[b-hebrew] I think this is what Kirk asked for
rosewalk at concentric.net
Sat Jun 24 23:21:01 EDT 2006
"Levicus 23, the Bible speaks about Atonement, Yom Kippur, and the
Bible says on this day we have to afflict our souls. How do you
afflict your souls? This is a commandment of 'God.' It is not clear
how you would fulfill this law, and 'God' is giving this as a very
When it says [Exodus 12:2] "This month shall mark for you the
beginning of the months"? To which months is this referring? Is it
referring to Egyptian months (where the Jews were living at the time)
or Chaldean months (from where their patriarch Abraham originated)?
Solar months or lunar months? Without an oral tradition, there is no
way to know to what this verse is referring
When the Torah forbids certain birds [Lev. 11:13-19], does that mean
that all other birds are permitted? Or are there sign for birds like
there are for animals [Lev. 11:2-8]? How can anyone know whether
biblical law permits or forbids eating ducks, geese, and turkeys?
When the Torah [Ex. 16:29] says "Let no man leave his place on the
seventh day" to what place is this referring? Does it mean his home,
his property if he has more than one home, his neighborhood, his
city, or something else ? In fact, Isaiah [66:23] says "It shall be
that at every New Moon and on every sabbath all mankind will come to
bow down before Me - said the L-rd" which implies that people will
leave their homes on the sabbath and go to worship the L-rd .
Evidently, Isaiah did not understand this verse in Exodus as the
simple reading would have it.
What does the Torah mean when it [Ex. 20:10] forbids "work" on the
sabbath? What work is forbidden and what is not?
Without an oral explanation of the details of this forbidden work, it
is impossible to know what the Torah means. How did G-d command our
fathers to keep Shabbat? "You shall keep Shabbat holy, as I have
commanded your fathers" (Jeremiah 17:22).
The sections of Exodus [ch. 21] and Deuteronomy [ch. 21-25] that deal
with monetary and physical crimes do not seem to contain enough
information to formulate a working legal system. How can a court
legislate with so few guidelines? Certainly, for courts to function
based on biblical law there must have been more information given in
the form of an oral law
The laws of inheritance as stated in Numbers [27:8-11] cannot begin
to address all of the many complicated situations that can and have
arisen throughout the generations. Without an oral law, how does a
society apply the biblical inheritance laws?
How does one fulfill the biblical commandments of circumcision [Gen.
17:10-14], fringes [Num. 15:38-39], and booths [Lev. 23:42]? There
is not enough detail in the biblical directive to know how to fulfill
these commandments properly. What are fringes? What is a booth?
How much and where must be cut off in circumcision? The biblical
text is too silent to enable following these commandments unless
there was an oral explanation
A baby must be circumcised on the eighth day [Gen. 17:12]. What if
the eighth day falls out on the sabbath? Can a circumcision take
place on a sabbath or is that considered work? What if the baby is
sick? For what conditions would it be permitted to delay the
The Passover sacrifice must be brought by every Jew [Ex. 12:47] on
the day before Passover [Num. 9:5]. What happens if that day falls
out on the sabbath? Surely, slaughtering and offering a sacrifice is
work. Which takes precedence -- the sabbath or the paschal
sacrifice? There must be an oral law to explain this if these laws
were intended to be put into practice
Numbers 8 describes the building of the menorah in the temple. This
work of the candlestick, which was a beaten gold unto the shaft
thereof, unto the flowers thereof with beaten work according to the
pattern which the Lord had showed Moses. Where is the picture of the
There is a reliance on sages for interpreting the law in Exod 18:36
and in Deut 17:8-11. In Deut. 17:8-11 What possible knowledge is
there that can be hidden? If there is no oral law, then the only
basis for judgement is in the Torah which is open for anyone to
study. Clearly, the entire need for the above process of going to
the central court and following their ruling implies that there is an
oral tradition which also serves as the basis for judgement.
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