IIRC, the passing of the Tora/wisdom/divine knowledge in our tradition didn't start with Moses or even Abraham. Allegedly, the 19 generations of Tzadikim from Adam to Abraham studied/dealt with it passing the tradition over.

It appears, according to Judaism, that studying the Torah (whatever it is) and keeping the laws is the goal of the whole creation, and I'd expect the main sourcebook to focus on the existence and cultivation of that knowledge.

However, what we see in the plain text is that the only piece of the divine knowledge/Torah in the form of a Mitzvah/blessing explicitly passed on Adam is "be fruitful and multiply". (*I'm aware that the Gemmorah tries to find hints on Adam receiving the 7 Laws but the associations are very distant.*)

But instead, all G-d's interactions with Adam that are mentioned are very "Earthy" - "rule the animal kingdom", "take care of the garden", "multiply and don't eat fruits", "who told you you're naked", etc. Even when he's expelled G-d outlines his future physical suffering but no mentioning of studying, knowing or the like.

While I don't refute the existence of the Oral tradition, I see a need to justify the fact of omitting such important detail from the story.

So, assuming that studying Torah by men is the goal of the Creation, why the Torah does not mention any wisdom passed to Adam from Heaven?

  • 1
    He was the pinnacle of creation and creation was 'fresh'. I imagine Adam in his prime days (before the forbidden fruit incident) to be literally 'walking with the divine spirit' as it is written in the very first portion. I don't think that an entity (I've heard that some poskim ruled that prior to the forbidden fruit Adam was a spiritual being with something much less than our todays physical bodies) that is so close to haShem needs wisdom in the form that got passed around after such a long time and yeridat ha dorot of the genereations.
    – Ilja
    Oct 26, 2019 at 21:59
  • @Ilja Sorry I don't understand what you're saying.
    – Al Berko
    Oct 26, 2019 at 22:04
  • 2
    Assuming you concede to the truth of the Oral Torah, seems like this is a duplicate of judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/94873/…. For some reason, the Torah recorded some things and left other things Oral. I trust the Torah's judgement as to why it left it how it did. Oct 27, 2019 at 1:13
  • Allegedly, the 19 generations of Tzadikim from Adam to Abraham studied/dealt with it passing the tradition over. - From Adam? Don't recall learning that. Source? Oct 27, 2019 at 10:42
  • 1
    Why the downvote? Dec 1, 2019 at 21:04

1 Answer 1


Genesis 26:5 states that G-d said that Abraham "listened to my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws", the Talmud and Midrash Genesis Rabba says that Abraham observed all the biblical and rabbinical commands. The rabbis here are emphasizing not only the importance of the Oral Torah (or, Oral Law), but that the Torah and rabbinic laws are part of nature, natural laws, something an intelligent man such as Abraham could deduce from nature. Indeed the Rambam quotes a midrash which says that Abraham discovered G-d by studying the heavens, natural law.

Accordingly, G-d revealed to Abraham and gave the option of observing the mitzvot and all the laws of Judaism to the patriarchs who could choose to observe them fully, partially, or none at all; it was optional. They did it to show love of G-d. Additionally, mystics claim that Adam observed the Torah and the wisdom of the Kabbalah. But if this were so, why did Cain kill Abel and Eve eat the fruit? Perhaps Adam was away or that the 7 laws of Noah did not exist yet. Could this be the reason why the Torah is silent on the matter?

  • I forgot to mention here that the Rambam also says that since Abraham only focused on the philosophical aspects of Judaism he did not focus on the commandments and this resulted in the people forgetting about G-d while slaves in Egypt. The remedy was Moses who added both philosophy and law.
    – Jonathan
    Nov 1, 2019 at 2:28
  • 1
    This does not really answer the question. If you have a different question, you can ask it by clicking Ask Question. You can also add a bounty to draw more attention to this question. - From Review Dec 1, 2019 at 12:16
  • Thank you @DannySchoemann for your comment. Could you elaborate on why it fails to answer the question. Thank you.
    – Jonathan
    Dec 2, 2019 at 5:21
  • The question is why the Torah does not mention any wisdom passed to Adam from Heaven? - how did you answer that? (BTW: the comment is a "canned" one that the system injects when we flag as "does not answer the OP".) Dec 2, 2019 at 9:01
  • The best answer I could give is twofold: either the Torah didn't mention it because it did not exist or the Torah was silent because it chose to be.
    – Jonathan
    Dec 3, 2019 at 1:26

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .