- Torah and Jewish Thought
- General Questions
Ezk.20:25:Bad laws/Can’t live by them?
Can you explain this verse (Ezk.20:25)? It seems to be saying that the laws God gave to us are bad and we can’t live by them.
The Rambam (Mishneh Torah, Shabbat 2, 3) explains that it’s referring to those who observe the mitzvot in a way which is un-livable, thus turning them into “bad mitzvot”. He gives the example of those who refuse, even when necessary, to travel to the hospital on Shabbat, or one who fasts against (!) the doctor’s orders on Yom Kippur. The Living Torah is not only practical but beneficial, and following the “Manufacturer’s Guide” is the best way to get the most out of life. In short, don’t try and be “more religious than God”, and we must always obey Him, including when He says that a certain mitzvah is temporarily displaced when it may cause danger to life (even if that may "feel" wrong, it's religiously correct).