Suppose we eliminate all
spaces in the Torah, and consider the text as one long sequence of 304,805
letters. A computer is then instructed to look for hidden words, encoded
at equal skips of letters. For example, the distance
between the letters comprising the word “HaShoa” (Holocaust) is 49. Statisticians call this phenomenon and ELS short for “equidistant letter sequence.”
Once the computer has
revealed an encoded word, we then format the long list of the Torah’s letters
into an line-length that best graphically depicts the encoded word.
For example, if a code was found at a skip sequence of every 49 letters,
we would format the Torah into lines of 50 letters each Not a single
letter is added, deleted or changed; the new
line-length simply enables us to view the encoded word more easily.
THE RAMBAM CODE
Maimonides is recognized
in the four corners of the globe as one of the most famous of all Jewish
commentators. Acclaimed author, esteemed philosopher, renowned physician,
and master Talmudist this is his legacy. Maimonides is known
more popularly as the “Rambam,” an acronym for his Hebrew name, Rabbi Moses
ben Maimon. The Rambam, who lived in Egypt, was a much sought-after medical
expert, and he served as the personal physician for the royal Egyptian
court. But most of all, the Rambam was a prolific writer on the most important
topics of Judaism. His magnum opus, Mishne Torah, (“Review of the Torah”)
on the subject of the 613 mitzvahs, is revered until this day as the most
authoritative, comprehensive codification of Jewish law. It is a marvel of Jewish scholarship, and was composed in Egypt. In fact, so revered is Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, that he is popularly mentioned in the same breath with the Moses who led the Jews out of Egypt and brought them to Mt. Sinai. As the ancient Jewish maxim goes:
“From Moses until Moses there was none as great as Moses.” It was stated by the Vilna Gaon, every person is alluded to in the Torah. When the Vilna Gaon was challenged to locate the Torah’s reference to the Rambam, he pointed to this verse. ‘G-d said to Moses, “Pharoah will not heed you, so that My marvels may be multiplied in the land of Egypt.”’
Exodus 11/9. Here, the acrostic RaMBaM is formed by the first letters of each word in the phrase “My marvels may be multiplied in the land of Egypt” (Ribot Moftai B’eretz Mitzraim). Mishne Torah, his marvel of Jewish scholarship, was composed in Egypt. When the computer searched the entire Torah to find any other appearance of four consecutive words which form the acrostic RaMBaM, it was discovered that this was the only occurrence. Out of approximately 80,000 words, this is the only place in the entire Torah where we find the acrostic “RaMBaM.”
“GREAT RABBIS” EXPERIMENT
For this experiment, great rabbis’ names were taken from the Encyclopedia of Great Men in Israel, edited by Professor M. Marglioth in 1961. The criteria for selection was that an entry contain at least three columns of text, and that the date of death (“yahrtzeit”) be specified. Thirty-four rabbis qualified for the test.
In the second experiment,
we employed exactly the same methodology as the first. This time
we were asked to select entries from the Encyclopedia of Great Men in Israel
containing 1.5-3 columns of text. In addition, a control experiment was
conducted using a cycling shift of data. That is, we used [name of
ith person, date of i+1st person] as the set of word pairs. The results
of these experiments have been rigorously tested, verified and validated
by leading statisticians worldwide. In August 1994, the “Great Rabbis
Experiment” was published in its entirety in the prestigious
scientific journal, Statistical Science.
A review journal of the institute of mathematical statistics
STATISTICAL SCIENCE (ISSN
Volume 9, Number 3, August 1994
Published quarterly by the Institute of Mathematical Statistics
3401 Investment Blvd. #7
Hayward, California 34545
Printed in the United States of America
Institute of Mathematical Statistics
Organized September 12, 1935
The purpose of the Institute is to foster the development and dissemination of the theory and applications of statistics and probability. The scientific journals of the Institute are The Annals of Applied Probability, The Annals of Probability, The Annals of Statistics, and Statistical Science.
JOURNAL EDITOR’S COMMENTS
Equidistant Letter Sequences in the Book of Genesis
Doron Witzum, Eliyahu
Rips, and Yoav Rosenberg searched the Book of Genesis looking for pairs
of words spelled by picking every dth letter, where d is some integer.
