"If your brother, or your own mother's son, or your
son or daughter, or the wife of your bosom, or your closest friend entices you
in secret, saying, 'Come let us worship other gods' whom neither you nor your
fathers have experienced…take his life. Let your hand be the first against him
to put him to death, and the hand of the rest of the people thereafter. Stone
him to death" (Deuteronomy 13:7).
In the portion of Shelach we showed
that the freedom to investigate and examine veracity of the Torah is utterly
non-existent. In this portion we will show that the whole issue of freedom of
religion, one of the very foundations of democracy, is not only forbidden by
the Torah, but one who wishes to exercise this freedom is liable to stoning,
that is, he merits a death sentence.
From the verse we brought above we see that it is
sufficient for a person to say to his friend: "I have found happiness in
my way of life. Come with me, we will bring incense to the love goddess, and
you will see how you shall find peace from the rat race, how your relationship
with that which surrounds you will improve, and even your financial situation
will improve." According to the Torah, one who says this should be put to
death immediately (even if he did nothing but talk!) As Maimonides wrote in The
Laws of Idolatry, chapter five, halacha one: "One who entices a Jew, be it
man or woman, is stoned, though neither the enticer nor the one being enticed
actually worshipped an idol, for he made the other think of worshipping… The
enticer does not require warning…if he entices before two people, he should be
killed… How?…The one being enticed should answer, 'How can we leave our G-d in
Heaven and go and worship stones and trees?'…and if he says 'this is our
obligation and it is good for us' those standing there, at a distance, should
bring him to the religious court and they stone him."
To understand what stoning is, we will bring the mishnah in
Sanhedrin 45a, "The house of stoning is two stories high. One of the
witnesses pushes him to his hips. If he turns onto his front, he should be
turned over (When he is on his back he is more disgraced -- Rashi)…the other
takes the stone and throws it towards his heart. If he dies from this, he has
fulfilled his duty [the stoner has fulfilled his duty to kill by stoning]. If
not, all Israel [all those present] throws stones at him, as is said, 'the
hands of the witness shall first be against him to kill him, then all the nation
They smash the man's body with stones. And all this for
what? For his beliefs! Because he believes in something different. Therefore,
according to Judaic law, he must die painfully.
If this were not enough, after he dies they take his corpse
and hang it from a tree, as brought on page 46a, "How do they hang him?
They stick the beam in the ground and the cross beam comes out of it [like a
stake -- Rashi]. They put his two hands one next to the other and hang him [by
his hands -- Rashi]."
Though these things are difficult to write, and who
wouldn't shake at writing that these are punishments mandated by Jewish law, we
must write them. This is because the "pious" Jews pray three times a
day: "Return our judges as of old." It is very important that we
understand what they really pray for.
The Tur, on Orach Chaim 118, wrote: "[The eleventh
blessing of the Shmoneh Esreh -- the most
important prayer in Judaic ritual], 'Return our judges as at first.' Why
is it said after the prayer for the ingathering of the exiled [the tenth
blessing, 'Gather us together from the four corners of the earth']? Since after
the exiled are gathered they will judge the evildoers before settling in
Jerusalem." This, exactly, is what G-d fearing Jews pray for, that
"the judges as at first," that is, the Torah's laws, will quickly
return to the courts of law, and these are the laws of death sentences and
stoning for any who thinks other than the rabbis. For the return of these laws
they wish and hope and pray.
Come here and see what the Responsa Tzitz Eliezer wrote in
part 12, section 72, "About the prohibition against going to courts which
judge according to alien laws, even if the judges are Jewish, and even then the
prohibition is more sever…and it's more disgraceful then, for the replaced the
laws of the Torah with nonsense laws…There is nothing in the world, G-d forbid,
which escaped the framework of the Written Torah and the tradition we have from
Sinai…and any who has ever tasted from the taste of Torah knows that all the
words of the Torah are sweeter than honey and is the secret of our survival in
the prolonged exile…" [and about this we shall say: woe to a person who
calls bitter sweet and changes cruel laws into honey] "for soon the Master
will come home and will set true Jewish judges as we pray each day, 'return our
judges as at first and our advisors as at the start,' ones who judge according
to the Torah. 'And remove from us agony and distress'--these are those who
judge according to Christian law." ("Christian law" is the laws
of enlightened nations, the laws of freedom and equality.)
