The Torah

Torah Scroll at the MST

The Torah is the first part of the Hebrew Scriptures. It contains the five Books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. It is hand-written on parchment by Soferim (expert scribes).

For Jews, this is the basic revelation of¬†God, given to Moses at Mount Sinai and studied and interpreted throughout all of Jewish history. It teaches Judaism as ethical monotheism, the belief in the one, unique God. The¬†Torah¬†and the Bible are the texts which tell the history of human life from the first moment of divine creation, and speak to all people. The rabbis wrote commentaries reinterpreting Jewish laws and customs as the world and the Jewish community evolved. Yet the¬†Torah¬†remains the sacred text of Jewish life. As the Sabbath prayer says: ‚ÄúTheTorah, given by God to Moses, is the property of the children of Israel.‚ÄĚ In dark times Jews would risk their lives to rescue it from peril.

Torah Scrolls at the Museum