- If a Jew and a gentile came at the same time to ask for a loan, and they are equally trusted to repay the loan, but the lender can lend only one of them, he must give preference to the Jew, as it is written: When you lend money to My people (Shemos 22:24).
- When the Jew and the gentile ask for a loan, even if the non-Jew offers to pay interest while the Jew will be borrowing for free, the lender must nevertheless advance the loan to the Jew. It makes no difference whether the Jew is poor or wealthy because both of them need this loan for their livelihood.
3. But if the lender’s main source of income is from loaning on interest to gentiles, then he is not required to give precedence to the Jew who would be borrowing for free. This is because of the rule that one’s own needs for life take precedence over the life of his fellow, and, after all, this is his livelihood. Nevertheless, if a poor man came to borrow money to buy food, then certainly the lender must put him first.