The pairs of words were names of personalities and dates of
their birth or death taken from the Encyclopedia of Great Men in Israel. When the authors used a randomization test to see how rarely the patterns they found might arise by chance alone, they obtained a very highly significant result, with p=0.000016. Our referees were baffled: Their prior beliefs made them think the Book of Genesis could not possibly contain meaningful references to modern-day individuals, yet when the authors carried out additional analyses and
checks, the effect persisted. The paper is thus offered to Statistical Science readers as a challenging puzzle.
EQUIDISTANT LETTER SEQUENCES
IN THE BOOK OF GENESIS
Doron Witztum, Eliyahu Rips, and Yoav Rosenberg Abstract. It has been noted that when the Book of Genesis is written as two-dimensional arrays, equidistant letter sequences spelling words with related meanings often appear in close proximity. Quantitative tools for measuring this phenomenon are developed. Randomization analysis shows that
the effect is significant at the level of 0.00002.
Key words and phrases:
Genesis, equidistant letter sequences, cylindrical
representations, statistical analysis.
The phenomenon discussed
in this paper was first discovered several decades ago by Rabbi Weissmandel.
He found some interesting patterns in the Hebrew Pentateuch (the Five Books
of Moses), consisting of words or phrases
expressed in the form of equidistant letter sequences (ELS’s) that is, by selecting sequences of equally spaced letters in the text. As impressive as these seemed, there was no rigorous way of determining if these occurrences were not merely due to the enormous quantity of combinations of words and expressions that can be constructed by searching
out arithmetic progressions in the text. The purpose of the research reported here is to study the phenomenon systematically. The goal is to clarify whether the phenomenon in question is a real one, that is, whether it can or cannot be explained purely on the basis of fortuitous combinations. The approach we have taken in this research can be illustrated by the following example. Suppose we have a text written in a foreign language that we do not understand. We are asked whether the text is meaningful (in that foreign language) or meaningless. Of course, it is very difficult to
decide between these possibilities, since we do not understand the language. Suppose now that we are equipped with a very partial dictionary, which enable us to recognize a small portion of the words in the text: “hammer” here and “chair” there, and maybe even “umbrella” elsewhere. Can we now decide between the two possibilities? Not yet. But suppose now that, aided with the partial dictionary, we can recognize in the text a pair of conceptually related words, like “hammer” and “anvil.” We check if there is a tendency of their appearances in the text to be in “close proximity.” If the text is meaningless, we do not expect to see such s tendency, since there is no reason for it to occur. Next, we widen our check; we may identify some other pairs of conceptually related words like “chair” and “table,” or “rain” and
“umbrella.” Thus we have a sample of such pairs, and we check the tendency of each pair to appear in close proximity to the next. If the text is meaningless, there is no reason to expect such a tendency. However, a strong tendency of such pairs to appear in close proximity indicates that the text might be meaningful. Note that even in an absolutely meaningful text we do not expect that, deterministically every such pair will show such tendency. Note also, that
we did not decode the foreign language of the text yet: we do not recognize its syntax and we cannot read the text.
This is our approach in the research described in the paper. To test whether the ELS’s in a given text may contain “hidden information,” we write the text in the form of two-dimensional arrays, and define the distance between the ELS’s according to the ordinary two-dimensional Euclidean metric. Then we check whether ELS’s representing conceptually related words tend to appear in “close proximity.” Suppose we are given a text, such as Genesis. Define an equidistant letter sequence (ELS) as a sequence of letters in the text whose positions, not counting spaces, form an arithmetic progression; that is, the letters are found at the positions n, n + d, n + 2d,…….n + (k 1)d.
[The tests showed the names of great Rabbis plus their birth dates and other information encoded in the Book of Genesis].
PROMISES OF ETERNAL ISRAEL FALL ON THE KEEPERS OF THE ORAL LAW
Finally, Israel is described
as the eternal nation. [GENESIS 17:7, LEVITICUS
26:44-45] speaks of ‘ETERNAL BONDS OF DESCENDANTS AFTER YOU.’ [ISAIAH 54:10,
54:17] ‘MY LOVE FOR YOU SHALL NEVER MOVE.’
