Monday, December 28, 2009
Religious Coercion In The Land of Israel
Should Jews implement religious rules as law in the land of Israel ? Shouldn't Religion and Politics be separate ? Wouldn't it be harmful to force religion thus causing it's repulsion ?
At the surface the arguments above sound reasonable. Yet Judaism is different - always was. We are not just a religion but a people with a creed from God to guide personal and national life. Since we have been in exile for so many centuries Judaism has been limping on one foot. It has been turned into a personal guide and it's national guide has been lost. But all is not lost. It is for that reason that the state of Israel is a process to re intimate our People, Land and Religion.
The breastplate was the conduit of communication for the nation to go out to war or any other national question. Kings ruled by the Torah the nation and has special commandments to carry a Sefer Torah with him at all times. Rules by the Torah governed the King's abilities to limit wives & horses. The shmita & Yovel governed the land and it's use nationally. It all goes without say, that the Sabbath, Holidays and personal Jewish laws were experienced on the streets of Israel nationwide.
So today when the question of Judaism to be imposed statewide arises. The answer is clearly yes. True coercion is generally not helpful. Yet on a national level Jewish law ensures and helps create the framework of which Jews live in.
It happened in Yehizkia’s time, where he deliberately ruled to abolish idol worship. It happened in Shaul’s time when he outlawed witchcraft and sorcery. The Sefer Hachinuch implicitly writes “Mah shelo Lishma Ba Lishma” – Correct action leads to proper intention thereafter.
It happens today on Yom Kippur where no driving is a law and now the secular Jews appreciate it. Swine and Pigs are outlawed to be raised on the holy land of Israel and favors little opposition for it's inherit feel of a Jewish state. In fact, there is nothing more important than the requirement of Jewish law without choice as is commanded to every Jew to be instituted nationally so that more and more our country is in line with Halacha as just a way of life.
Have you ever been to Tel Aviv on Pesah. It’s horrifying to see restaurants serving thousands of Jews Unleavened bread - the punishment of which is "karet" spiritual removal from the Jewish nation ! We are saving souls from "Karet" by implementing a law to disallow it. It is so hard to keep ? Not eating Bread for 8 days whether your forced not to, will eventually be recognized and appreciated by all and unifying our people and country for the future to come.
The Times of Israel
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