Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Telling the future - not just prophets

 Sefer HaIkkarim (1:18): The Rambam writes in Sefer Madah 8th chapter of Yesodei HaTorah that Moshe Rabbeinu was not believed by the Jews because of the signs and wonders...The Rambam is saying that that the miraculous signs that were done by the prophets  -  like the dead person who was resurrected by Elisha or Na’aman’s cure from leprosy or Chananya, Mishael and Azariyah who were not harmed when thrown into a furnace or Daniel who was saved from the lions or Yonah who was saved from the belly of the fish and similarly all the miraculous signs that were done by the prophets or the foretelling of the future  -  are in fact not in themselves proof to the validity of prophecy. In fact, people other than prophets are capable of foretelling the future such as astrologers or diviners. Even the doing of miraculous signs, it is possible that some of them can be done by tzadikim or Chassidim  -  even though they are not prophets. For example, R’ Chanina ben Dosa and R’ Pinchas ben Ya’ir and his colleagues or by means of natural technology as Chazal tell us concerning King Chezkiyahu… who was saved from fire by the use of salamander oil. Alternately the supernatural events could be done through magic as we saw in Egypt or by utilization of Divine Names…because the Divine Names have the ability to bring about miraculous events. …

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