[JEREMIAH 31:34-35, 46:27-28] ‘I WILL CORRECT YOU IN JUST MEASURE, BUT I WILL NOT UTTERLY DESTROY YOU.’ [MALACH 3:6] ‘FOR I AM G-D, I DO NOT CHANGE. YOU ARE THE CHILDREN OF JACOB, YOU WILL NOT CEASE TO BE.’ [DEUTERONOMY 7:6-9, 12] ‘HE IS G-D, THE FAITHFUL G-D WHICH KEEPS HIS COVENANT AND MERCY WITH THEM THAT LOVE HIM AND KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS.... IF YOU HEARKEN (the oral listening, ongoing teaching ingredient) TO THESE JUDGMENTS AND KEEP THEM AND DO THEM, THAT THE L-RD YOUR G-D SHALL KEEP UNTO YOU THE COVENANT AND THE MERCY HE SWORE TO YOUR FATHER.’
[ISAIAH 59:21] ‘AS FOR ME, THIS IS MY COVENANT …MY WORDS WHICH I HAVE PUT IN YOUR MOUTH, (ORAL TRANSMISSION) SHALL NOT DEPART FROM YOUR MOUTH NOR FROM THE MOTHS OF YOUR CHILDREN, NOR FROM THE MOUTH OF YOUR CHILDREN’S CHILDREN,’ says G-d, ‘FROM NOW ON TO ALL ETERNITY.’
So, who will survive
so who has survived as identifiable Jews of today? Only those who
have had absolute orthodox, Torah true, observant, great-grandparents.
Demographically after 3-4 generations of Jews who have cast aside the Oral
Torah, they simply stop being sociologically Jewish. A fifth generation
doesn’t exist if there were not Torah keeping, oral tradition living relatives.
Similar to a flower is cut from it’s roots, the fragrant smell is retained
for a while. Thus we see the Jews who sever themselves from the living
Oral Torah after a while stop being Jewish. As individuals, or as part
of breakaway sects, they disappear from the community of the Jewish people.
Many verses describe the eternal bond
between G-d and His people. These verses describe the bond specifically with those who have kept and will keep the Oral Torah. In short, only the keepers of the Oral Law are alive and part of the body of Israel to tell G-d’s story to the world.
You would have expected
more problems with the Jewish Oral and Written Torah. [LEVITICUS
6:46] “THESE ARE THE DECREES, THE ORDINANCES AND THE TORAHS THAT
G-D GAVE BETWEEN HIMSELF AND THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL AT MOUNT SINAI THROUGH
MOSES.” But yet the gospels with a 1500 year less history
had a central Church authority who would not hesitate to kill. The
New Testament is much smaller, lacking an enormous, beautiful Oral Torah,
explaining the Bible, and has over 200,000 textual arguments. Some of the codexes have serious theological implications. For example, several important Christian New Testament versions only go up to Mark 8. Thus rejecting chapters that come after Mark 8 as unreliable and unsubstantiated. Yet look at those branches of Christianity who make a religion out of the chapters supposedly to be found later in Mark. Again, for about 1300 years of New Testament existence, the central authority of the Church made it lethal to tamper with text and it was willing to bloodily enforce its decisions. On the other hand, the Jews for 200 years had no such armed and central authority that could effectively do anything if a scribe decided to change a text. What would stop a scribe in London, Paris, L.A., or Manchuria from altering texts? Nothing, no one; yet the Rabbinic scribes, on their own, remained loyal to the teachings of their
fathers and mothers. So, respect for the integrity and honesty of the torchbearers is certainly in order. Many ancient, non-Jewish sources recognize the honesty, integrity, sincerity, and righteousness of the sages of Israel.
We can go on and on with
examples of complex commandments whose understanding was assigned to the
Oral Law. [NUMBERS 15:37-40] “…HAVE MEN MAKE
TASSELS ON THE CORNERS OF THEIR GARMENTS FOR ALL GENERATIONS…”
What these are and how they are worn and what symbolism the details expound,
etc., etc., are clearly spelled out in the Oral Bible. Jews for 3300
years have been wearing these fringes and know what they are and have an
Sinaitic tradition explaining the Torah’s shorthand. The Oral Bible brings color and life to the Biblical painting, making the Biblical commands possible to fulfill practically, as they were intended to be.
