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“Moses our Teacher was commanded by the Almighty to compel the world to accept the Commandments of the Sons of Noah. Anyone who fails to accept them is executed.” – Mishneh Torah (Rambam), Laws of Kings and Wars, 8.13
What are the Jewish Noahide Laws, and why does America need to repeal Public Law 102-14? To answer these questions, let’s take a look at the law itself as it is cataloged in the Library of Congress. Let’s also research Noahide Law and get its definition from a reputable source.
What Is Public Law 102-14?
|Public Law 102-14 was signed into law by George H. W. Bush |
and is cataloged at the Library of Congress
On March 20th 1991, the United States Congress passed H.J Res 104, which was then signed into law by President George H. W. Bush and became Public Law No. 102-14. The language of the law asserts that the "Seven Noahide Laws" are the ethical values of civilized society and are the basis on which the American nation was founded and that without these Seven Noahide Laws society stands in peril. It is also stated that it is our nation's "responsibility" to transmit these "ethical values" to the generations of the future and that in the future the President of the United States will sign an "international scroll" pledging to return the world to the Seven Noahide Laws through education and charity. The law also celebrates the birthday of one Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the leader of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement, who along with this organization has been dedicated to spreading and fostering the Seven Noahide Laws in society.
Notice the law is written in a very creative way, it states the Seven Noahide Laws are the "foundation" upon which American was founded, couldn't someone argue that this statement makes the Noahide Laws actionable and enforceable? The law says it is our responsibility to transmit the values of these Seven Noahide Laws to the nation, could this be interpreted to mean we must begin education programs? The law also promises that our President will sign an "international scroll" pledging to return the world the values of the Noahide Laws, along with other heads of state; could this proclamation ever supersede American law? Before discussing what the Noahide Laws are, please take a moment to read Public Law No. 102-14 in full from the American Library of Congress website:
“Whereas Congress recognizes the historical tradition of ethical values and principles which are the basis of civilized society and upon which our great Nation was founded; Whereas these ethical values and principles have been the bedrock of society from the dawn of civilization, when they were known as the Seven Noahide Laws; Whereas without these ethical values and principles the edifice of civilization stands in serious peril of returning to chaos; Whereas society is profoundly concerned with the recent weakening of these principles that has resulted in crises that beleaguer and threaten the fabric of civilized society; Whereas the justified preoccupation with these crises must not let the citizens of this Nation lose sight of their responsibility to transmit these historical ethical values from our distinguished past to the generations of the future; Whereas the Lubavitch movement has fostered and promoted these ethical values and principles throughout the world; Whereas Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, leader of the Lubavitch movement, is universally respected and revered and his eighty-ninth birthday falls on March 26, 1991; Whereas in tribute to this great spiritual leader, `the rebbe’, this, his ninetieth year will be seen as one of `education and giving’, the year in which we turn to education and charity to return the world to the moral and ethical values contained in the Seven Noahide Laws; and Whereas this will be reflected in an international scroll of honor signed by the President of the United States and other heads of state: Now, therefore, be it“
– Public Law 102-14, Library of Congress Website (Please Google “Public Law 102-14, Library of Congress”)
Who Is Rabbi Schneerson?
Public Law 102-14 also commemorates the birth of
Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson
who promoted the Noahide Laws.
But what are the "Seven Noahide Laws"? How can we know what the law is asking of us if the Seven Noahide Laws have not been explained? One clue to this mystery lays in the fact that the law commemorates the birth of a Rabbi, Rabbi Schneerson; is it possible the Seven Noahide Laws have something to do with Judaism? Who is Rabbi Schneerson? Rabbi Schneerson is an extremely controversial Rabbi as he has stated that non-Jewish souls are "satanic" and that non-Jews have no other purpose than to serve Jews who are the reason for creation, the Rabbi believes this ownership on the part of Jews goes so far as that Jews own the fetus of non-Jews and thus non-Jews may not have abortions as the unborn child is Jewish property; Jews, however, are not punished for abortions since the adult Jew is the meaning of creation above the fetus of a Jew (here). This law is already offensive as it praises a Rabbi who obviously hates non-Jews, but what are the Seven Noahide Laws? To answer this question I turned to a respected source on the Jewish religion, the 1906 Jewish encyclopedia.
