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Rabbi Yoel Lieberman

Kislev 18, 5779
Question
Shalom Rav, Q) is there any Pasuk in bereshit that hints Adam was given 6 commandments ? Q) if so why are the commandments given to Adam if there is only one man or two people especially if there is no community ( for eg: commandment of establishing courts..)? Thank you Rav for your precious and valuable time and we really appreciate this..
Answer
ב"ה Shalom The Rabbis in Sanhedrin 56b derive from the Pasuk in Bereshit 2:16 as being the source for the 7 Commandments given to Noach. There are different versions in other Rabbinic sources, but it seems from most of them that Adam was given 6, and the 7th commandment prohibiting eating live flesh from an animal was given to Noach. (see Torah Shleima on Bereshit 2:16 and Rambam Hilchot Melachim 9:1) The Rambam sees this source primarily as an "Asmachta" – a reference while the actual commandment is something that the "mind requires". (see also Rav Yehuda Halevi , Kuzari 3:73) It seems that Adam as the crown of creation, gifted with intellectual powers beyond the other creations, was given the commandments to be the leader of all beings and to lie the foundations for the generations to come. (see Rav Yoseph Albo, Ikkarim I;11) All the best and Happy Chanuka !
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