6:5-9] “AND WRITE THEM ON THE DOORPOSTS OF YOUR HOUSE AND UPON YOUR GATES…”
What are you to write? The Magna Carta? The Star Spangled Banner?
Who is authorized to write? How, what, when should it be written
on your gates? What if they are not your doorposts and gates
you are merely a renter? What if, how to ad infinum.
Here, again, fulfillment of G-d’s command predicates reliance on the Oral
Bible. The Oral Bible is a
necessity. Here, again, for millenniums, the Jews never had a doubt as to the divine directive. The mezuzas is a well known feature n Jewish properties without debate, confusion, or subjectivity. The Oral Torah filled in the spaces.
12:25] “… YOU MAY SLAUGHTER FROM YOUR CATTLE AND YOUR FLOCKS THAT THE L-ORD
HAS GIVEN YOU AND I HAVE COMMANDED YOU, AND YOU MAY EAT IN YOUR CITIES
ACCORDING TO YOUR HEARTS ENTIRE DESIRE.” Let us paraphrase
the Encyclopedia Britannica. Scientific opinion indicates that severance
of the carotid arteries and the jugular vein (with the razor sharp ritual
knife) in one swift movement results in immediate loss of
consciousness. The after struggle is reflex muscular action alone. It is a very painless way to raise the animal up spiritually together with everything that ever went into the raising of that animal. This takes the animal to a higher plane. Thus, through its health imbuing properties, the human being can live and better serve G-od and humankind. The ancient law stands on humanitarian high ground when compared to the head crushing and strangling inflicted on animals through non-kosher methods of slaughter. Many Rabbinic Torah authorities feel that unless people serve
G-d, thus using their food consumption for that purpose they do not really have an ethical moral right to eat them. Judaism has led the world in legislation against animal cruelty and some of the modern societies for animal protection and been founded and supported through tradition conscious Jews.
The question is where
in the twenty-four books of Hebrew Scriptures did G-d explain how to perform
this ritual slaughter? [DEUTERONOMY 12:21] says clearly, “YOU
SHALL SLAUGHTER IT AS I HAVE COMMANDED YOU.” Again and
again, from any honest reading of the scriptures, the question that emerges is where are those commands to be found? The answer, my friend, is flowing in the Oral Torah. The answer is in the Oral Torah. [LEVITICUS 11:1-8]
“BUT THIS IS WHAT YOU SHALL NOT EAT FROM AMONG THESE THAT BRING UP THEIR CUD OR THAT HAVE SPLIT HOOVES. THE CAMEL, FOR IT BRINGS UP ITS CUD, BUT ITS HOOF IS NOT SPLIT. THE SHOFAN, FOR IT BRINGS UP ITS CUD, BUT ITS HOOF IS NOT SPLIT. THE ARNEVET, FOR IT BRINGS UP ITS CUD, BUT ITS HOOF IS NOT SPLIT. THE PIG, FOR HOOF IS SPLIT, BUT IT DOES NOT CHEW ITS CUD…”
The ID signs of permitted
animals are those that have the true cloven hoof and the chewing of the
cud (rumination). Also says the Oral Law, all ruminators have no
incisor teeth in the upper jaw. Furthermore, all ruminators have
a cloven hoof except for the camel and its family. All cloven hoofed
animals ruminate, except for the pig. Therefore, says the Oral Tradition,
if you find an animal whose species cannot be ID’d, check out its hoofs.
If the hoofs are mutilated or missing, then check out the mouth.
If no incisor teeth in its upper jaw are present, you can be sure
it is a clean animal species as long a s you can recognize a camel. If you find an animal whose mouth has been mutilated, check the hoofs. If they are cloven, the animal is clean as long as you can recognize a pig. Zoologists have discovered over 5,000 different kinds of mammals. Why would the Bible and Oral tradition stick its neck out 3,300
years ago and make such absolute statements regarding the animal kingdom? Did the scribes and the Rabbis have the means of the Discovery Channel and National Geographic to check out every hemisphere, to investigate every nook and cranny of forest, hill, jungle or prairie? In other words, asks the Talmud (Chulin 60/b), Was Moses a hunter or an archer
(a zoologist)? This refutes those who maintain that the Torah was not divinely revealed.
