Questions regarding our understanding of God, such as it is. NOT for every question about Jewish beliefs.

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5
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2answers
379 views

So who is this “angel of the Lord” that call himself “the God of bethel”?

There is only one "God". So there is only one being in the whole world that can call God with the word "I" Yet we have this malak hashem repeatedly acting as if he is God himself. http://en....
3
votes
2answers
92 views

Is God Praiseworthy?

In many Jewish prayers and throughout Tanakh, God is strongly praised for His goodness, that which He does for the Jews, His amazing miracles etc. However, those same sources, and most Jewish sources, ...
29
votes
9answers
2k views

Bereishit vs. science

How does Judaism deal with the differences between scientific evidence of the beginning of the world and the account(s) in Bereishit?
6
votes
1answer
677 views

May we still say Elohim and other names of God in everyday speech?

My experience (at least in the Orthodox Ashkenazic community) is that it is common knowledge that we may not say Elohim in everyday speech. On the other hand, it seems like in many cases in Tanach or ...
5
votes
3answers
255 views

From the Torah itself how do we know that various names of God points to the same God?

Jews believe that God, while having many names, is actually one. So the idea is that El Elyon, Elohim, El Shadai, YHWH, Adonai, El, are just names mostly referring to the same being. Is there any ...
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3answers
64 views

If God is all powerful, why does he need the angel of death to carry out the tenth plague?

If God is all powerful, why does he need the Angel of Death? Why did God need the angel of death to carry out the 10th plague to the Egyptians? Couldn't God himself just do it?
3
votes
1answer
62 views

How do מושב יקרו and שכינת עזו work in the Oleinu prayer?

I would like to understand in the Oleinu prayer what is meant by (1) מושב יקרו Artscroll translates as “the seat of His homage” and (2) שכינת עזו Artscroll translates as “His powerful presence” ...
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0answers
29 views

How can God be one in Judaism even though the Torah gives God numerous names [duplicate]

How can God be one in Judaism even though the Torah lists God as having numerous names with numerous meanings
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2answers
60 views

Mocking God- sources

Is there an issur for a Jew to mock God by means of satire or a joke? is joking about God halahcically distinct from "birkas hashem," (cursing God) which is prohibited even to Bnei Noach (per ...
2
votes
1answer
79 views

Does Rambam contradict the Shema

Does Rambam teach one should not say "God is one" but rather "God is not multiplicity?" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maimonides See segment labeled "Negative Theology."
20
votes
1answer
321 views

Can a Noachide continue to believe in religious tenets that are against the Torah?

Say you have a Christian* or a Muslim (or a member of any other monotheistic religion) who accepts the Seven Noachide Laws, and (as per Mishneh Torah, Hil. Melachim 8:11) does so because he believes ...
2
votes
1answer
30 views

attributes of God--Why does God have to come down to check out Sodom and Gemorrah?

I've always thought it rather curious that God came down to check out the corruption of the city: כִּי יְדַעְתִּיו, לְמַעַן אֲשֶׁר יְצַוֶּה אֶת-בָּנָיו וְאֶת-בֵּיתוֹ אַחֲרָיו, וְשָׁמְרוּ דֶּרֶךְ ...
0
votes
2answers
88 views

Knowing Hashem how? [duplicate]

It says veyadata es Hashem elokecha And ladas ki Hashem hu Elokim devarim 4:35 What does it mean to know Hashem (God)? How can our finite and limited minds grasp him and understand him? Not Hashem's ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

Why should we use lightning rods? [duplicate]

If God won't kill us, we won't be hit by a lightning. If He wants our death, a lightning rod won't defend us. Same reasoning could work for seat belts. Which is, on my opinion, a false reasoning. ...
1
vote
2answers
97 views

Is it correct to read the pasuk of Deuteronomy 15:11 with the “never” term?

In one of the Torah Readings for the eighth day of Pesach, falling in a week day, there's the following passukim (Deuteronomy 15:10-11) י  נָתוֹן תִּתֵּן לוֹ, וְלֹא-יֵרַע לְבָבְךָ בְּתִתְּךָ לוֹ:  ...
1
vote
2answers
45 views

When the Torah states that the Israelites “saw no form” when they were at Sinai, is this referring to G-d being perceived as formless?

Devarim 4:15 states: Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves—for ye saw no manner of form on the day that the LORD spoke unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire— And also in ...
1
vote
0answers
111 views

Do the Rishonim that hold G-d can have physical form (e.g Rav Moshe Taku, etc.) also hold he can incarnate?

