May a Noahide Keep a Halakhic Shabbat Rest?

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About three years ago, after many years of teaching according to the opinion of the majority of Orthodox rabbis in our day – that Noahides are forbidden to keep Shabbat – after having seen too much evidence to the contrary, I have firmly reversed my position on this, finally agreeing with an early mentor’s opinion on this. A Noahide is by no means required to keep Shabbat whatsoever, but he may, if he so wishes. This pieces explores the reasons why.

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About Author

Mori Michael-Shelomo Bar-Ron is an ordained rabbi and publishing Torah scholar. He also has a BA in Anthropology from the University of California San Diego. His broad Torah journey ultimately brought him to formal rabbinical training at Shehebar Sephardic Center in Jerusalem, and under the tutelage of master halakhic decisors according to RaMBaM. Bar-Ron made strong bonds of friendship with Noahide scholars and teachers in the U.S., and became keenly aware of their need for authentic Torah instruction. This was the inspiration for this book. He is currently based out of his Torah center in Ramat Beit Shemesh, Ohel Moshe (torathmoshe.com), where he continues to study, teach and write.

1 Comment

  1. This is a simple and sound deduction of what a Ben-Noach may, rather than must, do beyond the seven obligatory categories. I am happy to read that a Noachide may keep the Shabbath while being cautious on the lexical choice of some prayers. I wonder what the reaction from the wider community has been, such as from Rabbi Weiner of Sefer Shewa Mitzwoth Hashem, if any response at all.

    One comment on the wisely articulated footnote #3, specifically:

    The death penalties discussed in the Torah and by the Rabbis for desecration of ritual, stealing, etc.,are NOT to be adjudicated thus in our time. For several reasons, to relate to the corporal punishments in classical rabbinical halakhahas practical in our day and age is no less than criminal.

    Is M’ori Bar-Ron implying, based on the quote above, that certain punitive injunctions in the Torah are no longer practical nowadays and, therefore, may be ignored? Or am I misinterpreting this statement, the equivalent of which would be that certain aspects of Torah are no longer to be heeded, despite the principle that the Torah is invariably immutable and stands as given at Mount Sinai?

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