Gentile Equality
Moshe Ben-Chaim
Reader: Yesterday I was learning a midrash Tanchumah from Parshas Vayeishev and it was titled "V'Yosef hurad mitzruyma". It asks if one is allowed to make havdalah with a candle from a goy. It answers that one is not allowed to because it did not rest from work. It continues on and says, if one uses it its as if one is making the goy important and the pasuk says, "Kol hagoyim keayim negdo" (which is part of a posuk in yeshaya chapter 40 posuk 17). My question is, is this midrash taken literally? Im trying to understand what the posuk means but I can't understand how goyim are like nothing to God. Please look up the midrash and look at the story it brings down after the posuk.
Mesora: When a person is worthless before God, it is only if they severely violate the Torah's 7 Noachide or 613 Jewish commands. Torah violation in general does not make one worthless before God, as God knows that man sins. The very institution of teshuvah - repentance - teaches that God prefers the repentance of the wicked and not his death. This is a paraphrase of the actual statement in Isaiah 18:23, "Do I indeed desire the death of the wicked? So says God. Is it not in his return from his path that he may live?" God desires all mankind exist, and that they live according to Torah principles. A gentile who follows God is priceless. The Talmud in Sanhedrin 59a says that a gentile who studies Torah is as a Kohane Gadol - a high priest. Me must say that the Tanchumah quoted refers only to one who does not follow God's Torah.



Philosophy | Tnach | New Postings | JewishTimes | Audio Archives | Suggested Reading | Live Classes | Search | Letters | Q&A's | Community Action | Volunteer | Links | Education | Chat | Banners | Classifieds | Advertise | Donate | Donors | About Us | Press | Contacts | Home


Mesora website designed by
© 2003 Mesora of New York, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Articles may be reprinted without permission.