It was taught in the Academy
of Rebbe Yishmael the Torah states, “THE CAMEL SHALL
BE UNCLEAN TO YOU, ALTHOUGH IT CHEWS ITS CUD.” The Ruler of
the Universe knows that the camel chews its cud and yet, it’s impure.
Therefore, the verse specifies it. In other words, the redactor of
the Bible G-d himself knew all the species the zoologists would
eventually reveal throughout history. The same G-d of pure oneness,
who can see the unity of history and nature, could have the oral and written
tradition go out on a limb describing the wild kingdom without any fear
What about fish?
You know what kind of cigarettes a Rabbi smokes? A gefilter cigarette.
Fish need fins and scales (microscopic ones are not included). Leviticus
11:9-10, Deuteronomy 14:9b, Mishna in Talmud Nida 6:9, all clearly say,
“Every creature that has scales will have fins, but there are those which
have fins but no scales.” The Talmud Nida 51/b goes on to say if
so, then why did G-d not write scales and there would be no need to mention
fins? Rebbe Abbahu answered and it was taught in school of Rebbe
Yishmael. In order to magnify the Torah and make it glorious [Isaiah
42:21] around 25,000 new species of fish have been revealed in the last 100 years. How could the Talmud have been so sure of itself? Because the information given in the Talmud comes directly from the very author of life, who knew oceanography and marine biology the best.
Remember [ISAIAH 45:19],
also [EXODUS 16:29-30] says, “LET EVERY MAN REMAIN
IN HIS PLACE ON THE SABBATH.” What does that mean? Do
we envision West Side Story Jets vs. Sharks. ‘Yo bro don’t leave
your turf. Your hood
(neighborhood) is your place and don’t you dare cross lines into another turf on the Sabbath or else you is chopped meat.’ The answer is no. The oral tradition spells out what it means not leaving your place. The Sabbath laws carry with them severest of penalties. So G-d was exact in what He wanted, but the exactness was to be found in, yes, you guessed it; the living, breathing, dynamic oral tradition.
[ISAIAH 58:13-14] “IF YOU RESTRAIN YOUR FOOT BECAUSE OF THE SABBATH FROM
PERFORMING YOUR AFFAIRS…” What does
this mean? “…AND IF YOU DO RESTRAIN
YOUR FOOT…THEN YOU SHALL FIND DELIGHT WITH THE L-RD…” Perhaps some
new dance step. Do the “Restrain your foot hop.” No such confusion
was left. The earth was null and void only in Genesis; afterwards
the world was to be orderly and logical. G-d’s natural laws make
sense and have
logus, likewise His spiritual laws have order, logic, and logus about them. He did not say unintelligible things and order us to do them and be consequently rewarded or punished. He gave laws to do and explained what that meant to us in His Oral Torah. Perhaps we do not understand His ultimate reason or purpose to a specific law, but the practical application has always been intended. Any technical differences are worked out in terms of application within a system that comes to proper Biblically anchored conclusions.
Michael Drazin in ‘THEIR
HOLLOW INHERITANCE’, states that clearly, the Oral Tradition must be afforded
the utmost seriousness, for its explanations of Biblical verses were given
to Moses by G-d and have been studied and
cherished for generations. In contrast, during the glorious prophetic era (which lasted one thousand years), while the Jewish people pondered the profound Divine messages conveyed by its prophets, Christians were non-existent and most Gentiles were illiterate pagans. The Hebrew Bible, with its revolutionary moral standards, only became known to the world at a much later date (around 246 B.C.E.). Nevertheless, the founding fathers of Christianity had to insist that their interpretations of the Hebrew Bible were as valid as the Jews’. But the basis of theses claims is itself founded on misinterpretations: [II CHRONICLES 34:14] "AND WHEN THEY BROUGHT OUT THE MONEY THAT WAS BROUGHT
INTO THE HOUSE OF THE L-RD, HILKIAH THE PRIEST FOUND THE BOOK OF THE LAW OF THE L-RD BY THE HAND OF MOSES."
