Saturday, February 28, 2009

Yosef Mokir Shavi's reward for honoring Shabbat


This story raises several troubling questions in my mind, but I love it anyway:

"Yosef, who honored Shabbat, lived in a neighborhood with a wealthy non-Jew. Astrologers told the wealthy man that Yosef was going to end up with all of his assets. The man sold off his assets and bought a gem with them, and placed it in his turban. When the man was crossing a bridge, a wind blew his turban into the sea, where it was swallowed by a fish.

"The fish was caught and brought to market on a Friday afternoon. The fishermen asked, 'Who will buy fish now [at this late hour]?' People told them, 'Go bring it to Yosef who honors Shabbat, for he regularly purchases.'

"They brought it to Yosef, and he purchased it. He cut it open and found the gem inside, and sold it for thirteen roomfuls of gold.

"An elder met Yosef and declared, 'One who lends to Shabbat will be re-paid by Shabbat.'"

(Talmud, Shabbat 119a)

Have a great day,

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