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Mitzvos Relating to our Fellow Man

23: Loving Converts

You shall love a convert, for you were convets in the land of Egypt. (Devarim 10:19)

In addition to the mitzvah of loving all our fellow Jews, there is a special mitzvah to love converts. Thus, we have a double mitzvah to love a convert. The Sefer HaChinuch (mitzvah 431) teaches that a stranger in town is like a convert and is therefore included in this mitzvah.

The Torah cautions us in thirty-six places to treat a convert properly (Bava Metzia 59b). Whereas we are commanded to love all Jews "as ourselves" (mitzvah 22), there is no limitation given to how much we should love a convert (Rambam, Hilchos Dei'os 6:4). In addition, we are taught that Hashem loves converts (Devarim 10:18), which means that fulfilling this mitzvah is also a mitzvah of emulating Hashem.

There is no greater joy than causing happiness to the poor, orphans, widows, and converts. (Rambam, Hilchos Megillah 2:17)


Text Copyright 2007 by Rabbi Moshe Goldberger and Torah.org.


 


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