Thursday, August 16, 2012

Jewish Principle # 11: God is just

The eleventh principle asserts our belief that God is just. He rewards those who keep His commandments and he punishes those who transgress them.

The following lines are a direct quote from the extraordinary book of Rabbi Hayim Pereira Mendes published in 1905 (see the book here). 

1. Virtue brings its own reward. Sin brings its own punishment.

2. God does not punish in the sense of vengeance but only for correction, in order that we shall forsake our sins and lead better lives.

3. God rewards and corrects sometimes in this life and sometimes in future life.

4. God sends the reward or penalty when He thinks best.

5. Therefore we must not wonder if a righteous man remains long unrewarded or if a wicked man remains long uncorrected.

6. Suffering is not sent to us only for punishment of sin. It is often sent to arouse us to better and nobler lives, to educate us to higher ideals, to lead us nearer to God.

8. God has given us Free-will, to choose between good and evil, or right and wrong.

9. If we were destined to do right or wrong and did not have the power to choose, there would be no merit in doing the right, and we could not be justly punished for doing the wrong.

10. We Hebrews therefore do not believe in Predestination.

11. Nor do we believe in anyone suffering in order that other sinner may be saved from the results of his own sin. 

12. We Hebrews do not believe in vicarious atonement. (i.e., God punishing Mr. A to atone for the sins of Mr. B. Vicarious atonement is the Christian doctrine that says that Jesus' death was the atonement for all humanity. From a Jewish--and Biblical--point of view every individual must repent from his or her ownsins. Y.B.).

The debate over the DEATH PANELS in a new American Health care system

√ Read the statement  given by the American Association of Neuroligical Surgeons.