"Do not withhold good from one to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it."
Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch points out that the word that is commonly used for charity,
tzedakah, really does not mean giving alms. It is derived from the word tzedek, meaning "justice." When people give tzedakah,
they may feel that they are making a sacrifice by giving to another person from their own money. They may even resent the
recipient taking away from their assets. The Torah, however, tells us that this attitude is wrong: "Do not give with
a bad heart." Deuteronomy 15:10 What we give to the poor is rightfully theirs, and the person of means is really only the
trustee of the poor man’s property.
"Do not rob from the poor." Proverbs 22:22
What do poor people own that we can rob from them? This verse refers to withholding tzedakah, because when people do
so, they keep for themselves what rightfully belongs to the poor. People who receive tzedakah should not feel humiliated,
and people who give tzedakah should not feel superior. It is simply an act of tzedek, justly distributing what rightfully
belongs to each person.