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Rambam - Sefer HaMitzvos
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Positive Mitzvah 155

  Day 45Day 47  

This is not an error of duplication. The full-fledged version of this Mitzvah are many and change for those who are learning the one/three chapter a day. The Message for the day from "Bringing Heaven Down to Earth" at the end of this Mitzvah is different than that of yesterday.
Positive Mitzvah 155: Making Shabbat holy
Exodus 20:8 "Remember the Shabbat to keep it holy"

HaShem created the world in six days.

Upon completing the creation, He declared the seventh day to be special.

He proclaimed it holy, separating it from the rest of the week by not creating anything on that seventh day - the Shabbat.

The Torah wants us to regard the Shabbat as being holy.

Just as HaShem proclaimed it to be special, we are commanded to recite a special prayer when the Shabbat arrives - the Kiddush, and when it departs - the Havdalah.

These prayers remind us of the holiness and uniqueness of Shabbat.


The miracle of Chanuka was that one flask of oil burned for eight days. Some say the oil burned, but new oil miraculously appeared each day. Some say the oil wasn't really burning, that the flame was miraculous. The theories go on and on. Why do we limit G-d with our logic? Say simply the flame was burning oil, but the oil was not burning!

G-d can do anything. He could even, as the saying goes, "fit an elephant through the eye of a needle." So, how would He do it? Would He make the elephant smaller? Or would He expand the eye of the needle?

Neither. The elephant would remain big, the eye of the needle small. And He would fit the elephant through the eye of the needle. Illogical? True. But logic is just another of His creations. He who created logic is permitted to disregard it.

When the world was made and done, G-d was left with two lights: A light of boundless energy that encompasses all things and gives them being, but transcends them, and a penetrating light that vitalizes all things but is limited and darkened by them.

The first light is a pure expression of "there is none else but He", so from it extend miracles, acts that deny the world any significance. The second light is an expression of His desire there be a world, so from it extends the natural order of things, a world of elements behaving as though they are directed by their own properties.

But G-d did not want a world where there are two gods -- one of Nature and one of the supernatural. So He made the two lights to play in harmony, to reveal that they both shine from one Source.

How does He do it? Does He blunt the miracles so they could fit into the natural order? Or does He change the nature of things to compromise with the miracles?

Neither. The properties of each thing remain the same, the natural order runs according to its own laws, and miracles of the highest order occur. The elephant in the eye of the needle, the infinite within the finite. Impossible? Plant a seed and watch it grow. And greater by order of magnitude: Plant good deeds and watch with wonder the miracles that ensue.

From: Bringing Heaven Down to Earth by Tzvi Freeman - tzvif@aol.com


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