Question:
Hello,
 
Thank you for your interesting presentation of the subject but I have an objection.  I was going to say I found an error but that would assume that I am right, and the more humble approach is to not assume I am right but to be open to the possibility that I am wrong.
 
The part where you say what makes God God is not that he is all powerful or the creator but because the instructions for Torah actually work.  
 
It may be good initially to entice people to follow Torah with a reward incentive, that is to say if you follow Torah you will be rewarded with peace, happiness, wealth etc.  But there is a teaching in the Mishneh Torah concerning the 7 laws of Noah which states, that anyone who observes the commandments in order to receive a reward does not have a place in the world to come, rather the commandments must be fulfilled simply because God commanded them.  In this will he merit a place in the world to come.
And these are my own words: and why would someone do what God commands? because God is the creator, and as his creation is right and just to be obedient to him, as is evidenced by the Torah which states that one must honor their parents.  
 
Although these words were directed as bnei Noah, logic would seem to suggest that it is likely they apply to all of God's creation.
 
peace,

eran

 

Answer:

Regarding why anyone should keep commandments, This is just the Rambam's opinion (he is very well entitled to it).

In regards to keeping them (7 laws) because G-d gave them (in Hil Melachim) this is only regarding someone who is seeking a share in the next world (something that not even the Torah itself ever claims exists).
I was trying to justify the keeping of any of G-ds commands from a literal understanding of the text and its characters, ie without bringing any later mystical notion of impulse because of some promise of a later metaphysical reward which does not appear in the text anyways.
 
The unchangeable fact is that the Torah offered us commands to keep, why you keep them is really up to you, although I do think that trying to entice people with some future reward when the Torah is silent of such a reward (while still calling it torah) is misleading and dishonest.
 
The only things that we as those who study the commands that appear in Torah can objectively know is that for the most part they (the laws) work in improving not just our personal lives but or surroundings as well.
(which is the only argument we can offer skeptics inquiring about Judaism.
 
That being said I do believe in a reward but I don't think that the Torah commands me to.
 
R' Asher Meza