Noahide Seven Commandments Torah classes
© 2016 by Rabbi Zvi Aviner
Know your CREATOR, know yourself and know the difference
“Let Us Make an Adam in Our Form and Our Image”
1: Adam would have had no chance to win
Moses says on Adam something that Science won’t say,
That Adam was created by ELoKiM to withstand a trial.
This way Adam would EARN ELoKiM’s Goodness as a REWARD, rather than a humiliating CHARITY.
Moreover, for Adam’s trial to be meaningful, ELoKiM conceals Himself from Adam’s eyes, and conceals His retributions and rewards from him.
For if everyone would see in his eyes the presence of ELoKIM, who would dare to sin?
And if everyone would see in his eyes ELoKiM’s rewards and punishments, who would sin?
If a killer’s head would be smashed right away by a falling ceiling, ELoKiM intervention would be obvious. Henceforth who is the fool to sin?
Hence ELoKiM set up Nature, the Six Days, as a thick screen to hide Himself from Adam. We need to be TAUGHT about Him and His way, as Moses did in his Torah.
So what exactly is Adam trial?
ELoKiM is a harsh JUDGE, yet FAIR. He wouldn’t place Adam in a lifelong trial without telling the trial’s terms and how to win it.
That information, the rabbis taught, is given to Adam right at moment of his creation.
2: The Comprehensive, End of Days Trial
The harsh, Midday Trial before making Adam
Before making Adam, ELoKiM conducted an unusual midday trial. He judged everything He had created earlier ON THAT DAY. He judged the Cattle Like, the Beast like and the Crawling creatures that once ruled the Planet Earth.
How unusual was this! On all previous Day, besides the Third Day, He Judged each Day at the end of the Day, at the junction between it and the following one. But at the middle of the Sixth Day He conducted His trial while the “sun was up,” before the Sabbath.
As a rule of thumb, whenever ELoKiM conducted a Midday Trial, the Earth stood on a crucial crossroad. Thus at the Midday trial of the Third Day, ELoKiM decided whether or not to seed life on Earth. (The details of this crucial Midday trial are given in Genesis Chap. 2-5.) EoKiM then said that “It was good” and seeded life on Earth, from which Vegetation grew, then Fish, Bird, Crocodiles and so on.
So when He passed a judgment at the ‘middle’ of the Sixth Day, Earth also stood on a crucial crossroad: would it see Adam on it or not?
To our luck, ELoKiM deemed everything He had created before on the Sixth Day to be “good.” Those creatures which were “not good” anymore were eliminated right there and then, while the ‘good’ ones were allowed to enter the rest of the Sixth Day to live side by side with Adam. ELoKiM, as a Builder, may find a creature or a Day not good anymore, not fitting the plan, unable to support anther Floor or another Day, and therefore eliminate it WITH NO MERCY.
Science tells us that before the appearance of Adam, a huge catastrophe hit our Planet and wiped out all the pre-historical creatures. Those who survived had to adapt to theh new environment.
ELoKiM then went on to create Adam, as the last creature of the Sixth Day of CREATION.
And as our rule of thumb says, the judgment of every creature is based on the creature’s location on the ladder of the Six Days CREATION.
To be ‘good,’ Adam would have to support the next Day of CREATION, the Seventh, the (Eternal) Sabbath.
But to our surprise, the verse says something else. At the End of the Sixth Day, the verse says, ELoKiM will judge it as follows:
“And ELoKiM saw everything that He had done
and behold, it was Very Good
And there was evening, and there was morning, the SIXTH DAY.”
………………………………………(The Sixth Day is Over)………………………………….
“The Heavens and the Earth were FINISHED
And ELoKiM FINISHED all the Work that He has done,
And He ABSTAINED on the SEVENTH DAY from all the work that He had done
And ELoKiM blessed the Seventh Day…..”
Unlike all previous Days when the ‘good’ verdict was enough to allow the creature entering the next Day,
At the End of the Sixth Day, in which we live, ELoKiM will increase His yardstick and demand from Adam to be not just good, but VERY GOOD.
If Adam supports the next Day, the Seventh, he would be deemed Very Good. He would then merit entering the next, Seventh Day.
If Adam doesn’t support the next Day, the Sabbath, why should he enter it? He would be terminated!
Thus Adam trial is no different than all other creatures before him, only that Adam is required to excel and be Very Good in ELoKiM’s eyes. And to be Very |Good means that Adam qualifies to enter the Sabbath.
But the verse tells us more about Adam’s final judgment based on our sensitive location on the transition between the Sixth and the seventh Days.
It says that unlike all other Days when ELoKiM judged only the last, passing Day,
At the End of our Sixth Day, at the End of Day’s trial,
ELoKiM will judge the entire Six Days, the entire Building, as it says:
And ELoKIM saw EVERYTHING HE HAD DONE,
And behold it was Very Good!.