The 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia
|Josh Kopelman is a reputable Jewish entrepreneur. |
His Kopelman Foundation is responsible for
digitizing the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia.
The 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia is an English language encyclopedia originally published in New York between 1901 and 1906 by Funk and Wagnalls, under the full title “The Jewish encyclopedia; a descriptive record of the history, religion, literature, and customs of the Jewish people from the earliest times to the present day.” It contains over 15,000 articles in 12 volumes on the history and then-current state of Judaism and the Jews.[A] Fortunately, the entire 12 volumes of the Jewish Encyclopedia has been uploaded online by The Kopelman Foundation. According to their website, one of the Kopelman Foundation’s missions is to “advance a deeper understanding of Judaism — its traditions, values and history — and help Jewish organizations make a positive contribution to contemporary public life.” [B] The Kopleman Foundation was founded by Josh Kopelman and his wife Rena Cohen. Josh Kopelman is an American entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and philanthropist most noted for founding the website www.half.com which he sold to ebay in 2002. Josh Kopleman also professes to be of the Jewish Religion. You can access his professional LinkedIn account (here). Seeing that Josh Kopleman is a professional business person, it is safe to assume that his digital version of the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia is authentic and worthy of quoting. You can access all 12 volumes of the Jewish Encyclopedia at www.jewishencyclopedia.com.
What does the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia Say About Noahide Law?
|The symbol of Noahide Law is a rainbow,|
Noah's rainbow, 7 colors for 7 laws
1906 Jewish EncyclopediaThe Seven Noahide Laws: Jewish Religious Laws That Apply to All
According to the “Seven Laws” section of the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, according to Judaism all human beings are the descendants of a man named Noah who along with his family survived a worldwide flood spoken of in the Bible. “Noahide” refers to “Noah”, the supposed to be father of all of humanity according to Jewish theology. According to the encyclopedia entry, Jewish Rabbis have determined that since we are all the children of Noah, and the Noahide Laws were given to him, they are binding upon all of humanity, not just “Israelites”. The section states that these Seven Noahide Laws are not found within the Old Testament of the Bible (Torah) but were introduced later in a book called the Talmud (a Jewish holy book). According to the entry, the Seven Noahide Laws are:
1) Do Not Worship Idols
2) Do Not Blaspheme
3) Establish Courts of Justice
4) Not To Kill
5) Not To Commit Adultery
6) Not To Rob
7) Not To Eat Flesh Cut From Living Animals
According to Judaism, the Noahide Laws against blasphemy, idolatry, adultery and the command to set up “courts of justice” are mandatory upon non-Jews just as they are Israelites. These are the laws which Public Law 102-14 states America was founded upon, but isn’t America supposed to be a secular nation, with separation of Synagogue and state? Why have Jewish religious law been adopted into our legal system? The above-mentioned laws would impinge on the rights and freedoms of others. Isn’t blasphemy, questioning or disparaging of a certain religion or god freedom of speech? What about Idolatry? Isn’t it one’s right to worship in whatever way they see fit, even if this includes using idols to commune with the heavens? And then there is adultery. We don’t all believe that adultery is a sin or should be abolished. What about these “courts of justice”, are these Jewish religious courts? There are already many questions that need to be answered about Jewish Noahide Law and Public Law 102-14.
The Seven Laws.
