Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Retirement in the Torah

Interestingly enough, Written Torah discusses the retirement issue. Written Torah appear to understand that people get old and therefore they can't be effective workers anymore due to age.

Let's take a look at these rather obscure passages:
YLT Num 4:23 from a son of thirty years and upward, till a son of fifty years thou dost number them, every one who is going in to serve the host, to do the service in the tent of meeting. 
YLT Num 4:30 from a son of thirty years and upward even unto a son of fifty years thou dost number them, every one who is going in to the host, to do the service of the tent of meeting. 
YLT Num 4:35 from a son of thirty years and upward even unto a son of fifty years, every one who is going in to the host, for service in the tent of meeting, 
YLT Num 4:39 from a son of thirty years and upward even unto a son of fifty years, every one who is going in to the host, for service in the tent of meeting, 
YLT Num 4:43 from a son of thirty years and upward even unto a son of fifty years, every one who is going in to the host, for service in the tent of meeting, 
YLT Num 4:47 from a son of thirty years and upward even unto a son of fifty years, every one who is going in to do the work of the service, even the service of burden in the tent of meeting, 
YLT Num 8:24 'This is that which is the Levites': from a son of five and twenty years and upward he doth go in to serve the host in the service of the tent of meeting, 
YLT Num 8:25 and from a son of fifty years he doth return from the host of the service, and doth not serve any more, 
YLT Num 8:26 and he hath ministered with his brethren in the tent of meeting, to keep the charge, and doth not do service; thus thou dost to the Levites concerning their charge.'
As you can see, according to these verses, Levites were allowed to work at the Tabernacle from 25 years old until 50 years old. This is very wise commandment because people over 50 years of age start to make mistakes and their productivity starts to decline. The Levites and the Priests were supposed to represent perfection of human form, so unfortunately humans stay in their best shape roughly from 25 - 50 years of age just like the Torah says. After you are 50, you are too old to be considered perfect. Sorry :(

Having said all this, please note that these passages are literally directed at the Levites and Priests. This mean that if you are not a Levite or a Priest, you can work at your job after you reach 50 years of age. This Levitical commandment should only be taken by regular people as a guideline and not as a fact.

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