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Mitzvos of Learning and Teaching

20: Honoring Sages and the Elderly

You shall stand up for an old person, and you shall repect the wise (Vayikra 19:32).

It is a mitzvah to stand up for the elderly (anyone over the age of sixty), even if they are not learned, and to honor them. We are also commanded to stand up for Torah sages.

Besides the eneral mitzvah to honor and fear every Torah scholar, ther eis a specififc mitzvah to honor and fear one's rebbe. The Tur teaches (Yorah Dei'ah 242) that one is obligated to honor and revere one's rebbe to an even greaer degree than he honors and reveres his parents. Parents bring a person into this world, but one's rebbe teaches him Torah, enabling him to be worthy of the World to Come. Our sages say: "Fear your rebbe like you fear Hashem" (Avos 4:12).

Text Copyright © 2007 by Rabbi Moshe Goldberger and



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