Lesson video

In progress...


Hi everyone, my name is Rabbi London, and today we're going to learn about Moses and the Commandments.

If you haven't already done so, please turn off your phone if you're not using it.

Or put it to the side.

And turn off any notifications if you're able to do so.

Try and end any conversations you might be in the middle of.

And try to find a place where you're going to find the least amount of distractions.

Also, today you're going to need paper or something to write on, and a pen or pencil or something to write with.

Let's get learning! So today in this lesson, we're going to learn about what happened at Mount Sinai according to Jewish belief.

We're going to learn the Ten Commandments, and we're going to learn of the concept of the 613 mitzvot or Commandments.

Today you're going to need a pen, or pencil and some paper or something to write with and something to write on.

If you haven't already gotten those things, please pause the video now and go and get some.

Before we get started with learning some new information, let's go over a little bit of what we learned the last time when we were learning about Moses and leaving Egypt.

Because really these two stories are tied together.

So which Jewish festival remembers the escape of the Hebrew slaves from Egypt? Is it Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Chanukah or Passover? Passover: Passover is the Jewish festival, that remembers the escape of the Hebrew slaves from Egypt.

What was the miracle that happened at the Red Sea? All the Jewish people knew how to swim.

The water became drinking water, the sea split and the Jewish people were able to cross to safety.

Or it started to rain delicious deserts.

The miracle at the Red Sea was that the sea split and the Jewish people were able to cross to safety.

According to tradition, who is Moses? The first human, the only prophet to speak to God face-to-face, The person to make the first covenant with God, or the first monotheist.

According to Jewish tradition, Moses is the only prophet to speak to God face-to-face.

In what book of the Torah is the story of leaving Egypt? Is it in Genesis, Leviticus, Exodus, or Deuteronomy? Exodus: The book of Exodus is the book in the Torah where the story of leaving Egypt is found.

Moses leading the Jewish people out of Egypt was the fulfilment of God's covenant with Abraham, God's covenant with Moses, a dream that Moses had, or a wish the Miriam had for her brother.

God's covenant with Abraham.

Moses leading the Jewish people out of Egypt was the fulfilment of God's covenant with Abraham.

So I'll begin where we left off the last time.

The Jewish people, had fled out of Egypt, got to a sea, were scared that they weren't going to be able to cross it, and God performs a miracle.

That they are able to walk on dry land in between two walls of water.

And they wished that the other side of the sea safely.

Now, to fulfil God's promise to Abraham, the Jewish people were on their way to the promised land.

To the land of Israel, or Canaan.

On their way, the Jewish people stopped at a small little mountain, according to tradition, called Mount Sinai.

At Mount Sinai, this is where God made a covenant, and a promise on agreement with both Moses and the Jewish people, renewing the covenant that God made with Abraham.

You remember back to the covenant that was made with Abraham.

God promised Abraham that Abraham's descendants, his children and grand children and great grand children, will be numerous, they would be saved, and they will be led from Egypt.

Or from the time of slavery, to freedom.

Now, God is making this covenant again with the children of Israel, and with Moses.

At Mount Sinai, it is where Jews believe that God gave the Jewish people the Torah, and all of the laws and the Commandments that went along with it.

The Jewish people today, even today, celebrate the holiday of receiving the Torah on a holiday called Shavout.

It's actually cerebrated 50 days after Passover.

And in many communities, they will count the 50 days between Passover, when traditionally the Jewish people left Egypt, all the way to Shavuot, the day where the Jewish people received the Torah.

So what happened at Sinai? Well according to the Torah, there was a lot of noise and there was thundering, and lightening and God spoke.

And no one was allowed onto the mountain except for Moses.

And Moses went up the mountain, and went to the top, and there, Moses and God spoke.

And according to some Jewish people, God gave Moses the Torah which contained the Ten Commandments which we're going to look at, as well as many many other laws.

According to the Talmud, a book of Jewish law, which we're going to talk about in a few lessons.

There are 613 mitzvot or a Commandments that are found within the Torah.

So God gave Moses the Torah that contained 613 Commandments that Jewish people are supposed to follow.

But today we're going to focus on 10.

The big 10 as some people like to say, the Ten Commandments for many people are the basis of what one should do, or shouldn't do.

The first commandment, we're going to read them, I'll read them out loud, is: You shall have no other God besides me.

So the first commandment in the Ten Commandments is telling the Jewish people to believe in one God.

To continual to be monotheists just like Abraham.

Commandment number two is you should not make yourself a sculptured image.

Meaning that you shouldn't make idols.

Or according to some opinions, you shouldn't make pictures of God.

So you might notice in some synagogues, there won't be any pictures of humans within the synagogue art.

Three is you should not bow down to them or serve them.

So if one does see an idol or a statue, one should not bow down and worship that idol.

Four, you shall not swear falsely by the name of the Lord your God.

Saying don't use God's name in vain.

Don't use God's name for no reason.

Like we spoke about a few classes ago, talking about how the Jewish people show reverence or respect to God's name.

Maybe only saying it at certain times, watching where documents where God's name might be on it, and how one is taking care of that object.

Five, remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy.

Part of the Commandments is to keep Shabbat or remember Shabbat.

There's actually two versions of the Ten Commandments, once in Exodus and once in Deuteronomy.

So there's a little bit of a difference in language.

So remember keep Shabbat the day of rest.

That we spoke about when we were learning about creation.

Six, honour your father and your mother.

Or and it's also gets passed down as honour those who are older than you.

