The only source I found that relates to charity and gentiles is that Jews are expected to give charity to help the non-Jews in their environment for the sake of "darkei shalom".

Given that charity is not a "hok" that we observe for the sake of serving God alone but a practical way of ensuring justice for all people, would it not be God's intention to cover gentiles' basic needs and prosperity as part of the "tzedakah framework" or is this only considered necessary for Jews alone?

Despite massive amounts of charity in the non-Jewish world, the world is full of suffering and injustice. In a (hypothetical) world, where all Jews and non-Jews are righteous and live according to Halacha, would it not be problematic alone for the financial injustice among gentiles to be unaddressed at all (except for the Jewish "darkei shalom" contribution that couldn't possibly be sufficient to resolve the imbalances fully)?

  • I wonder whether, technically speaking, a duty of care for the needy can be derived from the Noahide Commandment of not spilling blood, as, in the extreme, poverty can lead in various ways to death.
    – Isaac Moses
    Dec 29, 2023 at 17:26

1 Answer 1


As neglecting charity contributed to Sodom's destruction (per Yechezkel 16:49), they are apparently not only obligated but even held to task for it.

הִנֵּה זֶה הָיָה עֲוֺן סְדֹם אֲחוֹתֵךְ גָּאוֹן שִׂבְעַת לֶחֶם וְשַׁלְוַת הַשְׁקֵט הָיָה לָהּ וְלִבְנוֹתֶיהָ וְיַד עָנִי וְאֶבְיוֹן לֹא הֶחֱזִיקָה.

Behold, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom; pride, fullness of bread, and prosperous ease was in her and in her daughters; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

I should also note Devarim 23:4-5 where lack of kindness is a contributing factor for permanently disallowing marriage with certain folks

לֹא יָבֹא עַמּוֹנִי וּמוֹאָבִי בִּקְהַל י"י גַּם דּוֹר עֲשִׂירִי לֹא יָבֹא לָהֶם בִּקְהַל י"י עַד עוֹלָם. עַל דְּבַר אֲשֶׁר לֹא קִדְּמוּ אֶתְכֶם בַּלֶּחֶם וּבַמַּיִם בַּדֶּרֶךְ בְּצֵאתְכֶם מִמִּצְרָיִם וַאֲשֶׁר שָׂכַר עָלֶיךָ אֶת בִּלְעָם בֶּן בְּעוֹר מִפְּתוֹר אֲרַם נַהֲרַיִם לְקַלְלֶךָּ.

An Ammonite or a Moabite shall not enter into the assembly of Hashem; even to the tenth generation none belonging to them shall enter into the assembly of Hashem forever, because they didn't meet you with bread and with water on the way, when you came forth out of Egypt, and because they hired against you Balaam the son of Beor from Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse you.

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