More Important than Gold

Once, R. Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev saw a Jewish man with styled hair, like the custom of gentiles.

R. Levi Yitzchak said to him: “My son, why do you grow a forelock, this is prohibited as it follows the custom of the Amorites? (See Tosefta, Shabbat Ch. 8)”

The individual excused his actions saying:

“I work amongst ministers, and I need to be presentable before them.”

R. Levi Yitzchak said: “I’ll give you a gold coin to cut your hair.”

The man replied: ” No Rebbe, I can’t”

When R. Levi Yitzchak finally upped the price to twenty five gold coins, the man continued to refuse.

Finally R. Levi Yitzchak said: “I’ll promise you a place in the world to come.” The man agreed and hurriedly cut off his forelock.

R. Levi Yitzchak lifted his eyes heavenward are remarked:”Master of the Universe: look down from Heaven, for who are like your nation Israel, who are believers children of believers?!”

“This man toils and sweats for even one coin, yet, for something that he would refuse to do for for twenty five coins he immediately agrees to do for a portion of paradise which he has never even seen.”

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