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"For Instruction shall come forth from Zion, The word of the L-rd from Jerusalem." -- Isaiah 2:3

Jerusalem

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GENESIS — 1:27 image

Loving, compassionate behavior extends to all humanity, and grows out of the biblical teaching that every human being, both Jew and Gentile, is created in G-d’s image.  (See also Leviticus 19:34) As the biblical prophet teaches: “Have we not all one Father? Did not one G-d create us? Malachi 2:10. Justice and tolerance, the virtues that demand from us fairness and respect, are also based on the love we should feel for those, like ourselves, created in the image of G-d.  TELVOL 2:1
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GENESIS — 1:27 image 

Jewish tradition places strong emphasis on the worth of the individual.  Human worth derives first from being created in G-d’s image, a concept that the Torah repeats three times in the opening chapters of Genesis to ensure that we take note of it [this verse, Genesis 5:1-2, Genesis 9:6]. As this [third] indicates, the divine image in each of us is not only a philosophical conception but also justifies and explains specific laws. The most obvious, the one in Genesis 9, is that murder is to be banned because human beings have divine worth. Even murderers, though, are created in the divine image, as are others guilty of a capital offense. The Torah, therefore, prescribes that after we execute such people for their crimes, we must honor the divinity of their bodies (and the holiness of the Land of Israel) by burying them quickly Deuteronomy 21:22-23.  The Rabbis [of the Mishnah, Talmud, and Midrash] took this further. That we were created in G-d’s image is a manifestation of G-d’s love for us; our awareness of the divine image within us as mark of yet more divine love Genesis 9:6. DORFFDRAG 5-6
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GENESIS — 1:27 likeness

ETHICS OF MONOTHEISM. It must be borne in mind that Jews worship no abstract “First Cause”.  To the Jew G-d is a reality, with whom there is personal relationship which inspires righteous and holy conduct. The insistence with which His Unity, as well as His Incorporeality and Holiness are stressed, is due to the protest made by Judaism against the immoral practices which early contemporary religions associated with their local deities. What is now, more or less, accepted as theological doctrine was revolutionary when Judaism first proclaimed that there is only one G-d who is always approachable and nigh until those who call upon Him in truth, who is at all times “a gracious and merciful G-d” desiring nothing more than their happiness.  To provide a further link between man and his Maker, man is described in the story of Creation as formed in the divine likeness. [this verse]  Accordingly, our earthly life must be modeled on the heavenly pattern set out in the Bible. The Jew is asked to do what the Rabbis daringly, if poetically, picture G-d as doing in His ethereal abode. There He is pictured as wearing Tephillin, Berachot 6a; as donning the Tallit, Rosh Hashana 17b, as studying the Torah for three hours daily, besides praying for the welfare of all on earth. Avodah Zara 3b. G-d weeps over the short-sightedness of his children in eschewing the good and choosing the evil. Haggigah 5b. He was present at the marriage ceremony of Adam and Eve; Berachot 61a; He visits the sick, consoles the mourner and assists at the burial of the dead. Genesis Rabbah 8:13. In short, each good deed that man is asked to do is to ascend another rung on the ladder of perfection he is asked to scale if he is to reach heavenly heights.  LEHRMAN 146-7
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GENESIS — 1:27 likeness

It is a mitzvah for every Jew to love every fellow Jew as he loves himself, as the Torah states [Leviticus 19:18], You shall love your fellow as yourselfRambam, Hilchos Dei’os 6:3  Rabbi Akiva taught that this is the principle upon which the mitzvos of the Torah are based. Ben Azzai elaborated, quoting the verse regarding the creation of man [this verse], in the likeness of Hashem he was created. Thus, when we view another person we are viewing the likeness of the Creator. The Jewish people, who committed themselves to enter a permanent covenant with Hashem to follow His ways, are considered children of Hashem.  This is how we must perceive every other Jew. Furthermore, since we all have one “Father,” we are all “related,” which breeds natural closeness and feelings of affinity. Toras Kohamim, Parshas Kedoshim 4:12; Raavad, Rabbeinu Hillel (cf. Rashi, Shabbas 31a, s.v. de’aluch). See also Avos D’Rabbi Nosson 16:5, Devarim 14:1. EHRMAN 3
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GENESIS — 1:27 male/female

