Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson
The Seven Noahide Commandments
By the grace of G-d
Duties for a Civilized World
G-d originally gave commandments to Adam and Eve to observe and to teach to their descendants. After the Great Flood, G-d repeated the Seven Commandments to Noah, his family, and all their descendants -- which includes all of us. This is the meaning of the term Noahide.*
When G-d revealed Himself at Mount Sinai, He gave Moses and the Jewish people the duty to convey these commandments to the rest of the people of the world. G-d also gave the Jewish people additional commandments to fulfill.
The Seven Commandments are general categories which contain many details:
- WORSHIP G-D. Do not worship anything except G-d Himself.
- RESPECT G-D AND PRAISE HIM. Do not curse Him or anyone in His name.
- RESPECT HUMAN LIFE. Do not commit murder, suicide, or abortion.
- RESPECT THE FAMILY. Do not participate in sexual immorality.
- RESPECT OTHERS' RIGHTS AND PROPERTY. Do not steal, cheat, or kidnap.
- RESPECT ALL CREATURES. Do not eat the flesh of any animal while it is still alive.
- PURSUE JUSTICE. Establish courts of law to enforce the Seven Noahide Commandments
These seven universal laws are a matter of obedience to G-d even if they are part of the laws of our country. Their observance guarantees peace and goodwill among all people through universal faith. Any non-Jewish person who fulfills the Seven Commandments is considered righteous and earns a share of the Eternal World to Come. Jews are rewarded for fulfilling their 613 commandments.
- HONORING PARENTS and GIVING CHARITY are time-honored observances that have become part of this doctrine.
Although these commandments seem quite simple, profound principles of faith motivate us to fulfill them:
- G-d involves Himself with every creature's life at every instant, and He provides what is best for each creature.
- G-d listens to our prayers. It is fitting to ask Him for what we need and to thank Him for His kindnesses.
- G-d created evil for us to reject and thereby earn reward.
- G-d grants us free choice to obey or transgress His commandments, so that reward and punishment are in our hands.
- G-d accepts everyone's repentance, and repentance restores us to a sinless state of being.
We stand poised on the threshold of the promised Messianic Age. The Messiah is about to come.
Please prepare by doing acts of goodness and kindness -- at least a little more.
The Lubavitcher Rebbe *