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Chumash      Rambam-Teshuvah
(5746) (Deut 24:15): "You shall give him his wage on his day" - How could HaShem delay the wages (schar) of Yisroel until the "morrow" (olam HaBa);

Boundary of the reward of the physical benefits "which will reinforce our performance of the Torah" Rambam ( Hil Teshuva 9) according to Halacha


1. Concerning the command:

 “You shall give him his wage on his day and not let the sun set over it (Deut 24:16)",

There is a well-known question:

The Sages state that “G-d ’fulfills’ that which He said to Yisroel to do and to keep”.

In our case, we find in many places in the statements of the Sages that the Avodah of Yidden in fulfilling Torah and Mitzvot is compared to the work of a laborer before his employer, and the reward of Mitzvot is the “wages/tashlum” that G-d (the employer/Baal haBayit) pays to the Yidden (the laborers) for their “work”.

According to this, one must conclude, that every time a Jew completes a Mitzvah, he should immediately (“on his day”) receive the reward for his “work” – just like G-d’s command in His Torah – “You shall give him his wage on his day and not let the sun set over it” (You shall not withhold the wages etc. of a day-laborer, keeping it in your possession until morning”).

Why do we find that G-d pays the reward for a Mitzvot (not immediately, but) “tomorrow/l’machar – in the Future”, as the Sages state “Today to do them, tomorrow to receive (and take) their reward”.

Thus G-d “delays/m’acheir” their reward (from complete Tzaddikim, even) until “tomorrow”?!

2. The commentators answer that since “All our lives we are indentured to G-d to perform His Avodah”,

(a person, he is obligated every moment of his life “To serve his Owner/kono”),

it follows that that the entire life of a of a person is considered one collective period of service. Every Jew is handed a “mission/shlichus” and task which he must accomplish in the course of his life in this world, and every one of his deeds in Torah and Mitzvot is a part of that mission and task.

Therefore there is no obligation to pay a Jew the reward of Mitzvot until after he passes from this world (when the period of his employment ends) because “wages are not paid except at the end”

(This is like the law is that if someone employs a worker for a certain period, the employer does not transgress the command of “You shall not withhold the wages” until the entire period has elapsed).

This answer, however, only fits according to the opinion of Rambam - that the Future World (Olam HaBa) - “the ultimate reward for the Mitzvot” - is a world of Souls without bodies (Gan Eden) which “a person attains after his life in this world”. Therefore he relates “tomorrow” (to Olam HaBa) to receive their reward” to etc. Gan Eden.

However according to the opinion of Ramban – which is the opinion of Kabbalah and Chassidut - Olam HaBa here refers to Olam HaTechiyeh (the resurrection) (which is the epitome of reward).

Accordingly it comes out that G-d doesdelay/m’acheir” the reward for Mitzvot until the Future, quite long after the time of reward for a Jew has elapsed.

(In other words, a Jew must wait to receive the reward for a Mitzvot until the time of (Yemot HaMoshiach/the era of Moshiach and) Olam HaTechiyeh)

The question thus returns.

 How does the time for the payment of the “Reward for Mitzvot”/”Schar Mitzvot” coincide with the Halacha of “You shall give him his wage on his day”?

3. One could say – that the question is averted according to the explanation of the Alter Rebbe in Tanya:

The Alter Rebbe cites the Rabbinic statement that:

“The purpose of the creation of this world is that the Holy One, blessed be He, desired to have an abode in the lower worlds” which means that, in this lowest world of which “there is none lower in the aspect of concealment of His blessed light”, the “G-dly light” should illuminate without any obstacle.”

And this is accomplished by “Our actions and service throughout the duration of the galut” (and in the duration of all the times of Avodah, in general).

For each act of a Jew in the Avodah of Torah and Mitzvot effects purification in the materialism of his body and his portion in the world. (and an effluence of G-dly light in the world) . And together with the Avodah of all Bnei Yisroel during all the generations, the purification and refinement of this entire world and the entire world becomes an “abode for G-d”.

(Furthermore The Alter Rebbe explains that:

“The world as a whole” is divided into 600,000 parts) corresponding to the “600,000 souls”

(which is the number of the general souls which are “roots” for all the Jewish souls - and each specific soul is a spark of one of the “600,000 . . roots”)

In other words, every individual soul/neshama, every Jew, has a portion in the world which “pertains to him”. And through his Avodah in Torah and Mitzvot, he refines “his” portion in this world.

And through all 600,000 Jewish neshamot collectively carrying out their Avodah, the “world as a whole” is refined becomes an “abode for G-d”.)

The world will be refined and elevated to this level in the Future – Yemot HaMoshiach, and primarily and in completeness – at Techiyat HaMeisim (resurrection). For then evil will be completely eradicated from this world and there will be the revelation of His glory, as it states:

"And all flesh shall see together, and He will shine forth on them with the splendor of His majestic greatness and the whole world will be filled with the glory of the L-rd”.