The sensational discovery unearthed the Torah scroll Moses himself had written (“the Book of the Law”) not that there were not an abundance of scrolls Torah was being learned and practiced day and night. Merely that this was particular because of its antiquity and very special scribe that worked on it, namely Moses. [DEUTERONOMY 31:24-26] AND IT CAME TO PASS, WHEN MOSES HAD FINISHED WRITING THE WORDS OF THE LAW IN THIS BOOK…THAT MOSES COMMANDED THE LEVITES…SAYING, ”TAKE THIS BOOK OF THE LAW AND PUT IT BY THE SIDE OF THE ARK OF THE COVENANT OF THE L-RD, YOUR G-D, THAT IT MAY BE THERE FOR YOU AS A WITNESS.”
This scroll had been hidden from King Ahaz, who had destroyed the holy artifacts one hundred years earlier:
[II CHRONICLES 28:24] "AND AHAZ GATHERED TOGETHER THE VESSELS OF THE HOUSE OF G-D, AND CUT IN PIECES THE VESSELS OF THE HOUSE OF G-D…"
However, when this scroll was unrolled before King Josiah, he rent his clothes (II Chronicles 34:19) for it fell open to the section containing all the curses destined to befall those Jews who disregard the Torah (Deuteronomy 27-28).
Huldah the prophetess confirmed Josiah’s conviction that this was no mere coincidence but an omen from G-d:
[II CHRONICLES 34:24-25] THUS SAYS THE L-RD: “BEHOLD, I WILL BRING EVIL UPON THIS PLACE AND UPON ITS INHABITANTS, EVEN ALL THE CURSES THAT ARE WRITTEN IN THE BOOK THEY HAVE READ BEFORE THE KING OF JUDAH. BECAUSE THEY HAVE FORSAKEN ME AND OFFERED TO OTHER GODS…”
Hoping to move the populace to repent, Josiah read them this section of the Torah: [II CHRONICLES 34:30] "AND HE READ IN THEIR EARS ALL THE WORDS OF THE BOOK OF THE COVENANT THAT WAS FOUND IN THE HOUSE OF THE L-RD."
Although there are many covenants in the Torah, this section is called “the Covenant” because they accepted each curse upon themselves as a punishment foe violating the Torah. The conclusion of these two chapters affirms their
[DEUTERONOMY 28:69] "THESE ARE THE WORDS OF THE COVENANT THE L-RD COMMANDED MOSES TO MAKE WITH THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL IN THE LAND OF MOAB, BESIDES THE COVENANT HE MADE WITH THEM IN HOREB [SINAI]"
It should be noted that of all of the Torah’s commands, some of Josiah’s subjects were accused of violating; with idolatry: [II CHRONICLES 34:21] …FOR GREAT IS THE WRATH OF THE L-RD THAT IS POURED OUT UPON US, BECAUSE OUR FATHERS HAVE NOT KEPT THE WORD OF THE L-RD, TO DO ACCORDING TO ALL THAT IS WRITTEN IN THIS BOOK.
It has been claimed that
the written Torah (and consequently, the Oral Tradition) was lost and forgotten
until it was found by Hilkiah, which any objective reading would show otherwise.
The Torah was being lived and studied continuously, without interruption,
from time immemorial. Obviously, during the seven hundred years between
Moses and Josiah, the Jews had innumerable copies of the Torah. As shown,
it was their most treasured possession. The Torah is also referred
to throughout the Hebrew Bible. For instance, in the same book chronicling
the discovery of this
scroll, Deuteronomy 24:16 is quoted verbatim with regard to Amaziah, who reigned just three years prior to Josiah:
[II CHRONICLES 25:3-4] NOW IT CAME TO PASS WHEN THE KINGDOM WAS ESTABLISHED UNTO [AMAZIAH] THAT HE KILLED THE SERVANTS WHO HAD SLAIN THE KING, HIS FATHER. BUT HE DID NOT PUT THEIR CHILDREN TO DEATH; RATHER HE DID ACCORDING TO THAT WHICH IS WRITTEN IN THE LAW OF THE BOOK OF MOSES, AS THE L-RD
COMMANDED, SAYING, FATHERS SHALL NOT DIE FOR CHILDREN, NOR SHALL CHILDREN DIE FOR FATHERS; BUT A MAN SHALL DIE FOR HIS SIN.”
