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What Is the Torah?

What Is the Torah?

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The Torah is composed of two parts: the Written Law and the Oral Law. The written Torah contains the Five Books of Moses, the Prophets and the Writings. Together with the Written Torah, Moses was also given the Oral Law, which explains and clarifies the Written Law. It was transmitted orally from generation to generation, and eventually transcribed in the Mishnah, Talmud, Midrash, and the entire corpus of Torah literature that was developed over the millennia.

The word Torah means “instruction” or “guide.” The Torah guides our every step and move through its 613 mitzvahs. The word mitzvah means both “commandment” and “connection.” Through the study of Torah and fulfillment of mitzvahs, we connect ourselves and our environment to G‑d. G‑d’s purpose in creating the world is that we sanctify all of creation, imbuing it with holiness and spirituality.

On the holiday of Shavuot, the entire Jewish nation heard from G‑d the Ten Commandments. The next day Moses went up to Mount Sinai, where he was taught by G‑d the rest of the Torah—both the Written and Oral Laws—which he then transmitted to the entire nation.

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Anonymous Arizona January 27, 2017

Wanting to learn Could you please explain the G-d? I was raised to Southern Baptist but I am really eager to learn the truth! Will you please explain it to me? Reply

Chani Benjaminson, chabad.org June 2, 2008

Tosefta Yes, it is part of the Oral Torah. Click here to read up more about this. Reply

Anonymous Lancaster County, PA May 31, 2008

Tosefta Is Tosefta part of the Oral Torah? Reply

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