Among the various Rishonim that hold that G-d can take physical form (e.g Rav Moshe Taku, etc.), do they also hold he can "incarnate" into physical form (i.e come down to Earth and be born to a woman ...
18
votes
4answers
1k views

Why isn't the Kabbalistic doctrine of Sefirot considered Shittuf if the Christian Trinity is?

From the answers to this question it seems that most if not all Jewish sources treat Trinitarian Christianity (in particular, their doctrine of the Trinity) as either Shittuf or outright Avoda Zara, ...
5
votes
3answers
331 views

Why does God care about our service?

The Rambam in yesode hatorah says that God has no emotions. He does not change, he does not get angry nor have joy. Everything you see in tanach is just so that we can understand. The commentary ...
1
vote
2answers
83 views

Are there any specific laws and consequences for claiming to be God?

Is there a specific command to not equate yourself to God? For instance, someone says, "I am God." This someone is a believer and a member of the Jewish faith, not an unbeliever. I'm curious if ...
19
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the machlokes between the Gra and Ba'al HaTanya?

What is the famous argument between the Vilna Gaon and the Ba'al HaTanya in understanding the Sod HaTzimtzum? And what are some ma'areh mekomos in their works where this Machlokes is seen?
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2answers
303 views

Why say Hashem wrote the torah? [closed]

Why do people say Hashem wrote the torah, shouldn't it be He created it, made it, edited it, etc?
2
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3answers
86 views

Laws of Belief in G-d

Does anyone know of a sefer or other halachic source that deals with the halachot of what one must believe about G-d? e.g., obviously Jews are required to believe G-d exists, and that He is the only ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

What does “Baruch shem k'vod malchuso l'olam vaed” mean?

A sentence commonly said during prayer is "בָּרוּךְ שֵׁם כְּבוֹד מַלְכוּתוֹ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד". How do we interpret it? What does it mean? It sounds like it means: Blessed is/be the name of the ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

How to understand the texts that litterally speak of other gods and compares to G_d [duplicate]

Psalm 97:9 9 For You, O Lord, are Most High above all the earth; You are very much exalted above all gods. There are many similar indications, that the Jews (at least in the time of the king ...
2
votes
4answers
99 views

Source for Rambam about God's emotions being for the ignorant?

I believe that the Rambam somewhere in Mishneh Torah (although it could possibly be the Guide) states that the Torah only says that God "gets angry" etc. in order so that the masses will be scared to ...
4
votes
1answer
114 views

Is Panentheism considered heretical?

(Closely related to this post, but I think it is still a bit different) Panentheism: A doctrine that the universe subsists within Gcd, but that Gcd nevertheless transcends or has some existence ...
7
votes
6answers
222 views

Books on the Existence of G-d?

I was wondering if anyone would be able to recommend to me books from a Jewish perspective on the existence of G-d. Something along the lines of proving G-d's existence. I would prefer an evidentiary ...
5
votes
2answers
89 views

Was Abraham's religion original?

In what way was Abraham's religion different from Noah's, Shem's or Eber's? Weren't they all monotheists?
4
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2answers
301 views

How can G-d regret anything?

Does G-d regret making or creating something? Of course not! I've always believed this question to be silly and somewhat inappropriate, knowing that G-d is perfect, knows everything, has infinite ...
5
votes
2answers
225 views

When Moshiach comes how will people know about God?

When mosiach comes it says everybody in the whole world will believe in Hashem (Zecharya 8:23): כֹּה אָמַר ה' צְבָאוֹת בַּיָּמִים הָהֵמָּה אֲשֶׁר יַחֲזִיקוּ עֲשָׂרָה אֲנָשִׁים מִכֹּל לְשֹׁנוֹת ...
4
votes
3answers
184 views

Did HaShem “regret” creating someone/something

I heard once that it says somewhere in Chazal that there were certain things or people that HaShem "regretted" (had "charatah") in creating. Although I don't remember which examples were given or if a ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

Bereishit 3 :22 Angels or Hashem

Bereishit 3 22 And the LORD God said: 'Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree Here is a major question I have,...
11
votes
5answers
492 views

What did the 70 elders see?

