Rabbi Dr Zvi Aviner
IDOLATRY-10/Adam Born Into The IDOLATRY Trial
In our quest to study and understand IDOLATRY
We looked at Moses’ Ten Commandments,
Where the top two are lumped together
as The IDOLATRY Commandment.
The First of the Ten obliges us to Know G-d, and worship Him,
Whereas the Second of the Ten, lists the idols to their kinds,
whom we should worship not
Since in the First of the Ten Commandments
G-d presents Himself by His Attributes YHVH and ELHM
we went back to Genesis Chapter One, where
two of the many G-d’ Attributes – YHVH and ELHM
are first presented in full.
Should we leave that knowledge to scholars and theologians? o
The answer is no, since S the Ten Commandments
were given to all people, in particular
the IDOLATRY Commandment.
Hence it behooves every person on Earth to be familiar
with those Names of G-d, since they are the key
to comprehend the Bible. Knowing who is the Speaker,
YHVH or ELHM, is essential.
Thus, in Genesis Chapter One, Moses first presents
an unbelievable, credible history of Earth
that matches our scientific knowledge.
It seems as Moses speaks directly to us!
Then Chapter One presents the Attributes, ELHM and YHVH,
defining their meaning.
Let’s recall that they are ATTRIBUTES of ONE CREATOR,
who has no name and is beyond our conception.
Thinking otherwise is IDOLATRY.
Last class we learned that in order
to be Very Good in ELHM’ eyes
and see the next Day,
Adam would have to abide by ELHM’s Laws,
And accept YHVH and Her ways into his heart.
What are ELHM’s Laws?
Or better asked: What Law of ELHM is paramount?
For that, let’s go to the creation of Adam.
As we remember, before creating Adam, ELHM
stepped down from His High Pedestal of ‘Dictatorship’
and spoke in plural for the first time, saying
“Let Us Make Adam in Our Form and Our Image.”
The verse does not say to whom was He speaking.
The rabbis said: He spoke to whoever was listening,
Or better: to whoever is mentioned in the Chapter.
We’ve already identified the first, most important
consultation of ELHM with YHVH, to make Adam together.
Another important consultation, Rashi says,
Took place between ELHM and the Angels,
Who are said to be created on Day Two.
ELHM, as a KING Who Consult,
turned to the Angels and said:
Let Us make Adam in our Form and Our Image.”
Surprised, the Angels responded:
Our KING, why consulting us at all?
Aren’t we your faithful messengers,
who fulfill your wish with no discretion?o
ELHM said: “I consult you, my Angels,
For I wish to show Adam modesty,
That the Superior should consult the Inferior
Before making a decision”. o
The Angels then asked:
“Our KING, aren’t you afraid that by speaking in plural
You’ve opened the door for IDOLATERS
To think that there are more than One CREATOR, You?”
ELHM said: “I take the risk of IDOLATRY,
For teaching Adam modesty is paramount!”
Hence, the option of IDOLATRY came to the world
Together with Adam birth.
It is the first sin that Adam could commit,
And it became possible as the result of
G-d relaxing His Authority, as he stepped down
and became a King Who Consults,
A Democratic King.
Thus, by speaking in plural, by listening to the opinions of others,
G-d opened the door for Adam to worship “other gods.”
We have now a rule of thumb-
Any entity that ELHM consulted with at Adam creation,
Might become an idol in Man’s eyes.
It is as if the very consultation, has rendered those entities
a magic charm in Adam’s mind.
We wouldn’t ask why ELHM agreed to take that risk,
For ELHM always creates things to withstand Judgment.
From that ancient story, we may derive that
of all Adam’s fault, ELHM picket up arrogance.
For the first thing that Adam is taught is MODESTY.
And from all the Commandments in the world,
IDOLATRY comes first. For according to Moses,
The Option of IDOLATRY is intertwined with
As we’ll see, IDOLATRY is not just a foolish error.
IDOLATRY encompasses all aspects of our lives
Since G-d made us – along with the
option of IDOLATRY
So, from all types of IDOLATRY,
Which one comes first?
On that we’ll learn next class