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Sukkat Shalom B'nei Noach



13 Principles of Torah-based Faith that were enumerated by Rambam (Maimonides):

10. I fully believe that G-d knows man’s actions and thoughts.

G-d sees and hears all the actions of men. We see this in Tehillim, for example, where it is jokingly said to the people:

thinking, “The L-RD does not see it, the G-d of Jacob does not pay heed.”… Shall He who implants the ear not hear, He who forms the eye not see?

(Tehillim 94: 7-9)

Of course, G-d sees and hears everything. Only ignorant people think not.

This is in contrast to deaf and blind people. Precisely because G-d sees and hears everything, we must think carefully about our actions.

You shall not insult the deaf, or place a stumbling block before the blind. You shall fear your G-d: I am Hashem

(Leviticus 19:14)

G-d not only sees and hears everything, He knows our thoughts, even our most secret thoughts.

G-d would surely search it out, for He knows the secrets of the heart.

Tehillim 44:22

The L-RD knows the thoughts of men to be futile.

Tehillim 94:11

We must not harm our neighbour with actions, nor with thoughts.

Do not wrong one another, but fear your G-d; for I – Hashem – am your G-d.

Leviticus 25:17

How is it that G-d knows everything?

In Malachi 3:6 we read:

For I am the L-RD—I have not changed;

A person changes when he learns or becomes aware of something. His knowledge increases, he knows something he did not know before. With God it doesn’t work this way, as the Rambam said

“that the Holy One, blessed be He, His Essence and Being, and His knowledge are completely one, a perfect unity and not a composite at all.”

G-d is beyond place and time. He knows what is yesterday, today and tomorrow. He knows His Creation completely because He and His Creation form an absolute unity.

How can we understand this a little?

We experience our body as a unity. We know in our heads what our feet are doing, we feel where our little toe is, know when it bumps or when there is a splinter in it.

By Angelique Sijbolts

Sources: Tanya chapter 8

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