The world is divided into two parts: those who belong to God and those who do not. The final decision to follow Him is up to us. He extends His Hand to us but He won’t force us.  The Creator formed the people of Israel and allowed them to go through many trials before they stood before Him at Mount Sinai where they received the Ten Commandments and ultimately the Torah. In my mind, the basic standard of biblical revelation is the Torah, from Genesis to Deuteronomy and ANY later writings need to be viewed in light of this, including any of the later writings in the Tanach. The principles of Torah alone stand the test of time.  In Matthew 5:17-20 our Messiah Yeshua was speaking as a rabbi and a prophet clearly trying to get our people to return to the Torah.

I say with kindness that Yeshua was not speaking to the Gentiles but was dealing specifically with Israel because our Creator gave the sacred calling to them of bringing the commandments, the Torah to the rest of the nations.  What had Israel been doing? The religious faction had been holding the Torah for themselves; they had changed it and replaced it with the Talmud. This was a problem of authority passing God’s authority to man. Yeshua called the scribes and Pharisees hypocrites who honor God with their lips but their hearts are far from Him and in vain they worship Him teaching doctrines and commandments of men.

What does it mean to be obedient to God? Many people think that it is by following a religion but here we see it is the intention of our hearts, our willingness to do what is right.  The Torah teaches us that there is no difference between the native of the land and the foreigner among us.

Both Rabbinic Judaism and Christianity agree that the Torah is not for the Gentiles.  Each religion accuses the others of being better than the other.  The Creator doesn’t care about how dedicated we are to following the letter of the “law”; He is interested in our hearts and our daily walk with Him and how we treat the rest of the community every day of our lives. He is always present in our lives. That is what our Messiah Yeshua was teaching us when he told us how to pray…”Our Father in Heaven” points to God who is above all.  We are to thank Him for everything that He has provided for us. We are to recognize that we are sinners and need to forgive others as He forgives us.  We end by giving Him all the honor and the glory.  Yeshua said that the Torah is summed up with “love God with all your heart, soul and might and love your neighbor as you love yourself”.    It is so exciting to know that at this time in history we do not need to be attached to human doctrines but to simply have a relationship with God by doing good for the poor, the widow, the orphan and the community in which we live. Will we continue to follow man or God – religious instructions or the Torah?