Thus He will judge the entire CREATION, from the Beginning till that moment.
If He deems CREATION to be Very Good, He would allow it to enter the next Day, the Sabbath.
If He is unsatisfied, He would eliminate it entirely to nothingness.
Obviously, the World can’t improve itself. It can’t excel from being ‘good’ to ‘Very Good.’
It is only the advent of Adam in it that can make the change.
It is only Adam, who can make CREATION seen VERY GOOD in the CREATOR’S eyes.
What a tough judgment is waiting for Adam!
What a responsibility! The fate of the Universe depends on Adam!
Can we stand such a trial? Can we win it?
And what exactly is expected from Adam to be Very Good?
what would make Adam Very Good in the JUDGE’s eyes?
What would make Adam ready to enter the Sabbath?
Only one thing for sure: keeping the JUDG’ES Laws.
ELoKiM then would give Adam a set of Commandments,
By which He would judge Adam whether or not he has become Very Good.
And that set of Commandments must prepare Adam to enter the Sabbath.
The question was: would Adam meet ELoKiM’s expectations?
Would he be able to win his trial and be Very Good in ELoKiM eyes?
Would he withstand the harsh , meticulous, scrutiny of ELoKiM?
Moses says that ELoKiM Himself doubted it.
Knowing that Adam can’t see ELoKiM, nor can he see ELoKIM’s interventions,
What would hold back Adam from violating ELoKIM’s Laws, thereby failing to be Very Good?
Adam had no chance!
If so, why making him at all? (Rashi)
Let’s remember that ELoKiM is Kind and would like to shower goodness on his creatures.
br>A bad outcome
What would happen if CREATION fails to become “Very Good?”
You can see the answer in the verse. At the End of the Sixth Day it says: “The Heavens and the Earth were FINISHED.”
This can simply mean that their creation was finished, ended.
But the word “Finished” can be read as a threat, as in the phrase: “I will finish you!” Meaning “I shall terminate you to nothingness!
Indeed, the Hebrew word for Finish, khalah, infers “consumption to nothingness with wrath.”
Thus if ELoKiM would NOT find CREATION to be Very Good, He would terminate it to nothingness. In fact, he had done that to numerous other Universes before ours! (Rashi)
A very good outcome
What would happen if ELoKiM has found CREATION to be Very Good?
Again, the answer is given by the same verse. IF He is Very Pleased, He would allow CREATION to enter the next Day, which is the Sabbath. Or stated better: The “Eternal Sabbath” to distinguish it from our human weekly Sabbath. The” Eternal Sabbath” is the next Day of Creation, which may arrive millions of years from now.
Where do you see that in the verses?
At the End of the Sixth Day it is said: “And ELoKiM Finished all the work that He had done.” The same word for “Finished,” khalah, can also be read as a BRIDE.
The Eternal Sabbath is therefore depicted as ELoKiM’s BRIDE.
Hence at the End of our Day, the Sixth Day of CREATION, ELoKiM would judge the entire CREATION. If He finds it “Very Good” He would carry it to the Sabbath, the next Day, which is depicted as ELoKIM’s BIRDE.
Just enter a synagogue on Friday evening before the Sabbath and you would see the congregation standing up and chanting with passion: “Walk my Groom towards Your Bride, the Sabbath Queen….”
He is the Groom-King,
She, the Sabbath, is the Bride- Queen.
he passing Day, as ever before, at the end of the Sixth Day He would judge the entire CREATION, the whole Six Floor building, from the Beginning till that moment.
This would be the most comprehensive trial our Universe has ever seen!
Moreover, this time He would seek CREATION to be not just “Good” but “Very Good.” Whereas during the Six Days He was satisfied with a ‘good’ verdict, after the Sixth Day’s Midday Trial He tightened His yardstick by which He measures the Universe and would not be pleased unless CREATION has become “Very Good” in His eyes.
But CREATION can’t elevate itself to be Very Good.
It is the new creature in it, Adam, who CAN make the difference.
Hence it is Adam who could escort the Groom towards the Bride.
But ask yourself: if the Sabbath is only a Day, how can She be His Bride?
Indeed, you are right.
The Queen is not the Sabbath herself, but another Attribute of the CREATOR who rules over it.
Her Name is YHVH, and She is the Attribute of MERCY, COMPASSION, FORGIVEESS and HOLINESS.
So now we are ready to read the full story of Adam creation
The End of Idolatry Class 9
To see Adam’s trial, let’s read the verse that describes ELoKiM’s words planning him. He said in PLURAL voice:
How different it is from the previous verses. Here, instead of giving an order like “Let it Be Adam,”
ELoKiM spoke softly in plural, as if consulting with someone or something.
