"Do not think that I have come to incorrectly interpret the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to incorrectly interpret them but to correctly interpret them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished."
(Matthew 5: 17-18)
As he has given us such a direct instruction, it is useful to be able to define exactly what the Law (teachings / instructions) are to which he refers.
This is where we can learn much from Jewish tradition, that has identified 613 positive and negative commandments in the Bible (TaNaKH – Torah (teachings), Nevi'im (prophets) and KHetuv'im (writings)).
In Hebrew, letters also have numerical values. If you take the numerical value of the word "Torah" (Tav, 400; plus Vav, 6; plus Reysh, 200; plus Heh, 10 equals 611) then add the 2 laws that existed before the Torah was given to Moses ("I am the Lord your G-d" and "you shall have no other gods before me"), you get 613.
The word Taryag also equals 613, hence the above name / desription - "Taryag Mitzvot".
Several lists have been compiled over the ages, but this is the list of 613 as identified by the renowned Jewish Scholar, Rambam (Rabbi Moses Ben Maimonides, 1135-1204).
Please also see our teaching on "Torah Rediscovered" for more information on our views on Torah for the Believer in Yeshua as Messiah. To help you in your studies, these mitzv'ot (commandments) have been placed in a thematic order.
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