|SIDEBAR - "Maimonides"
Moses ben Maimon, known as both Maimonides and the acronym RAMBAM, lived in 12th century
Spain and is one of the most influential figures in Jewish history. He was a physician,
philosopher and chief rabbi. His most important works include: the Commentary on the
Mishnah, Book of Commandments, Mishneh Torah (commentary on the Torah), Treatise
on Resurrection, and Guide of the Perplexed, a very philosophical work.
(Check www.amazon.com for these.) He is also known for
his "Thirteen Articles of Faith," which is about as close to a
"Jewish statement of faith," that there is.
The Thirteen Articles of Jewish faith are as follows:
- Belief in the existence of the Creator, be He Blessed, who is perfect in every manner of
existence and is the Primary Cause of all that exists.
- The belief in God's absolute and unparalleled unity.
- The belief in God's noncorporeality, nor that He will be affected by any physical
occurrences, such as movement, or rest, or dwelling.
- The belief in God's eternity.
- The imperative to worship Him exclusively and no foreign false gods.
- The belief that God communicates with man through prophecy.
- The belief that the prophecy of Moses our teacher has priority.
- The belief in the divine origin of the Torah.
- The belief in the immutability of the Torah.
- The belief in divine omniscience and providence.
- The belief in divine reward and retribution.
- The belief in the arrival of the Messiah and the messianic era.
- The belief in the resurrection of the dead.
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