Laws which were supposed by the Rabbis to have been binding upon mankind at large even before the revelation at Sinai, and which are still binding upon non-Jews. The term Noachian indicates the universality of these ordinances, since the whole human race was supposed to be descended from the three sons of Noah, who alone survived the Flood. Although only those laws which are found in the earlier chapters of the Pentateuch, before the record of the revelation at Sinai, should, it would seem, be binding upon all mankind, yet the Rabbis discarded some and, by hermeneutic rules or in accordance with some tradition (see Judah ha-Levi, “Cuzari,” iii. 73), introduced others which are not found there. Basing their views on the passage in Gen. ii. 16, they declared that the following six commandments were enjoined upon Adam: (1) not to worship idols; (2) not to blaspheme the name of God; (3) to establish courts of justice; (4) not to kill; (5) not to commit adultery; and (6) not to rob (Gen. R. xvi. 9, xxiv. 5; Cant. R. i. 16; comp. Seder ‘Olam Rabbah, ed. Ratner, ch. v. and notes, Wilna, 1897; Maimonides, “Yad,” Melakim, ix. 1). A seventh commandment was added after the Flood—not to eat flesh that had been cut from a living animal (Gen. ix. 4). Thus,the Talmud frequently speaks of “the seven laws of the sons of Noah,” which were regarded as obligatory upon all mankind, in contradistinction to those that were binding upon Israelites only (Tosef., ‘Ab. Zarah, ix. 4; Sanh. 56a et seq.).
While many additions were made to these laws by some of the tannaim—e.g., the prohibitions against eating the blood of a living animal, against the emasculation of animals, against sorcery, against pairing animals of different species, and against grafting trees of different kinds (ib. 56b)—so that in one place thirty Noachian laws are mentioned (Ḥul. 92a; comp. Yer. ‘Ab. Zarah ii. 1), the prevalent opinion in the Talmud is that there are only seven laws which are binding upon all mankind. In another baraita (Tanna debe Menasseh) the seven Noachian prohibitions are enumerated as applying to the following: (1) idolatry, (2) adultery, (3) murder, (4) robbery, (5) eating of a limb cut from a living animal, (6) the emasculation of animals, (7) the pairing of animals of different species (Sanh. 56b).
Punishment For Breaking Any Of The Seven Laws: Death By Decapitation
In the section “Laws Before Sinai” the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia states that with few exceptions, the breaking of the Jewish Noahide Laws is punishable by death by decapitation. We also learn that Noahide Law sets up a two-tier legal system, one for Jews and one for non-Jews. “Noachids”, non-Jews who have willingly accepted these laws (sometimes known as Ger Toshav if they live inside the borders of Israel), are subjected to a different and less fair legal system than Jews. A Noachid/Ger Toshav can be sentenced to death with only one witness and by one judge (implying Jews are required more judges and witnesses to be condemned to death). Also, unlike Jews, the Noachid is not entitled to an official warning for their first transgression of the law. Noachids may be executed if they blaspheme even using a substitute for the name of god, but Jews must use the full official name of god when blaspheming to be condemned to death. Condemning someone to death for not following Jewish religious law is extreme and has nothing to do with American law. Also, there is an obvious inequality before the law, non-Jews are put at a disadvantage under Jewish Noahide Law in regards to trial and execution. Why has this law been enshrined in the US Federal Government? Why is it stated to be the “foundation” of our civilization? Why does the law beseech us to transmit the “values” of these Jewish Noahide Laws to the next generation of Americans and the world? Aren’t we supposed to stand for equality and justice for all?
Laws Before Sinai.
With regard to the other laws which are mentioned in the Book of Genesis and which were not included among the Noachian laws, as, for instance, circumcision and the prohibition against eating of the “sinew that shrank,” the Rabbis laid down the following principle: “Every law that was enjoined upon the Noachidæ and was repeated at Sinai is meant to apply both to Israelites and to non-Israelites; laws that were enjoined upon the Noachidæ and were not repeated at Sinai apply to Israelites only” (Sanh. 59a; R. Jose ben Ḥanina; comp. Bacher, “Ag. Pal. Amor.” i. 430 and note). By this principle a number of the pre-Sinaitic laws were excluded from the Noachian laws, although it required a great deal of speculative reasoning to make this principle apply to all cases (Sanh. 59b).