Two men, one Jewish and
one a Gentile, arrived late at night in the emergency room at a hospital.
In the morning the Jewish man donned tefilin and prayed. The Gentile man
was amazed and said to the visiting doctor, “These Jews are really something.
He’s here one night and already he’s taking his own blood pressure.” These
little boxes and straps were uncovered by archaeologists thousands of years
ago. Hundreds of years before, a portion of the Oral Tradition had
to be put into writing.
The Torah says [EXODUS 13:9] “AND IT SHALL BE AS A SIGN ON YOUR ARM AND A REMINDER BETWEEN YOUR EYES SO THAT THE L-RDS TORAH WILL BE IN YOUR MOUTH FOR WITH A STRONG HAND THE L-RD REMOVED YOU FROM EGYPT.” Look at [EXODUS 13:16] “IT SHALL BE A SIGN UPON YOUR ARM AND AN ORNAMENT (FRONTLETS)
BETWEEN YOUR EYES FOR WITH A STRONG HAND G-D TOOK YOU OUT OF EGYPT.” Deut. 6/8 makes it clear that this is a real time command. “BIND THEM AS A SIGN UPON YOUR ARM AND LET THEM BE FRONTLETS BETWEEN YOU EYES.”
[DEUT. 11:18] “Place these words of mine” (which words?). The command says “these words” quite specific so, friend, which words?
The hundreds of times
is to what are these things (tefilin) who must wear them, how to make them,
exactly how to wear them, etc. was faithfully transmitted and the entire
Jewish people accept these traditions until this day, 3,300 years after
the command was articulated, still practiced in its original fashion. Because
of the terrible persecution and dispersion, a
danger arose of forgetting the Oral Law. Thus part of it was written down, the Mishna, and later, for the same reason, the Gemora was committed to writing. The two together is the Talmud. This archaeological revelation showed that the tefilin of yesteryear are the same as the ones used today. The fact that the tefilin conform exactly with those of thousands of years ago is truly profound.
We clearly see the continuity
of the Biblical Oral tradition. How carefully it was preserved and
transmitted. Likewise the uncovering of numerous mikvot ritual
baths even from the First Temple times. Once again, they conform to the
rigorous standards of any ultra orthodox Jew of today. The Bible
cryptically says, “waters bring purity” and that reveres
numerous religious precepts for layman, priests, men, and women that necessitates a ritual bath for purification. Yet complete reliance is again placed on the Oral Bible for the practical real time application of these crucially important biblical injunctions. Almost no problems have crept into the Hebrew Bible. We see here even into the Hebrew Biblical
Oral Torah an absence of problems that would halt or obstruct actual observance of the Bible. These discoveries of ritual baths, tfillin, etc. are of such amazing ramifications to be mind boggling. Proof of the ancient Oral biblical teachings being faithfully kept. Hershel the water carrier had a son who would soon be Bar Mitzvah, so he went to his friend that he considered wise, as opposed to going to the town’s local spiritual leadership. “Tell me, Buddy, how shall I introduce my son to mysteries of reproduction? He will soon reach an age of spiritual manhood and it is time he learned about the ‘birds and the bees.’ “First of all,” replied his friend, “you must forget about the
‘birds and the bees.’ It is a myth that has no reality, in fact.” “How can you say that?” asked Hershel. “Because I proved it to my own satisfaction. I put a bird and a bee together in a cage and although I watched for a week, I assure you, dear Hershel, nothing happened.” People start off with the wrong premises, with conceptual mistakes, and
being overly literal in context. The results of these logical faults are to reject the tried and true wisdom of the Oral Bible. Simple, honest reevaluation would correct their mistaken conclusions. Clarifying the Identity of the Lost Ten Tribes and working to bring them back is part of the Messianic Process. We should all do all we can to hasten the coming of the Messiah. The whole concept of a Messiah is the concept of a world whose mistaken conclusions can be rectified, whose conceptual mistakes and out of context literalness can be fixed.
The Oral law was given together with the Written Law from the hand of the Almighty God of Israel.
by Rabbi Avraham Feld