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13

See also this letter by the Lubavitcher Rebbe on this subject, in which he states: It is my firm belief that the sun revolves around the earth, as I have also declared publicly on various occasions and in discussion with professors specializing in this field of science. He also explains why he believed this way based on the Theory of Relativity.


12

The best (English language) source, in my opinion, is Hyam Maccoby's Judaism on Trial: Jewish-Christian Disputations in the Middle Ages (Littman Library of Jewish Civilization; 1982). In it you will find a translation of the Ramban's Vikuach, and of the official church account of that disputation, together with an extensive introduction and commentary. The ...


11

Two explicit verses come to mind: לא איש אל ויכזב -- "God is not a man that he would lie" Numbers 23:19 כי לא אדם הוא להנחם -- "For he is not a man that he would change is mind" 1 Samuel 15:29 (My somewhat loose translations)


10

It's perfectly plausible that God commanded, for instance, to use designs similar to existing idolatrous ones, and instead turn them on their head by modifying them to build the Tabernacle. Similarly, the Torah quotes the curses that were written by professionals before Sichon went to battle against Moab. They were written by someone else, but for whatever ...


9

The straightforward answer to this question is that whereas the Christians are discussing what Hashem is made up of, the Kabbalists are discussing the ways in which He chose to reveal Himself. Just like we can understand that ה' ממית ומחיה is not reminiscent of trinity, since it is simply a reflection of what Hashem will do about different circumstances, ...


8

Bilam juxtaposes God and man in Num 23:19: לֹא אִישׁ אֵל וִיכַזֵּב, וּבֶן-אָדָם וְיִתְנֶחָם; הַהוּא אָמַר וְלֹא יַעֲשֶׂה, וְדִבֶּר וְלֹא יְקִימֶנָּה. God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: when He hath said, will He not do it? or when He hath spoken, will He not make it good? Moses says in Deut 4:12 ...


7

A friend of mine asked R' Tzvi Berkowitz this question. The response was that Hashem can see through your clothes also. The point is to be tzanua from the perspective of Man, in which being covered does make a difference. It is true that you aren't hiding from Hashem. But you are acting tzanua in human terms. Being in the dark or no one being in the ...


7

The Rambam referenced in the question actually deals with the many times in Tanach in which we ascribe emotions to Hashem. In chapter 55 in Moreh Nevuchim, the Rambam discusses Hashem's "emotion" as a literary device used to convey meaning to us an audience. Emotions and moods are transient in nature, and are impossible for the unchanging perfection of ...


6

I'm going to assume that this 'inability to believe in God' comes from a conviction that God doesn't exist. The question is, should a person be faulted for disbelieving, if he thinks that believing in God is philosophically unjustified? First off, I should mention the Rashash to Shabbos 31a, who writes that a person is only considered a heretic after fully ...


6

Rabbi Hirsch says a "proof is in the pudding" type of argument, namely if you keep the mitzvos it will become clear to you through your experiences that you are involved in something higher. It need not be explained - you will feel it, if you are keeping the mitzvos properly. This experience is an experience of G-dliness, and is the best "proof" of His ...


6

Shalom’s answer is pretty clear, but in case anyone needs more evidence, here are two unambiguous passages from common parts of the liturgy that make clear that Hashem is not corporeal and has no body, and that all descriptions of Hashem in those terms are allegorical. From Yigdal, sung at the beginnings and ends of many services (ArtScroll translation): ...


6

No. As WAF pointed out, the word is used synonymously in that verse with the word "אישי," "my husband," so that the word means "my husband" in context. Rashi to that verse explains: בעלי. לשון אדנות ומורא ורבותינו פירשו ככלה בבית חמיה ולא ככלה בבית אביה Baali: An expression of mastership and fear. And our Rabbis (Pesachim 87a, Kethuboth 71b) ...


6

R Yaakov Weinberg explained that an eved, a servant, is someone who is nullified to someone or something else. When you serve Hashem, it should be as a servant, as someone who is doing the will of Hashem and not his own will. If you serve Hashem because you see how beneficial it is, then you are not really serving Hashem, you are actually serving yourself ...


5

Copied (with slight modification) from another answer of mine: Almost all contemporary poskim, most notably the Chazon Ish, have assumed that at least some, if not all, of those halakhos are no longer applicable today to a person who doesn't believe in God, because we'd attribute it to his upbringing or the inability to be properly philosophically convinced ...


5

There is a small group of people who believe that the Lubvatcher Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson zt"l is in fact God. For example, the front page of the website for a synagogue(?) in Mikwaukee reads, in part, "Yechi Elokeinu Moreinu V'Rabbeinu Melech HaMoshiach L'Olam Va'ed!" You can read about this group of elokists on Wikipedia here. Or in this question. ...


5

I once heard the following from Rav Aharon Lopiansky. He basically said that any such suggestion of "If G-d really made the world, it should have been like such and such" is making the assumption that when G-d creates a world, He does it in exactly such a way. Saying "If I created the world, I would make it like such and such" shows nothing, because that ...