And more than this -- know that
not only those who believe in the Torah and the commandments pray each day that
the judgment according to the Torah will return and that instead of the Israeli
law courts we will have a Sanhedrin with full authority to stone, kill, and
hang, but even today, without a Sanhedrin, death sentences may be carried out
according to the Halacha! As brought in the Gemara, Sanhedrin 46a, "R'
Eliezer the son of Yaakov said: I heard that a religious court flogs and
punishes even without a rule from the Torah and though no Torah law has been
broken, just to make a fence around the Torah. There was an incident of one who
rode a horse on the Sabbath in the time the Greeks ruled, and they brought him
to the court, and he was stoned."
For riding a horse on the Sabbath "our judges as at
first [and last]" will stone a person to death, and the Shulcan Aruch,
Choshen Mishpat section two, paragraph one, writes: "Every religious
court, even one that was not empowered [by uninterrupted ordination from
teacher to disciple back to Moses] and that does not act in the Land of Israel,
if they see the nation is reckless in sinning and it is a requirement of the
times, could rule on capital cases and financial ones, all cases of punishment,
even if there is no full testimony about the matter…and this is the custom in
every place, that the city elders serve as a supreme religious court; they may
flog and punish and proclaim property ownerless, according to the custom."
And this is what is the Rama wrote in the Shulchan Aruch,
Choshen Mishpat 425a, "We cannot kill, flog or exile or slay, or beat any
of those who are liable to one of the religious court death sentences nowadays,
so we excommunicate them and separate them from the public. All this is
according to the letter of the law, but if a court sees that the times require
it as a fence, they can set whatever punishments they like, as said above in
paragraph two. This concerns only the capital cases which must be tried in
court, but those who may be killed without the court's intervention may be
sentenced to death even nowadays." [Like one who has intercourse with a
gentile woman, or heretics and apostates who may be killed without a religious
court order, as we said in the portion of Balak.]
Another thing you should know is that not only are the
Torah's laws cruel, but if the prayers of those who believe in the Torah,
"return our judges as at first," were ever to be granted, most
Israeli citizens would be inferior and discriminated against. After the
religious people use the laws of democracy and freedom of expression, seize the
government and abolish any courts of law other than the religious ones, not
only will women (half the population) automatically be invalid to bear witness,
but anyone who is not careful to observe the commandments will also be. As is
written in the Shulchan Aruch, Choshen Mishpat 34, paragraphs 1-2: "An
evildoer is forbidden to testify…Who is an evildoer? Any who violates a
prohibition which makes him liable for lashes, and there is no need to talk
about one who is liable to death at the hands of the court, whether he violated
the prohibition for his own convenience or in order to anger the Heavens."
Today, when those who fear G-d are restricted by the
country's laws, they merely fine those who open stores on the Sabbath, but when
they control the government, the courts of law will kill those who
"violate" the Sabbath without any hesitation, based on what "the
times require," as the Rama wrote above. And who determines what "the
times require"? The rabbis themselves, of course.
What follows from all the above is that in that situation,
if a religious person wants to take revenge on a non-religious person he need
only testify that "the non-religious person traveled on the Sabbath"
or rode on a horse on the Sabbath, or killed a flea on the Sabbath (though one
is permitted to kill a louse on the Sabbath; see Pamphlet 1).
In any case, the testimony of the defendant and the testimony of his
non-religious friends is invalid and would not be accepted by the court; only
the testimony of religious men would be heard. If one is not a Sabbath
observer? Throw him into a pit and stone him to death. That's how it will be
if, G-d forbid, such people take the control and if they are in power.
And if they take control of the government, what will they
do with the Israeli citizens who are not Jews? Their fate will be bitter
indeed. Not only are they, from the very start, marked by the Halacha as
inferior (one halacha even determines that one is forbidden to return a lost
item to a gentile!) the few things we must do "for the sake of peace"
would immediately stop. As Maimonides wrote in The Laws of Idolatry chapter
ten, halacha six, "None of these things [of compromise, conciliation, and
fair behavior to gentiles] are meant, except when Israel is exiled among
idolaters or the hand of idolaters has power over Israel, but when the hand of
Israel has power over them we may not allow idolaters to stay amongst us, even
if they only intend to live with us for a short time or to pass through our
land on commercial travels. They should not pass through our land until they
accepts the seven Noahide commandments."
That's how it will be. If the Sanhedrin rules over us
instead of the democratic institutions, the majority of Israelis will be
without rights and less than equal, subject to the whims of the rabbis, to
discrimination, and to the threat of death.
Words of True Knowledge