Let’s analyze it: Had ELoKiM continued making the Adam like all the creatures before, this Adam would have been a mere extension of Nature, another step in the ladder of Evolution.
Such an Adam would have lived under the harsh scrutiny of ELoKiM, facing retributions “measure for measure,” with absolute Justice ansd nothing else.
But since Adam would face a thick partition of Nature between him and ELoKiM, and since ELoKiM’s presence and hands would still be concealed, chances are that this Adam would certainly fail his trial. In that case his fate would be doomed.
Why would ELoKiM then even bother creating such Adam under such a harsh scrutiny?
In His Kindness, ELoKiM decided to offer Adam a better chance to withstand his scrutiny. After all, the primordial purpose of CREATION is to shower goodness on the world’s inhabitants.
ELoKiM therefore decided to offer Adam the chance of FORGIVENESS, MERCY, COMPASSION and HOLINESS.
This change would give Adam a better chance to survive the scrutiny.
But ELoKiM would NOT offer by Himself FORGIVENESS, MERCY and COMPASSION. This is NOT what ELoKiM does. His Judgment follows the Absolute Truth with precision, with no consideration to any other moral argument.
ELoKiM therefore turned to ANOTHER ATTRIBUTE of the nameless, infinite CREATOR, namely the Attribute of FORGIVENESS, MERCY, COMPASSION and HOLINESS whose Name is the Acronym YHVH (read as an acronym: letter by letter. Like you would read ABC, CNN, CBS.)
And this Attribute, so different from ELoKiM, dwells by definition outside our world, our Six Days of CREATION. She dwells, so to speak, on the Seventh Day of CREATION, the so-called Eternal Sabbath.
Never forget: we talk about Attributes, not different gods. The Infinite, nameless CREATOR who is beyond our human conception, may wear different’ hats’ on different occasions. Sometimes He sits on the Throne of Judgment as a absolute JUDGE ELKM, whereas on other occasions He appears to us as the Merciful YHVH. The Names used in the Bible are chosen to describe His manifestation at a given point.
To consider the opinion of the Attribute of MERCY, YHVH
ELoKiM first stepped down from His High pedestal of a Supreme JUDGE and spoke the first time in plural, with MODESTY. Until now, for Six Days, He ruled awesomely alone. But before making Adam he decided to be a Dictator no more. He would be a KING Who Consults.
Turning to YHVH who dwells, so to speak, on the Sabbath, ELoKiM said:
“Would you come to share the rule of my world with me?”
Moreover, a Look of LONGING appeared in His eyes, not unlike the longing of a Groom to meet His Bride.
His Bride, says Moses, is the Eternal Sabbath; the Day He would cease Judging, cease Creating and cease His work.
ELoKiM longs to ‘enter’ the Sabbath since in it the Infinite CREATOR would shower His Goodness on our world without judgment, without trials and without asking anything in return: a free gift.
On the Sabbath, the receiver would absorb the CREATOR’S Goodness with neither shame nor humiliation.
For on that awesome Day, our SELF and our Ego would not stand anymore as a barrier for the CREATOR’S Goodness.
ELoKiM would love to relinquish his authority altogether, and give it to the Merciful YHVH to rule over alone.
So ELoKIM invited the Attribute of YHVH, who rules the Sabbath, YHVH, to come in and share the rule of His World.
YHVH then entered our World form the Sabbath, like a thin ray of light, or a shy dove, or a beautiful Cherub.
5: Observing our World, YHVH said
Entering our World the first time, YHVH OBSERVED it,
not unlike a BRIDE entering her Groom’s Home the first time, assessing whether or not she could be comfortable dwelling there.
Note that it is characteristic to YHVH to OBSERVE things, seeing whether or not She would like them, rather than judging them (Rashi.)
What did YHVH say?
No one was there to record the Attribute’s Dialogue. But tradition holds that YHVH raised the following objections:
“How can I share your World, ELoKiM when there is no creature to comprehend me and perform my work?”
Indeed, can the spider, the crocodile or the Volcano comprehend MERCY, COMPASSION and FORGIVENESS?
“ How can I share your world, ELoKiMwhere there is no PLACE to REST my Wings?”
In Her Domain, the Eternal Sabbath, YHVH needs no rest, for She neither creates nor judges or works there. She seeks ‘resting’ only in our World. Wherever She rest, like in our heart, She would fill it with Her warmth, Happiness, Joy, Love and Holiness.
Note that in the Ten Commandments Moses says: “Thou shall observe the Sabbath…for YHVH has rested in it,”(Exodus 20: 11.)
While ELoKiM ‘ceases,‘ ‘abstains’ (‘Shabbath’ in Hebrew) from work on the Sabbath,
YHVH ‘rests’ on in it.
