTurim explains that the word "V'nasnu" read backwards or forwards is the same word. He says that this is to teach us that whatever a person gives to Tzedakah will come back to him.

We can see this idea laid out in the words of the Pasuk. Instead of reading it "Es Rosh Bnei Yisrael," read it "Es Resh." The letter Resh in Chassidic seforim is always a remez to Tzedakah. This is because they have the same gematria - Tzedakah is spelled Tzaddik, Daled, Kof, Hey and you add 1 for the word - this gives you 200, which is the gematria of the letter Resh.

So, what does it mean to count the Tzedakah of Bnei Yisrael? And what is it that we find when we count it?

The Gemara tells us "Kol Yisrael Arayvim Zeh LaZeh", all of Yisrael are guarantors one for the other. We see this very clearly in the Inyan of Tzedakah. The Gemara talks about two kinds of people. One is a person who has money and gives to Tzedakah but really does not want to. He gives, but he has no Ratzon, no desire. The second is a person who would love to give Tzedakah, but has no money. He has Ratzon, but nothing to give with. Chazal tell us that each of these people receives complete reward. The one who gives, but does not really want to gets reward for giving and the reward of the man who wants to give but can't. The one, who wants to give, gets reward for wanting and the reward of the person who gave.

When you look at the word Yisrael, you can see the whole Gemara clearly laid out. Yisrael is spelled Yud, Shin, Resh, Alef, and Lamed. The Yud and the Shin spell the word "Yesh" which means has (desire or money) and the Alef and Lamed spell the word "Lo", which means does not have) desire and money). What is left over is the Resh for Tzedakah.

So, what to we see when we count the Tzedakah of Bnei Yisrael - we see that all of Yisrael are as one - he gives and I receive Reward, I give and he receives reward. When you give to Tzedakah - you will always receive a return on your money.

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