Keeping the Torah

In Proverbs 28:4 the scripture states

“They that forsake the Torah

praise the wicked;

But such as keep the Torah

contend with them.”

עזבי תורה

יהללו רשע

ושמרי תורה

יתגרו בם:

From this word it is evident

that if you praise the wicked

and do not rebuke them,

then you do not keep the Torah

and you have forsaken it.

It does not matter if you observe

Shabbat, keep kosher,

wear tsitsis, put on tefillin,

pray the Shacharit, the Minchah,

and the Maariv every day,

you have forsaken the Torah.

The scripture says in addition

in Proverbs 24:24

“He that says to the wicked,

‘You are righteous’;

him shall the people curse,

nations shall abhor him.”

אומר לרשע

צדיק אתה

יקבהו עמים

יזעמוהו לאמים:

This is a great underlying cause

of anti-Semitism among

nations and peoples.

If we, being Jews, have the Torah,

and are entrusted with it,

do not rebuke the wicked,

or say to him “you are righteous”,

it brings against us the

curse of the people and

the abhorrence of the nations.

There are many grievous sins

that are condoned by the nations,

and they even praise them.

Among these is abortion,

which is the sacrifice of children

to Molech, the god of lust;

Leviticus 20:1-5

‘Gives any of his seed to Molech’

כי מזרעו נתן למולך

homosexuality and lesbianism;

Leviticus 20:13

‘If a man also lie with mankind,

as he lies with a woman,

both of them have committed abomination.’

איש אשר ישכב

את זכר משכבי אשה

תועבה עשו

sorcery and witchcraft;

Leviticus 20:6

‘And the soul that turns after such

as have familiar spirits, and wizards,

to go a whoring after them,

I will set my face against that soul,

and will cut him off from among his people.’

והנפש אשר תפנה

אל האבת ואל הידענים

לזנות אחריהם

ונתתי את פני בנפש ההוא

והכרתי אתו מקרב עמו:

evidenced by the recent upsurge

in popularity of the ‘Harry Potter’

deception; all these things are

declared by HASHEM in the Torah

to be an Abomination to Him,

תועבת יהוה אלהיך

and we should rise up and

openly condemn such things.

If we do not, we have forsaken the Torah.

If we say ‘Peace’ to the wicked

when he or she is practicing evil,

we cast a snare at his or her feet,

because unless that person utterly forsakes

and repents of that sin,

the wrath of G-d will be upon that person eternally.

The Torah also commands us

in Leviticus 19:17-18.

“You shall not hate

your brother in your heart:

you shall in any wise

rebuke your neighbor,

and not suffer sin upon him.

You shall not avenge,

nor bear any grudge

against the children of your people;

but you shall love your neighbor

as yourself.

I am the LORD.”

לא תשנא

את אחיך בּלבבך

הוכח תוכיח את עמיתך

ולא תשא עליו חטא:

לא תקם ולא תטר

את בני עמך

ואהבת לרעך כמוך

אני יהוה:

The Torah here states emphatically

that if we do not rebuke our brother

when we see him sinning, then we

hate him in our hearts.

Our brother here is all people,

but especially this applies to

the children of our own people Israel.

We cannot forbear to rebuke him,

and keep the mitzvah מצוה to love

our neighbor as yourself.

If we don’t rebuke, him we hate him.

If we rebuke him, we love him.

It’s just that simple.

So if we are intent upon

pleasing HASHEM,

we had better do it,

because He concludes this

by saying “I am the LORD” אני יהוה !