As gentiles leave the religions of this world and return back to the One Creator of heaven and earth, religion has left a scar and religious baggage. Religious baggage does not go away overnight or sometimes even in years. It is one of our hardest struggles.
Being a Noahide includes accepting the 7 Universal Laws, their sub-rulings and a correct understanding of where they come from and what it means for them to be an obligation.
There is one scar that many have been inflicted with by certain religions of the world. When a Torah (Chumash) or Tanach (Hebrew Scripture) is read, they are confused by ‘who’ is being spoken to on those pages. So many open a Tanach and the religious scar misleads them to continue in the belief that every word is spoke to them, that they are the subject of the words read.
The Tanach is a conversation that the Creator is having with Israel. Even the parts that include the 7 Laws. They were all part of the Sinai package to Israel.
According to Jewish tradition it was offered to the world but the world’s majority turned it down and Israel was the only nation to accepted it and that includes the 7 Noahide Laws.
Lets take a look at something together.
Exodus 24: 3-4a
And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the ordinances; and all the people answered with one voice, and said: ‘All the words which the LORD hath spoken will we do. And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD,
According to Rashi on these two verses, Moses reiterated the 7 Noahide laws and those given at Marah and then he, Moses, wrote down everything God spoke to him; at the time of these verses, Genesis to Exodus 20 was written down.
The very essence of becoming a Noahide is what I call an Adam or Noah state of being. With Adam there was God, Adam and an obligation but no religion – Noah was the same and he was called righteous in his generation and again there was no religion in his walk with the Creator.
So this non-religious walk with the Creator is what God wanted from the beginning. This is what we Noahdes are striving for. It is our duty to know what our commanded obligation is.
If some one quotes a verse where God says that we are to keep the commandments of God without detailed explanation then that person has not learned proper Torah study.
As I have written in other blogs, not every commandment that God commands is for everyone. It is important to know who we are and which commandments are given to us.
Israel in the Torah is our prime example of this. Not all commandments were designed to fit every Jew.
My friend Pesach shared this point with me this week. He is a Jew but he is not a Cohen. A Cohen has other commandments to do that he is not obligated to.
If one day Pesach wanted to start doing the commandments given to the Cohen, he would be in a transgression of adding to the Torah given to him by God – and if he did it out of spiritual desire then he could also be guilty of creating a new religion.
The same is with us, we are taught by Israel that the nations have 7 categorical commandments, we are not to add to them – if we choose to do a commandment in the Torah other than those 7 that are permissible to us, we can only do it on a temporary basis with out spiritual intent. If so then we can also be guilty of adding to the Torah that we were given and creating a new religion.
It is in my humble opinion, we should follow an example we find in Torah Judaism and that is, it is not recommended for a Jew to study Kabbalah until he is well studied in Torah and a certain age – but the age really means he has studied Torah since a child. He needs to be in a complete understanding of all the commandments he is obligated to before he tries to add something else to his plate.
I suggest a similar thing – before a Noahide tries to do any extra commandments that he/she is not obligated to, they need to be well knowledgeable and trained in their obligation and have spiritual desire under control as to not to try an extra command and fall into transgression over it. And I would also recommend that it not be done without a learned teacher’s instruction. Again that is my opinion.
This is advice, our friends and brothers the Jews who are serious in their service to God follow. I know this because I have been an eye witness to this very fact several times. One in particular, I was staying in a rabbi’s home and his wife, who was born in Jerusalem and was in her 70s had a question about the status of a particular vegetable. She picked up the phone and called her rabbi in Jerusalem to get advise on it.
Noahides, gentiles, God Fearers or whatever title you choose for yourself, lets fine tune our understanding and observance of the 7 laws and all their details. They are our obligation and our service to the Creator. There is nothing more we can do to enhance our walk with the Creator. Trying to enhance your walk with added commandments is pushing your will and spiritual desires above what the Creator has already given us.
Terry W. Hayes – ben Noach
Photo Credit: Me