Show respect to your teachers and grandparents or any of the adults in our lives.

Seven, you should not murder.

Eight, you shouldn't commit adultery.

Meaning that if one is married, one should stay with their partner.

Nine, you shall not steal.

10, you should not be jealous of your neighbor's house.

So those are the Ten Commandments.

If we're looking at them, especially if they're written in this way, we can see that it seems, like five, the first five Commandments have to do with a person's relationship to God.

And the second five look like a person's relationship to how they are supposed to treat or interact with other people.

That is a lot of information and a lot about the laws.

So what I want you to do is take a few moments to review the Ten Commandments.

I want you to go back a slide and copy down the Ten Commandments.

Then write the Ten Commandments in your own words.

Please write in full sentences.

Press play and resume the video once you're finished.

So we were just talking a lot about the Commandments.

And the question that I would be asking is who is the author of them? Well, there's not really one answer.

Many Orthodox Jews believe that the words of the Torah were dictated to Moses by God.

So they believe that when Moses went up to Mount Sinai, Moses sat and spoke to God, and God told Moses explicitly what Moses should write down, and what all the laws are.

Because of this belief, this is how that the words of the Torah all of the words both the laws and the stories are coming directly from God.

One is going to see that the law might be more strictly followed.

And it's going to be more, a little bit more difficult to change.

Because in this belief, all the laws are coming directly from God.

Some reform or liberal Jews believe that the Torah was actually developed over a long period of time, and later attributed to Moses.

Meaning that it was as the Jewish people were wandering the desert and wandering, and were leaving Egypt.

They collected laws and customs, and Moses was one of the compilers.

And because he was one of the compilers, someone will say that he's the one who wrote it.

Reformed Jews see some of the Commandments as being a product of a particular time in culture.

And some laws might not be relevant today.

Or some laws have more of an ability to change or adapt to the way that life is looking in this year.

So I'd like you to pause the video and please answer in complete sentences.

How might the belief in who wrote the Torah have an effect with how one interacts with the Torah laws? Resume the video when you're finished.

So there's a lot of laws.

We're talking about a lot of laws, I know that.

Many Jews believe that Moses was given both the written law, the Torah, and the oral law at Sinai.

The oral law was what was being said around, was big passed around by word of mouth to help interpret the written law.

Because many things within the Torah were not very explicit of how does this actually happen? Or what does this object look like? But it was through the oral law that people knew how were the some of things built, what were certain ways that objects needed to look, and that was helpful.

The oral law was written down so it also became written.

And that is now what's known as the Mishna and Talmud or Mishna and Gemara.

And we're going to learn about that in a few classes.

What's important to know or remember is that according to some opinions, Moses was given both the written law and the oral law at Sinai.

Jewish law, which we've been talking about a lot, is also known as Halacha.

So a mitzvot is a commandment, and Halacha, is Jewish law.

The word Halacha comes from the root word to go.

Because it's seen as a way of life.

There are Jewish laws that encompass all parts of a person's life.

From the moment a person can wake up, to all the rituals that one does in relationship to God.

There are some mitzvot right, so there are 613.

So some of those 613 mitzvot are about humans and God.

Well some of those mitzvot are about how humans are supposed to relate to other humans.

So for example, some mitzvot that happen between humans and God are: Keeping Shabbat or keeping the Sabbath.

What does it mean that someone is supposed to rest on the Sabbath? Keeping the laws of Kosher.

The Jewish dietary laws which we'll go over in more detail, don't worry.

All the ways in which a person is supposed to celebrate the holidays.

Or what does Jewish prayer look like? Those are all the mitzvot, the commandments that are about humans and their relationship to God.

And I only gave you four examples.

Don't worry, there's many many more.

And then there're mitzvot that are in Commandments that are between human to human, and how humans are supposed to interact with one another.

Some examples are: The commandment of giving charity and taking care of those who are around a person.

Or that one is supposed to judge another person favourably.

Or there's a commandment in the Torah that one is supposed to return a lost object.

So if someone is walking around and finds something, they're obligated by the Torah to try and return that object to the rightful owner.

Another example is that it is a Torah obligation to pay workers fair wages.

So these are just a few examples of some of the mitzvot.

And as we saw as some mitzvot are the 613 have to do with how a Jewish person interacts or connects with God, and some of the mitzvot, are about how a Jewish person is supposed to act with other people living on earth.

Let's review quickly.

True or False: All Jewish people believe that God wrote the Torah.


Not all Jewish people believe that God wrote the Torah.

The word mitzvah means to pray.


The word mitzvah means commandment.

And sometimes, people will use it to mean a good deed.

True or False: Jewish people believe that God created a covenant at Mount Sinai.


Jewish people believe that God created a covenant at Mount Sinai.

True or False: One of the Ten Commandments is to honour one's parents.


One of the Ten Commandments is to honour one's parents.

True or False: Jews believe that there are only 10 commandments.


Jews believe that there are 613 commandments.

True or False: Jewish people believe that Moshe, Moses received the Torah at Mount Sinai.


Jewish people believe that Moses received the Torah at Mount Sinai.

You did great today.

Thank you so much for joining, and learning, and working really hard.

Today we learned all about Moses, receiving the Torah at Sinai, and about the 613 Commandments.

Some of which are between humans and God, and some of which are between humans and humans.

Take a moment to write down three things that you learned today.

And feel free to share those with your parents or carer or friend or teacher.

And now don't forget to complete the end of lesson quiz.

Have a wonderful day, and happy learning.