In the elaboration of these seven Noachian laws, and in assigning punishments for their transgression, the Rabbis are sometimes more lenient and sometimes more rigorous with Noachidæ than with Israelites. With but a few exceptions, the punishment meted out to a Noachid for the transgression of any of the seven laws is decapitation, the least painful of the four modes of execution of criminals (see Capital Punishment). The many formalities of procedure essential when the accused is an Israelite need not be observed in the case of the Noachid. The latter may be convicted on the testimony of one witness, even on that of relatives, but not on that of a woman. He need have had no warning (“hatra’ah”) from the witnesses; and a single judge may pass sentence on him (ib. 57a, b; “Yad,” l.c. ix. 14). With regard to idolatry, he can be found guilty only if he worshiped an idol in the regular form in which that particular deity is usually worshiped; while in the case of blasphemy he may be found guilty, even when he has blasphemed with one of the attributes of God’s name—an action which, if committed by an Israelite, would not be regarded as criminal (ib. 56b; see Blasphemy).
“Courts of Justice”
According to the “Procedure” section, Noachids/Ger Toshav (which are all people of the world) are required to establish approved courts of justice in every city and province to judge people according to Noahide Laws and warn them against transgressions. But Noahide Law is Jewish religious law, why should non-Jews be required to set up courts to enforce Jewish Law? American courts are required to follow constitutional law, wouldn’t Public Law 102-14 create a conflict with this principle? If brought to the Supreme Court could Public Law 102-14 be ruled to supersede the Constitution, could the legal argument be made that we need to amend to Constitution to humor these laws? The section continues and further stipulations are made about the second-class status of Noachids (non-Jews). Jews who murder other people indirectly (i.e. “staving him”) are not sentenced to death, but Noachids are. Noachids are executed for stealing less than the smallest denomination of money while Jews are executed only for stealing larger amounts. Is this the kind of “justice” we are supposed to uphold in our courts?
The Noachidæ are required to establish courts of justice in every city and province; and these courts are to judge the people with regard to the six laws and to warn them against the transgression of any of them (ib.; “Yad,” l.c. ix. 14, x. 11; comp. Naḥmanides on Gen. xxxiv. 13, where the opinion is expressed that these courts should judge also cases other than those coming under the head of the six laws, as, for example, larceny, assault and battery, etc.). In the case of murder, if the Noachid slay a child in its mother’s womb, or kill a person whose life is despaired of (“ṭerefah”), or if he cause the death of a person by starving him or by putting him before a lion so that he can not escape, or if he slay a man in self-defense, the Noachid is guilty of murder and must pay the death-penalty, although under the same circumstances an Israelite would not be executed (ib. 57b; “Yad,” l.c. ix. 4; comp. “Kesef Mishneh,” ad loc.).
Only six cases of what would ordinarily be illicit connection are forbidden to the Noachid: (1) with mother; (2) with father’s wife, even after the father’s death; (3) with a married woman, whether married to a Jew or to a non-Jew; (4) with sister by the same mother; (5) pederasty; (6) bestiality. In these cases also there are differences in the punishment inflicted, dependent upon whether the offenses are committed by a Noachid or by an Israelite (see “Yad,” l.c. ix. 5-8). The Noachid is punished with decapitation for all kinds of robbery, whether from a Jew or from a non-Jew, even though the article stolen is worth less than a peruṭah (the smallest Palestinian coin, for less than which no case can be instituted against an Israelite). The Noachid is executed also if he eat of a limb cut from a living animal, even though the quantity consumed be less than the size of an olive (the minimum portion for the eating of which an Israelite may be punished; “Yad,” l.c. ix. 9-13).
