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Love #7: Gentiles - Love Or Animosity?

There is a mitzva in the Torah to love EVERY JEW!!! Big job!

What about Gentiles? Is there a biblical obligation to love a Gentile? No.

Buuuuuuuut [say with talmudic sing-song] the Holy Kabbalist Rabbi Chaim Vital [Sefer Shaarei Kedusha] says that we SHOULD love even the Gentiles. Every human being is created in the image of G-d. If one truly loves G-d, he will also love His creations who are a "reflection" [tzelem] of Him.

Rav Kook writes that "It is impossible not to love all of G-d's creations." [Middos Haraáyah Ahava 3]. In another passage Rav Kook says that we must all follow in the path of Avraham Avinu who was "av hamon goyim" - the father of many nations, not only the Jews. Avraham loved everybody and everybody was blessed through him - and us. "V'nivrichu bicha kol mishpachos hoádama .. uvizarecha." [Oros Yisrael 8/5]


I love my wife and I love my neighbor's wife but in a quantitatively and qualitatively different way! I am crazy about my children and feel great affinity for my neighbor's children but there is no comparison! I love my parents and I love my friend's parents but we are talking about a much more intense love for my own. [Except for my brother's parents. I love them as much as I love my own.] So too, we must remember that our love for our fellow Jew must be incomparably greater than our love for gentiles. Some people blur the lines and that is a serious problem.

When Moshiach comes and the Gentiles will make themselves more lovable there will be a utopian society of love and peace for all.

Love and Blessings,


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About me

  • I'm Rabbi Ally Ehrman
  • From Old City Jerusalem, Israel
  • I am a Rebbe in Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh.
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