What do God and Bill Gates Have in Common?

October 16, 2008

Bill Gates - Photo by IsyI fondly recall my childhood memories of playing little league baseball or pickup games of basketball. Indeed, I gained life lessons from these activities and the people who served as my coach or manager. In sports, after an athlete has just gotten to the “top of the mountain” and won the Super Bowl or the like, you may find him or her repeating expressions ranging from “I’m Going to Disneyland!” to “We are looking forward to next year, but we have to remember that since we have reached this level we still need to be hungry and be humble.”

I’d like to focus on the later expression for a moment. Judaism espouses that we follow in the actions of God. Accordingly, I believe that if one follows the idiom of needing to “Be Hungry. Be Humble” they will be doing just that-following in the footsteps of the Almighty!

Let’s start with the basics.

One of the Talmudic Sages, by the name of Rabbi Yochanan points out that, “Wherever you find the power of God mentioned in Scripture, you also find his humility mentioned. For instance, Deuteronomy 10:17 teaches that, “God your Lord is the God of the powers and the Lord of Lords.” Immediately following this verse, it says, “He brings justice to the orphan and the widow, and He loves the stranger” (Megillah 13a).

From this Talmudic teaching, we see that God is mighty and powerful-and yet humble and gracious to those in need. I believe that it’s without coincidence that God has chosen someone like Bill Gates to achieve the financial success that he has attained in his life.

Why?

He appears to be someone who despite his wealth is convinced to help others through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It is my hope and desire, that more philanthropists, follow his lead, and by extension, the lead of God Himself!

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