5

First off, this is a perfectly valid and very important question, and it deserves a thorough, well thought out answer. While I'm not sure I can provide that, I'll try to give at least a small answer to try to explain this phenomenon. There is a concept in the tradition known as "Shivim Panim Latorah" which loosely translates to 'there are 70 interpretations ...


5

תלמוד בבלי מסכת עירובין דף יג עמוד ב אמר רבי אבא אמר שמואל: שלש שנים נחלקו בית שמאי ובית הלל, הללו אומרים הלכה כמותנו והללו אומרים הלכה כמותנו. יצאה בת קול ואמרה: אלו ואלו דברי אלהים חיים הן, והלכה כבית הלל חידושי הריטב"א מסכת עירובין דף יג עמוד ב אלו ואלו דברי אלהים חיים. שאלו רבני צרפת ז"ל היאך אפשר שיהו שניהם דברי אלהים חיים וזה אוסר וזה מתיר, ותירצו כי ...


5

First, some background information: The passuq in question is Bereshith 28:16 - "Wayyiqass Ya'aqov mishenatho wayomer akhen yesh HaShem ba-maqom ha-zeh wa-anokhi lo yadha`ti" Translation: "And Ya`aqov awoke from his sleep and said, 'Surely HaShem is in this place and I did not know it." However, the Targum Onqelos renders the sense (cf. ...


4

In terms of praying to get out of a certain situation, the Nefesh Hachaim addresses this question in Sha'ar Bet, Perek Yud Aleph (Translation from The Soul of Life) For in truth, we would wonder how it could be appropriate to plead in any way from Him (blessed be His name) to relieve him of his suffering and torments. As with the healing of the body, if ...


4

Rambam in his introduction to Chelek cites the verse (Yeshaya 40:25) ואל מי תדמיוני ואשוה, to whom can you compare Me that I would be equatable? He explains: If Hashem had a body, He would be equatable to other creations that have bodies.


4

here is a quote of the Manoach Halevavos commentary on the Shaar Yichud ch.5 That which a thing cannot make itself applies only to something created but that which is Kadmon (eternal, without beginning) and infinite, behold, in truth, it did not make itself. This is the reason why the question of "how did G-d make Himself?" is not relevant. i.e. ...


4

One early source is Bereishis Rabba 12:15: ה' אלהים . למלך שהיו לו כוסות ריקים, אמר המלך אם אני נותן לתוכן חמין הם מתבקעין, צונן הם מקריסין. ומה עשה המלך? ערב חמין בצונן ונתן בהם ועמדו. כך אמר הקדוש ברוך הוא: אם בורא אני את העולם במדת הרחמים, הוי חטייה סגיאין. במדת הדין היאך העולם יכול לעמוד?! אלא, הרי אני בורא אותו במדת הדין ובמדת הרחמים, והלואי יעמוד: ...


4

Tehillim 94:1 refers to Hashem as being "vengeful" (twice in one verse!): קל נְקָמוֹת ה' קל נְקָמוֹת הוֹפִיַע A word about our descriptions of Hashem - when we attribute descriptions to Hashem, we are not describing His essence, or His nature. We are describing the way in which he interacts with the world. When a person is "loyal," that means that ...


3

The Gemara you quote asks and answers that very question. Miriam B was doing something dangerous and thereby she was at high risk of dying. היכי יכלת לה? הות נקיטא מתארא בידה והות קא שגרא ומחריא תנורא שקלתא ואנחתא אגבה דכרעה קדחא ואיתרע מזלה ואייתיתה Rashi: היכי יכלת לה. מאחר שלא הגיע זמנה: הות נקיטא מתארא בידה. היתה אוחזת בידה האוד של תנור ...


3

The same reason that you have to go and earn a living, even though G-d gives you what you need for food, clothing and shelter. Because G-d wants you to engage in the world and transform it, not live outside it. To quote the Lubavitcher Rebbe: We are commanded in our holy Torah, the Torah [of Life, emanating] from “the Living G‑d,” that concerning our ...


3

The Rambam changes his language in two places where he discusses our awareness of G-d's existence. In the introduction to the 10th chapter of Sanhedrin, where the Rambam lays out his 13 Principles, the Rambam discusses "belief" in Hashem's existence. (Depending which translation you look at, the term "belief" is in the text of the Principle itself, but in ...


3

Rashi to Exodus (2:5): על יד היאור. אצל היאור, כמו ראו חלקת יואב אל ידי (שמואל-ב יד, ל.), והוא לשון יד ממש, שיד האדם סמוכה לו. ורבותינו דרשו, (סוטה יב:) הולכות לשון מיתה, כמו הנה אנכי הולך למות, (בראשית כה, לב.) הולכות למות לפי (צ) שמיחו בה, והכתוב מסייען, כי למה לנו לכתוב ונערותיה הולכות I'm not clear on his exact intent, but it is evident that "yad ...


3

The Chazon Ish (Y.D. 62:20) writes that in all likelihood, Noahides are commanded against heresy, because belief in God is the foundation for all 7 commandments that they are actually commanded in. However, he himself is unsure whether this heresy is defined in the same way as it would be for a Jew, considering that there are some authorities who permit ...



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