6: Let Us Make an Adam
“Let Us Make and Adam in Our Form and Our Image.”
Hearing the Bride’s reservations, the ‘Groom’ ELoKiM said:
Adam would be our child,
In his heart you’d dwell,
In his Sabbath you would rest.
He would do your work in my world,
Adam would earn your favor. He would do your work of MERCY and COMPASSION, REPENT and ask your FORGIVENESS.
Your presence here would enhance his chance to survive into the next Day, the Sabbath…
YHVH agreed, and the two Attributes, holding Wing against Wing like two Cherubs IN Love
flew over CREATION, consolidating it with their mutual Love and Oneness.
Moses depicted them as two cherubs in love, standing on the holy Ark in which the Torah was kept. One Cherub had a face of a boy, the other a face of a girl.
The Levite Choir chanted on every sixth day of the week:
“YHVH has reigned, the World was consolidated; henceforth it would not falter…”
They meant: On this day, the sixth, the world was consolidated by the presence of YHVH. Henceforth it would not falter.
You can see Her entrance into our World in the text; for at the End of the Sixth Day it says:
"And ELoKiM said let the Earth bring forth creatures, Cattle, creeping things,
And ELoKiM made the animals…cattle…and everything creeping
And ELoKiM saw that is was good,
And ELoKiM created Adam in His Image
And ELoKiM blessed them saying be fruitful and multiply
And ELoKim said let us make Adam in our form and our image
And ELoKiM said behold, I have given you all the grass
And ELoHiM saw everything that He had done and behold, it was Very Good,
And it was evening, and it was morning,
Y om, (Day)
H aShishi, (Sixth) (Genesis 1:31)
VaYechulu (and they ended)
HaShamyim (the Heaves)
And the Earth, VeHaaretz, and all their hosts,
And ELoHiM finished all the work he had done,
And ELoHiM finished on the Seventh Day His work which He had done,
And He abstained on the Seventh Day from all His work which He had done..." (Genesis 2: 1-2)
Here the Sixth Day which is ruled by ELoKiM is painted red
Whereas the Sabbath Day which is ruled by YHVH, is painted blue.
And as you can clearly see, the Acronym YHVH penetrates our Sixth Day of CREATION,
Half of it, the YH, lies in our Sixth Day,
The other half, the VH, still lies in the Sabbath Day.
Let us make
But aas long as Adam lives in ELoKiM world, nothing is gained for free. Adam would have to earn the Forgiveness and Mercy and Compassion and Holiness of YHVH.
\Adam would have to ask forgiveness, confess, pledge for the future, and stand a trial before he is forgiven.
Moreover, Adam would have to exercise himself forgiveness, mercy and compassion on others, before he would qualify for the same treatment by YHVH.
Adam would therefore stand a scrutiny of the two Attributes YHVH and ELKM
Adam would have ot be Very Good.
Last class we saw that Moses concurs with Science that Adam is a Homo Sapience, a Wise Man. When ELoKiM said in plural “let us make Adam in our Form and Our Image,” He consulted the Six Days mentioned earlier in the chapter and made Adam accordingly. We see that in the way that a human embryo develops in the uterus.
ELoKiM also consulted the “Beginning”, the “Head of the Events,” or His “Head” or the “Wisdom and Science by which He had created the World” (RaMBaN) and made Adam accordingly. Adam’s mind can therefore decipher all the mysteries of the Universe.
But according to Moses, there is more in Adam than his smart mind. For ELoKiM “consulted” other entities mentioned LATER in the Chapter, and made Adam. These entities would lead Adam to the future. What are these entities?
This teaching is based on the verse “Let Us Make an Adam in Our Form and Our Image.” ELoKiM, of course, does not have any Form or Image. We can’t even perceive Him. So according to tradition (Rashi) when ELOKIM said these words, planning the making of Adam, He was referring to an “Image and Form” not of Himslef, but rather of an “ideal Man” that was on His mind.
In other words, Adam was NOT made an ideal creature. Adam was made, rather, to BECOME an ideal Man in time, in history. Adam would have to become that Form and Image that the CREATOR had about him.
It is as if ELoKIM was saying: let me and you, Adam, made an ideal Adam together. I will help you and guide you and show you the way….
Why then didn’t ELoKiM make Adam an ideal creature right away? Because:
(1) ELoKIM, the All Mighty JUDGE, wished to place Adam in a trial. Everything that ELoKIM creates is for a trial.
(2) Because as All Mighty as ELoKiM is, there is something He would NEVER DO: make Adam Merciful, Compassionate and Forgiving.
For this, ELoKiM consulted another attribute of the Infinite CREATOR: her name is YHVH, to make Adam together. Adam would become an “ideal Adam” when and if he would incorporate Her into his heart.
Yes, it is all written in the verses.