Ask the Rabbi

  • Torah and Jewish Thought
  • Questions on Hashem

Loving G-d


Rabbi Jonathan Blass

20 Sivan 5763
G-d has commanded us to love Him in an absolute all- encompassing way. Do you think this is really possible for man? What is your experience?
Maimonides writes that someone who worships G-d out of love performs the mitzvot- not because he expects to be rewarded or out of fear of punishment- but only because he knows that they are true. He adds that this kind of worship characterized Abraham, but that not even all righteous people attain this level of devotion (Hilchot Teshuva 10 2). Such a person is G-d-obsessed; everything he does is based on his identification with the source of absolute truth and goodness and his desire to advance these with all his being (Hilchot Teshuva 10 3). Maimonides teaches (Sefer Ha Mitzvot asei 3) that when one devotes himself to understanding the Torah and the ways of G-d in the world and is blessed with insights, these insights are accompanied by a joy inevitably leading to a love of G-d. Try it and you will see from your own experience that Maimonides was right.
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