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The Riches of Moses in Rabbinic Aggada / עושרו של משה באגדת חז"ל

משה בר and M. Beer
Tarbiẕ / תרביץ
כרך מג‎, חוברת א/ד‎ (תשרי-אלול תשל"ד), pp. 70-87
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23593798
Page Count: 18
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The Riches of Moses in Rabbinic Aggada / עושרו של משה באגדת חז"ל
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Abstract

The Bible contains no specific reference to the fact that Moses was a wealthy man. On the other hand, rabbinic Aggada is replete with information concerning the wealth of Moses and its source. The consensus of opinion among the Palestinian Amoraim of the third and fourth centuries was that Moses' wealth was of divine origin. Their controversial argumentation on this subject was originally voiced in Sepphoris and Tiberias. It is interesting to note that two of the leading Patriarchs, R. Judah the Prince and his grand-son, R. Judah Nesi'a, resided in these cities during the course of the third century. Moses was depicted by the Amoraim as the ideal leader; he was the trustworthy treasurer who presented a detailed financial report on each and every expenditure connected with the erection of the Holy Tabernacle, which was financed by the donations of the populace. Moses refused to accept any pecuniary remuneration whatsoever for his services, and, as a result, he was rewarded by divine wealth. Due to his unique position, Moses was considered worthy to rebuke the populace and offer them guidance in the divine precepts. The aggadists also warned the populace to beware of hasty accusations against their leaders. From their discourses on this subject, it is apparent that they strived to emphasize the importance of proper relations between the leaders of the people and the members of the populace.

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