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Rabbi M Ch Luzzatto in Derech HaShem (1:2:1) gives HaShem’s purpose in creation to “bestow of His good to another”. (Translation Aryeh Kaplan.) The translator in his notes gives several sources/references for this which I find very difficult to locate even at Hebrewbooks.com. They are: Emunos VeDeyos 2:1 end, 3:0; Or HaShem (Crescas) 2:6:2; Sefer HaYashar 1; Pardes Rimonim 2:6; Eitz Chayim Shaar HaKelalim %1

How does Ramchal (or any of the references) know that this was HaShem’s purpose?

Is the proof from Tehillim 89(3) כִּי אָמַרְתִּי עוֹלָם חֶסֶד יִבָּנֶה, שָׁמַיִם תָּכִן אֱמוּנָתְךָ בָהֶם?

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Olam Chesed Yibaneh? –  Seth J May 6 '12 at 2:04
    
Can you point me to the relevant text in the links supplied by WAF (for which much thanks)? –  Avrohom Yitzchok May 6 '12 at 16:00
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2 Answers 2

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The relevant quotations from Emunos V'Deos are, respectively, here (end of Maamar 1) and here (introduction to Maamar 3).

In the first-mentioned place he cites Isaiah 48:17, אני ה' אלקיך מלמדך להועיל מדריכך בדרך תלך - "I am Hashem your G-d, who teaches you for your benefit, who guides you in the way that you should go." In the second place he starts by explaining that since G-d existed before (and independently of) the world, then He didn't need to create it to fulfill some need of His, but rather for our good, and cites in this connection Psalms 145:9: טוב ה' לכל ורחמיו על כל מעשיו - "Hashem is good to all, and His mercies are upon everything He made."

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Thank you Alex . –  Avrohom Yitzchok May 6 '12 at 20:03
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While there are any number of Biblical verses that support the idea that God created this world for the purpose of bestowing good, the fundamental reason for believing this is theological. Because Judaism sees God as the source of all existence, He is therfore perceived as being entirely independent of creation, needing nothing whatsoever. From this it follows that the purpose of Creation cannot be to satisfy any need or want of God's, as God has no needs or wants to satisfy. The purpose of Creation can only be understood as being purely for the benefit of the created beings.

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Is it not possible that He had other non-disclosed purpose(s)? –  Avrohom Yitzchok May 9 '12 at 14:03
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@AvrohomYitzchok, For example? I would assume anything you come up with ultimately must be for others, since G-d does not need or desire. QED, creation must be a manifestation of G-d's innate quality of a Giver. –  YDK May 9 '12 at 14:27
    
But what about the desire to do good? –  Shmuel Brin May 9 '12 at 15:26
    
@ShmuelBrin, I recommend you ask that as a separate question instead of discussing here in the comments. –  msh210 May 9 '12 at 16:39
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@ydk so Hashem is "forced" to do good by nature? –  Shmuel Brin May 13 '12 at 5:12
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