Posts Tagged ‘Oral Torah’

Two Torah’s

May 27, 2009

Nobody reads without interpretation. So how do we read the bible? We need someone who explain and teach us. Someone who we can trust.

I came across an interesting story from the Talmud:

Our Rabbis taught: A certain heathen once came before Shammai and asked him, ‘How many Toroth  have you?’ ‘Two,’ he replied: ‘the Written Torah and the Oral Torah.’  ‘I believe you with respect to the Written, but not with respect to the Oral Torah; make me a proselyte on condition that you teach me the Written Torah [only].  [But] he scolded and repulsed him in anger. When he went before Hillel, he accepted him as a proselyte. On the first day, he taught him, Alef, beth, gimmel, daleth;  the following day he reversed [them] to him. ‘But yesterday you did not teach them to me thus,’ he protested. ‘Must you then not rely upon me?  Then rely upon me with respect to the Oral [Torah] too.’ [1]

Who did us teach the bible? We all use and need the oral tradition. Doesn’t the disciples give us an oral tradition of the revelation of the new covenant/Torah? Didn’t Yeshua give a renewal and correction of the oral tradition? Certainly, at the feast of the Shavuot (Pentecost) we received the Holy One who we can trust as the best counsellor, explainer and teacher of the Torah.

[1] Avot de-Rabbi Natan B29, fol. 31a-b. (this translation comes from: )