Blind Leaders of the Blind?


November 1996

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The Orthodox Jew is a good example of those who follow the law blindly.  The law said that a fire could not be kindled on the Sabbath day (Ex. 35:3).  The Orthodox consider electricity to be fire and will use no electricity on the Sabbath day.  They will not start their cars, although they will ride in an airplane that began its flight before the Sabbath.


There are kosher elevators where there are large numbers of the Orthodox.  They stop at all the floors, so the Orthodox do not have to push the button, or wait for someone to push it for them.  It is all right for them to ride the elevator if someone else has pushed the button, or if it is a kosher elevator.  You must commend their zeal, especially if their room is on the sixtieth floor.


They have a real problem if they have to stay in modern hotels over the Sabbath.  These rooms do not have keys anymore, but operate by electronic cards.  Therefore the Orthodox have to leave their doors open, and try to persuade the maids not to close them.


Dietary laws are a real problem.  Tuna fish is o.k., but there is a problem if it is suspected that a dolphin or some other unclean animal is caught in the net and even a tiny portion of the contents of the can is dolphin.


The tradition of eating ham at Easter was the Christian witness to liberty in Christ.  Rightly or wrongly, it was a sort of in-your-face response to those who blindly followed the law.               Return to menu