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Daily Mitzvah

Day 139: Positive Commandment 131, 125

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Positive Commandment 131 (Digest)
Declaration of Tithes

"And you shall say before G‑d, your G‑d: 'I have removed the holy from the house, and I have also given it to the Levite, the stranger, the orphan, and the widow...'"—Deuteronomy 26:13.

[This mitzvah is observed on the eve of Passover on the fourth and seventh year of the seven-year Shemitah (Sabbatical) cycle.]

We are commanded to declare before G‑d that we have separated the requisite tithes. We must verbally clear ourselves of these tithes, just as we have physically parted with them.

Positive Commandment 125 (Digest)
The First Fruits

"The first fruits of your land that ripen you shall bring to the house of G‑d, your G‑d"Exodus 23:19.

We are commanded to separate the first fruit that ripen and bring them to the Holy Temple, where they are given to the priests.

This mitzvah only applies when the Temple is standing, and only to produce of the "Seven Kinds" [wheat, barley, grapes, figs, dates, pomegranates, and olives] that grew in Israel (on the east or west bank of the Jordan) and certain lands that adjoin Israel.

Translation of (the unabridged text of) Sefer Hamitzvot by Rabbi Berel Bell, member of the Rabbinical Court of Montreal and director of Teacher Training for the Jewish Learning Institute.

From "Sefer Hamitzvot in English," published by Sichos in English.
Daily Quote
Rabbi Yossei the son of Judah of Kfar HaBavli would say: One who learns Torah from youngsters, whom is he comparable to? To one who eats unripe grapes and drinks [unfermented] wine from the press. One who learns Torah from the old, whom is he comparable to? To one who eats ripened grapes and drinks aged wine.
Said Rabbi Meir: Look not at the vessel, but at what it contains. There are new vessels that are filled with old wine, and old vessels that do not even contain new wine.
  –Ethics of the Fathers, 4:20
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