27 December 2021

Code Word: "Universal" (Part 2 of 2)

23 Tevet 5782

In Part 1, it was established that there is an insidious trend today to universalize Judaism and the Torah.  I daresay, that were this the correct path to take, we would not have been mourning the translation of the Torah into Greek just a couple of weeks ago.

Authentic, Torah-true Judaism is engulfed and drowning in a tidal wave of error and misconception regarding our relationship to the nations of the world.  

In part 2, here, I hope that the sources I bring will shed light and clarity on this subject and help to keep us on the straight path, deviating neither to the left nor the right.

Universalist Claims

  • It is a mitzvah for every Jew to evangelize the world with Torah.
  • Israel's mission is to be a "light unto the nations" by spreading the gospel of Torah.
  • Jew or non-Jew, it doesn't matter, all are equal and have equal standing before God.
  • All of humanity is one big family and all are the children of God regardless of belief.
  • The Messiah is not coming just for the Jews, he is coming to save the whole world.
  • The Jews can't be redeemed unless the gentiles play their part.

Yes, I have tweaked the language because in essence this is really what it is and it helps us pinpoint the origin of these false ideas.  Yes, this is more Judeo-Christianity.  And it bears noting that the Jews who want to teach Torah to Gentiles stopped pretending it was for those seeking to learn the Noahide laws long ago.  Now, there is no more pretense that they are anything other than Christian idolaters.

Consider this...

The Rambam in Hilchot Avodah Zarah, Chapter 7, Halachah 1:

It is a positive commandment to destroy false deities, all their accessories, and everything that is made for their purposes, as [Devarim 12:2] states: "You shall surely destroy all the places [where the gentiles... served their gods]" and, as [implied by Devarim 7:5]: "Rather, what you should do to them is tear down their altars."

In Eretz Yisrael, the mitzvah requires us to hunt after idol worship until it is eradicated from our entire landIn the diaspora, however, we are not required to hunt after it. Rather, whenever we conquer a place, we must destroy all the false deities contained within.

[The source for this distinction is Devarim 12:3, which] states: "And you shall destroy their name from this place," [implying that] you are obligated to hunt false deities in Eretz Yisrael, but you are not obligated to do so in the diaspora.

From the commentary: On we are not required to hunt after it. - since these lands are not holy, we are not obligated to eradicate idol worship from them. (Kinat Eliyahu)
In other words, we do not go out from Eretz Yisrael and travel the world begging the non-Jews to leave their idolatry and accept the Sheva Mitzvot. Neither do we go out from Eretz Yisrael and travel the world inviting the non-Jews to come to Eretz Yisrael, welcoming them to bring their idolatry in with them and practice it in our midst!

Rabbi Meir Kahane from his book Uncomfortable Questions for Comfortable Jews...

..for the sake of the Jewish people, it is time to speak about the ignorance, the perversion, the corruption, the counterfeiting of Judaism. It is more than time to bring down what Judaism really says about Jews and non-Jews, about the status of both in the world, about the concept of Israel as a special chosen people and the place of a non-Jew within the Jewish State, about the contradictions between basic Judaism and basic western democracy and liberalism.

...The liberal west speaks of the absolute equality of all peoples while Judaism speaks of spiritual status of the chosenness of the Jew from and above all other people, of the special and exclusive relationship between G-d and Israel.

Excerpts from the Ramchal in Derech Hashem (Feldheim Publishers) ...

...According to the Highest Judgment, it turned out that none of [humanity] deserved to rise above the degraded level to which Adam and his children had fallen as a result of their sin.  [Not a single one had risen above it all.]

There was, however, one exception, and that was Avraham.  He had succeeded in elevating himself, and as a result of his deeds was chosen by God.  Avraham was therefore permanently made into a superior excellent Tree, conforming to man's highest level.  It was further provided that he would be able to produce branches [and father a nation] possessing his characteristics.

The world was then divided into seventy nations, each with its own particular place in the general scheme.  All of them, however, remained on the level of man in his fallen state, while only Israel was in the elevated state.

After this, the gate was closed on the era of roots.  Things would then be directed and brought about upon individuals as branches, each one according to his nature.

...[4]  God's great love and goodness decreed that the branches of other nations still be given a chance.  If they so desired, they still had the free choice to tear themselves loose from their own roots, and through their own actions include themselves among the branches of Avraham's family.

This is what God meant when He told Avraham (Breishis 12:3), "All the families of the earth will be blessed through you."  Avraham was thus made the father of all converts.

...Avraham's tree consisted of 600,000 main branches. These were the individuals who left Egypt, and it was to them that the Torah was given and the land of Israel divided. Every Jew subsequently born is considered to be an element and descendant of one of these primary branches.

It was to these 600,000 original Jews that the Torah was given.  When this occurred, the tree was said to have attained maturity.

At this time, God also gave the nations a last chance.  In His mercy He had suspended their final judgment until the time that the Torah was given [with the revelation at Sinai].  He then offered the Torah to every nation, giving them the opportunity to accept it.

If any nation would have then accepted the Torah, it would have elevated itself from its lower state.  As it was, none of them desired the Torah, and their judgment was therefore sealed completely The gate was permanently closed, never again to be opened.

It still remained possible, however, for any individual to convert to Judaism.  In this manner, he could still include himself in Avraham's tree of his own free will.

...[9]  God thus made the rectification and elevation of all creation totally dependent on the Jews.  To the extent that this can be expressed, we can thus say that He subjugated His Providence to them.  Through their deeds, they can cause [His Light] to shine forth and have influence, or, on the other hand, hold it back and conceal it.

The deeds of the other nations, on the other hand, do not add to or subtract from the state of creation, nor do they cause God to reveal Himself or withdraw.  All they can do is bring about their own gain or loss, and strengthen or weaken their own directing angel.  [Read it in full here:  Israel and the Nations.] 

The final redemption will mirror the first redemption from Egypt.  Moshe Rabeinu was the redeemer promised to Israel.  All of the slaves went free, but Egypt was destroyed for the sake of freeing the Jews.  "The world exists for the Jews; had Israel refused the Torah, the world would have ceased to exist."  Ben David will come at the End of Days to redeem the Jews and the entire world will benefit, but all who oppose this goal of freeing the Jews to fulfill their true mission of rectifying the world through Torah and mitzvot will be destroyed in the process.