According to this, it comes out that the Avodah of all the Yidden, in the duration of all the generations together, represents the aspect of one (complete) “Wage”, whose purpose and objective is to transform the world to be an “abode for G-d” in the lower worlds.

And one could add that:

In this task, the Yidden (are not considered “laborers” but are) considered  trustees (kablan). G-d entrusted His world in the hands of Yisroel in order that they make the world an abode for G-d.

Therefore, it is resolved why the primary aspect of reward will be initially paid in the Future (Yemot HaMoshiach - and primarily - Olam HaTechiya) – for the reward of Olam HaBa is the general payment to all Yidden, as a whole, for their Avodah to make the world an abode for G-d. And this reward comes immediately after their completing the Avodah to make the world an abode for G-d.

4. According to this explanation in the nature of Schar Mitzvot –one can explain another aspect that is related to Schar Mitzvot:

It is known that Rambam comments regarding the material promises and good things which we find in “the entire Torah”.

(for seemingly, how does this coincide with the statement that “the reward for Mitzvot . . is life/chayei in Olam Haba?) –

Rambam writes:

“Those benefits are not the ultimate reward for the Mitzvot, . .Rather, G-d gave us this Torah . . we are promised by the Torah that if we fulfill it with joy . . (G-d) will remove all the obstacles which prevent us from fulfilling it . .  He will grant us all the good which will reinforce our performance of the Torah, . . in order that we will sit unburdened and have the opportunity to study wisdom and perform Mitzvot in order that we will merit the life of the world to come.”

From the broad wording of Rambam it appears that the effluence of “All the good” in material things which G-d promises are not for the payment of reward, but rather a side aspect that comes from G-d’s kindness –

In other words it is because Yidden fulfill Torah and Mitzvot (with simcha/happiness). Therefore the Supernal conduct is in a manner that removes the obstacles and grants us “all the good which will reinforce our hands” to better perform their Avodah in Torah and Mitzvot.

It is however, difficult to say so:

For according to this, it comes out that in all the places where the Sages equate the aspect of Schar Mitzvot to payment which an employer is obligated to pay his laborer, it refers only to the reward of Olam HaBa – and not to the many aspects of reward that are delimited in the Written Torah.

It is therefore probable to say that even this aspect of effluence of “All the good” which is explained in Rambam (‘which will reinforce our performance of the Torah’) is in the category of reward and therefore an aspect of Halacha, for which we find examples of in the obligations of an employer to his worker.

5. Seemingly, we could have connected this with the known maxim that Yidden are called “G-d’s Servants /Avdei HaShem”:

The law regarding a Hebrew servant is that “A master is obligated to treat any Hebrew servant or maid servant as his equal with regard to food, drink, clothing and living quarters”. Therefore when we are occupied in Avodat HaShem, there is an obligation, as it were, on G-d, our Master, to provide for all our needs, and with largess (as it states to treat any (Hebrew servant or maid servant) as his equal).

Yet this does not fit because this obligation of a master to his servant – is not comparable to Schar Mitzvot (i.e. the way an employer pays his worker) – for the providing for a Hebrew servant is not reward for a deed, rather it is just an obligation of a master to his servant because one who acquires a Hebrew servant is as if “he acquires a master over himself”.

(In general, the nature of Schar Mitzvot – namely that G-d pays Yidden for their Avodah as one pays a worker - is not because the Yidden are G-d’s servants. For a servant does not receive reward for his work. He is obligated to work since he is a possession of his master (kanui l’rabo)).

However the aforementioned effluence of the good is an aspect of obligation, of which we find examples of in the obligations of an employer to his worker.

It is also not because of the law, regarding a worker, that:

“When you enter your fellow's vineyard, you may eat grapes as you desire, to your satisfaction etc.. When you enter your fellow's standing grainstalks etc.”

In other words, that the employer must allow the workers to eat from “that which they produce”.

Similarly, one could say that it is the same in our case. Since Yidden are in G-d’s vineyard and field (this world) and they perform “work” there for the Employer (Baal HaBayit), they may take their needs,

(for all of man’s necessities are termed “eating/food”) from “that which they produce”. –

(It is not like the above) because these Mitzvot just place an obligation on the employer to “allow/SheYaneach” them there to be eaten (but not that he must feed them).

(Also: This obligation is not just regarding a person which he is working, but even to an animal which works - one is not allowed to muzzle his ox when he is plowing).

6. One could say the explanation is:

According to what was previously said (par. 3) – that the purpose of Yidden is to make this world an abode for the Holy One, blessed be He – one could say, that the Avodah of Yidden in the world contains (not just the element of a “trusteeship (kablanut) but also) the element of partnership/shutfus.

