Ask the Rabbi:
I enjoyed reading some of your teachings for the first time tonight (3/8/14). There is a lot of “meat” in these teachings to chew on. I was wondering, though, if you have a list of Yahweh’s commandments that a believer should keep? I believe that the Pharisees corrupted the Torah and ended up with 613 commandments, and I am sure that some of those were “man-made”. But which ones? And, which ones should we observe?
Thank you, and please don’t feel pressured to answer this email if you’re too busy.
Your question is a common one. The initial response to “which” commandments to follow is “all of them!” However, that is not possible. Not all of Torah is for everyone. There is a large portion of the Torah that is intended only for the priesthood and the Levites. Many of them pertain to the offerings which we cannot perform because the place designated to do them is not available:
(Deu 12:13 NASB) “Be careful that you do not offer your burnt offerings in every cultic place you see,
(Deu 12:14 NASB) but in the place which the LORD chooses in one of your tribes, there you shall offer your burnt offerings, and there you shall do all that I command you.
That place is occupied by the Islamic Dome of the Rock. So we cannot present offerings at this present time.. Also some laws pertain only to women. These include the laws pertaining to her menstrual time and some other things. Many of the laws only pertain to the government. The government is to enforce the Torah, not the individual or groups. All punishments and penalties commanded in Torah are to be implemented by the government. Torah says to bring the offenders to the judges for punishment:
(Deu 17:9 NASB) “So you shall come to the Levitical priest or the judge who is in office in those days, and you shall inquire of them, and they will declare to you the verdict in the case.
(Deu 17:10 NASB) “And you shall do according to the terms of the verdict which they declare to you from that place which the LORD chooses; and you shall be careful to observe according to all that they teach you.
(Deu 17:11 NASB) “According to the terms of the law which they teach you, and according to the verdict which they tell you, you shall do; you shall not turn aside from the word which they declare to you, to the right or the left.
When one starts following the Torah, some snarky people will often ask “So you stone your children for misbehaving?” For one thing, “misbehavior” by itself is not an offense in Torah. The other thing is that we cannot implement verdicts and punishments as individuals or groups. That must be done by the government.
To be obedient to the Torah, there is not a whole lot involved. One must celebrate the Feast Days in Leviticus 23, follow the dietary laws in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14, avoid all paganism such as Sunday church, Christmas, and Easter, and love your neighbor. Your “neighbor” or “brother” is he or she who also follows the Torah of the Father. Men are to wear tzit tzit (tassels) on the corners of their garments. Numbers 15 and Deuteronomy 22. Also, men are to have facial hair around the mouth at the very minimum. Leviticus 19. That’s about it.
Let me know if you have any further questions or thoughts. Check out our videos on our website also. WWW.BeitYeshua.com
Thank you very much! Your reply is very helpful.