Secondary Status Of Noahides (Non-Jews)
In the “Special Exception” category it is further elaborated that a Noachid is not executed if he commits a crime unwittingly, but ignorance of the Law does not excuse him. A Noachid who: kills another Noachid, practices adultery with another Noachid, blasphemes or practices idolatry may be spared from execution if they convert to full Judaism. However, they cannot escape execution even upon conversion if they killed a Jew or practice adultery with a Jew. Those who willingly follow the Noahide Laws are regarded as “domiciled aliens”, “pious of the Gentiles”. Evidence that the Noahide Laws are to be implemented everywhere comes from the ending of the entry where foreign Babylon is chastised for not following all Seven Noahide Laws, a nation that existed on the other side of the Euphrates river and beyond the boundaries of Israel. Finally, we are told that in the “Messianic Age”, the Noachids will accept Torah and becomes Jews, but then rebel against it. Noahide Law obviously has everything to do with the Jewish religion and it is also obviously very biased in favor of Jewish people and biased against non-Jews. It is no surprise that Rabbi Schneerson who is applauded in Public Law 102-14 dedicated much of his life spreading acceptance of these laws and that his Jewish followers worked to have these laws very carefully entered into federal law.
The Noachid is free from punishment if he commits a sin unwittingly; ignorance of the Law, however, does not excuse him. If he commits a sin under duress, even one for which an Israelite is obliged to undergo martyrdom rather than transgress (e.g., idolatry, adultery, or murder), he is not liable to punishment (Mak. 9a; Sanh. 74b; “Yad,” l.c. x. 1, 2; comp. “Leḥem Mishneh” and “Kesef Mishneh,” ad loc.). A Noachid who slays another Noachid, or worships idols, or blasphemes, or has illicit connection with the wife of another Noachid, and then becomes a proselyte, is free from punishment. If, however, he has killed an Israeli (Sanh. 71b; “Yad,” l.c. x. 4).
A Noachid who wishes to observe any of the laws of the Torah is not prevented from doing so. With regard to the prohibition against a Noachid studying the Law or observing the Sabbath, see Gentile in Relation to Jews.
He who observed the seven Noachian laws was regarded as a domiciled alien (, ‘Ab. Zarah 64b; see Proselyte), as one of the pious of the Gentiles, and was assured of a portion in the world to come (Tosef., Sanh. xiii. 1; Sanh. 105a; comp. ib. 91b; “Yad,” l.c. viii. 11). In Talmudic times the non-Jews of Babylon were apparently sunk in the grossest immorality, so that ‘Ula, one of the earlierBabylonian amoraim, complains that out of the thirty laws (see above) which the Noachidæ accept they observe only three—they do not write a marriage contract (“ketubah”) for pederasty; they do not sell human flesh in their shops; and they show respect for the Torah (Ḥul. 92b).
In the Messianic age the Noachidæ will accept all the laws of the Torah, although later they will again reject them (Yer. ‘Ab. Zarah ii. 1).
Hamburger, R. B. T. ii., s.v. Noachiden;
Hirschfeld, Pflichten und Gesetze der Noachiden, in Kobak’s Jeschurun, iv. 1-19;
Levinsohn, Zerubbabel, ii. 74-87, Warsaw, 1878;
Weber, System der Altsynag. Paläst. Theologie, § 56, Leipsic, 1880;
Zweifel, Sanegor, pp. 269 et seq., Warsaw, 1894.
Why Do We Want To Repeal Public Law 102-14?
Public Law 102-14 is a religious law, a Jewish religious law, and in the United States, we work under a government where there is an official separation of Synagogue and State. Public Law 102-14 defines the Seven Noahide Laws as the “foundation” of our civilization, even though there is no evidence that the United States was founded on Jewish Law. The law also requires we transmit the “ethics” of Jewish Noahide Law to the next generation and encourage other nations to adopt the Seven Noahide Laws as well. Noahide Law is not just religious law, it is also very discriminatory and biased. The law abolishes “idolatry”, “blasphemy” and “adultery” on pain of death, but these are Jewish supremacist rules, not humane or even logical rules. It also requires that all people of the world set up “courts of justice” to enforce these discriminatory laws, Noahide religious courts, not secular courts. Beyond this, Noahide Law is extremely biased in favor of Jewish people, providing them with special dispensations and greater legal protection against prosecution and execution than it does non-Jews (Noachids). These are the reasons why we need to Stop Noahide Law and repeal Public Law 102-14.
[A] “The Jewish Encyclopedia”. New York Times. August 16, 1902. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
[C] Laws, Noachian. 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia.