Arachin 23 - 29
- Collecting a ketubah or other debt from the resources which have been consecrated for Sanctuary use
- How much of his resources are left with the person who has pledged all he owns as arachin
- When may one donate or redeem an inherited field consecrated for Sanctuary use
- Rate of redemption of such a field
- Who are the redeemers and how long can they retain it
- If the field is not redeemed by the fiftieth year of yovel
- If the father who sold field to son subsequently donates it to the Sanctuary
- The bidding procedure in redeeming consecrated field
- Consecrating resource through cherem
- How much can one spend on charity
- Who benefits from cherem
- When can one redeem field sold to another.
How Much to Spend
Rabbi Akiva once wished to donate more than a fifth of his resources for charity to the poor. His colleague, Rabbi Yesheivav, discouraged him from doing so. This was because of Rabbi Ila's report that when Sanhedrin were seated in the city of Usha they issued a decree that one should not donate more than a fifth lest he himself become a dependent through such magnanimous extravagance.
In our gemara we find two different positions in regard to one making a cherem consecration of his resources which will go to the kohanim.
Rabbi Eliezer rules that if once consecrates all of his resources it does not take effect. He predicates this limit on the pledge that the Patriarch Yaakov made to donate a tenth of his resources. Since he used the term ma’aser twice, it can be deduced that he meant a gift to charity of two tenths – a fifth of his resources. The inference is that, based on the ruling in Usha, one may give away more than a fifth as long as he leaves himself enough to retain financial independence.
Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah, on the other hand, states that since one may not consecrate all of his resources in the form of a cherem, the lesson may be learned that one must be careful to avoid spending all his resources on secular matters. He disagrees with Rabbi Ila's report about a Sanhedrin decree of a limit of one-fifth and posits that one may indeed donate more than a fifth as long as he leaves something for himself, concluding that one should learn from this advice to avoid squandering all his resources for non-religious matters.
- Arachin 28a
What the Sages Say
"If one cannot donate all of his resources for a sacred purpose, how much more must one be careful in regard to spending his resources."
- Rabbi Elazar ben Azariah - Arachin 28a