Project Genesis

Basics of Judaism

Basic Values and Morality

If G-d Always Helps, Why Should I?

Question: I understand that while we want to be the ones doing good things for other people- G-d will take care of them regardless. If so, how can a person be motivated to do kindness for another person out of care/concern/wanting things to be better for them? They will get what they need anyways! So while of course we should be responsible and do what we should to help, how can our MOTIVATION be out of concern for their welfare?

Answer: Thank you for your question. The short answer is, they won’t necessarily get what they need anyway. It could be that Hashem gave them this challenge so that we would help them; therefore, our duty in any situation is to do our best to help fix the situation. This is why, for instance, we take medicine. We are not quietists (you can look that up). The Tehillim/Psalm says, “If Hashem doesn’t build the house, can it be built?” – this doesn’t mean the builder can relax and never pick up a hammer and nail! We are put here to be Hashem’s partners in every way. He will act in accordance with our actions (including prayer and other Mitzvot).

But there is a kernel of truth to your supposition: since everything is in Hashem’s hands, ultimately, one should not be overly concerned with the situation. Meaning, if we’ve done our utmost, including prayer, then the outcome must be Hashem’s will. Therefore our concern for their welfare never becomes despair.

I hope that’s helpful. Feel free to follow-up.

Rabbi Seinfeld
My Iphone app:
Android version:

2 Follow-ups »

No published follow-up questions.

We respond to every follow-up question submitted, but only publish selected ones. In order to be considered for publication, questions must be on-topic, polite, and address ideas rather than personalities.


Powered by WordPress