Parshat Mishpatim says of the 70 elders who went up on Har Sinai with Moshe and Aharon: וַיִּרְאוּ, אֵת אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל; וְתַחַת רַגְלָיו, כְּמַעֲשֵׂה לִבְנַת הַסַּפִּיר, וּכְעֶצֶם הַשָּׁמַיִם, ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

If G-d does not lack anything what is meant when it says that he desires prayers of the righteous? [duplicate]

I believe that rashi says that the reason God made the avos/imos barren is so that they would pray since God desires the prayers of the righteous. There's also the idea in Judaism that God is a ...
3
votes
6answers
144 views

what is good and what does it mean that God is good?

what does the term "tov" (good) mean. I am asking especially in how it relates to God. i.e. what does "tov" mean and what does it mean that God is "tov". an example where God is ascribed "tov" is in ...
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votes
1answer
34 views

Hashem, dwell in their midst

Shemot 25 8 And they shall make Me a sanctuary and I will dwell in their midst Vaikra 15:31 and Bemidbar 19:13. It is being implied there that the body is the temple of Hashem. 31 Thus shall ye ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Does G-d have a sense of humor? [duplicate]

Is there scriptural evidence, from the Tanakh (not Talmud) that humor is an attribute of G-d? If so, can a chapter or verse be cited?
1
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2answers
63 views

The ten commandments ,are the five first and the five last connected:1-6,2-7,3-8 and so on?

The ten commandments ,are the five first and the five last connected? Rabbi Mordechai Kraft teaches that the sages(I have no source)did teach that the first five commandments works together with the ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

Is it a mainstream view that Satan is an angel testing us for Hashem so that He can reward us in Olam Haba?

An American Rabbi claims that Satan is an angel and he is not evil. That Satan is testing us and that is good, so that Hashem can give us a good reward in Olam Haba. Is this a majority view in Judaism?...
38
votes
11answers
3k views

How do we know that God exists?

Simple enough question, and very much related to the topic. According to traditional Jewish sources, on what basis should people believe that there's a God?
6
votes
1answer
360 views

If I knew Him I would be Him

Anyone know the source of the phrase "If I knew Him I would be Him," and its meaning? (heard it a few times though don't recall where. rumors abound that the rambam said this though have never seen a ...
6
votes
5answers
245 views

God's Pair of Teffilin

How when moshe turns his head not to see God's face, he sees He's got on teffilin? I thought God had no physical form.
5
votes
1answer
121 views

How was Moses able to speak to G-d “face to face”?

I'm trying to resolve what seems to be a conflict with two verses: Exodus 33:20: וַיֹּ֕אמֶר לֹ֥א תוּכַ֖ל לִרְאֹ֣ת אֶת־פָּנָ֑י כִּ֛י לֹֽא־יִרְאַ֥נִי הָאָדָ֖ם וָחָֽי׃‏ And He said: ‘You can ...
15
votes
4answers
1k views

How can we be sure that Judaism is true/the truth?

I borrowed (with permission) a question from Ahmed Han, which is: People of every religion claim that they are the ones in the right path. Even the people of sects in these religions think that ...
5
votes
1answer
193 views

Writing HaShem's actual name in English

Is it permissible to write out HaShem's actual name (the "Tetragrammaton") in English (or any other, non-Semitic, language)? Does it make a difference how you spell it, ie., whether you write it in ...
0
votes
1answer
43 views

Rabbi Chanina ben Dosa understood “Ain od mivado” to also exclude the powers of cishuf, what is the source of this?

In Chulin 7b, Rabbi Chanina ben Dosa was not concerned with the threats of a sorcereress due to his understanding that "Ain od Milvado (Devarim 4:35)" included even the powers of sorcery. What was his ...
6
votes
5answers
225 views

Rashi and Corporealsim

Shemos 7:4- וְלֹא-יִשְׁמַע אֲלֵכֶם פַּרְעֹה, וְנָתַתִּי אֶת-יָדִי בְּמִצְרָיִם; וְהוֹצֵאתִי אֶת-צִבְאֹתַי אֶת-עַמִּי בְנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל, מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם, בִּשְׁפָטִים, גְּדֹלִים There, Rashi comments-...
3
votes
1answer
79 views

What is worse: not believing in G-d or believing in many G-ds? [duplicate]

I have been wondering - for no particular reason - what is worse between being an atheist and being an idolater? I thought that a logical place to look for an answer would be the Ten Commandments, ...
14
votes
2answers
7k views

Do religious Jews generally believe the serpent of Garden of Eden was Satan?

Upon reading the recent CNN article, That Actually Isn't In The Bible, one not-really-in-the-Bible misconception they cite is the idea that serpent in the Garden of Eden was the Satan. The article ...