The Future reward embodies that which Yidden will see the G-d’s Glory “eye to eye/ayin b’ayin” –the G-dly light which is drawn down through their Avodah in a manner of “The reward of the Mitzvah is the Mitzvah” (“Schar Mitzvot Mitzvot”).

In other words the “reward” is not a separate aspect from their Avodah, but rather – the object of their Avodah itself.

Therefore it comes out that this is similar, as it were, to the law that:

“A person gives eggs to a chicken farmer with the intent that the chicken farmer have the chickens sit on the eggs until they hatch, and then for the chicken farmer to raise the chicks with the profits to be divided between them”.

In other words, G-d entrusted His world into the hands of Yisroel in order that they accomplish with their Avodah that the G-dliness that is found in the world in a potential and hidden manner,

(Similar, as it were, to the way the chicks are “potentially” in the eggs)

become revealed and so much so, to the epitome of revelation (- “raises them”) . And the “profit” from this very Avodah (from the principal and similarity to “partnership “) is “between them”.

·         G-d has pleasure, as it were, that His desire to have an abode in the lower worlds was accomplished.

(As it states: it is a pleasure to G-d that I spoke and they performed My Will/ "nachas ruach le'fanai, she'amarti v’naaseh retzoni”).

·         And Yidden have pleasure from being able to “behold the graciousness of the L-rd” – from the revelation of G-dliness which they accomplished with their Avodah.

(This is not just a “partnership” in a side “profit” - in the revelation of pleasure that the Avodah of Bnei Yisroel accomplishes – but it is a “profit” that is connected to the essential existence of the world,

(similar to the aforementioned law that one is a partner in the chicks that are hatched from the eggs themselves)

                It is similar to the saying of the Sages that:

“He who prays on the eve of the Sabbath and recites 'vayechulu”( the heaven and the earth were finished etc.),'is considered as though he had become a partner with the Holy One, blessed be He, in the Creation”.

The purpose of saying 'vayechulu” is to “attest” and reveal the recognition of the Creator of the world. This is the intent of the entire Avodah of Bnei Yisroel in the world that was created in the Six Days of Creation – and through the Avodah of revealing G-dliness in the world, where one makes the world itself an “abode for G-d”, one becomes a “partner with the Holy One, blessed be He, in the Creation”)

Accordingly one could say that the “obligation” to pay Yidden Schar Mitzvot in this world

(and to remove all the obstacles which prevent us from fulfilling it . .  He will grant us all the good which will reinforce our performance of the Torah)

is based on his Halacha of “When a person gives eggs to a chicken farmer etc. the profits to be divided between them”.

This Halacha states that, in addition to the portion of profit, which the “giver/notein” apportions to the “chicken farmer”, after he has “raised them”, the owner of the eggs is obligated (“must”) “provide the chicken farmer with a wage for his work and sustenance . . every day”.

The same is in our case. In addition to the obligation to apportion the profit in the Future,

(after Yidden have completed their Avodah to make the world an “abode for G-d).

even now – for the duration of our Avodah – there is an obligation to give Yidden the wage for “their work and sustenance” in order that they be able to carry out their Avodah properly (“have the opportunity to study wisdom and perform Mitzvot”).

7. This aforementioned aspect has a special connection to the time that we find ourselves in – the month of Elul, the month of preparation for the Day of Judgment. For the judgment of Rosh Hashanah is for material things.

According to all of the aforementioned, that, in addition to being G-d’s servants, where G-d must provide for us all of our needs in sustenance/mazon, clothing/levush and home/bayit (so much so that it is in a manner that we are “as his equal”, as it were),

And not only this, but also from the perspective of an “Employer “to his “worker”, that when a Jew performs his Avodah in G-d’s field and vineyard, he must be given the ability to “eat . . to your satisfaction etc.”, namely from G-d’s vineyard - this world.

(and this applies also to the body and animalistic soul, the “Beheima/animal” that is in man, since the verse fully states that: “one is not allowed to muzzle his ox when he is plowing”)

In addition to all this, there is an obligation, as it were, on G-d to support for Yidden and provide for their needs, even beforehand, with the wages of “their work and sustenance” in order that they be given the wherewithal to carry out their Avodah.

In simplicity – already from the beginning of the year every Jew is meritorious in judgment and is written and sealed immediately in the Books of the complete Tzaddikim for a good and sweet year (Shana Tova u’Mtukah) in the best and most revealed way (b’tov haNirah v’HaNigla) - banei, chayei, mezona (children, life and sustenance), and in all of them in great measure (kulam revichi), plainly, even in physicality.

And when G-d gives to the Yidden material things, they transform them to spirituality and carry out their task - to transform the world to be an “abode for G-d” in the lower worlds.

m’Sichas Shabbat Parshat Vaeira and Shabbat Parshat Bo 5746

Shabbat Parshat Teitzei 5747



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