Erev Shabbat Kodesh
20 Days of the Omer
It has come to my attention that some people still do not understand my complaints against Christianity and some sects of Hasidism, so I'd like to take this opportunity to try and bring some clarity to the issue. I'll try to make it short and succinct so there can be no misunderstanding.
HKB"H: "You shall have no other gods before Me."
- Christianity is an idolatrous religion, worshiping a man-god who is supposedly the physical offspring of the Creator, God forbid!
- It is a missionary religion intent on bringing the entirety of humanity - especially and including Jews - into that idolatrous worship.
- They compiled a book of "scripture" which they added to our Tanach and call the entire thing the "Bible" - the "inspired Word of God," God forbid!
This is a horrible, treacherous crime against HKB"H which carries a horrendous penalty - death. It got the ten tribes of the Northern Kingdom of Israel exiled and permanently cut off from the nation, as well as the first Beit Hamikdash destroyed. We have an obligation from the Torah to our fellow Jews and to HKB"H to prevent its practice and proliferation in Eretz Yisrael.
Some elements in some sects of modern Hasidism are coming closer and closer to the Christian religious model. It is this tendency which I decry and distance myself from.
- Rebbe 'worship' to the point of believing that a rebbe is still alive or communicating with his followers from the grave or otherwise directing their lives or intervening on their behalf from above.
- Viewing a particular Hasidic sect as superior to other Jews and "encouraging" others to adopt this path.
- The addition of a particular Hasidic text which can even supercede the Torah as an object of study.
That's not to say that other sects of Judaism don't have their own issues. There is plenty of correction and improvement called for all around. But, these seeming similarities between Christianity and some sects of Hasidism are too close for my taste or my comfort.
In this week's Torah portion [Kedoshim] we are commanded: "You shall be holy, for holy am I, Hashem, your God."
The commentary says...
It was God's will to rest His Presence among the Jewish people so that it could rise to its calling to be a holy nation of His servants (Exodus 19.6). In order to make this possible, Israel was enjoined to avoid the spiritual contaminations that would result from the sexual and religious practices listed in the previous several chapters. This sidrah begins by explaining that the reason for these prohibitions was to make it possible for the nation to become holy by emulating its Creator as much as possible. Furthermore, the purpose of this holiness is for people to become elevated in their lives on this world, and the way to do this, our passage teaches, is by scrupulous adherence to the commandments found on the first tablet of the Ten Commandments....
The first of which is, "I am Hashem, your God, Who has taken you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of slavery." And the second one is, "You shall have no other gods before Me."
"...before Me." (in My presence), i.e., as long as I exist. Since God is eternal, this prohibition, too, is permanent (Rashi) To defy a human king to his face is the worst form of treason, and since God is omnipresent, idolatry is an unpardonable affront. (Ibn Ezra, Sforno) ...The Torah uses the expression jealous only with reference to idolatry and to a suspicious husband's claim that his wife was unfaithful (Numbers 5.14) The term refers to an abuse of trust and someone's refusal to give up something that is rightfully his. In the context of idolatry, God alone is entitled to the veneration of human beings and He will not countenance worship of other beings. Mechilta teaches that God says, "For idolatry, I zealously exact punishment, but in other matters I am gracious and merciful." In the context of the jealous husband who claims that his wife has lived with another man, he refuses to give up the faithfulness to which he is entitled.