This question asks who b'nei Noach turn to for psak. The answer to that question was that there are a few rabbis who are involved in the b'nei Noach movement who rule on the law for non-Jews.

Now I am asking whether it would be considered permissible for a non-Jew to rule on the halacha according to the sheva mitzvot b'nei Noach for non-Jews. My inclination tells me that it would be permissible (since one of the 7 mitzvot is to set up a system of courts), but I am not sure.

  • 3
    Can a non Jew paskin while drunk?
    – Double AA
    Commented Aug 29, 2013 at 7:53

2 Answers 2


According to R. Yitzchak Ze'ev Soloveitchik, only a Jewish court can rule on doubts in Noahide law. However, he seems to be referring to determining as yet unestablished areas of Noahide law (i.e., new questions that weren't previously ruled on), but he might not apply this to ruling on existing areas of Noahide law. Likewise, he appears to be talking about a ruling of a legitimate Jewish court (i.e., beis din ha-gadol) which has authority to determine the law, not a local orthodox rabbi.

See חידושי מרן רי"ז הלוי עה"ת, פ' ואתחנן:

אם יש ספק בדין מן הדינים של מצות ב"נ הרי הם צריכין לבוא לפני ב"ד של ישראל לדרוש ולדון במדות שהתורה נדרשת בהן, אבל לא להם לדרוש ולדון ולהוציא דבר מתוך דבר... דגם בשבע מצות שלהן בין הקבלה ובין הדיון במדות שהתורה נדרשת בהן להבין דבר מתוך דבר, הכל נמסר רק לישראל לבד ולא להם

(See also: R. Naftali Tzvi Yehuda Bar-Ilan, Mishtar u-Medinah be-Yisrael al pi ha-Torah, vol. 4, p. 1574. A similar issue is whether non-Jewish civil law is supposed to follow the rules of Jewish civil law; the Rema maintains that this is subject to a debate in the Talmud, while others, including Netziv, state that non-Jewish civil law is entirely independent.)


They'd need to get their answer from people who are learned in Jewish law, not from people who aren't. So it would be better to ask a rabbi than a Noachide leader, unless there comes a time when (perhaps??... I don't have sources that it could happen) the Jewish community supports and teaches Gentile leaders to answer halachic questions of that nature. This would always be under Jewish authority, though; it's not a totally separate movement from the faith system carried by the Jewish nation.

There are also halachic concerns specifically related to the time a non-Jew spends with the Jewish community, in which case the community itself would need to decide how a Gentile can can best respect the things that they are guarding before God while with them. Some things will differ from place to place.

Anyway, how should Gentiles choose rabbis to learn from and follow? They can find people who are generally respected by the observant Jewish community as a whole and whom they personally respect as loving God, holding close both to the spirit and letter of Torah, and learning it so they can live it themselves in love for Him and both kindness and justice towards others.

  • I don't understand why you keep deleting your answer and reposting the same thing?
    – Daniel
    Commented Aug 29, 2013 at 13:08
  • I decided to take out even more irrelevant things, but then realised that it would make all the following comments look nonsensical so I just posted it anew. Sorry if it was a bother.
    – Annelise
    Commented Aug 29, 2013 at 13:09
  • Better just to edit the question. The comments can be deleted if necessary. I still don't think this answers the question, though, btw.
    – Daniel
    Commented Aug 29, 2013 at 13:10
  • Thanks. And I know it doesn't, it's just slightly less convoluted. Sorry... I think it just gives a few points to consider though, for someone who can find more sources and discussions than I know how to.
    – Annelise
    Commented Aug 29, 2013 at 13:14

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