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Behar-Bechukotai “There is no other than He”

The prohibition of idolatry is the first Noahide commandment and it appears in the Bahar Torah portion. G-d instructs us to refrain from worshiping idols and to destroy any idols or places of idle worship. The Torah tells us that anyone is called to worship G-d alone.

Abraham challenged the idol worshipers in his generation. He taught each person to call upon the name of the One G-d of the heavens and the earth. Abraham smashed his father's idols. Once there is only one G d, who supervises all things, we all should serve only Him. Every adult and child must know there is a single Creator of all things, who cares about what you are doing in His world. Only when the building blocks of society stand upon the principle of the One Who Created Everything, can a sustainable just society develop.

The prohibition of idolatry is not just about the physical act of bowing down to an idol, but also about the attitudes and beliefs that underlie idol worship. Torah warns us to remain faithful to G-d and to His commandments. Idolatry can manifest itself in many different ways, some of which do not necessarily resemble the traditional image of an idol. As the Rambam writes, all the nations were commanded at Mount Sinai — to keep the seven mitzvahs of Adam and Noah, which include the prohibition against idol worship. This includes also faith in One G-d.

Not only one should avoid idol worship, rather, it is a continuous obligation for every person to think about and contemplate the existence of the Master of the universe and His greatness, in order to set the knowledge of G-d strongly in his heart and mind. This command of knowing and recognizing the existence of God includes accepting the yoke of Heaven.

One of the ways that repentance can be demonstrated is by eliminating idol worship. When people turn away from false gods and instead focus on worshiping only one true G-d, they are showing that they are committed to following God's 7 laws of Noah and living in accordance with His will. Eliminating idol worship can hasten the arrival of true redemption. This is due to the Torah view that idolatry is an essential obstacle to revealing G-d's presence. In the Messianic Era, it will be revealed that "there is nothing besides Him".


Rabbi Moshe Bernstein is a writer and a Community Rabbi in Netanya, Israel. He believes in making connections between the Jewish People and the Noahides worldwide in order to share and enhance the knowledge of the Torah's Universal Code for Humanity and fulfill Isaiah's Prophecy 11:9 " And the world will be filled with the knowledge of G-d as the waters cover the oceans".


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