A certain man once applied to16 R. Nehemiah [for maintenance]. 'What do your meals consist of', [the Rabbi] asked him. 'Of fat meat and old wine', the other replied — 'Will you consent [the Rabbi asked him] to live17 with me on lentils?' [The other consented,] lived with him on lentils and died. 'Alas', [the Rabbi] said, 'for this man whom Nehemiah has killed.' On the contrary, he should [have said] 'Alas for Nehemiah who killed this man'! — [The fact], however, [is that the man himself was to blame, for] he should not have cultivated his luxurious habits to such an extent.
A man once applied to18 Raba [for maintenance]. 'What do your meals consist of?' he asked him. 'Of fat chicken and old wine', the other replied. 'Did you not consider', [the Rabbi] asked him, 'the burden of the community?' 'Do I', the other replied, 'eat of theirs? I eat [the food] of the All-Merciful; for we learned: The eyes of all wait for Thee, and Thou givest them their food in due season,19 this, since it is not said, 'in their season' but 'in his20 season', teaches that the Holy One, blessed be He, provides for every individual his food In accordance with his own habits'.21 Meanwhile there arrived Raba's sister, who had not seen him for thirteen years, and brought him a fat chicken and old wine. 'What a remarkable incident!'22 [Raba]23 exclaimed; [and then] he said to him, 'I apologize24 to you, come and eat'.
[The fact], however, [is that the man himself was to blame, for] he should not have cultivated his luxurious habits to such an extent.
Perhaps this is the lesson.