753. Eating and Drinking on Yom Tov

103:8 Even though there is a mitzvah to eat and drink on yom tov, a person should not eat and drink all day long because the Torah calls yom tov “an assembly to Hashem your G-d” (Deuteronomy 16:8). Even though it says “you shall have an assembly” (Numbers 29:35), our Sages explained this to mean that half of yom tov is for G-d and half is for us (Beitza 15b). Therefore, we must also occupy ourselves with Torah on yom tov.

When a person eats and drinks on yom tov, he is also obligated to feed orphans, widows, and others who may need assistance as per Deuteronomy 16:14, “the Levite, the convert and the orphan…” If someone locks the door to his courtyard while he and family eat and drink, and he doesn’t feed the needy and downtrodden, this is not the mitzvah of rejoicing on yom tov. It is simple gluttony, about which the Bible says, “Their sacrifices will be like the bread of mourners to them; whoever eats it will be polluted because their bread will be for their hunger only” (Hosea 9:4). This kind of rejoicing is disgraceful. Regarding it, the book of Malachi (2:3) says, “I will spread dung on your faces, the dung of your holidays.”