A man fulfills his duty to procreate, according to Jewish law, when he produces one boy and one girl Mishnah Yevamot 6:6 (61b); Laws of Marriage 15:4; Shulchan Aruch Even Ha-Ezer 1:5, thus imitating the way that G-d created humans “male and female.” Because the Jewish tradition sees children as a great blessing, however, men were supposed to try to have as many children as possible, in fulfillment of two biblical verses---“G-d did not create it [the earth] a waste, but formed it for habitation” [Ecclesiastes 11:6] and “Sow your seed in the morning [that is, in your youth], and do not hold back your hand in the evening [that is, in later years].” [Isaiah 45:18]. Yevamot 62b and Mishneh Torah, Laws of Marriage [Ishut] 15:16 encourage as many children as possible on the basis of Isaiah 45:18 and Ecclesiastes 11:6]. OXFORD 314
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GENESIS — 1:27 male/female

Although [this verse] could be read to mean that G-d created humankind to be both male and female from the beginning, the Rabbis, reading the number and gender of the nouns and pronouns literally, suggest that G-d first created one person who was androgynous.  The second chapter of Genesis, however, asserts that G-d first created a male human being from the dust, and then created a female from the man’s side in order to be his helpmate.  This second account, and the Garden of Eden story that follow in chapter three, assert that man is first in the order of Creation and is designed/meant to reign over woman.  So even the opening chapters of Genesis give us conflicting understandings of human gender and of the proper relationship.  DORBOD xiv-xv
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GENESIS — 1:27 male/female

Ethics in Family Life.  The basis of Jewish social life being the family, Judaism has exercised a ceaseless vigil over its purity and stability. The relation between the sexes is based upon the ideal of tohorat ha’mishpachat, that is, upon chastity and purity which border on holiness.  The Jew does not regard woman as his inferior but as his co-partner. The sole reason why she is exempt from certain precepts, the fulfillment of which is circumscribed by the occasion, is the fact that male and female have been cast into different physiques, making it biologically necessary for a division of labour between man and woman. It was never intended that the sphere of the home, delegated to the wisdom and tenderness of the wife and mother, should be considered as secondary to the study of the Torah or to the pursuit of a livelihood, occupations set aside for the programme of men.  The Bible knows no such distinction, for “male and female He created them”. [this verse] LEHRMAN 237
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GENESIS — 1:27 male/female

Procreation is a requirement of Jewish law. To deny procreation is to deny creation.  Celibacy affirms the limitations of the body, the status quo.  Procreation assumes that no body is complete or whole. To realize our bodily nature, a complementary other is needed. See, e.g. Yevamot 63a, “A man who has no wife is no proper man for it is said, [this verse].  Adam equals the human.  Only when male and female are united are they called Adam.”  HTBAJ 154
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GENESIS — 1:28 blessed

When G-d created man, He left the task of moral perfection to man himself.  That is why the divine refrain “And He saw that it was good” that accompanies the other acts of Creation which sprang into life at the fiat of G-d, is significantly omitted when man was shaped in the likeness of his Creator.  For though the first chapter of Genesis concludes the six days of Creation and “And G-d saw everything that He had made, and behold it was very good”, this approval seems to be the work in general, and not specifically of man.  In fact, man is described a few chapters later (Genesis 8:21) as possessing “from his youth, an evil inclination.”  In this steep climb towards nobility, the ethics of Judaism, as presented in belief and action, will serve as competent guides.  To help man in his aim of becoming spiritually perfect, the Torah has outlined the unique design for living that we call Judaism.  LEHRMAN 3
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GENESIS — 1:28 fertile

All human actions are either commanded, prohibited, or meant to secure some basic need.  For whatever deviates from the bounds of the necessary – either toward excessiveness or toward deficiency – can be nothing other than a command, if it be for the sake of Heaven, or a prohibition, if it is not for the sake of Heaven.  Upon further examination of the basic need to draw sustenance from the world, we find that we are commanded to do so, as it says in the beginning of [the account of] Creation: (the verse) and then it says, “Behold I have given you every seed bearing plant on the face of all the earth. Genesis 1:29. Thus, securing one’s need for food is included in the category of the commanded.  Since this is so, it is now evident that all human actions are either commanded or prohibited.  DUTIES 271
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