Although it might seem obvious to responsible individuals to have an "emergency fund", some might say it's a lack of bitachon - is there a Torah source (Gemara, Midrash, Halacha, etc) for saving up extra money for a potential emergency situation?

  • 3
    Related question? Same arguments?
    – Oliver
    Commented Jul 21, 2019 at 20:46
  • 1
    Relevant article, citing the Maharsha for the reason a person should keep some of their assets liquid.
    – Fred
    Commented Jul 21, 2019 at 20:47
  • @Fred I think that's an answer Commented Jul 21, 2019 at 20:55
  • (המבזבז אל יבזבז יותר מחומש" (כתובות נ ע"א"
    – Loewian
    Commented Jul 21, 2019 at 21:45
  • I'd like to offer a different angle - you're saying you have some spare money - how should it be spent? Spend it on the needy or save for preventing oneself from becoming one?
    – Al Berko
    Commented Jul 22, 2019 at 9:56

3 Answers 3


Maybe closely related:

Gemara Baba Kama 116B:

רשאין החמרין להתנות שכל מי שיאבד לו חמורו יעמיד לו חמור אחר

רשאין הספנים להתנות שכל מי שאבדה לו ספינה יעמיד לו ספינה אחרת

"Ship owners and donkey owners may decide that if one loses his property (ship, donkey) the others must buy him another one"

  • 2
    Sounds more like (mutual) insurance
    – Joel K
    Commented Jul 22, 2019 at 13:43
  • @JoelK Yeah, emergency fund and insurance serve the same purpose. Commented Jul 22, 2019 at 14:13

Opposite to my first answer:

Gemara Sota 48B:

רבי אליעזר הגדול אומר כל מי שיש לו פת בסלו ואומר מה אוכל למחר אינו אלא מקטני אמנה

Rabbi Eliezer the elder says, One who have bread in his basket (for today) and says, "what will I eat tomorrow?", has not enough faith"

  • 1
    This is for someone who does not have and worries about it. I would not take from here that we should not put aside money for a rainy day when we can and it is reasonable in our budget.
    – simyou
    Commented Jul 23, 2019 at 9:40
  • @simyou I agree. like my first answer, this is closely related. This source still tells you not to worry about your financial future, therefore IMHO it's a valid answer. Commented Jul 23, 2019 at 9:51

Ecclesiastes 3:2 states:

"A time for planting and a time for uprooting the planted"

From here we can take that there is a time and a place to save up, and a time and a place to spend those savings. Like all important considerations, this requires a delicate balance.

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