Concept

Tithes in Judaism

Résumé
The tithe is specifically mentioned in the Books of Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. The tithe system was organized in a seven-year cycle, the seventh-year corresponding to the Shemittah-cycle in which year tithes were broken-off, and in every third and sixth-year of this cycle the second tithe replaced with the poor man's tithe. These tithes were akin to taxes for the people of Israel and were mandatory, not optional giving. This tithe was distributed locally "within thy gates" to support the Levites and assist the poor. Every year, Bikkurim, terumah, ma'aser rishon and terumat ma'aser were separated from the grain, wine and oil. Initially, the commandment to separate tithes from one's produce only applied when the entire nation of Israel had settled in the Land of Israel. The Returnees from the Babylonian exile who had resettled the country were a Jewish minority, and who, although they were not obligated to tithe their produce, put themselves under a voluntary bind to do so, an
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