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How To Be Holy

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God instructs Moses to tell the Jewish people: “You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God, am holy” (Leviticus 19:2). How does one make oneself holy? The remaining 35 verses of Leviticus 19, however, offer specific mitzvot to help one achieve this goal. Here are those that are applicable even without the Holy Temple:

1. Fear your mother and father and keep Shabbat. (More Details)
2. No idolatry. (More Details)
3. Leave the corners of the harvested field and the gleanings of the field and the vineyard, as well as the fallen fruit of the vineyard, for the poor and the stranger.
4. Do not steal, deal falsely or lie to one another.
5. Do not swear falsely in God’s name.(More Details)
6. Do not oppress or steal from your neighbor.
7. Pay your employees on time.(More Details)
8. Judge your neighbor righteously. Do not disrespect the poor, nor favor the mighty. (More Details)
9. Do not act as a talebearer, nor stand by idly as the blood of your neighbor is shed.
10. Do not hate your brother in your heart. Rebuke your brother and do not bear sin because of him.
11. Do not take vengeance or bear a grudge (More Details ). Love your neighbor as yourself.
12. Do not let your cattle mix-breed, or sow your field with mixed seed, and do not wear garments of mixed fibers (wool and linen).
13. The fruit of trees planted in Israel is forbidden for the first three years. According to many it applies outside of Israel as well.
14. Do not eat blood (More Details), practice divination or soothsaying, round the corners of your heads, mar the corners of your beard (More Details) or make cuts of mourning in your flesh or imprint marks on your body.
15. Do not make your daughter a harlot.
16. Keep Shabbat (More Details) and revere God’s sanctuary.
17. Do not try to communicate with the dead.
18. Respect the elderly. (More Details)
19. Treat the convert as one of your own. (More Details)
20. Keep honest weights and measures. (More Details)
21. Observe all God’s statutes and ordinances, and do them.

Copyright © 2012 National Jewish Outreach Program. All rights reserved.

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